This week marks one year since David and I decided to do the Ideal Protein Weight Loss Protocol. It's been an amazing journey--one that was completely and totally life changing. Here are our pictures comparing us week 1 and week 52.
We are not the same people. In more ways than just being 1/2 our original sizes. I want to spend this week talking about the changes that we've made in our diet, lives and outlook. So, look forward to that. Today I want to talk about getting started and making the commitment to be organized.
When we met with the doctor one year ago on Wednesday, I couldn't help but think that we would never be able to stick with this program. In the questionnaire we filled out before going to meet with her, one of the reasons I'd found diets too difficult to follow in the past had been the restrictive nature of the diets. I'd always end up hungry, tired, or just bored with the food. The IP program looked more strict, had less variety in food, and was very low in calorie which would mean that I'd be starving to death all the time.
Because I'd had such a difficult time convincing David to come along with me to do this diet, I was afraid to speak my concerns. Instead, stepping up and "giving it the old college try" (as we always said at TAMU) was the only real option.
While I can say that I was hungry, I was tired, and I did get bored with the food sometimes...I never gave up. I never quit trying because this weight loss protocol works. We feel and look amazing and are so proud of the accomplishment we've made.
And there are many days when it doesn't really feel like an accomplishment because it just made so much sense and once we were organized it wasn't really hard--just structured. Something, apparently, I needed.
Details on how we were (and are) organized:
Because mornings are always difficult, we make our meals for the following day at night before going to bed. We make a giant salad with as many vegetables as we could put in it--lettuce, spinach, cole slaw, celery, cucumbers and onions for me. David adds peppers, radishes and home-made pickles. Our salad dressing is oil and vinegar and we bought some little "jello shot" cups to put in our salad containers to take to lunch with us. We put in our shakers, IP foods and an extra snack just in case we get hungry, and 2 large bottles of water and then we are ready. In the mornings, we just pull out the fridge food and go.
As we've transitioned, we still do the same thing but have added things like fruit, natural protein to lunches, nuts, rice cakes and the like for snacks. I'm unable to tolerate gluten so haven't tried to add bread or bread products back into my diet. My one indulgence is Frito Pie. I'll have that every couple of days, but since I've never been much of a chip snacker, the Fritos don't tempt me outside of the chili days.
We've also found that alternating fish with other proteins for dinner every night has been a very good plan. Anything that we can freeze, we cook extra servings up and keep our freezer well-stocked for the week-nights where we're too busy or too tired to cook. These extra servings also become our lunches.
We have found that pre-chopping all of our veggies when we get home from the store results in yucky veggies by the end of the week. The best way to store them is open in the fridge--i.e. not in a bag or zip loc--if it's a regular veggie. Leafy greens stay in their bag, then we put that bag in a zip top bag and squeeze all the air out.
We also buy our vegetables and most of our fruit in bulk at Sam's Club. We eat lots and lots of vegetables and they seem to have the best quality in town.
Another change we've made has been to be organized while we travel. It's very important for us to be able to travel and stay within our diet plan. We love travel too much to give it up, but travel has been one of the slip-ups we've had in the past. We've lost weight, went on a trip, ate anything we wanted and continued that when we got home and gained all the weight back in the end.
Being aware of that tendency and having too much at stake, we've determined to go on small trips, force ourselves to make the right choices and we have succeeded. In fact, I'm always happy to come home now because I can eat the foods that I know for sure what's in them and get back into my now familiar routine.
While I can say with certainty that IP isn't for everyone, what I can say is that the method of being organized with your food choices and routines can significantly impact your ability to succeed--whether it's a decision to lose a lot of weight, a little weight, or just to be healthier.