My wife started a new diet a couple of weeks ago. I decided that weight loss was something I too was interested in, so I started it too. We are doing the Medifast plan, a diet that consists of a lot of pre-packaged foods (shakes, soups, etc.) with minimal preparation required. Each of the foods is a self-contained meal, and they are all balanced with respect to protein, carbs, calories, sodium, sugar, etc.
I am 5’9″ tall. My doctor told me two years ago that my ideal weight was, at the high end, 180#. People don’t believe it when they look at me, but I have been consistently weighing in between 205-210 for the last six years. (Yes, it’s true what they say about married people.) Medifast says that my ideal weight is somewhere between 146-168#. Now that, I think, is just ridiculous. If I weighed 146, well, let’s just say I’d be a lot flimsier. Still, I’m targeting 168# or so, which would be the lowest I’ve weighed in my adult life.
Medifast includes a personalized website which anyone can join. It includes all the latest social networking tools, including messaging, chat rooms, forums, your own blog (which I don’t use at all – one blog is enough for me, thank you), and best of all, a great meal calculator.
In addition to each of the Medifast meals, we have one “Lean and Green” meal a day, and allowances are made for “Fat Servings” and condiments. Depending how you play your cards, you can combine these (salmon and tofu, for instance, have fat built in, whereas shrimp does not) or separate them† (so I can have a cup of coffee with half and half to make it tolerable).
This is day 3 for me, and I’ve lost a pound a day so far. I haven’t increased my exercise(yet, and am still “lightly active,” by their measurements. I’m hoping to get more active in the coming month, which should be good all around.
The hardest part has been making it to dinner. In the hour or so leading up to dinner, I get really hungry, and I’m afraid that there won’t be enough on my plate to satisfy me. Fortunately, it does, and other than an extra bite or two of broccoli, I’m staying on the plan. Yesterday, when we went out to see the Incredible Hulk, the popcorn did smell really good, but I resisted. Having the other “responsible” adult in the house be on the same plan helps, because for the first time since that I can recall, it feels like we’re genuinely supporting each other on the diet, as opposed to working against each other. (If I had a dollar for each time she offered me ice cream during the first couple of years of our marriage, the house would be paid off.) What’s interesting, however, is that neither of us has really needed a lot of support, not as much as I would have expected anyway. When I look at the serving sizes, I never think that they will be enough to tide me over, but they do, and that’s reassuring.
It’s amazing to add everything up and see that I’m taking in well under 1,000 calories a day, and I still feel fine. The first couple of days were rough, and on day 1, I felt like I had no energy. I spent most of the weekend sitting around, with absolutely no desire to exercise or even leave the house. However tonight I attended Aikido class. It was very hot and humid, and I did feel a little “loose” toward the end, but not light-headed or irresponsible. Well, not significantly more so than normal anyway.
Supposedly the rate of weight loss will taper off over time, and I’m not expected to keep losing a pound a day for more than a couple of weeks. Still, after a month, there should be enough of a change that I’ll be digging out some of my smaller shirts and shopping for some slimmer jeans. Time will tell.