On the last day of 2017, I am proud to say that I officially lost 50 lbs. My weight had just blown up in 2016 because of all the chemo, steroids and surgeries. I was literally eating everything in sight. I have a picture from my 40th surprise birthday party and was just disgusted by how bloated and huge I had become. I had to cut myself some slack because the bulk of the weight gain was completely out of my control.
As all the toxins flowed out of my body, my weight started to go down. I was thrilled until I realized the chemo induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) in my hands and feet was still as bad as the first day I got it. It was within 15 minutes of my very first Taxol chemo treatment. The damage was done. No amount of ice, Vitamin B or L-glutamine would help. Why do I mention this? It’s because by the end of 4 AC and 12 Taxol chemo, six surgeries and 33 radiation treatments I could barely walk. My equilibrium was completely off. My legs were so wobbly that I was using a cane. Then the urgent surgery to medically induce me into menopause in Feb 2017 really set me back. It took me over six months to heal from it and all the other cancer trauma to my body.
How was I supposed to get some weight off if I can’t walk without falling down or into things? So, that’s how I started my journey back to health. I knew I needed to first understand my body as it is now. I had to get my appetite back under control. I also had to strengthen my legs so I could move.
I can’t tell you how frustrating it was to have people tell me “just get moving and walk” all the time. The fact I am single and had fallen down numerous times in my apartment with no one to help me up, I knew I couldn’t just start briskly walking. I literally had to think in baby steps.
First, I worked on controlling my cravings while healing from that final surgery. I still have thyroid issues (hypothyroidism), so made sure I got my levels balanced for it. We had to go up on my levothyroxine. My taste buds still have not come back. I can only taste food if it has a lot of spices. So, I had to break all the automatic bad eating habits I had developed from 2016.
- No more fast food, except the occasional Chick-Fil-A.
- Always carry a snack in my purse on weekends when running errands.
- When working, make sure to eat my favorite apple slices and peanut butter on the way home so I won’t get tempted to buy fast food. It really does work for me.
- Understand why I was craving certain foods. I realized I wasn’t actually hungry. I just wanted something crunchy or needed water.
- Lots of water and occasional ginger ale because I still suffer from nausea.
- Now, I still eat pizza. I love pizza! I’m not vegan. I’m not paleo. I just learned how my body reacts and feels with certain foods.
- I’ve incorporated protein shakes and smoothies into my healthy eating.
- I added more seafood and veggies.
- I made slow substitutions to curb that sweet tooth. It’s easier since I can’t taste much. Lol
- I showed myself compassion.
So, now I have literally marched into 2018 as 50 lbs lighter and with purpose. I will get into that in my next post.