Getting the Junk Out of Our Trunk After 50

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Jinny’s story

Jinny’s story.


A Challenge to Myself

Ok, I really have to get this diet and exercise thing on a roll. I missed posting last week as I was away helping out a family member. It seemed like I was always on the go, never getting more than two quick meals per day, and I did get a case of water into me. But still I managed to gain two pounds. It was over 90 degrees everyday, I had to keep the dog on the leash and walk her several times a day. I mean where did two pounds come from?

Stress. As I understand it, one of the hormones that is produced when you are stressed out causes you to retain weight.My husband is handicapped, so when we go off on an excursion I have to do it all. All the packing, loading luggage, driving, unpacking, walking the dog, make his meals, plus the work I did for the family while I was there. I missed a class while away, the hotel promised internet and then I could not connect all week. Cant check the bank account, talk with other family, or write my post. Still it’s that two pounds that really bugs me.

My post was supposed to be about what my plan was to get going on my diet/exercise program. I was going to post my stats and lay out my plan to loose 20 lousy pounds…now its 22! This is where the challenge part comes in. Since I have been doing a lot of extra walking I am going to keep it up, hope the dog enjoys it!  Here are my numbers weight 148, height 5ft2in, bust 38.5, waist 36, hips 44, thighs 24.5. I am putting this ‘out there’ to help me be accountable, but I also see it a a motivating opportunity.  I will work on a before picture to post next week. That ought to scare you, the very thought scares me!

My diet plan is not extreme at all, increase lean protein while cutting or eliminating salt, sugar, and fat. Decreasing all portions by 25%, increasing activity by 25%  to start. I has been awhile since I really worked out with weights so I want to be careful not to get hurt. I have an eliptical/ bike, weight bench, hand weights, and a weighted bar. I love to rollerblade, so once I get stretched out, I hope to get back to that also. That is where the walking will really come in handy, it helps you with your breathing, which for me is so important, as I have exercise induced asthma.

Going back to the stress thing, I didnt know I was stressed, because I help my husband everyday, I just feel busy all the time. But the body registers it differently I guess, and at this age it is showing up on my body. I feel that this is an important thing I am doing for myself in so many ways. We all know that exercise is a great way to reduce stress, but putting that plan into action is difficult when life moves so fast sometimes. I would love to hear how you cope with stress, and any diet or exercise tips that have worked for you. Maybe a couple of recipes too!

Not a Diet, A Lifestyle

Yes, all overweight people have heard that one.  Eating healthy has come a long way. No longer restricted to carrot sticks and celery, dieters have a many more choices from online menu’s to packaged meals that are delivered to you by mail. Heck, you can even have real Chef prepare meals and deliver them in some places. But, most of us are fighting the battle of the budget, as well as the bulge.

In Florida, something is always ‘in season’. Road side stands with fresh strawberry’s, peaches,tomatoes, corn and beans are not hard to find, and with the competition among local farmers, nicely priced. Every place has its ‘season’, and if you have a local farmers market it is the best way to begin your quest for fresh produce. Generally the markets run from late spring into fall, that covers 4-6 months of fresh food. Check your Sunday paper in the local section for days, location, and times for your market.

Out of season requires a little more planning, and for me, coupons. Yes I use them, and yes, sometimes its  a pain, making sure you get what the coupon specifies, etc. Extra time at the register, the glaring looks of the customer behind you.  But when I sit down with the family at mealtime and I average out the cost per portion, that’s where I can see the real advantage of coupons. If we eat it or use it, I try to find a coupon for it. Especially soap, toothpaste, and other items that we don’t eat, but do use everyday. Saving on these items means more money for real food, and better food.( When I went to purchase a car, I had a $500 coupon, and they honored it!)

Eating healthy is not the chore it used to be. The variety of fresh food available at the local level, frozen section in the stores, and other delivery methods make it a lot easier to eat right.  Shopping sales and using coupons will help keep you on budget. It does take an effort in planning , but well worth it to keep you on track to ‘not another diet, but a lifestyle’ of healthy eating.

Everything after 6 Sticks to Your Hips

When I was in my late thirties I really got into the working out, watching what I ate lifestyle and managed to drop almost 40 pounds. Going from a size 12 to a 4. Things were working out for me really well and then I got married, began really cooking again, and was not taking my own best advice, and found myself at size 10 in about 2 years. Probably the only reason I did not get back to that size 14 is because we had a drywall business and that is real labor intensive.

So back to my ‘own best advice’, which is “Everything after 6 sticks to your hips”. At that time I was working from 4pm until midnight, and I made sure that I ate right around 6pm. After that, maybe a hard candy mint, but plenty of water to stay full really did the trick. I ate a great breakfast when I got up around 9am, either went to the gym to work with weights, or rollerblading on top of a dam that had no traffic  (in those days).

I recently read an article in Health magazine (by Paige Greenfield, July/August issue, pages 39-40) that really made sense and echoed a lot of what I was doing in those days. Ms Greenfield  cites a study by Satchin Panda, PhD that says ” New studies reveal that to burn the most fat, you need to go 12 hours without eating-say from 8pm to 8am.” Make sense?

The article goes on talking about learning to break the midnight snack routine, and lets face it, its a habit that needs to be broken.

Think about it, staying up late is a recent thing. I know many young people don’t know this, but there was a time when the TV went off the air. Around midnight, after they played the National Anthem and showed the flag waving in the wind, suddenly a test pattern and strange ooooooo sound would be on all 3 channels. Yes, only 3 channels.  So here is some of the ‘science’ behind this.

During the day, your brain and muscles use some of your calories for fuel and the rest gets stored in the liver in the form of glycogen. At night, your body converts the glycogen into glucose and releases it into the bloodstream to keep your blood sugar levels steady while you sleep. Once the stored glycogen is gone, your liver begins burning fat cells for energy.  Here’s the catch: It takes a few hours to use up the days glycogen stores, so if you snack til midnight and then have a breakfast at 7 am, your body never gets to burn fat before you start reloading your glycogen again.