Monday, December 29, 2014

Don't Miss Out On The December Special! FREE PRODUCT!



Hey everyone! Don't miss out on the December Special. Place an order in the month of December and receive a FREE CAN OF FFL EGGNOG! This is one of my favorite flavors. SOOO good! All you have to do is place your order before January 1st and be sure to  note "December Special" in the comment box when ordering. That's it! What a great way to begin the New Year!

Friday, December 26, 2014

54 Day Countdown!

Ok...here goes. I had my 100 (actually 99) days of SS count down to my 56 birthday and ended up taking a break for Christmas. I haven't been weighing or really doing anything other then just being careful, but I definitely feel like I gained some of my weight back. New Years is a non-event in our house so the celebrating is OVER! Tomorrow I begin my 54 day countdown to my 56 Birthday goal. My wonderful son gave me an ice cream maker for Christmas so I finally get to experiment with some Cambridge ice cream! My husband also gave me a very nice Cuisinart Immersion blender with all sorts of attachments and a perfectly sized container that will be great for really blending the ice. I'm all set!

I'm having tons of new traffic on my site so others are searching for their answer to weight loss for the New Year. No doubt, a lot of the visitors are old friends that are back to try again. It's never too late to lose the weight and restore your health! We all have a clean slate in front of us.

                                                          2015, Time To Get Lean!


Sunday, December 21, 2014

Just A Few More Days

For those that are waiting to get Christmas over to once again commit to their weight loss program, it's only a few more days. If you're waiting until after the New Year, well...that's another story. Always waiting for the perfect time to diet is pointless as there is always another holiday or event coming up. Trying to make progress in between can mean  a lot of effort for not a lot of progress. Don't waste those in between days. Make them count too. 5 days of work is not cancelled out by one day of play, as long as you give it your best.

Jan 1st will be here soon enough and then for the most part, the excuses dry up for a while. For those who are SSing or attempting to and making progress, or even just maintaining (which is also an accomplishment!) well done! Real life demands that we make tough choices and sacrifice what we want in the moment, for what we want most in the future.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Yucky week

I've had some kind of virus these past few days and have felt unmotivated to do much of anything other then the necessary holiday preps. One of the many bad things about my husband working at Walmart is that it is a hot bed of germs. He gets sick so often from all the people that not only are shopping there while sick as dogs, but the other employees as well. No one gets sick days so they show up spreading whatever they have to everyone else. It's ridiculous. I ran a day care for 20 years with constantly sick kids and parents in my home and never caught as many things as I have the past 2 years that he's been working there.

So poor Andy is at work today, feeling horrible. My energy is at 0, but at least my head is clear now. I can't imagine how tired he must be right now with another hour and a half to go.(cry)

Needless to say, I have not gotten back to my program. No excuses. It's a week and a half to Christmas and I'm just putting weight loss on the back burner until then. I'm still having my Cambridge of course, but not worrying about the scale for the moment.

Sorry I have not been as supportive as I would have liked to have been, but we're all dealing with the extra burdens of holiday expectations and duties which will soon be behind us. I fully expect to be back 100% come Dec 26th. Until then...survival mode.


Monday, December 8, 2014

Oh You Holidays! What Am I going To Do With You?

Here are my thoughts. It would be awesome if we could all SS right through the New Year. If able to do that, then by all means do it! Most of us seem to be kind of aiming for perfection during the most difficult time of year, but falling short. I believe that the one thing you do NOT want to do when trying to lose weight is allow any negative thoughts take over.

I had intended to SS right through the holidays and straight to my birthday on Feb 18th. I had completed about 12 or 13 days sole source, and then had Thanksgiving. Since then I have not felt motivated to get back to it and I have felt kind of bad about it, not to mention physically just blah. I realized that for now, my goal is good enough if it is just not to gain anything over the holidays. So what I'm going to do is get back in the habit of having Cambridge very day and  consider what I eat carefully and be sure it is worth it. It's not an all or nothing thing, or at least it doesn't have to be. I want to keep my attitude positive. I want to retain my Cambridge habit. I want to weigh every day for now to be sure I am not gaining ANYTHING and I also want to feel free to eat if I choose until Christmas. Then it will be a full on focused effort to my birthday. I realize that my birthday is just a day on the calendar and I've never been much of a believer of setting myself up with a deadline before, but turning 56 is kind of major to me and I do want to begin my 56th year in better shape then I am today.

Each of us has to develop our own strategy for getting through this annual food fest without doing too much damage, physically or mentally. I just want to be sure that no one sets them self up for any negative thoughts if they can't be perfect for the next few weeks. There is no one right answer, other then to be sure that you are keeping a positive outlook at this evolution we call weight loss.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Thanksgiving Is Over...



Good Question! We made it through Thanksgiving. Some of us were able to stick to our plan, some of us went off the deep end, but all of us look forward to a better future so no looking back! Tomorrow is December 1st. 2014  is almost over. We have a few weeks to either make excuses, or make progress before the New Year begins. 

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

A Thanksgiving Poem I wrote for my Support Board

It's the night before Thanksgiving
And all through the board
Not a dieter was posting
Not one single word

The blenders are quiet
The posters are too
I had good intentions
But what's a dieter to do?

The family is here
The whole country is cooking
I so badly want to sample
When no one is looking

My head starts to spin
My heart starts to pound
My commitment to diet
Is nowhere to be found.

I know what to do
I know what is best
I know I'm important
But temptation's a pest

When Thanksgiving is over
And Friday begins
I want to count pounds lost
Instead of my sins

So take THAT you stuffed turkey!
Away with you food
My health's more important
I choose  to do good!

Whatever your plan
Whatever you choose
Keep your best interest in mind
And you will not lose!

(except pounds of course!)

Happy Thanksgiving !

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Day 90 Of My 99 Day Cambridge Diet Challenge

I am on my 10th day of Sole Source (SS) for my 99 Day Ultimate Goal. So far I have been pretty much 100%. I did have a few bites of stew the other day and last night some chicken breast, but other then that I've been on track. With Thanksgiving looming in 5 more days I need to make this time count. I am planning on having a meal with my family and then getting right back to the business of losing.

I still cook every day for my husband and I actually don't mind at all. In fact, I enjoy it. I'm very careful about taste testing for seasonings and all. It can be hard to cook like I do. I never use recipes and normally go completely by taste, but that can get you in trouble. Sometimes by the time I had dinner all prepared for him, I felt like I had already eaten! I'd still go ahead and eat with him though. No need to wonder why I had put on a few pounds since we got married.

So I'm chugging along and feeling good. If anyone reading this is also SSing until Thanksgiving and then planning on taking a break and eating, just keep in mind that your stomach has adjusted to your very low volume diet and will not be producing all the digestive enzymes and acids it normally would while eating a full food diet. You will be in a world of hurt and feeling pretty horrible if you overdo it...and let's face it... overdoing it is pretty much the definition of Thanksgiving. Be prepared and get some good Digestive Enzymes to take with your meal. Your local Health Food store should have a good variety. Choose one that has a long list of specific enzymes that break down all forms of food, not just something like papaya extract. You'll be thanking me later!

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Persistence, Not Perfection. An Emotional Healing

While on Cambridge, we all hope for perfection. We strive to stick to our diet without any detours or derailments. Unfortunately, it's not realistic to think we can isolate ourselves throughout the entire process of losing our weight. Success with Cambridge is not about perfection. It's about persistence. "All or nothing" thinking gets many of us in to a never ending loop of starting and stopping our diets. It reinforces thoughts of failure which only makes us feel hopeless and we give up once again.

There's always going to be something that comes up that will involve food somehow. That's just life. For example, lets say you have friends or family come in to town unexpectedly and  the decision is made for everyone to go out to eat. You don't want to be "that" person that lessens everyone else's experience by staying home or just sitting there with a diet soda while the rest of the table eats uncomfortably around you. What do you do?  Do you just dive in and go for it, using this as the perfect excuse to eat yourself under the table? Or, do you practice some good eating choices? We only have a problem if we continue to use normal every day activities and events as an excuse to binge and indulge our food addictions. If you eat like a health minded person, then that is a success! It's progress of the best kind. You are reinforcing your new lifestyle choices and will be in the proper state of mind to resume your Cambridge without it triggering an emotionally charged binge.

Eating food is not the problem. The emotions we nurture when we eat food are! The bargaining and excuses and justifying...these are the problem. They stir the pot of compulsive behavior and pretty soon, it boils over.

When given the unavoidable opportunity to practice good eating choices, take it as part of your recovery and make a point of detaching emotions from the event. Use it to your benefit as a chance to prove to yourself that you can keep food in it's proper perspective. That's not easy in our food obsessed culture. What other time in our history has food played such a obsessive central roll in our every day lives? TV shows and entire networks are devoted to it. The once common job of cooking for a living has become celebrity status. Restaurants and even food trucks clamber for cult like followings. Even home cooks are now endlessly striving for show stopper meals they see displayed on Pinterest and other social media. It used to be we just had to try to compete with Martha Stewart. Now we're all supposed to BE Martha Stewart!

You want to be free. The goal should not only be about being a certain size, shape, or weight. It should not only be about looking better for an event or a deadline. We all want to be free from this thing that our lives currently revolve around...our eating disorders. We all need an emotional mental healing. Only then will our bodies be able to do the work to heal us physically. We can't observe this healing from viewing X-Rays or stitches or any other tangible evidence of recovery. We have to be tuned in to our thoughts at all times and be willing to abort those that do us harm. A peaceful co-existence between our mind and our body, one nurturing the other.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Quick Hello

Hey readers. I just wanted to check in with a progress report. I'm on my third day of my 99 day challenge and so far, so good. Last night was a little rocky. I was pretty hungry and really had to keep the mental pep talk going. I normally don't experience hunger anymore, even when SSing so this is new. I have to admit that my diet of late has been a lot sloppier then normal so that is likely why. Paying the piper I guess!

Today is better. My tummy is a little growley still, but it's lunch time anyway so that's ok. I'm am experiencing a slight metallic taste in my mouth so I guess I am going in to ketosis which should take care of the hunger. My energy is great today and I feel better overall so this is progress! Tomorrow will be a good day.

I'm not weighing right now. I decided that for my first month I will stay off the scale. I will have my first weigh in Dec 12th. I have a pretty good idea of my starting weight already. I'm not focusing on the day to day numbers. Once a month weigh ins will be right for me.

So day 97 of my 99 day countdown is going well. Anyone joining me?

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

99 days

There are 99 days until my 56th birthday. My (ultimate) goal this year was to be at my high school weight by then. I've made a few half heart'd stabs at it, but I just couldn't stay focused for the long haul. This goal is important to me, both for my health, as well as my sense of accomplishment.

Being married now has put a whole new spin on things. Before I was married, when I would have clients complain about their spouses being a distraction by wanting them to go out to eat or by bringing food home, I never understood the real problem like I do now. By being on a highly restricted diet like Cambridge, you're pretty much demanding that your significant other be on restriction with you, to a certain extent. When my husband has his 3 day weekend, he likes to go exploring, mostly day trips.  We are still newbies here in Florida and there is a lot to see. Being out all day kind of makes it necessary to eat at some point. My husband has a healthy appetite and can eat a full meal and be ready to eat again in an hour! He has no weight problem of course. I know how hard he works and on his days off I don't want to be a party pooper. He won't eat in front of me. He just can't make himself go against the way his Mama raised him. This then condemns him to starving and when he gets hungry, he gets really wobbly, really fast! On top of that, he loves to eat and wants to enjoy that with me. Nothing wrong with that of course.

So here's the problem....I need to do this, but I hate forcing him to limit his recreation on his hard earned days off. He needs that time to decompress and gear up for another miserable week in the Walmart Claims Dept. I've been going 'round and 'round about this for some time now. I get going on my diet, only to feel guilty and go off so he and I can enjoy our time together. Now to be clear, he in no way EVER complains, but he also won't eat if I don't. He's also perfectly happy with the size I am at now and doesn't think I need to lose, other then to improve my health of course.

When I realized last night that I only had 99 days remaining till my B-day, I made the decision that no matter what, I'm sticking to my Cambridge until I either reach my goal, or the 99 days are up. At the age I'm at now, along with my history of diabetes, my digestion is very slow. It's called "delayed gastric emptying" and it makes it so my body has plenty of time to absorb every single calorie. I lose about half as fast as I did 13 years ago, so this will take some uninterrupted time. I printed up three, 100 day countdown charts. I have one on the fridge, one on my bathroom mirror, and one right here in front of me on top of my computer. I will cross off the bathroom one in the AM when I get up, the fridge one after my lunch shake, and my computer one at night before going to bed. I told my husband what I'm doing and he is of course supportive, but I am well aware of the toll it will take on him and I kind of hate that. I am also doing this at the worst possible time with Thanksgiving looming and then of course, Christmas.

If anyone would like to get in on my 99 days SS, please do! I will be posting updates weekly. You can use the comments and I would love to have you along for the adventure!

Wish my luck!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Learned Helplessness

When an athlete has an injury, lets say a runner breaks their leg, and they go through a time of recovery with a cast and crutches or whatever apparatus is required, they have to relearn how to get around and compensate for being off balance with whatever they are forced to drag around. Eventually they get the cast removed and even though they may have spent their entire life up until that injury being a runner, they will have to relearn how to walk normally again. They have learned not to trust that limb, the muscles have atrophied so it feels weak, they have gotten used to their lop sided gait and can't remember how to move smoothly and without thinking about it and it may feel like they will never be back to normal again. Running feels awkward and stilted. It is a learned behavior and the only way to get past it is to challenge it and push through, maybe by using visualization to reboot the mind and muscle memory to once again run freely. Physical therapy can assist the person in relearning to depend on that limb and eventually the recovery is complete.

My point is that we are all susceptible to false beliefs. This can be due to learned conditioning as in the broken limb, or in our self belief based on past experiences and input from others. It makes sense that if you fail at something, you have one of two options. Give up or try again. If you try again and fail it begins to alter your thinking and weakens your confidence until you lose hope in your ability to do any better. You may try again, only this time you go in expecting to fail. Like the broken leg, if every time you try to walk again you fell, how many times would you get back up before fearing failure, possibly not even trying so hard with each attempt. It's a self fulfilling prophecy.

Most of us have a history of dieting and disappointment. We flog ourselves emotionally with each failure and our self esteem gets chipped away with each attempt. Gradually we come to believe that obesity is our destiny and that the most we can hope for is to keep it under control with periodic efforts at weight loss. We no longer consider ourselves "normal" by the world's standards and our fear of failure is ever present, sometimes to the point of self sabotage without even being aware of it.

Cambridge is a good apparatus to support your body during it's healing from obesity. It can only address the physical need. The emotional mindset of what you believe about yourself and your ability to accomplish your goal is 100% on you. Cambridge can serve as your "physical therapist", but not as your emotional one. There is only so much support you can get from others, or that I can offer one on one to you individually. There is no escaping the fact that at some point, we much deal with ourselves and our issues and do the work to heal them. We can't blame anyone or anything for our situation, nor can we hold others responsible for our successes or failures. You have to force yourself to override the ingrained thinking that continually trips you up and causes you to accept less from yourself then you are truly capable of. It won't be comfortable or seem natural, but it has to happen. You have to believe in yourself and be willing to say "no" just as you would to a tantruming child. No bargaining or justifying. You have to understand that your thinking is the illness and the obesity is the symptom. You can't cure illness by treating symptoms.

Your mindset or concept of self is the core of your issues with food and weight. It is what will propel you forward or hold you back. I learned that if I changed my thinking, I could change my perception of my world and how I experienced it. Once I truly understood my potential to change what I didn't like about how I was living, it opened up doors I never understood I had barricaded. It was a revelation to say the least and I still marvel at it. Cambridge unlocked the door for me, but I had to be brave enough to go through it and see what was on the other side. Fortunately, the other side is wonderful!

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Rapid Weight Loss, Good or Bad?

There has been a long standing belief that rapid weight loss was harmful and that dieters should aim for no more then 1 to 2 pounds per week. For someone that may have more then 20 pounds to lose, that can look pretty bleak.  If you have 100 or 200 or more, you're looking at a year or two of constant adherence to a restricted eating plan. Since most diets are not made for enjoyment, this is unrealistic. The typical dieter can stay focused on a restricted eating plan for a month or two, but certainly not years! Along with that is the belief that rapid weight loss leads to rapid regain. An example of unproven theory accepted as fact.

15 years ago when weight loss surgery started to become more common, the expected rate of weight loss kind of flew in the face of the previous recommended loss of  1 or 2 pounds per week. Patients were expected to lose 5 or 10 times that much. Why was it suddenly ok for a body to drop weight quickly? What was different?

Fast forward to the ever popular reality (?) TV shows that feature obese cast members and their trainers who miraculously transform them in to weight loss machines, sometimes losing well in to the double digits in their weekly weigh ins.

So in spite of these contradictions, we were still being advised the same old tired thing...aim for 1 to 2 pounds per week. Anything beyond that was deemed "unsafe". Like most theories that are never proven, but repeated enough over the years for people to assume they are fact, this directive never had any foundation to stand on. It's true that for most people to lose weight rapidly, it requires extreme caloric restriction and that usually means nutritional deficiencies.  THAT can be potentially harmful. The body needs nutrients to thrive and survive. Going several months on say, 500 calories of conventional food would be unwise since it would be nearly impossible to consume what your body needs. The typical dieter would soon grow weary of so little food and feeling so weak and would have a good possibility of rebounding right back to the old eating habits that originally made them obese. So in reality, it is not the rate of fat being burned for energy that is the problem, it is depriving your body of nutritional building blocks to maintain good health. Now that makes sense.

Unfortunately, in the case of weight loss patients who rapidly lose large amounts of weight quickly through not only caloric deprivation, but also nutritional deprivation, it can leave them vulnerable to long term consequences related to nutritional deficiencies.  They are burning not just fat for energy, but muscle and other lean tissues. The fact that a good majority of them end up gaining the weight back suggest that the body is hard wired to survive and will demand nutrition. Old eating habits creep back in along with the drive to compensate for what's lacking in the diet. Patients learn to override the surgery by stretching out the stomach again. They may have lost weight rapidly, but gaining the weight back has nothing to do with how fast they lost the weight.

There is a light shining on this subject now. Recently there has been research that has proven the rate of loss has no bearing on any fat regained after the dieter goes off their plan. In other words, slow loss does not mean long term maintenance. Finally!  You can read the actual results here:

http://www.thelancet.com/journals/landia/article/PIIS2213-8587(14)70200-1/abstract

The research that was done during the development of Cambridge all those years ago by a team of scientists and doctors in the UK, proved that when fed complete balanced nutrition, the body was able to lose the excess fat rapidly with no damage done to lean tissues. This is key to the safety of rapid weight loss and long term maintenance. In spite of these findings, Cambridge was still looked at with suspicion in it's early years because it went against that old 1 to 2 pounds per week idea. People were losing an average of 4 to 7 + pounds per week on less then 400 calories a day while remaining perfectly healthy. We were still subjected to all sorts of doom and gloom predictions by people who knew nothing about the diet, including media doctors who never even read the label.

The new research that has been done studied controlled groups of dieters. One group was put on a very low calorie diet that resulted in rapid weight loss, while the other was given one to follow that gave 1 to 2 pounds per week. The goal was to determine if rapid weight loss resulted in more regaining of weight post diet, along with any other health consequences. What was found was that while the 2 groups both lost weight in the allotted time, the rapid group had lost much more. Both groups some time later were then evaluated for regain. Both in fact, did regain approximately the same percentage of the weight back, but the rapid group, because they had experienced far more weight loss initially, were still way ahead of the other group. In other words, if rapid group A lost 30 pounds, while slow group B only lost 5, and both gained back 4, it is easy to see that a rapid weight loss is desirable when done safely. On top of that the rapid group was far more motivated to remain healthy and in control of their diet due to a significant life style change.

Cambridge has been proven over time to be the best option for safe rapid weight loss. Given the choice to lose 1 pound per week on a conventional diet, or possibly 7 on Cambridge... the choice is obvious. All those old theories of the body going in to "starvation mode" or the metabolism slowing down or the nay-sayers predicting you will gain it all back because you lost if fast have been proven false. It's time to embrace the idea that the most beneficial way to lose the weight is as quickly as possible as long as your body is being fed completely as it is on Cambridge. Obesity is a killer and the sooner you leave it behind, the better for your long term health.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Recovery, It's a Good Thing

So I am now 95% back to normal after my flu virus or whatever evil thing it was that slammed me this past week. Sadly, my family is all sick with it, but at lease I am well enough now to take care of them if they need me.

In the midst of my viral misery, I thought about how much I take for granted now.. and how much I am in denial about. Some years back there wasn't a second of any day that I wasn't sick and in pain from my obesity. It was 24/7. It's a dim enough memory now that I forget what it's like to not be able to do what I want without thinking. Jumping up to answer my phone, walking endless hours at Disney World with my husband, knowing that I can go anywhere out to eat and not worry about fitting in a booth, going grocery shopping and not feeling judged. Normal everyday stuff that used to be on my "Too much effort" list. It was a long list. Now I live my life with few limitations and I don't take that for granted. I doubt I ever will. I hope I never do.

The denial part is where it gets real. Are you ready for this? Am I ready for this? I am not thin. I am not at my ideal weight. I am technically still considered overweight by the charts that be. I'm a little pissed about that. Who are "they" to tell me I am overweight? If I feel good and I am enjoying my life, why isn't that good enough? Why do I or anyone else have to fall in line with a chart that declares us worthy? Why? Well...I know why. Because these charts are not to judge us or tell us we are too fat to wear white jeans. These charts are to tell us that our current weight puts us in a category of health risk common for the average individual who is our weight, height, gender, and age.  I am still very much at risk. In fact, considering my health history, it's a no brainer that I am still very much in the danger zone of diabetes and heart disease. It's in not only my own health history, but several generations of my genealogy.

My ultimate goal for this year is to get to my high school weight. This would put me in the lower range of the weight charts for best health benefits. Now, when I was a teenager, I was active, not to mention...a teenager! Even though I had always struggled with weight, my metabolism was a whole lot better at 17 then it is now. Knowing this, I need to get my head out of the sand and get busy. I have made a few temporary attempts at my goal, but let's face it, 55, almost 56, is plenty old enough to realize I don't have all of the time in the world to prevent some major health disaster from crashing in on me. My sister died last year from pulmonary hypertension. She was one year older then I am now. My Mom died at 62 from congestive heart failure. I've already had that before. There is vascular disease and heart disease and other serious risk factors including my own battle with diabetes that is REAL! Very real.

So tomorrow I begin again. I have a few months until my 56th B-day. I want to be at my ultimate goal. Wish me success!

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Calling In Sick

I rarely ever get sick. Even when I was running a day care in my home and was surrounded by constantly sick kids, I seemed to be immune, or I would get a very mild version and be over it in a few hours. Well...for some reason I got slammed 2 days ago with a virus that seems to want to make up for all those times I didn't catch anything. I feel like my head is in a bucket of mud and my body is dragging hundred pound weights from every limb. I've had zero sleep for 2 nights and frankly, I'm not taking it too well. I much more prefer my previous superhero powers of immunity.

One interesting thing I wanted to share before going back to my sick bed, or in this case sick couch (my hubby is still sleeping and all my coughing and snuffling is probably pretty annoying), I hardly ever get food cravings anymore. Occasionally I'll get an urge for sushi, but sugar and all those things that used to rule my life just have no effect on me anymore. Last night was Halloween and we didn't participate in the candy craze. Being sick, we just put a note on the door and no one egged our house. In my dark sugar addicted past I would have already consumed POUNDS of candy by the morning after and I wouldn't have stopped until it was all gone...and the stores were cleared out of their 50% discounted leftovers. I'm completely free from that, but  for some reason, 2 sleepless nights have made me crave bread like my life depends on it! I hardly ever eat bread! Honestly, if my arm was made of bread, I'd eat it off.

I know there is a connection to insomnia and carbohydrate cravings. I've just never experienced it before. Probably because I was already eating a pretty carb loaded lifestyle. I struggled with chronic insomnia and day time sleepiness all the time back in my garbage eating days.  Now, I am healthy and usually sleep like a baby. Being made aware that sleep deprivation can have such a dramatic affect on resurrecting food cravings is quit alarming! The urge to self medicate my fatigue with an insulin stimulating bread binge is natural, but like most things we use food for improperly, it is a temporary fix at best with long term consequences. Resist!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Tips For Those New To Cambridge, part 2

Part 2

Here are a few hints about how to prepare the products along with some other info..        
       
1. Be sure to mix and drink your shakes right away. Don't let them sit around for any length of time          before drinking them. The encapsulation will wear off and you will notice a vitamin taste.        
       
2. When making the FFL Super Oats as a hot cereal I use about 1 cup water to my two rounded scoops. I first heat the water to just boiling with some cinnamon and a about 1 T coconut oil. Coconut oil is not part of the program, but I like to use it as a healthy fat that has actually has been proven to accelerate weight loss, plus it tastes wonderful in the Oats. Do some research on it and decide if you want to add it to your program. I like to cook mine on the stove, but you can use a microwave oven if you want. If you use the micro be sure to use a big enough bowl so they can't boil over. Stir a couple of times to avoid lumpiness. You can sweeten them with whatever sugar free sweetener you normally use. You can add cinnamon or any other spice if you like. I use cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves. There are recipes here for yummy things like pancakes for the Super Oats on the Support Board. You can see them at,

http://members5.boardhost.com/pam140/msg/1241977486

Be sure and check those out!      
       
3. The Rich Shake flavors are an extra thick and creamy option in the Original 330 line. Don't miss out on those! The Rich Chocolate is my favorite. I usually add about a half tsp of unsweetened cocoa powder for a more intense darker flavor. I like DARK chocolate!   If you use 3 to 4 oz water and 3 ice cubes, you can blend it until super thick like a mousse.    
       
       
4. It is a matter of personal taste and preference when choosing between the three plans, the Original 330 including the Rich Shake flavors, the 330 with the addition of Tonalin CLA, or the Food For Life (FFL) 420 formulas. FFL uses soy for it's protein source, while the 330's uses dairy whey. It's a good idea to try from all formulas so you can find which suits you best. They are all different in flavors and textures.
       
5. The 30 Day Starter Plans are for first time customers only. You are allowed to try one of each,     the Food for Life 420 30 day Plan, the Original 330 30 Day Plan, or the Tonalin CLA 30 Day Plan. All 3 come with the money back guarantee. If you try to reorder a plan that you have already tried the company will hold your order until they can contact you to explain the rules. They will offer to sell you the 6 cans at the regular retail price, but you will not get the free items again. Sorry!        
       
6. Do not mix hot soups or drinks in a closed blender! It will explode!!        
       
7. You can mix your shakes in the blender, with a hand shaker cup, or one of those hand held immersion blenders that fit right into your glass. My favorite blender is a low priced single serve little guy. It was only about $20 at Walmart and works perfectly on ice for a thicker shake. It is like the "Magic Bullet" only a lot cheaper and the personal blender mugs that it comes with are a little bigger. Perfect size for our shakes!        
       
8. You can use the Super Oats to make a great hot cereal, but you can also make pancakes,        
cake, muffins and whatever else you may come up with yourself! Have fun and experiment! Recipes are available on the Support Board,

http://members5.boardhost.com/pam140/msg/1241977486.top
                 
9. Once you have been on the diet for a while you will likely have friends and family who will see your results and want to do it too. You may want to consider signing up for a distributorship so that you can buy your own products at wholesale and then sell to those who express and interest. Please contact me for details. Signing up is simple and the cost is only $40.        
       
       
10. Try to clear your calendar for at least two weeks when you are first beginning. You don't want       to have to fight temptation in the first couple of weeks. Get to the point when you have       experienced some exciting weight loss and are into ketosis so the appetite is not a problem        
before you put yourself in a place to have to make food decisions. Just be warned what many people find out too late...that adding food can throw them off track and it can be very hard to get back on again. Be SURE that you can handle it! My best advice is to not play around and just get it done before adding food back in to your regular diet. By that time you will be in a much better state of mind to make food decisions and you will no longer be bothered with food addictions or cravings.        
       
11. You can add spices and any flavor non fat broth to your soups. People on the Support Board will be happy to share their ideas and there is also the recipe page on my web site.

  http://members5.boardhost.com/pam140/msg/1241977486.top    
       
The same for the shakes. Try different flavorings like a couple of drops of peppermint in your        
chocolate or vanilla shake. You can get all sorts of flavorings in your local store or online.        
       
12. You can make a thicker shake by adding ice to the blender. Some like adding frozen fruit like berries. Make sure that you are not one of those that fruit is a problem for. Be careful with citrus or bananas, both high in sugar. If you find you are hungrier after fruit, don't use it. The same goes for adding vegetables. Remember, this is a mental as well as a physical effort, in fact I tell my people that is is 90% mental and only 10% physical. You may think that your greatest challenge will be hunger, but believe me that you will battle your thoughts much more then you will your appetite. Remember, none of us got fat because we were hungry.        
       
I hope these 2 blog posts help you in your journey. Everyone finds their own way to succeed with this, but the main things to remember are, have all 3 Cambridge servings, no matter if you add a meal or not, try for 2 weeks straight sole source, drink your water, no strenuous exercise for the first week or so, don't get hung up on weighing all the time, be prepared for the first few days of adjustment and then for the exciting and motivating changes you will see each day!
 

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Tips for Those New To Cambridge, part 1 of 2

          
         
Some of you are new to Cambridge and may not have heard these suggestions before so they are worth repeating I think          
         
1) Be SURE to have all 3 of you Cambridge servings a day. This is extremely important, even if you are doing the regular program and adding food. You are only guaranteed a safe weight loss experience if you have your 3 a day. Otherwise you are on a "crash" type diet and you could harm your health.          
         
2) In your first week you are going through lots of adjustments. One of them is entering     ketosis. You can read about ketosis on my web site on the Q&A page. Until you enter ketosis you may experience hunger. If so, feel free to have additional Cambridge if you need them. Have whatever it takes to get you through the first few days without breaking your diet. You are better off having additional calories of Cambridge then regular food that may get out of control.          
         
3) If you find that you are feeling hungry between your Cambridge meals, you can break up your servings into half servings and spread them out over the day. For some this seems to help, especially in the beginning. You will eventually be able to just have your 3 or 4 whole servings at regular intervals with no feelings of hunger except at meal times.         
         
4) It is encouraged that you try for 2 solid weeks of SS, meaning you substitute ALL your food with Cambridge. This gives you the best start and allows the body to adjust while giving you the benefit of natural appetite suppressant and good energy that comes from being in ketosis. If you are going to add regular food to the diet, try to stick to lean proteins and low carb veggies. This will have less of an effect on your appetite. High sugar foods like fruit might stimulate your appetite, but you can try and see. Some people add fruit to the shakes and do fine, others find it makes them hungry. SS is best so give it a good try!         
         
5) Drink water! Lots of water! More then you likely drink now. Double it! I have a 32 oz bottle that I fill at least 3 times a day. It helps with weight loss and fluid retention.          
         
6) Take a good "before" picture. This will become very important to you as you are losing. I found that I had such body image problems that I could not see the weight loss in the mirror. I had to keep taking Polaroid's (before cell phone cameras!) to compare the difference. It is amazing to see the progress in pictures!          
         
7) Try not to be a slave to the scale. Remember that scales are weighing the entire body, not just the fat. Your body is in a constant state of change and it is unrealistic to think that what you see on the scale is in any way an accurate measure of fat loss. Try to weigh once a week and then have someone hide the scale from you!          
         
8) Exercise is not a requirement to lose on Cambridge, but it certainly does keep things moving along and helps to tone and firm as you lose. The health benefits are tremendous, both physically and mentally! Walking is a good way to start and light weights should come next.          
         
9) If you have a large amount to lose, try not to look at the big picture. Take it in mini goals, 10 pounds, one size, etc. Before you know it you will be at goal!          
         
10) You will probably have lots of well meaning friends and family tell you that what you are doing is bad for you. Try to listen and understand that it's possible and not unusual for people to be talking only to please themselves, not you. Obviously, you have done your research and have determined that Cambridge is a safe effective and nutritious way to lose weight at the fastest rate possible. They should respect that. Thank them for their concern and then suggest they go have this conversation with one of their friends who is considering gastric surgery.          
         
11) You will probably go through some emotional trials as you lose. None of us got this heavy because we were hungry! We got obese because of an inappropriate relationship with food based on an emotional need. You might be confronting these issues as your weight goes down. This is part of the healing that is taking place and should be embraced, not avoided.          
         
12) Remember to come to visit the Support Board at 
http://members5.boardhost.com/pam140/
when you need help or encouragement, or just need to brag! We will cheer for you, we will cry with you, we will educate you, we will understand.          
         
13) Finally, try to think of this as a gift to yourself. Others will benefit indirectly... family, loved ones, etc..but this is all about you! This is the time to be selfish in the best way possible. Do not let other's needs override your own. No one will suffer if you don't go to that BBQ or have any of that birthday cake. You will not offend anyone if you refuse to go out with the people at work to celebrate a promotion or a retirement. Send a card or flowers, just don't send yourself! 

Check back 10/28 for part 2

Friday, October 24, 2014

Holiday Madness!!!

Halloween is next week. In my past, this was a license to buy copious amounts of candy, (no judgmental looks at my shopping cart from other shoppers) sneak eat it all, then go buy more to replace it. Sometimes this played out more then once before Oct 31st. Have you ever eaten an entire bag of Reese's Peanut Butter cups? I have. Reese's were my favorite. Using the word "favorite" is undervaluing my obsession for them. In the midst of my binge I would be in an almost trance like state, but still aware of what I was doing and completely unable to stop myself until they were all gone. Wow...just reliving this makes me so sad.

Most of our upcoming holidays have a heavy (no pun intended) price attached of too much celebratory high calorie, sugary, and fat packed foods. It's a hall pass to eat with abandon and without thought of nutrition or consequence. It's comparable to being on a cruise ship. A major part of the cruise experience is the food. The endless buffet encourages people to "get their money's worth" since it's included in the price. We justify overeating and making ourselves sick with food because we are on vacation...so it doesn't count. Hmmm. Same for the Holiday season. Tradition, family gatherings, work parties and friends, all reasons to put our diet and our health on the back burner until the New Year.

My question is... why? Is this really the only option? Of course not! We have just as much of an ability to control our thoughts, decisions, and actions in the months of Oct, Nov and Dec as any other month of the year.  Sacrificing 1/4 of the year to mindless and excessive eating, year after year after year, in the name of "celebrating" is just plain crazy.

After all, Halloween is a kids event. I'm not a fan of Halloween and now that I no longer have kids of my own at home or Day Care kids I generally don't participate in passing out candy. I just can't feel ok about it anymore considering the rate of childhood obesity and diabetes and I won't waste my money on alternative trick or treat items that the kids will just throw out. I keep the porch light off and my dogs are grateful.

November brings Thanksgiving. Now, if ever there was a food worshiping holiday, this one is it! There are plenty of articles online that debate the true story of the Pilgrims and what took place, but that's not the issue here. As with most official holidays, Thanksgiving has been manipulated by the retailers in to a "spend money and eat too much" day. Because there is not as big of a potential financial gain for Thanksgiving as there is for other more profitable holidays, it has pretty much been squeezed out in the stores for the more marketable Halloween and Christmas holidays. Still...it is a license to over-indulge.

Christmas is LOADED with all sorts of excesses, food being one of them. Our pockets are wrung dry of money most of us can't afford, but we justify spending. Our diets are put on hold and we once again justify feeding and feasting, all the while planning our return to sensibility once the year ends.

All told, we are talking about approximately 70 wasted days that we could be making progress to our goal. 70 days that could bring you good health and the happiness that comes with it. Food will never give you that reward. It is an absolute fact that come Jan 1st, you will look back at this time with some degree of regret if you put your life on hold once again for the sake of eating the same holiday foods you eat every year. In reality, we are only talking about 3 days. 3 days out of 70. Unfortunately we don't restrict our celebratory eating to just those 3 days. It ends up being 3 months and a LOT of damage can be done.

This year I would encourage you to remember that you DO have a choice.  It is not mandatory to repeat the same old behaviors that have only contributed to your weight issues. If you were a recovering alcoholic, would you justify getting drunk on certain days because it's tradition? Would the people that love and care about you expect you to break your sobriety? No. You would be respected for your choice to hold to your new life style and convictions. We all deserve the same respect, not just from others, but more importantly, from ourselves.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Testing Scales

So we just did a family experiment. We have 3 scales in the house. My son left his when he moved out, my daughter has one, and then there is mine. 2 of them are Weight Watchers brand so one would hope it is accurate and the other is an expensive body composition scale that weighs overall weight, fat, lean, water and bone mass. I first weighed on the two WW scales. There was a 6.2 pound difference. I repeated it with the same results. To check for accuracy we got my son's 45 pound barbell and put it on each scale. One weighed it at 46.8 and the other at 46.2. So then we got out my son's, the expensive body mass scale. We had Andy get on all three. There was a 3.5 pound span between the lowest to the highest. What happened to the 6.2 pound difference when I weighed? I then got on all 3 and there was a 2.2 span between the 3 scales! I repeated it again and got the same. (confused)

Our goal had been to find which, if any, of our scales were accurate. The answer was none of them.  Not only did they weigh the same body at different weights, but the numbers changed significantly when weighed again. None of them weighed the barbell accurately either.

Conclusion: a scale is at best an estimate of weight. Digital scales are notorious for bouncing around the numbers depending on the floor they are on, placement of the feet, and any shifting of posture. I weighed myself first on my bathroom tile floor. Evidently that influenced the first results even though the floor is quit smooth. The second results were on a wood floor. I guess the best thing you can do is weigh 3 times and either take an average, or two out of three if you see the same number twice. Wouldn't it be nice to have an accurate number though?

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Diffusing Triggers

I tell my clients that none of us got fat because we were hungry. We overeat for emotional reasons and because of a lack of coping options. At some point, we decide that food is an acceptable method of dealing with our feelings. We self medicate with food. It is not unlike any other addict. We sacrifice our self respect, health, and happiness to be numb in the present.

Stress and anxiety are two if the common triggers for destructive eating. We can temporarily distract ourselves from the issues and even get a little boost from "feel good" hormones that sugar and other food chemicals can stimulate. Finding a way to handle stress and anxiety in a constructive way is challenging. When you are in the midst of it you are the least capable of making a good decision and more likely to turn to food for sedation. Stress and anxiety hormones need a release. Adrenaline can damage your health if it is not used so a better alternative to eating is physical activity. You will get the endorphins, those "feel good" hormones, released in to your system. It is the body's preferred way of managing stress. Find a way to move your body, sweat and get out of breath.

Depression and loneliness can be overwhelming and food can become your solace and comfort.  At least in the moment you are eating it. Once consumed, it becomes more fuel for your depression.  The hardest thing for someone to do while feeling down is to reach out for help and support. The immediate desire is the exact opposite. Retreating and trying to stuff the feelings down with junk food is normal for someone feeling hopeless. It's a self  perpetuating cycle. Depressed-eat-regret-gain weight-feel out of control-more depressed-eat...and on it goes.  Food will never make anything better. It isolates you even more. The best way to reject old behaviors is to make new ones. Write your feelings in a journal with ideas of positive ways to manage them productively.  Find some way to connect with others. Recovery groups like OA can  help and of course, I am just a phone call away.

Pay attention to your thoughts. Take note of how life events direct your actions and reactions. If you get disturbing news, is your first reaction to go to the fridge?  I have a magnet on my fridge that says, "The answer is not in here. It's inside of you". It's a good little reminder.  Start paying attention to your triggers and come up with alternative productive ways of diffusing them. It's not easy to change, but it's required for a lifelong success story.


Friday, October 17, 2014

Most Embarrassing Moments In a Big Girls Life

I bet we all have stories. I can't be the only one that has had embarrassing moments related to being obese. We may want keep them to ourselves and that is understandable. The embarrassment and shame can be too painful to ever want anyone else to know. However, I have found over the years that by telling these stories, it not only lessens their power over me, but it allows others to realize they are not alone and that there is compassion and understanding out there in the world. Yes, there is also judgment and cruelty, but those people don't matter. Only a miserably unhappy self loathing person can take pleasure in hurting someone. Feel sorry for them, but never let them influence your self worth. So, on with the stories:

1. Car binging. Now I KNOW I am not alone in this! Eating in the privacy of your own car. No limits. No witnesses. I'd go to more then one drive through and pretend I have a "list" of all the people I was picking up food for. I'd find an empty part of the parking lot and eat 'till I could eat no more. I'd get rid of the evidence in the nearest open dumpster and go home. That in its self is embarrassing to admit to, but it's not the embarrassing part. That happened in a mall parking lot. I had gone inside to my favorite bakery and loaded up on cookies, doughnuts and little pies. I went to my car and found my empty hiding place in the parking lot. I dug in with gusto, It was ugly. I had finished up the bag of cookies, 3 doughnuts, and I was half way through one of the pies when I noticed some movement out of the corner of my eye. I turned my head and saw an entire family in a van, parked next to me, mouths hanging open in stunned amazement at what they had been witnessing.

2. I was on a road trip along the Ca coastline with my lifelong best friend and our kids. We were somewhere near Monterrey and decided to stop for lunch. It was a warm sunny day so the kids all wanted to go eat on the rooftop deck. It was very crowded up there and the view was amazing.  We sat in the plastic patio chairs they had at the tables. I was happy that I fit within the chair arms, but that wasn't the problem. As we sat there in the sun, I became aware of the legs of my chair gradually bending out. I was sinking! I was horrified and didn't know what to say. I used all my leg strength to try and hold me and the chair up, but it was hopeless. In utter humiliation, I excused myself to the bathroom and went in and asked a waitress if they had any wooden chairs. The process of one waiter retrieving my bent plastic chair and another waiter bringing out a sturdy wooden one was not lost on the other diners.

3. I was at a friends house and needed to use the restroom. It was during a birthday party so all her family and friends were there. I went in and sat down, only to hear a lot "crack" and a tremendous pinch on my bottom. I broke the seat. Now, most people do not have a spare toilet seat laying around so I had no choice but to go out and tell her what happened. The only other bathroom was upstairs in the Master bedroom so for the rest of the party, everyone had to use that one.

4. This one harks all the way back to childhood. I was in Elementary School and it was the end of the school year party day. We were all encouraged to bring in games from home.  There was checkers and Monopoly and Life and all the popular board games of that time. One of the kids brought in "Twister". My favorite game! Now I had been a chubby kid my whole life, but I was also a tom-boy and was never one to sit and play quiet games. I got in on the Twister game and was having a great time until I bent and twisted to reach a colored dot and the loudest sound of ripping cloth you ever did hear filled the room. I had worn my favorite long sleeved velveteen dress for our party day (girls didn't wear pants to school back then) and like most of my clothes, it was too tight. The sleeve seam ripped from the elbow, straight to the armpit, and down the side seam to my hip. The entire side of my dress was open. The kids laughed hysterically and I went to the nurses office.

There are many more stories of moments like these. Any one of them should have been enough of a wake up call to get me to stop my self destructive behavior and get control of my life, but they weren't. A person in the midst of their addictive behaviors will endure all sorts of humiliation and shame. I have a clear memory of how I felt at those moments and if I had to find a reason to be grateful for these experiences, no matter how painful they were, it would be a acquiring a deep understanding of how someone else feels when they are trapped in an eating disorder.  Your stories may be different, but I've found over the years of being a Cambridge Distributor...we all have them. I would love to hear yours. Telling them can diffuse the negative emotions they cause. In time, you can even see the humor in them...well...some of them!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

How To Feel Motivated

First, put on a pair of High School pants.....

Ok, dumb joke. My apologies. But you know what? That is actually my goal for 2014. I graduated High School in 1976. Wait! Before you do the math, please keep in mind that I was more then a year younger then my classmates. That used to matter a lot when I was younger, but I guess not so mach anymore 38 years (gasp!) later. Anyway, back on the subject. Motivation.

When I was at my heaviest, my motivation was staying alive. Hovering somewhere in the 330's with a long list of serious health issues and chronic debilitating pain, each normal day to day activity, like getting up from my Lazy Boy chair to go to the bathroom, took supreme effort and caused mind blowing pain from grinding arthritis in my back, hips, knees, and ankles. I also had heel bone spurs and plantar faciitis so every step was like stepping on an explosive.  That first moment when I would get out of bed in the morning and stand up was so painful I would sometimes have to use my breathing exercises from childbirth to get through it. My high blood pressure, diabetes, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, asthma, and all the rest of my ailments were my reality and I felt completely hopeless to do anything about it.

When I found Cambridge again, my motivation to get started on it was off the charts! I knew from my experience with it 20 years before that it worked and I couldn't wait to get started. My weight loss experience was so dramatic, so life changing, so rewarding, that other then a challenging day here or there, I stuck to my diet like Velcro! I lost that first 120 pounds and felt like I had won the lottery! I wasn't at my goal weight according to the charts, but I was very comfortable where I was at and stayed there for a number of years. My next phase of weight loss was motivated by other life changes. I wanted to enter the dating world and I wanted to have skin removal surgery. For my best results I knew I needed to lose some more so I did and had the surgery. Best decision ever!

A few years later I found my prince and got married, about 2.5 years ago. I have a happy, healthy, active life and I should be content where I am at body wise, but there has been one nagging goal all along in my mind that has eluded me. My high school weight. I'm not sharing numbers because I don't know them. I'm not weighing. I found that the scale was my greatest tormentor and the cause of a lifetime of dieting failure so it's no longer a part of my world. So how will I know? Yes....those high school pants! They are a size 7  and that is in 1970's size which is a lot smaller then 2014's size 7's for some reason. My goal for this year is to get back to my ultimate weight (size) where I felt the best in my life.

My motivation is not as powerful. There is no life saving momentum this time, but I can see the prize and I want it! By shedding the remainder of this weight, I will be shedding the last of the emotions that put it on me. I am 55 and there is no other reason then a deep desire to return to my authentic self. This last amount of weight is attached to that despondent person I was long ago who suffered 2 bad marriages, single motherhood, debilitating health, and endless struggle. It's not attached to the woman I am today so it's gotta go!

Motivation can be a springboard to get you started, but unfortunately without constant attention it can fade and other emotions can crowd it out. If like me, you have lost your weight in stages, you can find it hard to get that energy and enthusiasm up again like you had your first time and may have some false starts and that can fill you with doubt. Your experience will be different this time so you need to approach it in a different way.  Journaling is a great way to keep your head in the game and remind yourself WHY you started. Write your truest feelings about what you want so that when the motivation fades or temptations are all around, you can go to your journal and give yourself a pep-talk with your own words and truth. With the same attention you would give to anything you value most, you can nurture your motivation and not lose sight of what you really want.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

The Road To Health

Many of us want to lose weight to look better. Appearance is important to our self esteem, but
let's not forget the health benefits of weight loss.

I think that our looks are top priority when we are young , but as we get older we realize that our health is far more important and should not be ignored. I have a friend that is about 220 pounds overweight. She is 25 years old and has been overweight most of her life. So far, she hasn't suffered any obvious negative health effects from her weight. She has normal blood pressure, blood sugar, no aches or pains, she can run endlessly and works out like an Olympic athlete! In her mind she sees herself as invincible and it has made it easy for her to justify remaining obese. Don't get me wrong...she is miserable with her weight. The fact that it has prevented her from many opportunities in her life, such as finding a mate is painful for her and so emotionally, she has suffered greatly. When we talk about it and I try to get her to understand the damage that her weight is doing to her she brushes it off by replying how "healthy" she is and that she doesn't want to discuss it. My fear for her is that in most cases serious health damage related to obesity is often invisible until it is too late to correct it. She has had some hormonal problems recently that are weight related, but it is almost like she is waiting for something major to go wrong before she will seriously face her situation.

Most people are not that fortunate. Health issues can kick in with as little as 30 excess pounds. Wear and tear of being overweight is cumulative and should be prevented at all costs. Diabetes, cancer, and heart disease are three of the most common problems, but obesity effects every system of your body. Don't wait for the health crisis to occur to finally commit to your diet. Start walking on the path towards good health and the happiness that comes with it. Cambridge is a gift to those of us who have spent a lifetime dieting with little to show for it. You will get the results you need with Cambridge! You can turn your health around and avoid a future spent trying to do damage control. Don't fool yourself in to thinking that medical science has a pill to correct what may be ahead of you. Prevention is the key to health and it is never too late to start.

Picture yourself walking along a road. You come to a fork and you must choose which way you will go. To the right you see a smooth bright path that leads to a future of robust health, happiness, adventure, fun, fulfillment, and confidence. To the left is a bumpy road full of rocks and potholes. It is dark so you can't always see what is ahead. You constantly stumble on unexpected health crises that require detours to doctors and hospitals. You are scared and ashamed that you choose this path, but you can't find your way out through the maze of confusing and conflicting medical advice that has you convinced that you are hopelessly doomed to this destination. If you have been on the left path, it is not too late to find your way back. I did! Cambridge is the compass pointing to the shortcut. The past 13 years have been the best for me so far and I credit Cambridge for helping me find my way. I would still be 300+ pounds...if I was still alive which is doubtful...and trapped in my misery and pain.

For those of you reading this who are already on your way to losing the weight and regaining your health, congratulations! You have wonderful things ahead of you! If you are still trying to decide what to do then please know this...You CAN lose the weight, you Can take control of your health, and you CAN change the course of your future starting today! With Cambridge the journey is just as exciting as the destination. You will enjoy your experience losing your weight and be excited about the changes you will see and feel every day. It is exhilarating to take control of your life! When you reach your goal you will have the satisfaction and pride of knowing that you did it yourself. There is a lot to be said for taking responsibility for yourself. This is your life and your body. Make it in to what you want it to be and leave the weight behind like a worn out pair of shoes. Your future is waiting!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Reflections

When you looked in the mirror this morning, what did you see? Where you pleased with your reflection, or did you spend 5 to 10 minutes focused on all your flaws...weight being the main one? Maybe you didn't look at all.

When I was at my heaviest I had an experience that has stuck with me all these years. I want to share it with you. I had a bad tooth. I had procrastinated going in to the dentist (don't we all?) and finally had to accept the fact that I needed to go in when one of my molars cracked while eating a hot dog bun! As I sat in the dentist chair he began to look around in my mouth and I could tell from his face that it wasn't going to be good news. He told me that I had cavities in my two top front teeth! I was shocked when he told me that. He then asked me a question I will never forget. As he held up the mirror and started showing me the holes in my front teeth he asked me, "Don't you ever look in the mirror?" I realized that the answer to his question was "no". I had avoided my reflection for so long that I had actually not noticed holes in my teeth. It goes without saying that I obviously had not been smiling at myself when I did look! I was so ashamed. He held up the mirror to show me my teeth, but what he showed me was my pain. To this day I still struggle with the fillings I have had to replace half a dozen times in those teeth because they don't hold very well. A little reminder for me.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Promises, promises


Originally Posted by Pam Turner on 10/07/14:
We've all seen infomercials, commercials, and magazine ads promising phenomenal weight loss results with "No change in eating" or "Eat all you want!"...all sorts of promises with little to no sacrifice on the behalf of the dieter. We want to believe! We wait for that magic pill! We buy in to that "All you can eat" diet that will free us from counting calories! For many people, surgery makes those golden promises and we willingly go under anesthesia and the knife.

What we find is that regardless of the promise, there is no magic. There is nothing to save us from ourselves. Most ads have disclaimers in very fine print and we can't be bothered to pause the TV to read it all. Besides, we all know disclaimers are only there to appease the media source and protect them from lawsuits anyway. In fact, I was just required from the company I have been with for my advertising for 11 years now, to reword all my text on my website so as not to be stating Cambridge can give "rapid" or "fast" results (even though it is true) or that you can lose X amount of pounds in X amount of days. So in other words, they are requiring me to remove all the truth on my website and replace it with vague statements. I was required to place those annoying disclaimers everywhere saying that "results may vary" etc. Nonsense...all of it. Nonsense to those advertisers of products that promise false misleading results and cover their backsides with disclaimers, and nonsense to an advertising company requiring me to remove the truth of my own personal experience and documented scientific clinical results and research.

People have a right to know what they are buying and putting in their body. I agree. I do my best to represent this product, The Cambridge Diet, as truthfully and factually as I possibly can. I do that because I believe in it from personal experience and success along my deep desire to help others do the same.

Cambridge has proven its self over 35 years and there is no need to exaggerate results or what people can expect when using it. I averaged a pound a day loss when I was on it for a total of 120 pounds in less then 6 months initially, and then another 40 pounds some years later. It happened and I have no intention of saying otherwise to pacify an advertising company's fear of lawsuits.

I can't promise anyone what their experience will be because it totally depends on the individual and whether they stick to the diet or not. I can promise that with Cambridge you will get the best and most rapid (yes, I used that word!) results that your body can give you if you follow it correctly.

Oct, Nov, Dec...Oh, The Holidays!

Originally Posted by Pam Turner on 10/07/14:
Well, here we are again. The beginning of the Holiday season. For most people that starts in Oct with Halloween. Granted, Halloween is all the way at the end of the month, but depending on what stage of life you are at, it can mean a whole month of school activities and parties or just a lot of candy laying around the office. Heaven knows the stores are LOADED with candy displays and just going grocery shopping can be overwhelming.

Every year I have clients that are going great guns on their weight loss, only to trip and fall when the challenges of this time of year get to be too much. The only way to get through it is to make up your mind that this time, you are going to make different choices then you have before. The remaining months of 2014 (can you believe that?) are completely under your control as far as the what you choose to eat or not. I think at times we actually justify what we eat by telling ourselves we are powerless over the food temptations. How crazy is that? We haven't been force fed anything since we were on baby food!

Yes, we have Halloween, then Thanksgiving, then Christmas and then New Years. All plenty of reasons to procrastinate doing anything about our weight until it's over. No one likes to feel left out or deprived of the celebrating, but how often has your weight interfered with you living your best life? How often have you felt deprived of an opportunity because of your weight? How often have you made an excuse not to do something that you worried would embarrass you and how often have you said "No" to food offered because you didn't want people to see you eating? All various forms of self deprivation, isn't it? And that just leaves you feeling frustrated because nothing was really accomplished.

The thought of beginning a diet this time of year may seem like poor timing, and for most conventional diets I would agree. Why suffer for only a few pounds lost? The good news is that The Cambridge Diet allows you to make a HUGE amount of progress in a very short amount of time. Between now and the new year, you could potentially lose 50, 60, even 70 pounds! We have 85 days from today until 2015. You can spend those days knowing that by the New Year you will be slimmer and healthier then you are now...or not. Jan 1st will come either way and it's up to you how you welcome the New Year.

Starting over

Originally Posted by Pam Turner on 09/23/14:
It is not unusual for people to have a harder time getting back to SS after a break. I try to warn people of that, but most people don't have a cooperative life that will accommodate several months of uninterrupted dieting time. It does't seem to matter how desirous a person is to begin again, or how much progress they have already made...it's never as easy to start again, but it's also not impossible. It really is all in the mind and as humans, we are highly suggestible to outside motivation and influences, good and bad. When we start the first time we have TONS of motivation! There is lots of anticipation of what your experience will be, what it will be like to watch the scale and the sizes go down. We are highly focused on the complete change. We will not be eating regular food and the reality of that can seem intimidating. We are prepared to experience something unknown and it keeps our head in the game.

After a break and discovering how much we like to eat again, it kind of deflates the momentum and all the unknown factors are replaced with "here I go again" type of feelings. We now know what to expect and the memory of how great we were feeling while SSing has dimmed somewhat. Just like the first time, it takes a few days to get back to fat burning mode and once again getting excited about the weight loss.

The emotions attached to food and being overweight run deep. They are strong and up until now have over ridden all others. It falls very much in to addictive type thinking, justifying, bargaining, denial, procrastinating, deception, depression, dependence...the list is long and different for everyone, but also very similar in that we choose it over our own well-being. The fact that we are surrounded by food at all times is unique to our lifetime and our culture. If we still had to grow it or catch it, we'd probably all be thin! It's way to easy to make snap decisions before we realize we made them.

As far as not enjoying the taste as much, for most people that is actually something that doesn't come right away. Our tastes are based on what we are used to consuming. Regular food is salty, sweet, bitter, fatty, and multi-textured. Most people find Cambridge palatable, but not necessarily enjoyable until their pallet has adjusted and then they actually begin to look forward to it. Like before, a few days on track and things will be different.

Ultimately this is where you test your determination. If you really want to lose this weight, there is no painless way to do it. Weight loss always requires some deprivation of some form. It would be awesome if we had a switch we could flip that caused our body to store or burn fat as needed, no change of lifestyle required.....wow....that WOULD be awesome! lol! Unfortunately we have to say "No" to ourselves a lot to accomplish this goal of weight loss and getting healthy. We tend to jump from diet to diet, hoping to find one that fits in to our life effortlessly and without any sacrifice of the things that have made us overweight, only to find that they ALL demand we turn away from what we crave or long for. The fact that most conventional diets only give 1 or 2 pounds loss per week, if that, is discouraging and drags the dieting experience out forever. We quit and jump to the next. Cambridge works and it works fast if you give it the chance. No other diet will give you the results that Cambridge can in a very short period of time. 20 to 30 pounds per month is average. You would be done before you know it. If you decide to eat a small meal each day along with it then you would still meet your goal if you are careful about your additional calories. No more then 300 to 400 tops. About 3 oz protein and 1 to 2 cups of green veg or salad greens is all.

If you are beginning again, what I would suggest is that you take some time and try to rediscover what motivated you to begin Cambridge the first time. This is where journaling would have come in handy. There is something about reading your own thoughts and feelings back before you started that can refocus your emotions and thoughts back to where you want them. You could take some time today and begin doing that now. I know that writing helps me dig in to my feelings and having it in writing and reading them reminds me of my true feelings, not just those "in the moment" when I'm feeling weak. Make some post-it's and put them up for reminders. Make a time line and mark off the hours and days of being successful. You will be less likely to sacrifice the time you gave already if you see it in front of you. Create an environment of support for yourself to get you through the re-start until you are in the zone.

I hope I gave you some things to ponder and that it helps. This is completely under your control. All you have to do is make the decision. Maybe there is a switch? It's in our mind, not our body. Our thoughts govern our actions. Every choice we make begins as a single thought. Spend some time concentrating on what you really want and what you are willing to do to get it. Commit to one day, 24 hours. You can do anything for 24 hours. It may be all you need to get back on track again.

Monday Mornings

Originally Posted by Pam Turner on 09/08/14:
We are already in our second week of September! Wow!!! Time is flying by. I think we can get kind of apathetic in the summertime. Vacations and BBQs and all can distract us from our goals. We just want to have fun! Unfortunately, as Fall begin to move in and we see the changing of the season, we know the winter and the {{{{{Holiday}}}}}} season is right around the corner! Gasp!!!!!

Don't let this upcoming holiday season catch you off guard. Make as much progress as you can right now so you can freely enjoy the season with all the picture taking, family reunions, party clothes and socializing without any self consciousnesses. No hiding behind someone bigger in the family pic! Not this year!

Monday is traditionally a day to begin a health and fitness reboot. It's psychological of course. Your body doesn't care what day or time you begin. Only that you do BEGIN! Today there is a sense of summer waning and Autumn approaching in the air. This may just be the perfect Monday to begin or recommit to your life changing for the better. Why wait another week, or month, or heaven forbid...another year?

We can continue to build a wall of isolating fat around us, food brick by food brick, or we can start swinging that sledge hammer and begin the process of bashing it down.

Monday morning? Bring it!

Addiction, depression, fighting back, giving up

Originally Posted by Pam Turner on 08/13/14:
With the suicide of Robin Williams, a lot of speculation is being shared regarding what the cause was for his tragic decision to end his life. He was after all, just a man. He had a career, a family, a couple of divorces, a health crisis, personal losses of friends, struggled with addictions and depression...not much different than the average person. The only thing that set him apart was that he was in the entertainment business. Lots of people are and there does seem to be a high level of deaths due to suicide and overdoses within those in the entertainment business, but maybe that is only because we are bombarded with the news when it happens with someone famous. People die every day for the same reasons that we never hear about. Some of us may even have someone in our family that ended their life or attempted to, or who maybe has addictions that they have not been able to overcome. What makes one person able to overcome and another one to give up?

We have discussed the concept of overeating as an addiction. Some people with chemical addictions take offense at that idea. They do not believe that food can be an addictive substance causing the person to knowingly be self destructive and even endanger their life by indulging in it like someone addicted to a drug or alcohol.

I think we do not need to classify things so much. Any person who repeatedly partakes in a substance or behavior that is harmful or destructive to mind and/or body is suffering from the same basic problem. Food, alcohol, drugs, tobacco, all can be the eventual end of life. All can rob the person of quality of life, end relationships, hurt innocent people, cause depression and a sense of failure. Logic tells the person to just stop. Quit. Change. Easier said then done.

Rehab is a popular option for drug and alcohol addictions, even sexual addicts have rehab....for those that can afford it. Eating disorders like anorexia or bulimia have recovery centers. All of these self destructive behaviors have intervention options. What is there for the obese? We are no different. Our psychology is very much the same as any other addict. Where is our rehab?

Depression and hopelessness is the natural result of a life out of balance, a life out of control. Not everyone can pull themselves out once they descend in to the pit, especially if they are still battling their addictions. My own personal experience with depression went on for many years. I was medicated and had some therapy, but it didn't cure anything. It wasn't until I got my addiction for food under control and began to put some distance between it and my sense of self that I realized I wasn't a "depressed person". I was a person struggling with an extreme problem that effected every aspect of my life. A problem that I felt powerless to do anything about, no matter how hard or how long I tried. I wasn't depressed. It was just that the life I was living sucked really bad.

Beginning the process of change is intimidating and scary and exciting and unknown. Those of us that hold tightly to whatever we have used to cope or to self medicate do NOT give it up willingly. We can't see life on the other side of addiction and believe that we can ever be truly and permanently free or at peace. The people in our lives grow weary of our repeated attempts at recovery and we gradually lose our support system and can find ourselves feeling alone.

What makes one person give up and another fight until they are free? Hard to say. To see someone who appears to have all the resources available to them to overcome their addictions, only to commit suicide...makes sense to no one but them. Oprah had unlimited resources to deal with her obesity. Personal chefs, personal trainers, therapy, some of the world's most respected minds a phone call away...she lost weight and gained it back the same as any other food addict. We are all the same.

When we lose someone like Robin Williams to addiction or suicide it shakes us up and can cause us to examine our own problems a little more closely. It is a time for empathy and an unfortunate opportunity to realize we are all battling our demons of one kind or another. He didn't have it in him to fight anymore. I can't imagine that kind of desperate sadness to actually do something to end my own life.

Hopelessness is the enemy. When a person loses hope, there is no more reason to fight or change or believe there is anything to save them. I have had the privilege of being in the receiving end of phone calls over the years of people making one more attempt at reaching out for help. They don't believe in themselves anymore or their ability to change. There is nothing better then if by the end of the conversation I hear the magic words, "I have hope". It's a beginning.

Never give up on achieving the life you want. Losing weight in no way gets the respect it deserves. Living life as an obese person is hard in every way. Overcoming what drives a person to self abuse with food is a tremendous accomplishment. Remaining "food sober" is no walk in the park either. We all know that. Never give up.

Day 15

Originally Posted by Pam Turner on 04/18/14:
So here I am on day 15! I am well on my way to achieving my ultimate weight loss goal. My high school weight. Back when I was in high school I never thought of myself as thin. Not by a long shot! I had spent my entire life up until then being the chubby kid so it was all I knew. I was 5'9" so I was already taking up more space then any of my petite little 5'4" friends were, and they were all so willowy. My body always felt bulky to me, even thought I was only a size 7. I was curvy, but the style back then was to look like a 9 year old boy so I just didn't fit the mold.

I look back at the few pictures I have of myself as a teenager and I realize I was absolutely perfect for me. I was physically healthy, (once I recovered from the horrible crash diet I had been on) but my mind was still the mind of the "fat girl" who didn't look like her lithe, wispy friends. Unfortunately my distorted self image eventually became my reality, only much worse.

Now, my goal is to go back to my ideal weight and enjoy and appreciate what I should have when I had it before. Will I look 16 again? HAHAHAHAHA! Such a funny question. I now live in a 55 year old body that has been beaten to Hell and back, but for an old girl...it's all good. My thighs will never make a public appearance in shorts or swim suit, even though I live in Florida. But I can live with that. I come from a family with people that die too early. My mom at 62, her Father at only 45, and more recently this past Oct, my sister that was only 2 years older then me. I have a history of diabetes that keeps snapping at my heels as I try to outrun it and heart disease...well...the list is long. I've managed to outrun the pack of health issues so far, but I know enough to know that getting older will trip me up if I don't do everything I can to be as healthy as I can and priority 1 is get rid of the last layer of excess me that for some reason up until now, I was not ready to let go of.

Day 15 is an awesome place to be! I feel great and I already see changes. I refuse to weigh so I have no idea how much I've lost, but I do know that all attempts I've made to do this over the last 12 years ended when I saw a certain number on the scale. Why? heck if I know, but this time I won't know when I reach or speed right on past it. I plan to just focus on what I'm doing and not fall in to any old traps that trigger old behaviors. Not gonna do it!

Eliminating Obstacles

Originally Posted by Pam Turner on 04/18/14:
There are basically two things we are dealing with when it comes to doing this or any other diet. Thing one is the physical part of experiencing some hunger for a few days, maybe some fatigue or a headache. No biggie. It's not fun, but the way I figured it, I'd had my years of gluttony and excessive indulgences. It was time to pay the piper. Hunger has its limits.It's not terminal. It doesn't keep expanding in to an unbearable agony or anything. Plus, you are consuming Cambridge and other non caloric beverages so you're not completely on empty. Nothing terrible is happening. Hunger is a normal part of life for all creatures...although most of us rarely actually experience it in our food laden lives so when it happens...we freak!

Thing two is the mental stuff and that is where the greatest cause of failure (for lack of a better word) happens. When you are fat and feeling negative about yourself, not just in appearance, but in your very character due to a sense of no self control, there is an endless dialog running in your head reinforcing that opinion at the same time there is a library of justifications and excuses playing as to why you should give up and endlessly procrastinate. There are the outside influences as well that do a fine job of discouraging someone when they are on a diet, but ultimately it is our own thoughts that stimulate action. The body is not in control of any of this. It does not go on autopilot and start ransacking the pantry forcing you to eat. Other people do not hold you down and force feed you. Every single action a person takes begins as a single speck of a thought. One thought builds on another and before you know it, your body reacts chemically to the signals and starts producing adrenalin and stress hormones and you need something to smother it all out. For us...that is food.

To be successful you MUST get control of your thoughts and the self talk that leads you to caving in. Pay attention to it. It is not the smell of a co-workers lunch or your mamma's mac and cheese that will be your undoing. It is your willingness to allow the germ of a thought to abandon your diet for one more day or week, or to assimilate any negative ideas about your self worth that will take you out.

Create an environment that nurtures your efforts. Do not fall in to the trap of setting yourself up to fail so you have an excuse to do so. I'm convinced that having a scale as part of your weight loss experience is detrimental to your success. Maybe with other diets you need one to make sure you are not screwing up, but that's not an issue with Cambridge. Just have your 3 or 4 servings a day and let nature take its course. When you're skinny enough for your own comfort, you are done. You'll know when you get there. Scales are the reason most people abandon their diets. We are as hopelessly addicted to numbers on a scale as we are to our bad eating habits. We see a good number..we eat. We see a bad number..we eat. You can't win at this game. Eliminate it.

Do not allow others to implant negative thoughts about what you are doing in your head. It's no body's business but your own and you are perfectly justified in letting them know that. Put them in their place. You're not a fool and you know what you're doing. If they also have weight to lose they'll see your success and and either want to try to improve themselves too from your example,or they will try to sabotage you (for reasons coming up) or they will avoid you like the plague. When a person is not ready to help themselves, they don't want someone else around them getting their act together and shine a big old spotlight on their unaddressed weight problem. Friends, family, co-workers, even spouses can feel very threatened when someone in their life loses weight. They may not like losing their "eating buddy", or feel left behind or suddenly not good enough...so many emotions. It may not seem fair, but it is up to you to set their minds at ease and let them know this is something you are doing for yourself and in the case of a spouse, it's ok to let them know you are doing it for "us".

The main message is, the secrete to weight loss success is not in a can or a pill or a doctors operating room. It is between your own ears. Your thoughts made you fat, and your thoughts will be what gets you thin. No one gets fat because they were hungry. You change your thinking, and you change your life.

Day 10

Originally Posted by Pam Turner on 04/13/14;
Today is day 10 for me. I have a goal for this year to get all the way down to my high school weight. I have not seen that since....well...high school! I have made a few half hearted attempts at it over the years, but I just didn't feel motivated enough. I made a spur of the moment decision 10 days ago to just pee or get off the pot (as my mother used to say!) and without any fanfare or plan, I just started. I put my scale out in the garage. I have accepted the truth that weighing is the kiss of death for me. I can be going along with my weight loss just fine, but if I see a number I don't like it can completely derail me so...no scale for me. I'm just going to keep moving forward and not worry about numbers. I know that all I have to do is stick to my 3 servings a day and not fool around by nibbling here or there or "taking a break" or any of the other self sabotaging behaviors I know I'm capable of. I want this so I'm giving it my absolute best. I have to admit, I'm curious to know how much I've lost in 10 days, but I will resist the urge and leave the evil scale alone!

Temporary Weight Loss?

Originally Posted by Pam Turner on 04/13/14:
It's interesting how we think about weight loss. We go on a diet. We lose weight. We reach our goal (hopefully). We return to regular eating. We gain the weight again. We blame the diet for only being a temporary fix. 

Because of this pattern we think it's the failing of the weight loss plan we choose. That would be like blaming the effect for the cause. It's not logical thinking and it's not how things work. The only way a person gains weight is by over eating and under moving. There is no mystery. If a person returns to the eating habits and lifestyle that put the original pounds on, it will again...of course!

Weight loss plans do not cure obesity. Even weight loss surgery does not cure obesity. Obesity is not a disease that needs curing. It is a physical symptom of an emotional malfunction. If the emotional component is ignored, no diet in the world will grant permanent weight loss. Rather then looking at obesity as a temporary condition of a body and mind out of sync as we should, we tend to think of restoring our body to a healthy weight as temporary and in peril of reversal at any moment! That is faulty thinking.

It's a true fact that most people that manage to lose weight will gain weight again. They won't gain "back" the same fat they lost before. It no longer exists. It's not out there floating around just waiting for an opportunity to jump back on! However, people are perfectly capable of accumulating new fat if they go back to living a lifestyle that supports it. We need to stop thinking of our obese selves as our normal selves. Our normal self is at a healthy weight and fitness level. Up until now, lifestyle has prevented this normal. Our bodies try every minute of every day to restore normal. It's how we're made. The excess fat on our bodies is the intruder and needs to be eliminated and denied reentry!

Weight loss is only permanent when we accept the fact that the reason we were fat was completely due to how we think and feel about food. Obesity happens because of us. It does not happen to us.
There are 2 absolute things I know and I can promise are true.

#1. If you stick to Cambridge 100% you have the iron clad ability to get to your normal healthy weight.

#2. If you go back to eating as you did before, you will once again gain weight and may end up right back where you started.

With these 2 simple facts we have all the information we need to make our post Cambridge weight our new permanent normal and the knowledge of what (not) to do to ensure we don't gain weight again.
It may take some time for your brain to catch up to your body. I know mine did. But the mind and body are very much connected and by rebooting your emotional connection to food, clearing out all the old thinking and programming, you can then welcome in your new and improved belief of self.