Tuesday, July 9, 2013

You Ought to Know...

I've totally been holding out on you. First off, you should know that I've now lost a total of 40lbs! It's been a really incredible experience and I've never felt healthier or happier about the way I look. When I hit the 30lb mark, the weight stopped coming off. It seemed like I had hit a plateau and I decided to be at peace with that. Although I felt that I was still just shy of my "ideal" body, I wasn't going to force additional weight loss if my body was putting up resistance. I wasn't willing to amp up my workout schedule and I certainly was wiling to possibly compromise my health by cutting calories from my diet. So I decided that 30lbs was enough. I didn't just say it, but I also believed it and let myself mentally relax about it.

I kept up my exercise and my healthy eating plan. This is a big difference from other times I've "dieted" in the past, when I've gone back to my old eating habits once I've reached my goal. This ultimately has only led to me gaining back weight and starting the whole dieting cycle over and over again. However, since I acknowledged from the start that this was a lifestyle change, not a temporary diet, I knew that I wasn't going to ditch the healthy habits I'd worked so hard to develop. And then something really cool happened. I stayed at that weight for a few weeks and then, without any calorie cutting or additional working out (I actually relaxed my workouts a bit), the numbers on the scale started to drop again.

And that's where I am now. 40lbs lighter and infinitely happier and healthier than I was at the start of this journey in February. Beyond the change in my appearance, I naturally wake up earlier and less tired, I have more energy during the day, I don't have the stomachaches I used to get from gorging myself on lots of unhealthy food, and I've noticed I have significantly less anxiety. I also really enjoy the healthy foods I eat and don't feel deprived, which is a key to long-term success.

Now the only challenge will be adjusting my eating to make sure I stay at this weight. Although it's always tempting, especially in our society, to lose "just a little more," I really want to maintain my current weight. I don't want to look bony or scary skinny and I don't want to get to be unhealthy, since this whole journey is just as much about health as it is about weight. That being said, I'll be experimenting with what new healthy foods and snacks I can add in for some additional calories. I have some yummy healthy recipes that I'm looking forward to trying when I get back from vacation and I'm excited to be able to share those cooking adventures with you!

Which brings me to the other thing I've been keeping from you. It's pretty much THE best invention ever. And while I can't guarantee it's going to change the world, I can tell you it's totally changed MY world. It's....Bell Plantation's PB2 Powdered Peanut Butter. (To be clear, the opinions expressed are completely my own and I'm not being sponsored in any way by Bell Plantation.)

Before changing to a healthier lifestyle, I was a self-confessed peanut butter addict. I didn't just use it in lots of yummy unhealthy baked goods, even though I did that. I didn't just put it on pretty much everything I ate, although I did that too. I was the kind of addicted where I was regularly eating large quantities straight in the jar anytime it was in the house. So when I started trying to lose weight and be healthy, I knew I had to keep peanut butter of the house. Sure, it's got lots of healthy fats, but it has a LOT of those healthy fats, a LOT of calories, and that's just in a "single serving" and I was certainly eating multiple servings at a time.

I stoically soldiered on, missing my peanut butter immensely but also realizing that it's like a gateway drug for me and that given the opportunity, I would totally dive head-first into a jar and not resurface until every last bit was consumed. And then I found PB2. It's a powder that's made from real peanuts that have been pressed to remove a significant amount of the oil they naturally contain. To make it into a peanut butter consistency, you just add water. The magical part is that it has 85% less fat calories than traditional peanut butter. To break that down for you: a regular 2 tablespoon serving of traditional peanut butter has 190 calories (130 of which are from fat) and 3 grams of saturated fat. Meanwhile, a 2 tablespoon serving of PB2 contains only 45 calories (13 of which are from fat) and 0 grams of saturated fat.

And it tastes AWESOME! It's great eaten plain right off the spoon. I use it daily in my morning oatmeal (with some protein powder and cinnamon) and I add it to plain non-fat Greek yogurt (with a touch of vanilla extract and honey) for my dessert most nights. It can be substituted into recipes to make them lower in both fat and calories. It's a great addition to smoothies. Basically, anywhere that peanut butter would be good (which is pretty much everywhere), PB2 works wonders. You can order it right from the Bell Plantation website, on Amazon, or possibly even purchase it at your grocery store. Believe it or not, my local Walmart carries it.

So there you go - you now know about the coolest thing on the planet. Go buy some PB2 and use it to help with your own weight loss or weight maintenance goals.

1 comment:

  1. How did I not know you were blogging?!? This sounds awesome and I want some ... so proud of you for your healthy journey and all you do for me on top of that :)