I want to share the progress I’ve made over the last 6 months — in hopes that it may encourage someone else.
I started my weight loss phase at the beginning of August. With the help of Justin Murphy, counting calories/macros, and working out, I lost about 15 pounds. However, after another unsuccessful round of doctor appointments, my doctor recommended I start a Paleo diet. Since I was already in a diet phase I thought, “why not just do it now?”
I think it’s good to explain how it suddenly just clicked to make these drastic changes. Cole & I have been trying to have kids since I was diagnosed with PCOS over 5 years ago. While it is discouraging to get that kind of news, I know many people are still able to become pregnant with treatments/surgeries, etc.. After many, many, and many rounds of doctor’s appointments, a surgery, and an unsuccessful pregnancy, it was time for a bigger change. Why after my September doctor visit did I want to make the switch to Paleo? I can’t say exactly why, just that it was time. I was tired of being so hopeful and my dreams being shattered each month; I needed to make some big changes.
With the help of my cousin, I learned what the Paleo diet entailed and understood how drastic my diet was going to change. She iterated how important it was to stick to it since deviating could make your body feel worse. At first, I didn’t really notice a difference, but about 4 weeks into it, I noticed I didn’t feel bloated after eating, my skin was clearer, and I just felt better overall. I couldn’t believe it either.
This is the first time I’ve ever lost a significant amount of weight. I’ve never even lost 5 or 10 pounds. Before I started this dieting phase with Justin, I definitely was a bit skeptical if I would see results, but man, did I see results.
– My insulin levels went down from 39 to 14 (!!)
– My A1C went down from 6.1 to 5.4 (no longer pre-diabetic).
– My doctor took me off metformin and on berberine (supplement)
– I’m wearing clothes I haven’t worn in 5 years.
– I officially lost 40 lbs at the end of December – 5 months!
Staying consistent was key. As Justin has said, and I have to agree, I’m a whole new person. My mindset is totally changed and I view my nutrition completely different. Sure, at first I was a little distraught I couldn’t have Dr. Pepper, or cheese, or regular chips, but now that I see and feel the difference in how my body feels, I don’t want to give my body anything else.
Another thing that helped was accountability and support. I’ve attempted to lose weight many times, but usually I just do it on my own — I don’t tell Cole, my family, or others I’m close to. With this diet phase, I was VERY open about it, especially once I made the switch to Paleo. My family and close friends were SO supportive of this. Since making the switch, people don’t ask if I want the last slice of pizza, cupcake, or want to go grab drinks. They know I’m trying to better myself and will say no anyways. However, there are plenty of times where I’ve make sure I have a Paleo option during social outings. For instance, my favorite type of food is Mexican food (LOVE queso, chips, tacos, margaritas). While I can’t exactly have queso or margaritas, I do bring my own Paleo chips to eat with guacamole and I have fajitas (no butter/oil) with guacamole as well. I’m still able to enjoy dinner with others and they can eat whatever they’d like
Pinterest has also been a lifesaver. There are SO many good recipes on there. Of the 50 or so recipes I’ve tried, there’s only 1 I wouldn’t make again. There’s also plenty of sweet treat recipes, which came in handy when I celebrated others’ birthdays and ate through the holidays. I would bring my own brownie, cupcake, or muffin and thoroughly enjoyed it while everyone else was having other dessert. I know how crazy it sounds that I really liked my desserts, but since I’ve taken refined sugar out of my diet, I don’t crave desserts like I used to. BONUS: Cole got me a Paleo cake for my birthday last month and I LOVED it. Everyone else at the party might not have totally liked it, but I thought it was the best
The thing I struggled with the most was getting started. Once I got used to looking at all ingredients and asking all the right questions at restaurants, it got much easier. However, there are a LOT of places that do not have Paleo options (even salad dressings usually have some sugar in them). We’ve cut down our restaurant eating significantly. Before I was dining out about 6 times a week, now it’s 1, maybe 2. Knowing exactly what goes into my body makes it easier to track and make sure I’m making the best decision for myself.
Through it all, thanks be to God, for giving me the strength to keep going when I felt discouraged. Thanks to Justin, for holding me accountable for consistency and coaching me along the way. Thanks to Michelle Cucco, for helping me navigate this new diet. And thanks to Cole Ganz and the rest of my family, for your support and acceptance of this new lifestyle.
I’m not sure how long I’ll keep with the Paleo diet, but for the foreseeable future, it’s here to stay.”
-Auriel, iCoach Nutrition Coaching Client