Thursday, 24 March 2016

The weight loss continues...

Here we are almost into April and we have some good news. I have officially lost 10 kgs...technically speaking it could be more or technically it could be less but for me it counts and I have made the 10kg mark in only 80 days! I stepped onto the scales this morning before breakfast as I usually do so that I get consistency with my readings and it read 108.6kgs! That is a bit more then 10 kgs technically but by this time of the day I will already be back up to 111kgs probably but that is alright because I always weight myself in the morning!

For those of you playing along at home I wish to encourage you. I know that you will have probably read this 100 times before and I used to hate it because I have tried doing this so many times before but you can lose weight. It can be done it just is a sucky process to be honest. I have given up sugar (most of the time) which has helped me tremendously. I am not going to tell you to do the same because you might not have a sugar problem. You do need to find what works for you. I would encourage you to analyse how much sugar is in your diet though, just for fun because you would probably get a pleasant surprise at where it can hide sometimes. 

Here are a few lessons that I have learned so far along the way:
-We are told that a balanced diet and exercise will help us stay healthy. This is true! But to lose weight we need more calories burnt then eaten and when you discover how inefficient exercise is to burn calories (go look up how long you have to run to burn a mars bar) you will quickly realise that exercise makes you healthy but what you eat has an impact upon your body's weight. I struggled to go to the gym over the last three months because the weight just kept coming off without the sugar in my diet!
-Get someone to help you out and yell at you and abuse you and encourage you and support you. My wife is a legend and although she will yell at me and say No Josh! That is enough chips today! I appreciate that she is doing it for the right reasons to support me and keep me on track. I usually have zero will power with these things and give up pretty quickly but 11 weeks in and we are still going alright.
-Think of it as a lifestyle change not a diet. Everyone will say oh are you doing that sugar free diet thing and you will probably say yes. But for me to stick to this I have had to think about it as a lifestyle change for the better not a diet because realistically I am not missing out on chocolate and ice cream that everyone else has I am reclaiming my lifestyle and improving it. It is opening a new world not restricting my current world!
-For any of this to work (this is the first time it ever has for me after so many attempts) you need to learn the art of getting back on the bandwagon. What I mean by this is when you stumble and fall and screw up (I salute those of you who never will screw up) you need to find the ability and will power to get back into it and start out strong again. For me I might have had a not so great week because we were super busy and went out a fair few times but I would always try and start the next week strong and get back into sugar free life because I knew if I didn't I would just go back to my old ways which were not pretty. 

Here is a quick update of where I am at in term of my weight loss charts. As you can see there are a fair few times that I have screwed up but that is alright. You still have to live your life you just need the ability to be able to recover from those times!

Saturday, 19 March 2016

Breakfast...what to do!

For the last two months I have consumed countless amounts of eggs for breakfast. Most mornings consist of scrambled eggs with kale on toast with butter and a coffee. Sometimes I have rotated with bacon and poached eggs and occasionally when I am sick of it all I would eat yogurt and fruit with cinnamon instead. But after two months there is only so many times you can put up with eggs.

Last week I did have the opportunity to visit some friends for coffee and breakfast before work. In these situations I choose not to make a big deal about sugar free food as I do not want to be annoying for everyone else. So I was expecting and preparing myself for cereal or white bread or a sugar high. This never came. These friends know that I am trying to be healthier and when we arrived we had discovered  that they had baked us fresh bagel the night before that were sugar free! Score.

Bagels usually contain sugar. Many people glaze them with a sugar and water solution to give them that shiny look. Really though this is unnecessary. A bagel is essentially a bread dough that is boiled and then baked. My wife has recently taken up baking bagels and she now uses oil to coat the outside prior to baking as this gives a golden brown exterior with a little crunch much like the sugar would.

So if you are looking for something different and new for breakfast I highly encourage you to try baking (or buying) some bagels. I choose to use cream cheese on mine as it is delicious but you can use anything and can make them in all sorts of different flavours as well!

Thursday, 17 March 2016

Two months in...

So I realise my promises of updating this blog regularly have largely gone unfulfilled and I apologise in case anybody was emotionally invested but sometimes life just catches up with you. But I am here to be accountable to you all and to share my experiences. Mainly for selfish reasons so that I can keep pushing on and trying to succeed in my quest to lead a healthier and thinner life. 

Month 1
If there was one word I would use to describe the first month it would be produce. Our house was stocked with fresh veggies and fresh fruit at its peak in summer with watermelon and strawberries, nectarines and peaches readily available in the kitchen. It was a marvelous time. University was on holidays, I ate no sugar  (except for the odd bit forced upon me when my aunty baked a birthday cake from scratch, you just cannot say no to that). Life was glorious, the weight was falling off, heck I even found it hard to go to the gym because it was so easy to lose weight. 

Month 2
This is where reality has set in. 'Real life' has returned. Uni has started, work is getting busier, I have less free time and as I would like to say, the struggle is real! The honeymoon period wore off once uni kicked in. The old temptations of $2 meat pies and chips are hard to resist. I had a sudden decrease in free time and couldn't spend hours thinking about what we would eat or looking for new recipes to try out that were delicious. Surprisingly I would not say that being sugar free is harder or more difficult to carry out in a practical sense. The truth is that it is harder because of my previous bad habits and routines, it is harder because of the way our lives are structured and we get tired and do not have the time or effort required to constantly fight our previous urges and temptations. My biggest struggle is trying not to fall into old traps. Trying not to go and grab a pie because they are cheap and I have an hour between classes. Trying not to go and grab an iced coffee (sugar loaded) from Gloria Jeans because I have an assignment due and society tells me as a uni student caffeine will really help get it done. 

My advice...I am not one to consider myself qualified in anyway to give advice on this topic at all. But I guess if there was one tip that I could offer anybody it is be prepared for the lame moments. These are the moments where life decides to line itself up and you have zero time, zero patience and every bit of you wants some sugar. Find things that are great to eat and find things that are quick and simple. My wife and I constantly resort to basil pesto pasta. Sometimes we make our own pasta and pesto from scratch, other times it is store bought pasta and store bought pesto but either way it is a yummy yummy meal that is quick to cook and is oh so yum! Find your favourite, simple meals and it will go a long way to set you up for success.