I promised to blog about how I lost weight. I apologize for the delay because I had a crazy busy week. I’ll make sure to write in terms people can understand (no scientific blahblah).
I lost weight using a combination of diet and exercise. I’ll tackle the dieting part first. I’m doing this for all the lazy (haha!) but inspired people out there who want to embark on a road to weight loss. The trick is to get past the initial inertia. It can be done!
Pre — Keto — The Elephant Years
I’ve always been slim, but after I had a baby, fat just stuck to me like white on rice. Battle with the bulge was on and off—sometimes I win, most of the times I lose. I was ready to give up on getting back my bikini body. I reasoned, the good Lord put carbs and alcohol in this planet for a reason, and I shouldn’t let him down.
It took a heartbreak, and a lot of spite, for things to shift. My heaviest recorded weight was in 2016, tipping the scales at 180 lbs. Yup, I was gargantuan. I decided to do something about it around Thanksgiving 2016.
Having tried many kinds of diets and supplements, some which worked and others did not, I yearned for something sustainable. Then, I came across the Keto Diet. I heard about it from a thread in reddit.com sometime in December 2017. After researching a ton of information online and preparing a schedule on implementation, I decided to embark on a new experiment.
Aside from the nitty-gritty details, I had to prepare for it mentally, knowing I had to make lifestyle changes. It can be difficult. I informed my friends and family of my plan to undertake the Keto Diet challenge. As expected, everyone laughed and wished me good luck. I wasn’t taken seriously because I always failed at sticking to a diet. They didn’t know this was different. Spite was a good motivator.
A week before I was to start keto, I ate and drunk everything I wanted. This was often my pre-diet ritual to reduce cravings. I would recall how cake, chocolate, or leche flan still taste the same no matter the time away from them—their flavors were all in my head, that I’ve had it all before and to quit whining!
What Is Keto?
Now, what exactly is keto diet? It is a very low-carb diet that uses fat as fuel instead of glucose. When we limit our carbohydrate (where we get glucose from) intake, the body looks for other sources of fuel. It converts its supply of fat into glucose, in a process called ketosis. Ketosis produces ketones in the liver, which breaks down fat. When fat is broken down, that’s how we lose weight.
Nutritionists say that fat is a more stable source of fuel than glucose. We don’t need more outside sources of glucose, we can utilize our fat instead through ketosis. Basically, keto is starving the body of carbs. The lower the carb intake, the faster the body goes into fat burning state. Only 50 grams of carbs are allowed per day.
I tweaked my regimen a little bit to fit Filipino cuisine when I started going to a gym, as keto diet can be so draconian (strikto besh!).
Aside from the obvious weight loss, you get these benefits if you make it past the murderous phase (you can do it!):
- controls blood sugar (good for diabetics)
- increased energy
- no hunger/hanger (hungry+anger) pangs
- mental clarity (I did not make this up!)
- control cholesterol and blood pressure by lowering LDL levels, increasing HDL
- lesser acne
What To Eat
- eggs, poultry, fish, meat (pork, beef, lamb, etc)
- leafy greens
- veggies like broccoli, cauliflowers
- fat like coconut oil, butter, olive oil
- cheese — mozzarella, feta, cottage cheese, cream cheese, sour cream, blue cheese
- nuts except peanuts — eat in moderation
- bacon — surprise surprise! but not the maple/sugar cured variety
- processed meats — check the label, 0–1 gram serving is okay
- spices like basil, cilantro, cayenne, pepper, etc — u need these, trust me!
- sweeteners — stevia but only if you need to, use in moderation, nothing with maltodextrin.
- dark chocolate and cocoa — yes you can! again, check the label and use in moderation.
- carrots — in moderation, not too many
- unsweetened coffee or tea — definitely no fraps!
- sauces — no gravy, soy sauce and ketchup in moderation
- W A T E R is your best friend! I drink at least 4–6 liters a day.
What Not To Eat
- all kinds of bread, not even wheat bread
- no oats, cereals
- no rice, black rice, brown rice, quinoa
- all kinds of pasta
- tubers like potatoes, sweet potatoes, cassava, taro
- beans like mongo beans, legumes, peas
- fruits except avocado and berries — sad but true, coz I love mangoes
- oils and unhealthy fats coz not all fats are good, like trans fat, margarine, hydrogenated vegetable oils like canola, sunflower, soybean
- fruit juices and sodas
- all kinds of alcohol, no excuses!
You can eat at McDonald’s, minus the buns of course. You can even eat lechon or lechon kawali, but personally, I’d scrape off the fat, go easy on the skin, and stick to the lean parts. Lechon manok (chicken), adobo, sinigang, grilled chicken breasts, garlic shrimps, grilled squid, beef steak, giniling (Picadillo), dinuguan, even sisig, are among the Filipino foods I ate. There are specialty shops that offer keto desserts. You can partake, but use common sense, do not eat the whole box. One trick I’ll share is to have soup before the main course—it makes me full, fast. Eat slowly, chew carefully, you are not in an eating contest.
No-Nonsense Tips To Surviving Keto
- Write down your goals and why you are
torturingdieting. How many pounds do you want to lose? Are you so broke you can’t buy bigger clothes? Do you plan to accidentally bump into your ex, make him c*m in his pants and sorry he left you? Is this one of those #lookwhatyoumademedo moments? Whatever it is, don’t lose sight of it. Make sure your goals are strong enough to make you commit to your diet. Write them down, put them somewhere you can see or read often.
- Have realistic goals. Don’t expect to lose 20 lbs. in 1 week, that’s ridiculous.
- Keep temptations out of sight. Like chocolates, croissants, beer, or donuts. Hide them so that you don’t accidentally eat them.
- Eat corn grits. This is for people who have difficulty letting go of rice. Corn grits are mais in our dialect. Substitute regular rice with half cup of mais during breakfast and lunch, or have a full cup during lunch. No mais during dinner please. Reduce portions until you are ready to go full Keto throttle.
- Take your vitamins. I can’t stress the importance of these. You would need supplements to combat whatever deficiency you will have while your body is readjusting.
- Make your fat pictures as wallpaper in your phone or desktop. I did this, and remember every mean word ever said to me by people sometimes disguised as friends. Your jokes hurt a**holes, but you didn’t realize because you have the emotional range of a spoon. Spite works, I tell you. As of this writing, the losers are still, well, ffugly (fat & f*cking ugly).
- Stare at your old sexy pictures or your beach body goal. All the time—when you wake up, when you are craving, before you go to bed. This is how the law of attraction works. Think sexy, visualize sexy, achieve sexy. Imagine yourself finally wearing that bikini. Thoughts become things. The mind is very powerful.
- Plan your meals if you can. You can do this by buying all the stuff you need for a week and getting rid of those you don’t. Personally, I don’t plan, I just eat whatever is available, without forgetting what to avoid.
- Curtail your after dark activities as much as possible. Less barhopping, less drinking, more money to buy new clothes when you lose weight. I didn’t go out often then, even until now. It’s a necessity. There will be other bars, events to see anyway when you’re ready.
- Have a cheat day. I gave myself cheat days after 2 weeks on keto. Every Saturday, I eat whatever I want. Use your common sense. Don’t stuff yourself when you’re already full. My friends and I even go to buffets. By this time, your system is well adjusted. You won’t eat as much as you used to.
- Have a diet buddy. I was lucky to have one. We would keep each other on the loop, and be each other’s cheerleader. You keep each other sane.
- Be selfish. By this, I meant be kind to yourself by always putting yourself first. LOVE yourself. Be your own cheerleader. Avoid negative people who bring you down, or those unsupportive of your goals. You don’t need them, like you don’t need a third chin. Surround yourself with like-minded people. I love myself so much I want to be lighter, healthier, sexier.
- You’ve been warned—the first few days will be brutal. Just try to get through the week. This is why I emphasized mental preparedness.
- You will feel a little dizzy sometimes, grumpy, tired, murderous, some flu-like symptons (keto flu). It’s like your PMS on steroids. This is normal. Give your body time to adjust and recalibrate itself.
- You will know you are in ketosis when you have this weird taste in your mouth, or you smell different, dry mouth, always thirsty, increased urination. These signs were very pronounced when I was dieting.
- You get into ketosis in 2–10 days. It varies from person to person, depending on how you cut your carbs. I usually go into ketosis on the 2nd or 3rd day, full on ketosis on the 4th or 5th.
- When you don’t have hunger pangs anymore, you are on full ketosis, and you can do the happy dance. Other annoying signs usually disappear when you get to this stage.
I did a very strict Keto regimen for a month and a half. I tweaked the diet after that, when I started seeing results. From January to May, I dropped around 40 lbs. I wanted more! By some miracle, I decided to get a gym membership in February. See, Keto gave me clarity! Months ago, I could never imagine myself being in a gym. The idea of exercise was painful and exhausting. But I wanted to be more toned, and lose the stubborn fat in some areas. I’ll blog about that in my next post!
I still have wobbly bits, and my tummy is not that flat. But I got my clavicles back, and I now have cheekbones! I’m a work in progress, but what mighty progress I made. You too can do it. Do it for yourself!
|Weight||Dress Size||Jean Size||Bra Size||Target Weight|
|Pre — Keto||180 lbs.||XXL/US 14–16||34||40 D/DD Victoria Secret sizing||125 lbs.|
|Post — Keto||132 lbs.||M/US 6–8||28–29||36 B Victoria Secret sizing||125 lbs.|