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It's been:
1 month on the south beach diet
1 month with no fast food, pizza, and for the most part, anything processed.
1 month with no tardies to work, no sick days, no days where I lie in bed debating whether or not I'm going to call in.

I have:
Gone to Tai Chi every saturday this month
Had breakfast almost every day, and at least a can of v8
Lost at least 10 pounds.

My goals for February:
Continue with my progress
Add 30 minutes of biking, walking, etc, two days a week at the Y

Things I've noticed:
I feel better about myself and the choices I've been making.
I have to pull up my pants after walking around.

In short: Go Team Me! My goal for this year is to keep setting small, obtainable goals every month that I know I can reach and that will have positive results.
Go you! You're a rock star!
Glad that you're feeling good about yourself...make sure that it stays that way. =)
Awesome!!!! Congratulations!!!!!
hey, well done.
That's awesome! I really need to get back to that low-carb way of eating, because it really does help your eneergy levels.
Heh...I always find that if I accidently go too low on carbohydrates, I have no energy and I even start to get dizzy. Plus, the extra protien and fat makes my stomach feel heavy. Then again, I run 35 miles a week, long runs often going into the double digits in miles, so I probably need much higher carbohydrate reserves than the average person, but it's interesting that a lack of carbohydrates could actually make some people feel higher energy.
Well, one of the things that the south beach diet does is slowly reintroduce GOOD carbohydrates into the diet. It talks about what kinds of breads and wheats are good for you, that are nutritional, and which ones are just nothing but sugar sugar sugar (which is basically all white bread).

Also - the beach is not about eating high fat foods. Rather, it's about eating lean cuts of meat and lots of veggies. It stays away from high fat oils and meats.

Really - you wouldn't NEED this diet at all, especially because you need those carbs to maintain your running regimin. But I have spent many years developing BAD BAD BAD eating habits in which I was almost completely dependant food that my body could digest easily and then do nothing with. What I'm finding is that I feel better because I'm eating healthier. Lots of veggies! Lots of good protien! My body is gaining energy from the foods I eat because I'm eating better foods for my body :)
Yeah, white bread is disgusting...tastes like cotton and isn't all that great for you, either (although I would argue that it has more nutrional value than say, hard candy, heh)...whole, multi-grain bread is definitely the way to go.

I'm NOT trying to attack your choices here, I'm merely curious -- what is the point in cutting out good carbohydrates at the beginning (whole grains, vegetables, fruits, etc) if you're going to reintroduce them? Is it a shock the system type thing, where you start off really restrictive so that eating a balanced diet doesn't feel restrictive?

I'm also really glad to see that you're working exercise into it -- I know people who have gone on low carbohydrate diets to lose weight (and I realize South Beach is NOT low carbohydrate), but end up with much lower fitness levels because they don't have the energy to exercise (and really, being healthy is not about weight -- it's about exercising regularly and eating moderate amounts of healthy food and not smoking and getting plenty of sleep -- and there are people at lots of different weights who are both healthy and unhealthy =) ). This is why tonarino_totoro's comment inspired me to comment.
The theory behind the first two, very restirctive weeks, of the south beach diet is that your body has become addicted to sugars and carbs so that as soon as you get them, your body produces insilin and more sciencey stuff that I can't remember because I don't have the book right in front of me :)

The two weeks is to clean the body of the sugar in the body so you can start with a clean slate. The two weeks forces your body to actually spend time digesting the foods. And lots of veggies are allowed in the first two weeks, so it's not just meat. Just no fruit and no bread and processed sugar. After that, when your body has somewhat "detoxed" itself, you can bring them in in moderate proportions.

Whole grain breads - breads where you can SEE the grains and everything are what I can eat, but right now, stll in moderation. The reason for that is to ease my body into the better eating habits.

And no worries - I don't think you're attacking, but I know a lot of people don't understand what the south beach diet is and how it's constructed. It's not just low carb hi fat, but tries to teach people who have spent years eating really badly (like me :) ) how to eat better and does it in phases.
Interesting that they're assuming a sugar addiction -- so is the diet only recommended for people who have regularly consumed certain levels of sugar? I'm a bit skeptical of the science behind the "detox" idea, although I know little about food science so I'd be interested to read a nutritionist's evaluation of the plan. =) (It's interesting, though, even though I don't know the details of the chemical reactions, I'm pretty well in tune with what certain foods do to my system, and it's almost as if my body tells me when I haven't been eating well -- it "complains" if I eat too much or too little of any one thing, and I feel "unclean" if I don't eat enough vegetables -- it's hard to describe. Of course, occasionally psychological reactions will kick in and try to override the system. =P)

I like the idea that it tries to teach people how to eat more healthfully, and I like the idea of "easing" into healthy eating habits (I've looked at the phases out of curiosity, and the last phase doesn't look like a diet at all -- just, um, normal eating -- so that's good), but I still think the approach it takes seems to be marketing off of the "low carb" fad idea. Sure, an excess of carbohydrates is not good for the body, but neither is an excess of fat or protein. Healthy eating is about balance and moderation. (And I'm sure you know this, I'm just emphasizing where I'm coming from =) ).
It's not so much the sugar in the system, but the excess of insilin that the body produces in order to digest the sugar.

See, you USE the sugar and carbs your body takes in, and you need a lot of it.

I don't use the sugar or the carbs my body was taking in, and as a result of long term sugar ingestion and seditary life style, my body has a lot of insilin running around, and that can lead to a different form of diabetes. So this cleans the slate of all that glucose and insilin in the body.

And sugar IS addicting! Let me tell you - I had a small peice of choclate on phase 2 (which I'm on now) after three weeks of no chocolate and I can tell you what that sugar did to my system :)

To a lot of people, eating balanced diets come naturally to them. For others, it's not. I have to re-teach myself how to eat and how to eat healthy.
So it IS assuming a certain amount of sugar consumption, then? And yeah, messing up the insulin levels in your blood is a precursor to diabetes (actually, my father, who has type 2 diabetes but never had ANY of the associated "risk factors"...he's always had good cholesterol levels, good blood pressure, always been skinny...thinks he got it because he used to go through horrendous quantities of soda), but the diet is assuming that everyone is addicted to sugar, which is not always true.

And oh yes, I understand how addictive sugar is. =) I go through sweets addiction phases which I have to work to break myself out of...although I don't get addicted to pure sugar, I get more addicted to things that also have fats in them -- cookies and chocolate. BUT, I also find that if a craving unrelated to the addiction is really strong, it helps to have a moderate amount of what I want and be done with it (of course, this is also a part of healthy eating in a way, because it helps prevent binges).

So, what is my point here, now that I've gone off on a major tangent? Um, well basically although some of the ideas presented by the South Beach Diet don't sit well with me, I am really happy that it works for you, and I am supportive of anything that will help you to improve your health and feel good about yourself. I'm also really glad that you seem to be focused on healthy habits rather than weight loss -- I get really annoyed with how so many people in this society think that any weight loss is healthy, rather than seeing weight loss as a common side effect of healthy habits.
If you want more information on the south beach diet, explained better than I ever could, go to the library and check out his book. He goes more into the way that the diet works.

And basically it is hacking the system - tricking it into working a certain way. But it's also backing that hack up with better habits.

What I like about the south beach is that I'm not obsessing over numbers, calories, exchanges, or points. Instead, when I make my dinner I say "what veggies am I having tonight? Is the food I'm making lean and delicious?"

Fun note: Everybody in my office have been/is getting sick, except for me. They all say it's because I'm eating healthier and doing tai chi :)

And yeah - people say "it's not about the weight loss" but really - it IS about the weight loss. What they mean to say is "it's not about rapid weight loss." And that's not what this is about. It's exactly what you said "Weight loss as a common side effect of healthy habits."
Well sure, but it's nearly impossible for a woman in this society to NOT think about weight loss (my little sister comes the closest I've ever seen in anyone, but even she still likes losing a few pounds). The fact that the FOCUS is health is the important thing.

Oooooh, Tai Chi looks awesome. =) I've never tried it, but I saw a lot of people doing it all around a park in Taipei when I was traveling in Taiwan last spring...really quite a sight to see so many people tranced out in their own Tai Chi world in one place. I hope you're enjoying the classes. =)
Tai Chi is AMAZING and is actually a good work out. It's like power meditation.

Seriously - if you can, find a studio near you and go once a week. It's just so awesome.
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icon LUST!!!

And can have so much fun in this city! *evil grin*