Today we’ve got the pleasure of sharing Ivy’s story of weight loss. Ivy has lost over 45lbs/20kgs and has some great info to share. If you want to learn more about Ivy she blogs over at Paleo In Melbourne
How did your story begin?
I have always yo-yo’ed on the scales. Ever since I hit my mid-teens. Not by much- normally, 5-10 kilos up and down- but as I got older I tended to gain more after each diet, finding myself heavier each and every time I failed another attempt at weight-loss. I was a vegetarian for a decade, and even though I have always enjoyed moderate exercise, nothing was ever enough to shift the stubborn extra weight for good. I seemed to last 12 weeks before I would start binging again. Sugar and bread were major culprits, I felt very addicted to both and found great comfort in these foods. So this is the basic story of my life weight- and health-wise in the last 13 years. I should also mention that I have taken many, many courses of antibiotics since early childhood right into my late 20′s. Now that I know more about holistic health, I feel that all the antibiotics is the reason I have always struggled with carb-cravings, low immunity, allergies and weight.
What was your breaking point? The realization?
I found myself 25 kilos overweight and unable to shed the weight a good 6 months after the birth of my 3rd child. Not only was I heavy and uncomfortable, but my sleep was increasingly getting worse thanks to sugar-induced anxiety, and I was developing terrible, burning stomach-pain after meals. After a bit of reading, seeing a doctor and a specialist and finding no answer to my gut-troubles, I found Marks Daily Apple, and stumbled upon the term “leaky gut syndrome”. It became clear to me that I had developed food allergies that in turn caused the terrible pains after meals. So now I was on a quest to recover my health and immunity, not only to lose weight. I started to eat Primal in June 2011.
How did you lose the weight?
Changing my diet from a normal (and carb-fuelled) diet to Primal saw me losing 21 kilos fairly effortlessly in the first 7.5 months. I had a couple of plateaus and several minor hurdles in that time, but I always figured out what and how to tweak things, and kept losing weight while also improving body-composition. I have to mention that by doing Jack Kruse’s Leptin-Reset combined with Paleo, it really cleaned up many hormonal issues that were holding me back- as well as ridding me of decades of obsessive behavior around sweets. It was one of the biggest factors in my successful weight loss.
How much weight have you lost?
By 10 months I had lost 21 kilos, and by 13 months I had lost 23 kilos. In that time I spent 2 months away from the gym due to travel, so I lost lean muscle, not fat- as soon as I returned to the gym I gained back the 2 kilos, leaving my total loss at 21 kilos. But I’m leaning out and really increasing my strength, lifting heavy weights and sprinting are important parts of my weekly exercise-routine. I also walk 40-50 min daily, and do yoga once a week. These are activities that grounds me and relax my mind.
And Doesn’t She Look Amazing!!!
How many diets did you try before discovering paleo?
Oh boy- A rough guess is 8, as outlined here
I have done many silly things in the name of “health” and all of them saw me regressing further away from my goal of health and effortless weight-management.
How has paleo transformed the way you think about food, your diet, and your health?
I feel so much more alive, energetic, but mostly, I’m so much more in tune with my body. I can instantly tell if I’m reacting to something I’ve eaten, I have improved my liver-function (having 1-2 glasses of wine no longer causes me massive headaches), I’m strong and my sleep is deep and restful most nights. I no longer see food as the obsessive, controlling centre of my day, but more an enjoyable highlight I look forward to. I really enjoy the slow cooking, preparation and exploration of new foods like fermented, offal, weird seasonal vegetables and so on. I love to learn and keep educating myself on the topic of health and foods. The more I learn, the more pieces I can fit into the puzzle that is my body and health.
Could you share your weight loss motivation tips?
I think that for me, I didn’t really excel until my focus shifted from “wanting to lose weight” to “I need to improve my health”. I had a health-scare with all those food-allergies I developed, and that pushed me in the right direction. By reading and researching, I learnt that the ability to burn excess calories from fat and food is within all of us, but doesn’t work when you’re hormones are out of balance. I started working on fixing my Leptin- and insulin-resistance, and the rest followed by itself, slowly but definite.
Any words of wisdom, lesson you’ve learned
You need to self-educate by reading the books , the blogs, the websites and the articles. Surround yourself with information by following relevant pages on Facebook, subscribe to blogs, use forums and read as much as you can. That’s what I did and still do. The amount of times I have stumbled across a vital piece of information that made my own situation clearer, is too many to count- but it always gave me the key to progress and improve. I am also a big fan of doing blood-tests and keeping an eye out for whats happening inside your body. It will always give me clues to what’s going on and if anything needs fixing or fine-tuning, for instance by the use of supplements or more de-stressing in my life.
Anything else you would like to share.
Sleep! Best thing ever! If I have a poor night’s sleep, I crave sugar and carbs the next day. Not good- so I always work hard on getting good sleep. I do this by limiting exposure to blue light after sunset, dimming lights and only using lamps at home. I also wear blue blocking glasses, and this sees me getting nice and tired by 10 pm most nights. A good night of sleep is vital for recovery and hormonal balance too- do not under-estimate the power of doing less to achieve more.
Awesome Ivy. Thanks so much for sharing your story and insights. Let’s all work on getting more quality sleep, it really does help to promote weight loss!
P.S. Please share this post around to share the motivation