Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Let's talk about blubber....

Hiya Blogland !!  Happy Hump Day!! In case you're wondering what the above picture is--it's the "Fatberg" a 15 TON blog of congealed fat they blasted out of the London sewers.

I decided it was time to get really REAL and discuss fat. My fat. I'm gonna through out some numbers I've never made public before!

I'm sure y'all have noticed I'm not exactly a 6 foot tall, 100 lb, 20 year old supermodel.  SURPRISE!! I'm really a 5'4", fat, 54 year old supermodel.

Let's get to the details and numbers. I ranged between 120-125 lbs through high school and my late teens/early 20's. And I thought I was FAT FAT FAT!! I was built rather straight up and down with some serious boobage. 36DDD, 30 waist, 35 hips. I was constantly starving myself trying to get "skinny". Totally and completely ridiculous.

Enter my 20's and going through all kinds of fertility treatments. hormones out of whack and I'm now  weighing between 155-165 lbs. I became diabetic in 1998 and maintained excellent numbers and control and kept my weight about 170lbs. Which SUCKED but it was what it was.
In 2005 everything went ass up and I was finally diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and  Myalgic Encephalomyelitis after being bedridden for several months. The suck-it multiplies!

I tried a medicine developed for Fibromyalgia called Lyrica. For some folks it's been a miracle. For others...not so much. I had no relief of the pain and managed to gain 47 FREAKING POUNDS in 6 weeks (weight gain is a side affect!) SUPER!! Now I weigh about 215lbs.

Add to the festivities--The American Diabetes Association now had all diabetics, regardless of their numbers/control being in the normal range, on a preventative plan where you took Metaformin (Diabetes med supposedly to protect your heart),  Blood Pressure Meds (low dosage to protect your kidneys) and Crestor (cholestorel med to protect your arteries). Now--my blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar were all NORMAL but I'm taking this medicines to "protect" my heart."

I'm chugging along until the Great Faceplant of 2011. I fell at work and managed to break my nose, chip my left kneecap and severely sprain it, severely sprain my right shoulder, wrist, and elbow, and had hairline fracture in right wrist. I couldn't use crutches, walker or wheelchair due to having casts/sling on right arm. I was pretty much totally immobile for months. AND taking enough steroids to probably juice up the Olympic wrestling team!! I balloon up like a puffer fish!

SO......... This left me at 261.3 lbs on January 1, 2012. I was still fairly immobile but I decided to start really eating "clean" and at least 50% vegetarian. Still on all the diabetes and such meds. Here's a picture of me at about 250lbs. There is no photographic evidence of the 261 lb me!

I regained mobility slowly last year and found myself weighing 229.7 lbs on January 1, 2013.
The weight loss crept along and I got more mobile. I read "Reversing Diabetes" and "Eat to Live" by Dr. Joel Fuhrman. One thing he wrote struck me--that the meds I'm taking for the diabetes makes it more difficult to lose the weight. He advocates a vegan "Nutritarian" diet. I highly recommend his books for some great nutritional advice. I asked my new doctor on my June visit if I could cut the meds and try this. She said sure--as long as my numbers were good when I had bloodwork done the end of October she was fine with it.

SO--basically I'm 90% vegan. I eat at least 1lb raw veggies, 1 lb steamed/cooked veggies, 1 cup minimum beans, 3-4 raw fruits and 1 ounce nuts or seeds daily. I have 4 ozs per week salmon or chicken. Miss Gracie has me walking quite a bit and I'm adding more yoga stretches every week. I want to try hula-hooping for the abs soon! My blood sugar numbers are fabulous and as of August 7, 2013 I weigh 196 lbs!! That's a 65.3 lb FATBERG GONE!!!

Aside from the weight loss recently, I've found stopping the meds has allowed my overall fibro pain threshhold (the average daily level) to drop from a 7/10 to under a 5/10-which is FREAKIN' AMAZING. I haven't had this low a threshold in 3 years!! plus I'm noticing that the "flares" are shorter in duration and I'm recovering faster. It can only get better!!

I've had some great support these last couple of years. My dear friend Vickie ( we met in high school first day of my 10th grade year) is a fitness trainer/coach in San Diego. She's also a corrective physi- something that can develop exercise programs for disabilities/physical limitations. She does "long distance" coaching for a super reasonable price. One of her long distance clients lost close to 200lbs and is running marathons. She's been such a source of inspiration and encouragement and makes me "accountable"!! I'm trying to get her to start a blog as she would be FANTASTIC!!

Another incredible source of support has been Crystal of The Queens Table. I went to high school with her husband. We first connected over art and creativeness. She has been on quite the health journey herself (74 lbs gone and beat cancer) She is my go-to reference for all things vegan. Her website is a treasure trove for anyone wanting to go vegan and clean up their food.  She's the one who recommended Dr. Fuhrman's books.  Her journey and story was the impetus to go vegan-you can't argue with results.

Whew--been quite wordy here today!! I'm linking up today with the always awesome Anne of Spygirl for this weeks 52 Pick-Me-Up Challenge: Tutti-Frutti. I pulled out my "salad" skirt again. It has lemon, lime, porange and pink grapefruit colors in it. The skirt is White Stag/thrifted. I put a thrifted lime Venezia Tshirt, thrifted orange belt, thifted orange Ralph Lauren cardigan, some thrifted citrusy bangles, Amerimark/retail white sandals and a pin I made from a clearance scrapbooking element. I think I'm very citrus-y and tropical and tutti-fruity.

Here's a close-up of the DIY brooches:

I'll be back tomorrow with my outfit for Gracey at Fashion for Giants Literary Stylings Challenge!!
Everyone have a wonderful evening!!


Sheila said...

What an inspiration you are, Tamera! And good for you for giving up the meds in favour of eating cleanly. One thing I always tell my WW people is "eat real food!" The less processed food, the better.

I'm so proud of you. :)

Pull Your Socks Up! said...

Wow Tamera, you've been through hell you poor love. What horrible stroke of bad luck to have had such a nasty fall, which combined with your meds, made life so much harder mobility-wise, not to mention the effect it must have had on your emotions. You're fighting back and my god what a battle considering the diabetes and Fibro, which are such debilitating conditions! I'm so proud of you for making the decision to fight back with healthy food and the kind of exercise that makes you happy (how can walking Gracie be a chore?), although I know there will be many, many days when just moving will be agony. Thank you so much for my beautiful parcel which arrived today my dear friend, I'm going to have to take out a special insurance policy out on the Trollz as they got a lot of attention while out and about today ;) xxx

Megan Gann said...

Congrats Tamera!! It's hard to actually take care of yourself, but the results are worth it! I'm glad you're feeling better. Keep rocking your diet and exercise. It works, it really does.

You've got a cheerleader in me!

Val Sparkle said...

Wow, it's amazing what a good diet will do for you. I was a little worried when you mentioned the medications the American Diabetes Association told you to take. All those things have crazy effects, and it's so much better to treat things naturally is you can.

Congratulations on your success, and finding some good advisers!

Suzanne Carillo Style Files said...

Wow that is crazy about you falling. Yikes. How devastating.

It is so difficult living with medical issues that prevent our bodies from doing everything we'd like them to do. I know how difficult FM can be since I've had it for some 25 years now. Somedays it can make it feel like you are climbing a mountain when in fact it's only the stairs. Most people don't get it when you try to explain that your pain is amplified 1,000 %. For many years I was told it was all in my head.

You are a great inspiration. Taking back control of your life despite all the health issues. I hope you continue on this journey and keep us updated as to your progress.


The Style Crone said...

Thank you for your inspiring story and your fabulous example of self care and determination. I embrace a similar vegan lifestyle, based on what was recommended for my husband when he was diagnosed with cancer in 2005. Sending you much support, and love your 'tutti-frutti' outfit.

Anne M Bray said...

WOW! Congratulations on all that you've achieved! Your support circle is invaluable. [VICKIE -- start that blog please!!!]
I'm inching my way towards gluten-free to help with inflammation issues.

Thanks for linking up with 52 Pick-me-up. And for being YOU!

Anonymous said...

You have no idea how much I needed to read your post! I have been ill for 3 years and Myalgic Encephalomyelitis is the label I'm going to end up with by process of elimination. I don't have fibro (ME's evil twin) but I have got an immune system so batshit crazy, it has been messing with my thyroid. You are an inspiration and I'm going to investigate those books/sites right after I've posted this. Thank you so much - and big BRAVO to you for such fortitude. Knowledge is POWAH! Take care sweetheart xx

seƱora Allnut said...

you're always inspiring, dear lady, and it's very supportive to read that you're being successfully fighting your health issues!, that's fabulousness!!
and your great attitude and colorful outfit really put a smile on my face!!, orange is so vitaminic!!
besos & salud!

Lynn Marsh said...

You are one tuff lady. Glad things are getting brighter.

Miss Simmonds Says said...

You're a fantastic inspiration, I've seen photos of you at school and in your 20s and you definitely weren't fat. I was around the same size and thought exactly the same thing. I would love to have a 32" waist again! That first photo of you looks so different, you look angry and defiant. There's no Tamera smile! You've done amazingly xxxxx

Gabriala Brown said...

This is awesome Tamera! Good for you for taking charge of your health! I am so proud of you! xoxoxoxoxoxxoxoxoxoxo!!!!

The Queens Table said...

Tamera, I was reading this post and amazed at all you have been through and how far you have come in your commitment to your health! I am so happy to hear of your success with affecting the fibro! I always think about you and wonder if a mostly vegan diet would help that for you. I am so thrilled to hear that it has made improvements in those areas!!! I am happy to hear how Dr. F has been such an inspiration too! I did not know I would run into my name on this post! Thank you! You are also paying it forward by being a great example to your blog followers! Keep on rockin' in the real world!

Penny-Rose said...

Tamera, I think you are really inspirational. You have such a great attitude and your blog photos are always so happy and smiley, it is hard to imagine that you have had the health challenges you describe. You are fabulous!!