Monday, May 23

The 17 Day Diet: Day 9 Review

I started the 17 day diet May 14th after reading through the book and reflecting on the diet quite a bit.  I’ve never been on a formal diet before, where I follow rules and such, so I’m a complete newbie at it.  Deciding to go on a diet was a big decision for me.  I don’t really like the idea of diets in general.  The reason I went with this one was because it promoted whole foods and healthy eating rather than eating whatever you want within a certain “points” or calorie scale.  So far here are my thoughts, my apologies in advance, it is long, but I wanted to give a full review :)
1-      The 17 days thing is misleading, I was very disappointed to read that really, that is just one phase.  There are 4 total phases, phase 1 and 2 everyone must do and phase 4 is more about the lifestyle.  So really, I committed myself to 34 days.

2- The diet is do-able, but it isn’t as easy as they’d like to make it sound.  I was already on the track to eating only non-processed sugars and am not a huge carb person.  So for me it wasn’t huge leaps and bounds from my every day diet. 

Dairy- I have found it difficult to cut most cheeses and dairy.  I couldn’t find the acidophilus milk, although I tried to find it at several health foods stores.  There is one more for me to try, but in the mean time I bought fat free milk to put in my tea, scrambled eggs and protein shakes.  I’ll try almond milk (which is preferred over milk) if I cant find acidophilus milk when I'm out of the milk I have now.  To be honest, I would like more of an explanation in the book of why milk is completely avoided.  I bought kefir and was sorely disappointed, it has a very bitter taste.  I have used them in shakes (1c kefir, 1 c frozen blueberries, 1 scoop protein powder) where the taste didn’t bother me, that is the only way I’ve been able to incorporate it into my diet.  I already eat a lot of Greek yogurt, so I’ve kept that and it has helped.

Sugar/sweeteners- the book suggests using sugar substitutes like Truvia.  Personally, I do not eat sugar substitutes.  Not even the ones that “come from nature.”  White sugar from the grocery store also comes from natural origins, but that doesn’t make it good for you.  Before this diet I was weaning myself off of sugar, but was still using about ½ tablespoon in the morning with my huge cup of tea.  I’ve stopped putting sugar in my tea and to be honest, I don’t miss it.  This has shocked me.

Fruit- The 2 servings of fruit before 2 has been a do-able component of this diet, no problems here!

Carbohydrates-  One of the hardest parts of this diet has been not eating my oatmeal for breakfast.  My whole life I’ve eaten oatmeal for breakfast, I’d say 75% of the time.  I love oatmeal.  Thankfully, in the next part I can eat oatmeal every other day (I think, don’t quote me on that one until day 18).

Protein- For some reason getting enough protein has been hard for me.  I don’t think it really has to do with the diet, I'm working on it this week!
Veggies- I like veggies, but wouldn’t consider myself a veggie lover.  I got a steamer to help me with the vegetable portion of this diet.  I’m doing ok, but will continue to do better this week.  Just getting in the mindset of packing veggies for snacks while I'm out is probably my biggest challenge here.

Travel- This weekend I traveled to see friends for 2 days.  Eating out was difficult.  Plain and simple, it is not easy to find things on the menu.  I packed my Playmate for the trip which helped immensely, but it required quite a bit of planning.  All together I didn’t totally fail this weekend, but it was hard.  It was also the first time I’d had something fried in weeks, my body really didn’t like it and I barely ate dinner because my stomach was rejecting it.

Alcohol- Im a wine and beer enthusiast.  How do I put this without sounding badly?  My social engagements usually revolve around a glass of wine on the back porch.  Me and {E} have a book of beers from around the world.  When we find and try a new beer from our book we make notes about it in our book.  My family drinks wine, our extended family drinks, my friends all drink.  Alcohol is something I’ve realized is immersed in my culture.  The wine on the back porch was not at all hard to give up, but the general absence of alcohol has been.  For instance, this weekend I was celebrating one of my best friend’s upcoming wedding.  It was a girls weekend, a time for celebrating, hence a time for a cute margarita.  I broke the no alcohol rule.  The good news is that after the month of dieting, alcohol in the form of a glass of wine is acceptable on a normal basis.  I am very much looking forward to this. 

Headaches- I had headaches about the same time of day for days 2, 3 and 4.  I practically never get headaches and nothing else was out of the normal so I attribute them to the diet.  They weren’t anything serious, I think my body was just letting me know it was a bit stressed with the change in food.

Exercise- The exercise is not at all difficult for me, and I do well over the 17 minutes required daily.  Just walking the dog daily requires me to be walking for 30 minutes.  I am trying to incorporate more strength training to help me get toned.

Results… what everyone cares about.  Before I left for the weekend I’d lost 5 pounds, which was at Day 6.  After the weekend I had gained 1.5 pounds back, so at Day 8 I'm 3.5 pounds under.  I'm just going to put it out there because it was something I wondered while reading the review.  People said they would lose 10, 15 or 20 pounds the first 17 days, but they gave no reference.  If I lost 20 pounds I'm pretty sure I’d be having an intervention from my loved ones.  My starting weight was 134 pounds.  I’m 5’6” and have a small to medium frame.  My general goal isn’t about loosing weight, I want to get more toned.  I am not a perfectionist, I'm not trying to starve myself, I just want to feel more comfortable in my body.  Even at 3.5 pounds down I feel much leaner.  I started trying to eat healthier and exercise a couple months ago, but only lost 3 pounds over the course of a couple months, mainly because I did eat very healthy most of the time, but when I slipped I really slipped.

If you have any questions or comments I’d love to hear them!  I’ll continue to give feedback as the diet progresses!

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