5 More Pounds…Gone!

IMG_8109I’m just one pound short of yet another goal of mine.  However, I’m certainly not frustrated though with being one pound shy of it, especially since it is a day after a food holiday such as Thanksgiving.  

For those who need to be brought up to speed, March 1st, 2013, I started the long overdue journey of not only loosing weight, but also setting out to live healthier.  At my heaviest, I weighed 252 pounds.  It still pains me to write that number down, because I can’t believe I weighed that much.  I can’t believe I let myself go like that!  I can’t believe I didn’t see it in the mirror.  Anyway, I’m at 223 pounds with a total loss, to date, at 29 pounds.  I’m pretty excited about that!  I have another estimated 23 pounds to go and feeling beyond confident that I’m on the right track.

My biggest issue was SUGAR.  I used to eat little cookies, pastries or whatever was convenient that I could grab-n-go during my busy everyday life.  I would get a sugar high that kept my motor running throughout the day.  I felt so satisfied and good when I paused between each of those bites.  Then, the sugar high would start to wear off, and I would feel awful.  So, what better way to solve that than to eat more sugar?  And that is exactly what I did over and over and over again.  The amount of sugar I consumed increased slowly through the years as I became more reliant on it and needed more to reach that same heightened level of a sugar high.  I kept this pattern until I reached the 252-pound mark, sadly.  By that time, I had no idea what “good” felt like anymore.  Sugar was a drug for me, one that I had very slowly conditioned myself to and relied on for over a 10-year period. Unfortunately, I got very good at it.  Over an entire decade!  Ouch! 

I know what you’re thinking: “But you are a trained chef; you should know what types of foods you should and shouldn’t eat.”  And yes, you are absolutely correct.  I do know exactly what I should and shouldn’t eat.  But, at the time, I didn’t look at it that way.  I was so busy feeding other people fabulous meals that I never even sat down for a meal, let alone eat the right foods.  I would just grab whatever I could to keep my body in motion, knowing if I sat down I probably couldn’t get back up.  It comes down to our priorities in life.  Let’s just say living healthier suddenly rose up on the list for me.

I’m now six months into my journey.  I have been working to recondition my eating habits and am trying not to rely on sugar every day.  It has been difficult at times, but I’m doing extremely well and just feel AWESOME!  The great feeling I get from quality foods certainly overrides any cravings I have for processed sugar.  I’m just more upset that it took me 10 years to figure it out.  What a waste!  But it is time to look forward rather than backward.  

I’m still totally into my Juiceoothie’s (juice/smoothie) and am so thrilled I put in the time to develop these great recipes that I look forward to trying everyday.  I personally need more than just a liquid juice.  I need some more substance.  So I developed juices that I then pour into a blender with maybe some frozen fruit and fresh, dark, leafy greens, for example.  That results in just not a juice or a smoothie, but a Juiceoothie

This way, I can eat/drink the whole greens and get some more substance from a creamy, frozen banana, which I’ve also blended into the drink.  I don’t use any ice or fillers.  Again, I know what you are thinking: “There is no way I can drink something green.”  I was the exact same way!  That is the one hurdle to overcome.  Drinking green drinks is not something we do on a daily basis in America — I get it.  It’s all in our minds, though.  Once you get past drinking that first green Juiceoothie and realize how fresh, full of flavor, perfectly balanced and naturally sweet it is, you will soon crave it as I do.  Plus, the bonus is that you don’t even taste the dark leafy greens AT ALL.  Let me say that again.  You don’t even taste the dark leafy greens AT ALL!  I promise you!  That takes us back to the visual aspect.  Try to just rely on your taste for the first sip.  By the second sip, you’ll actually be able to appreciate that gorgeous green color.

My real secret is not the Juiceoothies, though, but the fact that I’m eating and drinking whole, real foods.  It’s really just that simple.  These Juiceoothies give me the nutrition of whole, real foods — it’s just that they do so in a different way that allows me to consume a larger amount of vegetables and fruit.  Take the Blueberry Juiceoothie for example (it’s not green in color):

  • Apples
  • Blueberries
  • Lemon
  • Banana

Delish for a morning breakfast!

I couldn’t possibly eat all these fruits and vegetables in one sitting.  However, by using a juicer, I’m able to get all the nutrients in those fruits and vegetables without eating them in their entirety.  And, on top of that, my body can digest and absorb the juice that much quicker.  I can feel my body being energized as I drink them.  What an incredible feeling!

Try one of these Juiceoothies with an open mind, and your body will thank you.  You’ll even end up craving them.  Or, start with the Sunrise in the morning — it’s a beautiful orange.  It’s a great way to start your day!

As always, I welcome your comments and look forward to hearing your thoughts.

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About Chef Darren

I am simply a guy who loves the journey food takes us. I just happen to do it for a living. I write about my experiences with food as it surrounds all of us daily.

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