Like many others working with Tracie, I was overweight, having digestive problems and dealing with diabetes, which runs deep on both sides of my family. Besides dealing with various health issues, retirement for me is only months away and I have decided that I want to experience a healthy and active retirement. So in November of 2014, I started my journey to a better me.
When I started working with Tracie, she began by giving me baby steps such as eating at McDonald’s 2 times less per week (meaning I was stopping for breakfast every workday). We would set small goals, yet I was able to take these goals to the next level and sometimes beyond. During the process, I discovered that my thyroid needed a little help and I also identifed a few foods that my body seemed to be reacting to. I began taking a low dose of thyroid medication and started focusing my diet around foods I felt good eating and knew I digested easily.
We put together a weekly grocery list and I started sticking to it. I shop every week at Woodman’s on the East side of Madison and with a grocery list in hand, it made my weekly shopping trip so much easier! Although I do have some restrictions, I still have plenty of foods to choose from and stick to familiar brands like Muir Glen and Full Circle organic whenever possible. My daughter and I took one of the Grocery Store Tours Tracie offers and found it most helpful. We both have a clearer picture now of where to find clean foods, what brands to look for and why.
When creating my weekly menu, I choose 3 main dishes for lunches and suppers so that it doesn’t seem so overwhelming when prepping the meals. Since I struggle with portion control, prepping meals ahead makes it easier to control. A tip I learned from my daughter, who is now working with Tracie as well, is to keep a supply of Power Bites on hand for lunches and snacking. I have gotten to the point of looking at my “pre-Tracie” recipes and eliminating the not good stuff with better for me things.
There are times when I stray from following my menu, but I have not gone back to eating the way I was before I started working with Tracie. Keeping fresh fruit and snack protein like meat sticks around helps too. Having just made it through the holidays where goodies abounded, I made a choice to eat things or not. I asked myself if I was willing to put up with the consequences of eating certain things. If I did decide to splurge, I tried to keep it to one or two items.
I found positives about working with Tracie aside from the weight loss. For example, my grocery shopping time has dropped from an hour plus to about 35 minutes. Gas in my car lasts longer because I am not driving around looking for a place to eat. I have extra jingle in my pocket because I am not spending eight or more dollars each workday on lunch.
I recently had my annual physical and prior to my appointment had resigned myself to getting a glucose meter. Much to my delight, I have lost enough weight that the labs came back with everything in the normal range, including my blood sugar and hemoglobin A1c readings! Even though my doctor is skeptical because I am not using “their” dietitian and not going to the gym, you can’t argue with the scale and the labs!
The pictures displayed below are before I started working with Tracie and an “in process” photo from this past summer. I know I have a ways to go but I am further along than I was a year ago. Rather than focusing on all of the weight I need to lose, I set myself five pound goals. So far I have lost about 30 pounds, which puts me not quite halfway to my ultimate goal. If I plan my menu and follow it, THIS REALLY DOES WORK!!!!
Before I started working with Tracie
My “in process” photo from this past summer