Every gym offers orientation for new members where they give you a tour and show you how to operate different types of machinery. Afterwards, the gym staff is available at any time to help you with familiarize yourself with gym equipment you are not familiar with. Please take them up on that offer. Otherwise…
Several months ago, I life became both an obstacle and excuse preventing me from maintaining a regular schedule at the gym. I had a trip coming up, and I was looking to drop weight. At the time I was interested in a quick solution that would allow me to maximize my efforts in weight loss. I spoke with a doctor regarding my interest, and without hesitation, he prescribed me Phentermine.
If you are not familiar with Phentermine, I will simplify it by stating it’s doctor prescribed appetite suppressant that helps you to lose weight with little to no physical activity and reportedly provides you with an abundance of energy. The appearance of the pill varies with your prescription from your doctor-(mine looked like the red, white and blue capsule below). My doctor warned me to make sure I ate several times a day, and continuing my exercises for maximum results.
The first day I took, it, I noticed my appetite was reduced, but I was still able to eat, and I felt pretty good. A few days later, I had no appetite for anything. I was forcing myself to eat any tiny bit of food, and drink even water. I was losing weight and dropped two pant sizes within a month.
I was excited to lose the weight before my trip, and told myself that I would use my refills afterward along with returning to the gym to reach my goal. The challenge with that plan was that Phentermine was not providing me with the energy it advertised. Because I had no appetite and often went the entire day without eating anything more than a half sandwich, or half a bowl of cereal, I had no energy to do much of everything. I was tired all the time. I couldn’t take anything additional for energy because most energy supplements and beverages contained caffeine and I am caffeine sensitive. I didn’t want additional caffeine in conjunction with what I was already ingesting through Phentermine. Ultimately, my weight loss became totally dependent upon my reliability of the pill.
Another challenge I experienced with my taking Phentermine was that it caused major constipation. Regularity is highly reliant upon a well-balanced diet, and water consumption. My negligence in both left me “backed up” and I sought relief through using Now (brand) Magnesium Citrate supplements. I still suffered because I still did not have an appetite and not drinking much of anything.
After using Phentermine for about 4 months, I was in a happy place image wise, but I began losing my “toned” look I worked hard for at the gym, and I was tired, so I chose to stop taking it.
My appetite remained suppressed for several weeks after I stopped taking Phentermine and my energy level was still pretty low. After about 2 months without it, my appetite returned with a vengeance. Now 6 months had passed that I hadn’t worked out, and I lost my motivation. My weight slowly returned.
My experience led me to consider Phentermine more of a Foe than making me a Fan because I enjoy being active and I lost that while taking the prescribed diet pill. Did I get results from taking it? Yes, I did; however, I missed working out, I missed looking and feeling toned, and strong. I missed the excitement of watching my body healthfully transition. In the end, I was slimmer, softer (less muscle tone), and felt weak. (I felt jiggly).
Everyone’s experience with Phentermine is different, and I think prior to taking it, one should consider what their goals actually are. If you’re looking for a quick way to slim down without adopting healthier habits and nor creating an overall lifestyle change, then Phentermine might be for you.
However, if you are like me and desire a healthy life, over being “skinny”, then I suggest skipping the pill and developing a plan that will help you reach your desired goal. Allow yourself to re-learn what to eat, and how much you should eat and start working out! Set small goals that will lead you to your ultimate goal and enjoy every part of it. After all, your main focus is to change your life for the better.
I had a good day today. I finally got some much-needed sleep, ate my breakfast and watched the season premiere of Boardwalk Empire season 5. When the show went off, I was surprised that I simply felt like going to the gym. I kept my workout rather simple; 3 min warm up walk, 12 minute run, incline ab work, leg presses, and 45 minutes of incline walking.
It’s funny how quickly your body will let you know that you have been neglecting it. Although my body felt great and was very receptive to working out, my lungs were saying “are you serious right now?” Lol! Having asthma really sucks. It takes me some time to build my breathing up. Today, at the 10 minute mark of my 12 minute run, it began feeling as though I was breathing through a coffee straw. My experiences have taught me that it’s ok to slow down, but it’s unacceptable to stop or give up.
After the gym, I had a bit of grocery shopping to do, and soon as I got home, I made a smoothie with celery, kale, cucumber, cantaloupe, honeydew melon, grapes, cherries, strawberries and water. DELISH! I just realized that I did not take pictures of it…or my dinner! Ugh! Dinner was amazing! I made a salad with yellow bell pepper, romaine lettuce, cilantro, and chicken that I marinated in a fig and vidalia onion sauce. To add a bit of crunch, I used a palm size amount of praline almonds-(not healthy, but only a small amount). I’ve decided to start making my own salad dressing after watching the amazing documentary Hungry for Change. (I’m working on posts that share interesting facts that I learned from it-stay tuned!). One thing that stood out to me was when they were discussing food vs food products, and knowing what you’re reading on your labels. I hadn’t realized that salad dressing are often made of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) (Eeeeek!). So I made a salad dressing consisting of herb and garlic, rice vinegar-(which I later realized had brown sugar in it), and avocado oil. Yum!
In case you’re wondering, high fructose corn syrup is very unhealthy and is not natural. It is an industrialized food product with an unknown method of extracting the sugar from corn stalks, and is genetically modified creating a sweet chemical substance. Dr. Mark Hyman of drhyman.com shares the following about high fructose corn syrup:
“Regular cane sugar (sucrose) is made of two-sugar molecules bound tightly together– glucose and fructose in equal amounts.The enzymes in your digestive tract must break down the sucrose into glucose and fructose, which are then absorbed into the body. HFCS also consists of glucose and fructose, not in a 50-50 ratio, but a 55-45 fructose to glucose ratio in an unbound form. Fructose is sweeter than glucose. And HFCS is cheaper than sugar because of the government farm bill corn subsidies. Products with HFCS are sweeter and cheaper than products made with cane sugar” (drhyman.com).
“Since there is there is no chemical bond between them, no digestion is required so they are more rapidly absorbed into your blood stream. Fructose goes right to the liver and triggerslipogenesis (the production of fats like triglycerides and cholesterol) this is why it is the major cause of liver damage in this country and causes a condition called “fatty liver” which affects 70 million people. The rapidly absorbed glucose triggers big spikes in insulin–our body’s major fat storage hormone. Both these features of HFCS lead to increased metabolic disturbances that drive increases in appetite, weight gain, diabetes, heart disease, cancer, dementia, and more” (drhyman.com).
Dr. Hyman continues to share the following “5 Reasons High Fructose Corn Syrup Will Kill You”:
- Sugar in any form causes obesity and disease when consumed in pharmacologic doses.
- HFCS and cane sugar are NOT biochemically identical or processed the same way by the body.
- HFCS contains contaminants including mercury that are not regulated or measured by the FDA.
- Independent medical and nutrition experts DO NOT support the use of HFCS in our diet, despite the assertions of the corn industry.
- HFCS is almost always a marker of poor-quality, nutrient-poor disease-creating industrial food products or “food-like substances”.
To learn more about HFCS from Dr. Hyman: http://drhyman.com/blog/2011/05/13/5-reasons-high-fructose-corn-syrup-will-kill-you/#close
Invest in yourself and learn more about HFCS. Start reading the labels on your food, and you’ll be surprised to learn how much of it is present in most food products that we enjoy. Challenge yourself to find healthier alternatives that do not host HFCS, or any genetically modified toxins.
The decision to become healthy is not an overnight process. Everyday is a lesson for me. However the more aware we all become with what we put into our bodies, the better choices we will make and the healthier we become. A healthy body can help with a healthy mind and will have a ripple effect with everyone we come into contact with. Choosing to be healthy is not an easy process and requires change in all aspects. But in the end…your body will thank you for it!
Gym day #2 tomorrow!
Many blogs, and websites, like She’s Evolving, that are committed to adopting a healthier lifestyle address conscious eating through portion control, balanced and nutritious meals, meal planning and the list goes on. Although all of these things are important when considering your health and eating rituals, it is not often when we explore deeper matters that affect us all, but stem from a bigger picture.
Although it is vital to me that She’s Evolving shares all of its information from a positive prospective; I am just as committed to sharing knowledge that will help bring awareness. She’s Evolving is not a platform of trying to conform everyone to a single opinion; however, it is a platform to expand upon information that will encourage people to consider, to share and discuss, to learn from and continuously grow.
I have never pretended to be perfect in my own evolution process to lead a healthier lifestyle. I am human, and like everyone, I have my periods where I want something greasy and cheesy. Honesty is relatable. With that being said, although I am very conscious about what I eat, (and feel guilty whenever I’m on the junk food train), by reading labels, cut out carbonated and sugary beverages, and try to make healthier choices; I can openly admit that outside of sodium, sugar, carbohydrate and fat information stored on the label, I am ignorant to the process beforehand. Like most people, I am very limited in knowing where my food came from and as much as I thought I knew about reading the labels, this video let me know that I have so much more to learn and think about.
Talk to any health coach or nutritionist, and they will confirm the importance of having a well-balanced meal, and carbohydrates should not be eliminated from your diet, but instead, they should be monitored. Fitness enthusiasts will share the importance of having protein in your diet to repair cells and create new ones, to build and repair tissues and they are aware that it is an essential building block, and key in creating and maintaining lean muscle. So we learn these things and immediately commit to boneless, skinless chicken, and seafood high in protein and packed with Omega 3’s. But yet again, we don’t think beyond that and consider the what story behind our protein sources.
Here are a couple very interesting articles to consider. They left me wondering about what I am putting into my body and how it could or will affect me.