Drum roll please!
Actually, I didn't intend to keep the diet a secret in order to cause some big mystery or surprise at the end but more so that I didn't have to contend with any well-intentioned nay-sayers (not that any of my readers could ever be nay-sayers!) who might cause me to lose faith in the program. I'm glad to say however that "the program" is a winner!
I'm only halfway done with the diet and will pick up the second half after the holidays. And no, I do NOT think I will gain the weight back in the interim.
The diet/program is called The Simeon's Protocol, also known as the HCG Diet. Some of you may be familiar with the protocol, but for those of you who aren't and are interested in learning more about it, just Google it and you will find a TON of information about it. Better yet, go to YouTube.com, enter HCG Diet into the search bar, and you will have access to hundreds of vlogs (video logs) from people currently doing the protocol.
I could describe the diet here, but with so much information already available online it would really be a waste of time. I will tell you that the diet consists of eating no more than 500 calories a day, but with the HCG I experienced no hunger. NONE. Temptation, yes, but hunger, no. To me, this quite amazing since I remember doing Weight Watchers years ago and feeling extremely hungry eating as much as 1200 calories a day. The key (I found) was in the "loading" which is explained in the protocol manuscript. On the diet, you eat only (certain) proteins, (certain) fruits, and (certain) vegetables (up to 500 calories a day) and are allowed no dairy, sugars, starches, or fats. And naturally, the more organic you can keep your food, the better.
Since I feel like I kind of sound like a commercial for the program, before I go on any further, I want to say that I'm not in any way affiliated with the program nor any of the products that I might mention while writing about it. I'm just thrilled that the program actually worked and wanted to include it in my blog since it's been such a positive experience for me, and God knows I needed a positive experience :-) I should probably also mention that I'm not advocating that just anybody should jump head first into this program without thoroughly researching it. There's a TON of information out there available to the public and I highly recommend spending plenty of time educating yourselves before making any decisions regarding beginning the program yourself or even recommending it to others. Having said that, I will include some helpful links at the bottom of this post for those who are interested in reading more about the protocol.
Okay, on to the good stuff. In 34 days I lost 12.7 pounds putting me more than halfway to my goal of losing the 22 pounds I gained since beginning Lexapro in January. Most people lose about a pound a day on this protocol, but since I didn't have much to lose to begin with I set my goal at about 1/2 pound a day. After doing the math, you can see that I didn't lose quite a 1/2 pound a day but I'm okay with that. I did hit a pretty significant stall at about the 119/118 pound mark (as you can see below) for no apparent reason, but once I broke the stall I began losing pretty quickly again.
|10/9/2008||116.3 lbs / 52.8 kg|
|10/8/2008||116.7 lbs / 52.9 kg|
|10/7/2008||116.8 lbs / 53 kg|
|10/6/2008||117.5 lbs / 53.3 kg|
|10/5/2008||117.6 lbs / 53.3 kg|
|10/4/2008||118.2 lbs / 53.6 kg|
|10/3/2008||118.8 lbs / 53.9 kg|
|10/2/2008||118.5 lbs / 53.8 kg|
|10/1/2008||118.8 lbs / 53.9 kg|
|9/30/2008||119.2 lbs / 54.1 kg|
|9/29/2008||119.9 lbs / 54.4 kg|
|9/28/2008||119.4 lbs / 54.2 kg|
|9/27/2008||119.4 lbs / 54.2 kg|
|9/26/2008||119.8 lbs / 54.3 kg|
|9/25/2008||119.8 lbs / 54.3 kg|
|9/24/2008||122.1 lbs / 55.4 kg|
|9/22/2008||120.4 lbs / 54.6 kg|
|9/21/2008||122.4 lbs / 55.5 kg|
|9/21/2008||121.4 lbs / 55.1 kg|
|9/20/2008||121.5 lbs / 55.1 kg|
|9/19/2008||121.9 lbs / 55.3 kg|
|9/18/2008||122.8 lbs / 55.7 kg|
|9/17/2008||123.8 lbs / 56.2 kg|
|9/16/2008||124.7 lbs / 56.6 kg|
|9/15/2008||124.2 lbs / 56.3 kg|
|9/14/2008||124.1 lbs / 56.3 kg|
|9/12/2008||126.1 lbs / 57.2 kg|
|9/11/2008||125.1 lbs / 56.7 kg|
|9/10/2008||127.1 lbs / 57.7 kg|
127.7 lbs / 57.9 kg
|129 lbs / 58.5 kg|
Keep in mind that I stayed on protocol all throughout the hurricane Ike evacuation (yay me!) which did take some determination but just goes to show what a little determination can do!
The reason I'm taking a break is because the protocol is designed to be followed as a 23 day program or a 43 day program. I originally planned on following the 23 day program however decided to go a bit longer which is completely permissible. After following the protocol for the 23 days (or 43 days), you have to stop for a period of 6 weeks (or longer) before you can start again. The reason for this is because you can build up an immunity to HCG after a while which can be cause the protocol to stop working properly. The cool thing is that this protocol somehow re-sets the hypothalamus which in turn somehow keeps you from re-gaining the weight back after you stop the 500 calorie/day diet! How cool is that??? I plan to re-start the protocol after the holidays just to keep things simple.
My favorite part about doing this program is that I feel amazingly well. I have no idea why really, but I honestly have not felt this good physically in at least 5 years. My energy level is way up and I've got a super clean house to prove it (our housekeeper had to re-locate after hurricane Ike). I'm not sure if overall sense of well-being is directly related to the HCG or whether it's because for the first time in years I'm actually eating healthy (non-processed) foods, but I plan on keeping close tabs on how certain foods affect me from this point on. And even though I'm allowed to slowly introduce sugars and starches back into my diet over the course of the next few weeks, I'm choosing not to.
ETA: This post was written over a year ago but was never finished nor published. I'm sure I DID knit something at that time but right now I have NO idea what it was. Whatever it was though, I'm sure it was AMAZING ;-)