diabetes

“You don’t need me anymore.” – Best words I’ve heard in a long time

Good morning. It is Friday, and that means it is time for my weekly weigh-in. I will be updating my progress on the Daytona 500km walking challenge.  I also had a visit with my doctor today, so I’ll include all the news from that visit including an explanation of my headline.

First the weigh-in. This week I was up .4 pounds.  I am now at 240.6 pounds. I am down 104.4 from the start of my weight loss, or 30.3% of my weight as of March 1 of this year. Iam a little disappointed with being up a bit. I wrote about the struggle earlier this week. It is possible that I might be slowing down on my weight loss, or even that I could be reaching a plateau. Time will tell. I am certainly not in a panic over this number, and I intend to continue with my plan to do Weight Watchers, and work out.

On the challenge front, here is my chart as of yesterday:

daytona

As you can see I have now cracked 100km, and am at 108.7 total. I am on a pace to do 566.4km during the challenge, which would be well above the 500km goal. Yesterday my afternoon meetings ended and I was able to get out on time, so I made two trips to the gym. In between I did 5 laps inside my building for the other 2km. I am feeling very good about this challenge and have high confidence that I will reach and exceed my goal.

This morning I mad a visit to my doctor’s office. I had previously stopped in for a blood draw, so we had all of the numbers there for a good discussion. Here is a chart of my main numbers:

key numbersAs you can see, A1C went down even farther from back in June. It is now at 5.3. Additionally, my cholesterol numbers came down 11 points overall, with a 9 point drop in my LDL. She was quite pleased. I had a few other questions for her, and at the end of the visit I asked when she needed to see me again. Her answer was at least 6 months, and then she added, with a smile “You don’t need me anymore.”

I left the office with a spring in my step and a smile on my face. I am feeling very good indeed. Going forward she’d like to see me lose weight a little slower, which I think will happen naturally. Other than that, she just wants me to stick to the plan.

She asked me the question. You know THE question. “Why this time are you so successful and disciplined.” I told her that I’d been asking myself that question for months now, and that I don’t hae a firm grasp on the answer. I know my initial trigger was that I was inspired by my son. That explains my enthusiastic beginning, but it doesn’t account for how sustained I have been. I know that part of how I have stayed the course has been that I have been so public with my journey. I have told all my friends,  and I have this blog (where I have made many new friends). Over the course of the coming weeks I am going to do some soul searching on why I am successful this time around. Maybe there is something I am doing which could be of benefit to others. Maybe I will need that knowledge should I ever stumble on the road.

For today, I am healthy and happy!

First disappointment…

This week one of my goals was to get the test strips refilled for my glucose meter and start testing my blood again. I am a diabetic (time to start using denial words like “pre-diabetic”, or “low end diabetic”, and just call it what it is). So far my doctor has had me treat it with diet and exercise. I have known about this for two and a half years, and until the last month have done very little about it. My A1C test started just over 7, I did some things the first few months back in 2012, and got it down to 5.8. Since then I have been complacent, and it is back up to 7.1.

As part of this journey to better health, I want to make that number go down. I am more dedicated to diet and exercise. I am working out for over 100 minutes a week, and have been losing weight. My goal is to have that number go back into the low 6 range when I see my doctor in June. In the meantime, she wants me to test my blood with a glucometer twice a day, two hours after a meal.

Yesterday I picked up the refills on the test strips, and got my meter all set up. Last night I waited until two hours after dinner to make the first test. The target she has set for me is to be below 150. I was a bit excited, I’ve been eating well and exercising, and my weight is going down. So when I put in that strip and added a drop of my blood I expected a good number. It came out to 156. I was pretty devastated.

I spent the rest of the evening moping around. I wasn’t expecting something negative there. I had myself psyched up for a good score. I went to bed a bit depressed.

My wife and I talked about the likely reasons for the high reading. She made a really delicious jambalaya that was served over a bed of black rice. I added some Siracha sauce to kick it up a bit more, and really enjoyed the dish. Then I made the mistake. I liked it so much I had seconds. And, I heaped on the rice. We are convinced that the carbohydrates in the rice were what did me in for that reading.

The good news is that running the test had EXACTLY the effect my doctor sought. She told me that the reason she wants me to test is that when we test, we pay more attention to what we are eating, and we make better choices. I thought I was making pretty good choices, but the test told me I still have work to do.

I know that I have a very loving and supportive set of friends and family members. And I know all of them want to wish me words of encouragement. I will, of course, accept all of the love without complaint. I want you all to know, though, that I am OK with this. I didn’t expect this journey to be along a pleasant, fun, straight path. I knew there would be bumps and setbacks. And I knew that staying on track, losing weight, and improving my A1C was going to take a lot of thought and effort.

Today I made better choices with my meals. At lunch I had a crunchy salad with some grilled chicken. It was tasty, and low in carbohydrates, and my test two hours later came in at 92. I was buoyed by that result. For dinner I had another salad, and will be testing later. I expect a similar result.

The bottom line here is that I know I have a lot of work to do, and I have a lot to learn. Having that first