Sunday, May 9, 2010

Oh jeez! Another two months have flown past...

I know I haven't been keeping up my end of this blog, but I have remained faithful to my commitment to improving my health. I have good news to report!
  1. I am off blood pressure medication - I was on the lisinopril throughout the time of the divorce drama. The drama isn't quite over, but I'm happy to say that I am handling it all much better, and my bp is now within normal range. I discovered this because the coughing side effect of lisinopril was escalating. It forced me to stop it altogether. And so after I went off it, I tracked my bp, for three weeks now. I'm well under 140/80. In fact, I'm usually under 130/75.
  2. Just two weeks ago I went off the diruetic. I was afraid to do that because I didn't want to gain weight back. but I talked to my doctor and we both decided it was okay to do so. Inside a week, I gained back 12 lbs.! But in the last few days, I've lost half that. My ankles don't feel swollen at all today.
  3. I have been doing Pilates for six weeks now. That's been an interesting ride! Pilates and I have a love/hate relationship. My class is at 5 pm, twice a week. A beginning level class. Great instructor, Leigh, who is perky and supportive and lets me verbally bash her while she makes me do things my body isn't convinced it can do. But three weeks into the workouts I could finally feel air under my ass when I performed a bridge. Before, my ass was only puddling on the mat. And just last week, I was able to perform side planks from the knees and elbow position as well as prone planks from the knees and hand/wrist position! Can't do a roll up yet. When that happens, I will be shouting that from the rooftops!
  4. I'm happy to report that my wrist, the one injured in the car accident, is full operational and functional. We can thank time and Pilates for that.
I'm still struggling with a lack of weight loss, but I'm not letting that get me down. If you recall, I had reduced my calories to 1750, then gone Weight Watchers, then WW vegetarian-style. I stalled on all three methods at around 318 lbs. I was very frustrated. There were days when I'd eat as little as 1300 calories and I didn't lose weight. When I started going to Pilates, the owner of the studio agreed to become my fitness coach. She switched me to a low carb diet, making sure I ate less than 45 gm of carbs per meal. I was given the parameters of 3 to 5 servings of low-fat protein per meal and 4 to 5 servings of vegetables per meal. I didn't have to restrict healthy fats. I initially lost 4 lbs., but then stalled again. Then I did some reading and found that people on blood pressure medications had stalled on their weight loss while on very restrictive Atkins-style plans. So combined with the coughing sideeffect, it was easy to make the decision to go off the meds. It wasn't easy to watch the scale go up so dramatically after going off the diuretic, but it was to be expected. Seeing the weight go back down now that the drugs are out of my system feels good.

My new trainer has me on the following exercise routine:
  • 30 minutes aerobic activity three days a week (fast walking or rowing machine)
  • 1 hour of Pilates, 2 days a week
I really want to add weight training to the mix, soon. We'll talk about that in the near future. But I have to say, as difficult as it is for me to get myself to go to Pilates at 5 p.m. (I seem to be exceptionally sleepy at that time of day) I absolutely love how I feel 30 minutes into it, and I feel great for hours later, until bed. And then I sleep soundly. It wasn't like that for the first week. I even cried in class because I experienced strong emotions while doing the exercises, and I didn't know how this Pilates thing was going to help me at all. But by week 3, I was a fan!

In my training sessions with Lori, my trainer, we're discussing self-image vs. body image. I'll talk more about that next time. My head is so screwed up!