Weekend Weigh-In: 183.8 Pounds - The Lowest I've Been in a While!

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I have been back from vacation for over a week now and I’ve been “back on the wagon” with keto since I got home. I’ve been working on losing the few pounds that came on during vacation and today I’m at a new low of 183.8 pounds. I’m so close to the 170s, I can almost taste it! Hitting the 170s will be a big victory for me. It’s my first “goal” weight. Then, it’s off to my next goal of 150 and my final goal of 135 (although my final goal could change as I get closer to there. It’s been a long time since I was THAT low so I may not want to go that low when I get there. We’ll see.)

My keto routine is probably quite boring, but it’s working so well for me that I don’t dare mix it up too much!

Breakfast: McDonald’s Bacon, Egg, and Cheese Biscuit minus the biscuit. I don’t really like the biscuits at McDonald’s so it’s pretty easy for me to just toss it aside and not worry about eating it.

Lunch: Turkey Burger with A-1 and green beans with butter. It’s quick and easy and fills me up.

Afternoon snack: Muscle Milk Banana Crème shake - I don’t really like bananas as a fruit, but as a shake - so good!

Dinner: I got the Moe’s at Home last week and that worked out well. I may do that again or just eat Chipotle or Bunless Bacon and Cheese Whoppers minus the bun since it’s a short week and I don’t feel like cooking.

Night Snack: I have my GG crackers at night - four of them with cream cheese and Everything Bagel seasoning. The added bonus, if you can call it that, is that thanks to all the fiber, you don’t want to overeat them. I’m scared to see what would happen if I ate more than four because four is enough to get you making a bathroom trip almost as soon as you wake up! They are super filling so I usually don’t need any other snacks at night after my crackers. That has really helped my weight loss.

On weekends, I don’t eat breakfast and have Chipotle or some other meat + salad type meal for lunch and then Quest Pizza or a bunless burger for dinner. If I get sick of any of it, I try something that I know is keto-friendly to keep me from getting bored. Like today, I had Panera, which I usually dread going to, but I just couldn’t eat Chipotle again! The green goddess salad is amazing and full of good stuff like chicken, eggs, bacon, and avocado.

Progress: Vacation Shots from Atlantic City

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I used to hate taking full body shots, especially on vacation! It was a reminder of how much weight I had put on. Even if I was having a blast, I hated having the photographic evidence staring me in the face. I took a lot of head shots and clever angles. It’s f*cked up and a bit baffling since I usually felt pretty good about myself regardless of size, but seeing it in photos was that dose of reality I just didn’t want.

This trip, I took lots of full body shots! I was feeling pretty fabulous on this trip. I hit a new low weight - 184.8 pounds before I left and I was definitely feeling myself. Our hotel room sadly did not include a full-length mirror, which was annoying AF, but we just took photos of our outfits so we could see what they looked like! I did find a nice big mirror in the ladies room in the casino so I snuck a picture in there, too.

I’m finally seeing the progress of all the hard work I’ve done and it’s just so weird to me because I’m not even to my first goal yet of 179, my former “before” weight. It’s so wild to me how great I feel at this weight when it was this same weight that spurred me into action years ago the first time I did low carb and got to goal.

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I’ve been trying to take lots of pictures to document my progress because it helps me see that changes are happening, even when the scale is slow to catch up. Speaking of which, the scale is not happy post-trip. I did really good at sticking mostly to plan at the start of the trip, but ended up eating whatever I felt like towards the end. I didn’t go crazy, but it definitely knocked me out of ketosis. I weighed in at 191.8 today, which is 7 pounds up. I know I didn’t eat 7 pounds of calories so it’s most likely water weight and will drop off now that I’m back on plan. My fingers are STILL feeling a bit swollen from all the salt in the restaurant food.

This weekend will be my reset where I focus on getting back into Keto full-time and I’m hoping some of that vacation weight starts dropping off soon!

The Scales Not Moving, but I'm Getting Smaller

The mystery of my weight loss continues as I weighed in today and am no lighter on the scale, but I’m actually looking smaller! My clothes are looser and I can see the weight loss when I look in the mirror, but I wouldn’t know it from the scale! Cue The X Files theme. I feel like these pictures accurately reflect how truly short I am!

I’ve dropped two sizes, but only a few pounds on the scale since June so I’m basically ignoring the scale at the moment and just going by how I look and how my clothes feel. I may be picking up some muscle from starting to jog and I’ve done a bit of pilates mat work when I feel like it.

I’ve been pretty happy with my food this past week. I ate cream cheese pancakes in the first half of the week and bacon, egg, and cheese in the latter half of the week for breakfast. The turkey burgers with A-1 were great last week so I’ll probably do that again this coming week. The Quest chips are too good, but they’re great with my burger or as a snack at night (and sometimes, both LOL).

I tried a new place today for lunch because I was in a different area running errands. I got a chicken salad from California Tortilla. It was tasty! I had them hold the corn and tortilla strips and I got ranch dressing. I’d definitely go there again!

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I ran out of cream today. I usually prefer that in my coffee, but bulletproof coffee to the rescue. I had butter and coconut oil so I added them to coffee and blended in the bullet blender for a few seconds. I actually don’t mind the taste of BPC so it’s good to have that as a backup option when I run out of cream!

I treated myself this morning to a perfume that I’ve wanted for a while. Guerlain Art of Materials - Spiritueuse Double Vanille Eau de Parfum is one I’ve had my nose on, but never purchased. I pulled out the tiny sample I had of it and gave it a sniff and it’s love at first whiff. It’s a boozy vanilla that just smells so great to me. My gift to myself for sticking with my diet, even during my very stressful week!

Another Progress Photo - 186 Pounds: Front, Side, Back

I both hate these and love them. I love the front/side/back shots because I really think it gives you a good idea of how you are looking and what you still need to work on. I hate them for the same reason! I tried to take a very “honest” photo series with no fancy stances to make me look taller or whatever. Just straight on. Wow, I look short. That was my first thought when I saw these pictures. I actually am much shorter than I apparently appear online because whenever I meet someone who has only seen me online, they say, “wow, I thought you’d be taller!” I’m a very average 5’5”.

I’m very happy with how my waist is looking. I have a very hourglass figure, but it’s nice to have a waist! I’m actually okay with my legs as well. My hips and butt still need some work. I seriously feel like I need a “wide load” sign on my back. I can joke about it, only because my partner loves my butt so I’ve learned to love it as well even though I’d love to love less of it! I tend to shrink evenly so they will hopefully just get smaller as I lose more weight.

I’m lucky that my arms just seem incapable of gaining much weight. I’m like a T-rex with these useless little things! I may eventually start using some hand weights to get some more tone in my arms.

I’ve also started doing some old pilates moves I used to do. Many years ago, I started doing pilates and really liked how it made my body look so it’s something I’m starting up again. I think it helps with toning and getting a leaner look. I’m very paranoid about how my tummy is going to look when I lose more weight. It’s okay now, but I’m a bit paranoid about getting droopy skin so I’m doing what I can now to mitigate that. I have to keep reminding myself that I’m older than the first time I lost weight and I have more weight to lose than I did then so I need to be realistic, but at the same time I’m like - I WILL get that body back!

Bunless Big Mac to Celebrate Another Pound Down

I feel like I’m fighting for every pound on the scale this time around, but I am getting smaller and I’m going down sizes so I’m trying to ignore the numbers on the scale. I still feel like my weight loss isn’t all that obvious, but the computer guys at work noticed and commented it on Friday telling me that I looked good and to keep doing whatever I was doing!

I’m at that zen-like place in my weight loss journey where I’m not really having cravings for things. I have my certain foods I eat and that seems to be enough. I’m even struggling to figure out what I want to eat because I’m never really craving much of anything!

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Today, I got a bunless Big Mac for dinner. The bunless Big Macs are actually a great treat. They aren’t tons of carbs, but they taste very much like a regular Big Mac so I don’t even miss the bun. The Quarter Pounder with Cheese (minus the bun) is also another great option that I’ve eaten in the past. Most fast food places can be keto-friendly if you toss the bun. I had some veggies and dressing at home as a side and finished off the meal with some keto fudge (coconut oil + cocoa powder) that I make in batches and keep in the freezer.

Progress Picture: 8/19/19

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I haven’t taken a progress picture series in a while. I don’t feel like I’m that much smaller, but my clothing sizes are going down so I must be losing inches. I wish I had taken measurements when I first started so I could compare. I do think my hips are a bit smaller and I also feel like I have less of that annoying back roll stuff!

Breakfast today was 2 strips of bacon with cream cheese and everything bagel seasoning smeared on top. It’s amazing how getting a bit of “bagel” flavor satisfies me. My ginger garlic ground beef bowl reheated great at work and was super filling. I had a shake for an afternoon snack and my cream cheese pancakes for dinner.

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My biggest struggle I think right now is just eating too many snacks. I’ll have a great day, but after dinner, it’s snack city! I just ate an entire bag of Kohlrabi linguine! It was only 11 net carbs for the whole bag, but still. At the same time, it’s a vegetable and not super high in carbs so I’m not going to stress eating vegetables! I had sugarsnap peas with ranch after dinner and some moon cheese.

So, everything is pretty on plan…just too much of it!

I almost went on the treadmill today but I still have an annoying cough left over from my cold.

One highlight of today was that I don’t have to report for jury duty tomorrow. Whew!

Hello, Size 12s!

I stopped by Walmart to get a few things and saw these cute EV1 shorts with the stripe on the side. They’re from Ellen Degeneres’ clothing line. The only sizes they had left were 12 and 16. I took them both to the dressing room, but decided to think positive and try the 12s, half expecting them not to fit at all, but lo and behold - they fit!

I haven’t been a 12 in a really long time! I’m going shopping for more clothes this weekend for my beach trip so I’ll have a chance to try on more shorts and see if this is some vanity sizing on Ellen’s part or if I really am a size 12!

I had been a bit frustrated that the scale is fluctuating all over the place but I can tell I’m losing weight just by looking in the mirror, even if it hasn’t shown up on the scale yet! So, this was a nice surprise and a non-scale victory! I had just commented this morning that my size 14 jeans were feeling baggy.

This has given me the push I need to just stay the course! I’ll get there eventually and I am making progress.

My New Bathing Suit Bottoms Plus My Favorite Sunscreen

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I weighed in at 187.2 today and to celebrate, I went to Target to get some bikini bottoms. I found a bikini top I really liked last year, but I was more self-conscious of my weight last year so I had bought a swim skirt. It was okay - I wore it once to the beach and the rest of the time was just at my house, but I told myself that I would get regular bikini bottoms this year. As a celebration for losing 23 pounds so far (about of the third of the way to go), I treated myself to these cute bottoms from Shade and Shore at Target. They are high waisted and cover almost like a short short, but they have slits in the side to spice it up a bit!

I also picked up some Tanologist Mousse in Medium. I reviewed the Tan Water a few weeks ago, but I wanted to try the mousse to see if it was easier to apply. It was! The mousse smells as nice as the tan water. It’s still clear in the bottle, but it makes a foamy mousse when you pump it out. I found it easier to apply and I think I did a better job with coverage this time. I left it on for 2 hours and rinsed off. It gives a nice natural glow!

Today was the first day using my pool this season. I loaded up on my fave sunscreen - Neutrogena Beach Defense. It smells so nice (very tropical) and it really works. I used Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Liquid Sunblock because I’ve heard good things about it. My skin has been doing so good on the Olay Regenerist that I’m afraid to mess it up with all these other products, but so far so good!

I feel so good that I’m actually making progress on Keto! I don’t feel deprived. I don’t feel like I’m dieting. I’m getting closer to my former “before” weight of 179. That will be a big milestone for me.

Here’s how to get your hands on the goods (or check your local Target):

Progress Photo: 189.4 Pounds

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Since I hit the 180s today, I figured it was time for another set of progress photos. I officially weighed in at 189.4 pounds as of 10 am this morning.

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For my photos, I’m wearing a great new Champion C9 sports bra and mesh insert leggings that I got from Target. The C9 sports bra feels more like a bra to me. It has molded cups for shaping and support. It has the hook closure in the back, adjustable straps, and moisture-wicking fabric. It wasn’t super stretchy like my other sports bras that use the Spandex to keep everything in place. This feels super supportive. My girls ain’t going nowhere!

The leggings are super soft and comfy and I love the mesh panels. I don’t know how great these would be for a heavy workout. The fabric feels a bit thin. These run a bit big. I got a large and they actually are a bit big on me, but they still look and feel great - probably the most comfy leggings I own. I’d have no probably wearing these around the house or running errands. I almost wonder if I should buy a spare pair while they’re on sale!

If you want to snag either of these items, you can get them online below or from your local Target. You can also shop all my looks on my Looks page!

Working Through the Guilt That Comes With Regaining Weight

Me now.

Me now.

Anyone who has lost weight has probably experienced that feeling when the weight creeps on, whether it’s 5 pounds or 50. Sometimes, it sneaks up on you and you wake up and wonder how you got to THAT number on the scale. Sometimes, it’s no surprise - you see it happening, you know it’s happening, yet due to life circumstances or health issues, you can’t do anything about it at that moment. Often, there comes that day when you feel it - guilt. How did I left myself get to that place?

I’ve struggled with this a lot, especially lately. As someone who was a “success story” at one point in my life, there’s an extra feeling of failure. I lost all that weight - 54 pounds worth - only to eventually gain it all back plus another 30 when I was at my highest weight last year. It’s hard for me to look at my success pictures sometimes because I get so mad at myself. I was there. I had done what so many people struggle with - I had lost a large amount of weight and got to goal. That had never happened in my life with the myriad diets I had tried, yet this time, I got to goal. I kept it off for a few years and then as life does, it just sort of crept on bit by bit. The stressful year my mom died was the icing on the cake. I was barely holding on that year and while some people don’t eat when they’re stressed, I was the opposite. Food was always a source of celebration and comfort in my family and that year was no different. I ended up at 210 pounds, my highest weight ever.

I’m in a better place most days now, but my body still isn’t there yet, and that’s hard. I worry that I’ve “ruined” my chances for getting that “success story” body again. I look at my stomach and I wonder if it will snap back like it did before or will it sag? When I lost weight the first time, I had 54 pounds to lose. As I lost weight, my body just sort of snapped back into place. People used to ask me about sagging and I didn’t know what they meant. I just hadn’t experienced it. Now, as I’m still trying to get down to my former “before” weight of 179, I worry that my body isn’t going to cooperate this time. I’m older. I have more to lose. What am I actually going to look like when I get to goal?

Me as a diet success story

Me as a diet success story

I’m extremely lucky to have a girlfriend that loves me at all sizes. She also has a very realistic philosophy on looks and body. Her philosophy is “This is me. This is what I look like. Take it or leave it.” It is amazingly freeing to be in a relationship with someone who you know will accept you no matter what size you are, grey hair, chin hairs, body rolls, whatever. I actually attribute some of my previous weight loss success to her philosophy because there was no pressure to lose weight FOR someone. It was up to me. It became an option, something I could choose to do…or not. It was only when I started doing it for myself, that I experienced success.

My body has gotten me through a lot - marriage, divorce, trips to NYC, funerals, celebrations, work, and play. I’ve been in this skin and these bones for more than four decades and I’ve got to be gentle with myself. They often say weight loss is a journey and that’s so true. And sometimes, your destination looks exactly like it did in the pictures online and sometimes, it doesn’t. But, you can still have a great time once you get there!

So, I push on towards my goal. I don’t know when I’ll get there or what exactly it’s going to look like, but I’m going to try and throw away the feelings of guilt. How I got to this place is no longer important. There’s no use in looking backwards and lamenting what I could have or should have done. I just have to keep pressing forward to my goal and when I get there, no matter what it looks like, I can feel a sense of accomplishment at having gotten there!

Progress Photos: 190.6 Today - Going Slow, But Going!

I felt like I was due for some progress photos so I took some today. Thanks to my many trips and going off keto for most of them, I feel like I’ve been stuck in the 190s forever. I looked at my last batch of progress photos and they were from 193 pounds in mid-May after my first May trip and before my second one. I’m glad I tried to stay on Keto during that second trip because I only lost about a week, but still. I’ve got a looooong way to go and in my head I keep calculating how long it’s going to take me to get to goal and getting frustrated.

But, then I have to stop and take a breath and remind myself this isn’t a race. I’m making new habits (and keto truly has become a habit I think is pretty easy to keep). The last time I lost a large amount of weight, which I chronicle in My Weight Loss Journey, left me very confused on how to lose weight in a healthier manner. It’s taken me a long time to lose some of those old habits and trust in Keto, especially when I have memories of losing 3.5 pounds a week, every week. The rush of losing a half pound a day consistently was very motivating, but I’m honestly not sure I could even do such a restrictive diet again. Life’s too short for that.

So, I’m taking it day by day and just trying to stick with my plan, which has been going well (did Taco Bell really have to come out with that $5 Grande Nacho Box? It taunts me every time I see the commercial). I’ll get there when I get there!