I’ve been doing most of your program for a while so thought I’d share my “results” so far. I’d begun to gain weight before refeeding. It was hard for a long time to eat regularly or get enough sleep. I’m sorry I don’t write as amusingly as you do, please have patience! And I’ve followed you from the get-go, reading every post for YEARS!!! And the comments!
My normal weight, for years, before my second child was about 157 at 5’5″.
I have a history of restrictive dieting from age 15 to 30. After every diet on the sun, I gave it up, but I still had a restrictive mindset. I spent a while in Overeaters Anonymous (whoops, I just wasn’t eating enough and having rebound hyperphagia). I also had PCOS, endometrisis, and infertility.
I gained about 30lbs with my second pregnancy, and lost all of it in the first 6 months of breastfeeding. That brings me to December 2010, I was 154lbs. I had started skipping meals, and my sleep was poor.
I started gaining weight, getting up to about 182 by December 2012. I gained over 5 pounds every 6 months by undereating most days of the week, despite having an active lifestyle.
I started lifting weights just once a week (BBS) in April 2012 and gradually added other exercise. If an activity put me on the couch for the rest of the day, I did not continue to do it. I have been exercising consistently ever since, varying things as I got bored.
I tried to eat more, but was very inconsistent about it, not realizing my appetite was suppressed.
By December 2012 I was about 39% body fat (based on avg of covert-bailey and military).
A couple months later I started more formally with Eating the Food, beginning by tracking all food for several weeks. That was when I realized my normal intake was 1800-2000 and I needed at least 2700. I started to increase calories a chunk at a time and gained about a pound a week until the end of June, also feeling warmer.
I had a fitbit for a while and I almost always exceeded 10,000 steps.
June 2013 I peaked at 199 pounds and 41% body fat (17lb gain on ETF)
Stopped tracking and tried to eat intuitively, within a structure (3 meals and at least one snack).
In October 2013 I stopped breastfeeding.
In December I started Karate once a week. It is pretty intense. I get out of breath during the class. For other exercise, I walk & sometimes do yoga (at most 1x/week).
I have very slowly been losing weight without trying, about 6 pounds since July.
I am 42.
Now I weigh 193, with 39% body fat. I’ve added about 13 lbs of lean body mass in the last 1.5 years.
I wear a size 14 – at my thinnest I was a 10-12. So 36 pounds has added only a size and a half. Part of that is my round booty. I also have very broad shoulders and big arms. Most women’s shirts are not cut well for my shape. Boobs are bigger too.
I noticed when I started refeeding my stomach got huge. For a long time. Pregnant huge. That has started to come down a bit and pants are easier to button. More of a waist indent, but I still have a big belly (and great legs).
My temps used to be in the 96s now they are in the 98s and I am ridiculously hot around ovulation.
I started with an assisted chin up of 70 lbs, now I can do 110.
For years I was rather obsessed with food; could remember everything I ever ate. Now food is food. I mostly want balanced meals. I have no cravings. I eat ice cream or donuts now and then but they don’t call my name anymore, because I eat enough. I have several varieties of “junk” food in my house at all times and I rarely feel like eating it.
I am free of food hangups. I used to be orthorexic, skipping meals rather than eat a substandard meal. Now if I need calories, I pick from what’s available that sounds tasty.
The freedom is AMAZING. And giving my kids freedom has also been amazing.
I still try to avoid PUFAs at home but don’t sweat what I eat out.
I feel strong. I can’t do a ton of high intensity cardio but I can walk for miles.
Everything I have done is sustainable for me. I don’t eat or exercise in a way that I don’t enjoy or want to stop doing.
Yes, I have a lot of body fat, and I have a high BMI (IDGAF about BMI). But, in December I met with a new gynecologist. He said I look very healthy, and was very surprised when he glanced down at my weight/BMI on the chart. I’m pretty solid.
For a while now I have started to feel comfortable with myself at this size/shape. I like the muscles in my thighs, and my biceps after I do chin ups, and the curve of my butt. I am noticing small changes now that make me like what I see even more.
I was never happy with my body when I dieted. It never looked like I thought it should, even at 135 pounds.
I totally see now that you have to feel good on the inside before you will really feel good about the outside.
I wouldn’t even care about my size/weight except that it is harder to find cute clothes and I don’t want to be judged by thin people.
I’m working on sleep. It’s still not amazing, but I generally go to bed earlier (at least 7 hours) and try to sleep in once or twice a week. Last week I slept 11 hours one night.
Oh – I don’t usually pee as much at night.
Thanks for reading; I hope this can serve as a data point for you to help others,