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Day 201: Week 29 Weigh-in – Another Target Smashed Forever!

I started this journey  on 16th February, 2015, hoping to lose 5 stones and then decide whether to do a 9th IVF treatment with my ex or continue my weight-loss quest.

I am thrilled to report that I have today hit the 5 stones target and I am smaller than the weight I was for the last 5 IVF treatments which started November 2011 and ended April 2014.

5stones

I will not allow my changed circumstances to spoil my joy or the gratitude that this diet has saved my life.

For sure, I don’t have the joy of the chance of trying for the baby that I have desperately wanted all my life, but I have the chance to keep going on this diet, to keep working on myself and one day, getting to a healthy weight that is right for me.

I have not given up the hope of one day having a baby.

I believe in God.

I believe in fate.

If my destiny is to one day have a child in my life, God, the universe, all that is right and just in the world, will align to make it happen for me.

For now, I will carry on losing weight, staying focused and staying 100% on my diet.

I can’t control all the crap in my life; but I can keep kicking ass by controlling my hand to mouth actions.

Fit young woman fighting off fast food

I want to thank my Cambridge consultant Mandy, who started me on this journey.

I thank all of you that read this blog, in particular, the 110 or so of you that get an email or notification every time I publish my random thoughts. I am most humbled that you would want to do that in an age when we are already bombarded by too many emails and notifications.

I thank the new friends I’ve made on this journey who have been a rock of support; the friends that I am yet to meet.

And most of all, I thank my family. Without whom, I am nothing.

Week Twenty Nine’s Verdict: today’s weight 92.2kg, week’s weight loss 1.3 kg (2.86 pounds); total weight loss; 32.2 kg; 70.8 pounds; 5 stones 1 pound – mini target smashed!

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5

Swimming in the Sea

The beauty of this blog is that it is anonymous. I can let it all out here.

In the week of the anniversary of the death of my father-in-law, who I absolutely adored, I said goodbye to my mother-in-law (MIL) following a few days stay at ours wishing her good health and telling her to stay fit and be happy. If she thought my kisses, hand-holding and earnest good wishes were a bit OTT weird, she didn’t let on. I did so with all sincerity because there is a strong possibility that I shall not see her ever again. No, my MIL isn’t dying but her role in my life might be coming to an end.

When you have been with someone for 14 years, married for nearly 11 years, if you are childless, it means that when the marriage ends, there is absolutely nothing to tie you with your in-laws. No children to arrange to see the MIL, aunties, uncles, cousins or enforced family events that would mean a continuation of some sort of relationship, unless of course the parties choose to do so, which will be very unlikely in my case.

The crisis that rocked my life a couple of weeks ago and resulted in the blog entry about buying myself flowers, has reared its ugly head again. Sadly, there is a good possibility that my marriage might be heading for divorce.

The irony that I started this weight loss journey to give myself the best chance of having a healthy pregnancy with my husband isn’t lost on me. The irony that I might have spent (wasted?) the best years of my life with a man when it isn’t the forever thing I always assumed it would be, isn’t lost on me. I am devastated but that’s OK, shit happens.

I have been broody since a very young age and not having children has never been the future I saw for myself. The irony that with significant sperm factor issues, I chose to have 8 ICSI cycles (IVF when there are sperm quality issues), because I had never wanted any other man to be the biological father of my children, now seems to me to be nothing but an utterly ridiculous notion.

For our last ICSI cycle last April, we had chosen a sperm donor, having accepted the fact that even with extensive treatment by one of the best private doctors in the world, my husband’s sperm had not improved sufficiently to help our IVF success rate given that age was not on side. On my part, I produced 12 eggs which is impressive given that at the time, I was nearly 41. When it came to crunch time, whether we gave us (for there was an “us” then), the best chance of having a baby with the sperm of this very fertile twenty something year old man who already had proven pregnancies, or use my husband’s sperm with its countless issues, in an emotional and tearful decision that moved even the male embryologist patiently waiting for our most difficult choice, we hugged each other as we chose to go with my husband’s sperm.

What a naïve sense of the world I must have had.

Whatever happens in my marriage, I refuse to be bitter about the past and I’ll be just fine.

I will be just fine because I used to be that high achieving girl that managed to get more A grades than anyone else I’ve ever met; that girl that achieved a first class honours degree, best results in her year, plus all academic prizes going, and did the same for my post graduate studies, all in extremely difficult and unhappy circumstances. I am that girl that ended up working in one of the best companies in the world with people including my live-in partner at the time and even a university career adviser telling me to aim lower. In the words of my ex the day before my job interview: “You will never get in. They don’t take people like you.”

That girl that can do absolutely anything she sets her mind to do, is still in there somewhere and I just have to channel her, get her out to hold my hands and face whatever the future holds with bravery, positivity and some dignity.

Whatever happens to my marriage, it will not affect my determination to lose weight for myself or in fact, to try for a baby when (if?) I feel that I am good and ready to do so, even if it means doing it on my own. And if I choose to abandon the baby making quest and move on with my life with those dreams dashed forever, I will deal with that and I will be just fine. OK, that was never the life plan, but shit happens.

In all of this, I celebrate the fact that the “me” of only a few short weeks ago would have been drowning in greasy Chinese takeaway right now or out at an impromptu party I’d been invited to, eating far too much, drinking more than I normally would to drown my sorrows. Instead, I’ve had a comforting, tasty and healthy omelette, and a Cambridge chocolate mint mousse for dessert. Go me.

2015-03-14 21.06.08

2015-03-14 21.09.28

Nothing will derail this weight loss journey. To quote myself from my first blog entry once again:

This blog is not about making excuses for my weight gains. Coulda, shoulda, woulda. Shit happens. Shit happened. Deal with shit or drown with shit but don’t gain weight. Let that be the one thing I get to have some control in my life.

If my marriage isn’t salvageable and ends in divorce, I will of course be totally devastated but my life will go on. I will move on, be happy and stay positive. Someday, I might even get back on that horse and try again with the romance thing. I am extremely lucky and thankful that with all my imperfections, men have always found me attractive, even at my heaviest. In fact, I haven’t really been single since I was around 20 and went from one long term relationship to another relationship and then marriage. Perhaps being single for a little while might do me some good.

The fattest photo which I will one day proudly use as my “Before Photo” is one of me looking uncomfortably hot, miserable and extremely fat on a beach. I showed my Cambridge consultant that horrendous photo and told her my weight had stopped me going into the sea. I described my excitement and joy and showed her another photo of me when I tentatively ventured into the sea at the end of last year; slimmer than that extremely fat photo of me. She had replied that she would love to see me swim in the sea one day.

One day, when I am a healthy weight, slim, fit and gorgeous, I can tick off that bucket list. You know, that one that involves a man that loves and adores me, and is loved and adored in return, lovingly carrying me into the sea, as we giggle and happily laugh together.

Today, I promise myself that one day, I shall swim in the sea.

lovers beach

4

Chipping Away the Fat

I am fat. I know that I am fat. In fact, if we must get technical, I am super morbidly obese.

If I do not do something about my excessive weight, it will kill me. Every part of my body is struggling under the bulk of the massive body fat that I log along. The excessive weight means that I can barely walk, my legs feel like heavy lead. The little mobility I can muster has been hugely diminished by the excess weight. I am in severe agony from spinal/back problems which are no doubt exacerbated by the excessive weight. Every part of me feels sluggish and in pain.

Something has to give.

Something has to change.

Soon.

Drastically.

Now.

The good news is that I am doing something about it. I have tried to do “something” about my weight on countless other occasions. I am a 41 year old woman. I went on my first diet aged 9 which is a sure-fire way to have food issues but this blog isn’t about blame or making excuses. I am the master of my own destiny…or something to that effect. Hand to mouth equals weight gain…perhaps overly simplistic but let’s not go there right now.

Every diet you can imagine, I have been on it, some with some successes, and some with some spectacular failures. The main thing is that even when I fail, I try again because giving up is not an option.

In 2004, I married the love of my life. For our wedding, I embarked on a weight loss programme I designed for myself and lost 3 and a half stones. It took me a year and one month. I was counting calories, eating low fat foods, eating less than 1500 calories daily. I also worked hard in the gym, a magnificent 5 times a week. I would come home from working long hours in a very stressful full time job, and having already spent an hour in the gym (first thing in the morning before starting work) and would get on the floor to do sit ups, press-ups, yoga. Weekends were also spent doing floor exercises. It was hell but I was thrilled with the weight loss.

Clearly that level of exercising and restrictive dieting was not sustainable…as well as having a life. I put on a stone on our two weeks honeymoon. In the first 5 months of marital bliss, I put on 4 stones eating “healthy” food.

I would make various attempts to lose weight by eating healthy low fat diets with very little success. I have maintained food diaries for over a decade and various NHS dieticians would examine these diaries finding it incomprehensible that I was gaining weight or failing to lose weight. They probably secretly thought I was munching away on chocolates and faking the diary entries. I wasn’t. Really. I really wasn’t.

In 2008, I discovered that I have PCOS which makes losing weight difficult and means that if I as much as look at a cake with lust, never mind giving in to temptation, I’m guaranteed at least a 1 kg of weight gain the next day. And if I eat pizza, game over.

The solution given to me by the private consultant we saw for two failed IVF cycles was to accept that PCOS meant that I would always be overweight. Seriously? I was 35 and was being told that I was doomed to be fat for the rest of my life, however long (or more likely short) that life would be. Said dreadfully bad private doctor would refuse us further IVF treatment without significant weight loss of about 6 stones even though he was happy to collect fees for the first two cycles and yet, the only solution he could offer was to accept being fat.

Months later when I had had some weight loss successes without any help from him or anyone else in the medical profession, on low carb diets, he would casually offer:

“Yes, low carb diets work well for people with PCOS”.

Yes, thanks for that Sherlock. Shame you hadn’t offered that nugget of wisdom a year ago. It could have saved me anguish and better directed my research on the subject.

The PCOS diagnosis meant that I finally had something to work on. I embarked on countless research and discovered low carb way of eating. It was revolutionary. I finally found out why low fat diets with meat, potatoes and two veg never worked for me without killing myself like I did for my wedding. My body has a severe resistance to carbs.

In August 2008, armed with all the books and online research I could get my hands on, I designed various low carb, low GI diets and started the slow process that meant a loss of six and a half stones by August 2011. I even stayed on plan and wasn’t derailed by a plateau that lasted for four long months. WTF.

The weight loss followed 6 further failed IVF cycles, two early miscarriages, with slight increases in weight following each unsuccessful IVF cycle where I would go on carb porn to supposedly console myself from another failed chance to have a baby.

But I had discovered low carb. I could keep things in control and nip weight gains in the bud. And then 2014 happened. My annus horribolis. The most tremendously horrible year that meant that I was so desperately trying to retain any semblance of sanity, avoid being hospitalised for stress and (another) mental breakdown, fighting to stay mentally and physically healthy, gaining weight became the least of my worries. By the end of 2014, I had gained four stones.

I am utterly and completely ashamed to admit that as of this morning, I have put on all but half a stone of my 6 and a half stones weight loss of August 2011.

This blog is about getting up from rock bottom and trying again. Technically, being 6 and a half stones heavier than I was four years ago wasn’t really my rock bottom, I had been even heavier.

This blog is not about making excuses for my weight gains. Coulda, shoulda, woulda. Shit happens. Shit happened. Deal with shit or drown with shit but don’t gain weight. Let that be the one thing I get to have some control in my life. Having said all that, it is easy for the current day me, in a good head space, to preach to the past me. So enough already with the preaching. What matters is what happens now. Let’s just get on with it.

Today, I started the Cambridge Diet on Step 2, 810 calories. I have resisted this diet for so long even though I have a friend who lost 10 stones in 8 months.

Today I embraced the extreme in diets as I know it. This chick who for so long has put myself on fertility diets and healthy low carb diets that mean that at age 41, I am more fertile than I was at age 35, has finally accepted that desperate times call for desperate measures.

If I devote to the Cambridge 100% and it doesn’t work for me, then I am totally screwed.

It will work. I’ve got to believe that it will work. I am desperate to have a baby with my lovely husband. I am 41 years old and I haven’t got three years to spare to lose the weight, hence the Cambridge diet.

Michelangelo was once asked the secret of making his beautiful sculptures. He replied that he just chipped away the part of the stone that wasn’t the sculpture to reveal the angel within.

And like those beautiful sculptures, hidden deeply underneath the massively fat exterior that is my current super obese body, is the beautiful, slim *me*, begging to be released. Like Michelangelo, I will chip away the fat to reveal the beautiful slim person screaming to come out.

This morning I weighed a horrendously massive 124.4 kg….123.8 kg in my nightie but let’s stick to the dressed up weight. I am only 5 ft 3.

Today I will start to chip away my fat, one pound at a time.

Clichéd, yes but the only way is up…or should I say down.

Chipping away fat