Thursday, August 4, 2011

Good 'Ol Fashioned Diet And Exercise

I just turned 35 and am as pleased as punch that although still scales away from my ideal weight and body tone, I am on the road there, and the road is showing me results! Finally. About 2 months before my birthday I started an exercise program. I figured I could at least try to look better on my birthday than I did at that very moment. That was my goal, as evasive as it sounds, and for some reason the right combination of motivation, inspiration, dedication and desperation hit me, and I have actually kept it up this time. I refused to meet that birthday whining and complaining like a victim about Prednisone weight. Or Fibromyalgia weight. Any weight, for that matter. But the results were so slow coming! After about a month I still couldn't fit into my fat pants. Yes my upper arms were thinner, face resuming its normal contours sin chipmunk cheeks and the top of my belly smaller than the bottom, finally. But I had developed this mid-region weight that was glued and sealed to my rump and very round hips, and not in a sexy baby got back way either. I already eat very healthy, had cut out fast-food and dining-out all together (unless it's a special occasion or someone else's dime), switched to the salad plate instead of the dinner plate for portion control and when food would come to mind I quickly forced myself to start a project, lengthily and consuming, if not at all interesting, like reorganizing my very disorganized file cabinet and watching Chelsea Lately at the same time.

I was very anxious to know if this was working. During this time of s-l-o-w coming results I asked my husband if I was smaller now than I was on our last vacation in 2009, when I was at the height of my Lyrica explosion. He hemmed and hawed and stammered and sputtered something to the effect that this was "different" because exercise was shaping my body in a better way. He started getting all into the science of building lean muscle while dropping fat, increasing my metabolism, that kind of junior-high health class junk. So the answer was no. But instead of throwing a my-husband-just-called-me-fat tantrum I came into the office and looked at the pictures on the computer from that trip 2 summers ago. And as heavy as I thought I was then, Lyrica does not hold a candle to Prednisone in the weight gain department! After all that exercise and discipline, despite the fact that I had indeed lost pounds, and puffiness, I was still thinner in 2009 than I was at that moment. Oh it was depressing, puzzling and annoying, if extremely motivating!

So I kept going, up at 7 three to four mornings a week, letting Yorkie & Porkie lead the iditarod race in a big circle back to home. The amount of running steps getting bigger and swallowing up the walking steps. Yoga warming my muscles to stretch and release toxins as I loosen them up, new positions and poses becoming available to me as I gain endurance, strength and flexibility. I was so sore, had to up my pain meds, soothe my piercing muscles with self-massage as they adapted to the building demand I was requiring of them. And I gotta admit it, this was really very hard. But...those fat pants I could not even fit in after a month of dedicated action? They are now too big and in the donation pile. I am firmer and in a lot less pain. I had to get a new bathing suite, the one from 2009 now too big on the bottom. The longer I keep at it the quicker the fat melts away. So have I achieved my ultimate goal, a single digit dress size, erased all my extra chins? No. But I look a hell of a lot better than I did 2 months ago, and that is good enough to keep me going!

Thanks for joining,


  1. So happy that you are able to commit to doing what you need to in order to help you feel better! And praying that I can manage to do the same soon...

  2. how long does the lyrica and the cymbalta take for the withdrawal to stop.. I'm on day 4 and it's hell

  3. Wooohoooo! Proud of you, woman! Keep up the great work!

  4. A.K.: A week after I weaned off of Cymbalta, I couldn't take the withdrawal symptoms any more and my doc put me on a low dose of Prozac for a couple or three weeks and that took care of it. I had weaned off of several antidepressants over the years prior to that and never had a problem until Cymbalta. If the withdrawal becomes too much, let your doctor know! Cymbalta is pretty notorious for being hard to get off of it. Good luck! :)

  5. Congratulations, Leah....losing weight and toning can be so hard with fibro/CFIDS/etc. Somehow over 20+ years of battling them, I had kept my weight down until I got cellulitis in both feet/legs in the summer of 2008. I had to be on rest with legs up for 3 months and could not stand long, let alone exercise, for almost 2 years after that. Although I ate healthy, I gained weight due to lack of activity. One Spring day in 2010, I had a pic taken and didn't recognize the person I saw...I decided to crack down and start stretches and hit the treadmill. I also reviewed the diet and realized I HAD been sneaking in crackers as snacks and some ice cream equaling empty calories. I ate 3 meals and allowed ate fruit for dessert, twice a week I'd allow myself a "goody" guilt-free. I also started the treadmill...I felt like such a loser as I could only tolerate 2 minutes a day to start with but every 4 days I upped it by a minute and ended up doing 20 minutes daily plus stretches. I lost 18 lbs. and toned, still not my goal weight but I felt so much better about myself and the exercise DOES help the fibo! I got sick and had to stop for almost 8 months, I've kept the weight off but just 3 days ago restared watching the food intake and the treadmill, I'm *hoping* to hit my goal by the holidays but if I don't it is is better to go slow and steady. And with flares or illness we can't beat ourselves up, just go with it and restart when we feel better. I'm so happy for you...I know how you are feeling!! xo Joy

  6. Hi Leah thank you for the response, and Veronica the withdrawal ended me in the hospital they put me on Zofran, but I quit cymbalata and lyrica cold turkey it's almost 14 days now since I did that and according to blood work and such I'm tolerating the withdrawal but it was something only nightmares wish they could compare to (60mg cymbalata, 300mg per day of lyrica)