Thursday, April 22, 2010

Falling Off The Wagon (HCG Phase 2)

When you finish the 500 calorie + injections phase of the HCG diet and move on to the maintenance phase, you're supposed to feel a great sense of relief. You're supposed to have so many more food options open to you, it should feel like a feast after a famine.

But you still can't eat carbs or sugars. And so I'm finding that I feel almost as deprived on this phase of the diet as I was on Phase 1. Just not as hungry. But deprived isn't all that far from hungry, I'm discovering. Think about it. You can't have cereal for breakfast. Or pancakes. Or oatmeal. Or waffles. Or toast. Or any of the other wonderful breakfast foods you'd normally eat. What does that leave you? Eggs. Yes, and bacon, sausage, ham and all the breakfast meats. But you can't just eat breakfast meats for breakfast. And an egg without toast is not that enticing. Even if you can choke it down, you can't do it day after day. So what do I end up eating for breakfast? A strawberry smoothie. Same as before.

Then there is snack time. What would you eat for a snack normally? Some crackers with cheese? (No crackers allowed). A granola bar? (Guess again). Chips and salsa? (Ixnay on the ipschay). Seriously, it is HARD to think of stuff to snack on! So far I've come up with nuts. A handful of nuts. I should feel grateful that I can eat nuts. But I'm so used to thinking of them as fattening, that even though they're allowed on this phase of the diet, I am paranoid about eating them.

And then there is meal-time. I still eat my lean meats--shrimp, fish, chicken, turkey, steak. But I can't add carb-based side dishes to them. No potatoes au gratin, no rice pilaf, no noodles, no bread, no fries. So what can I eat with my meat to meet my daily calorie goal (1500-2000 calories)? More veggies? For real??? A couple of fruit choices that I couldn't have before? Whoopdeedoo. I'm not joking, people. Not eating carbs is freaking HARD!

I don't mean to be such a whiner. I know I should be grateful that I can have cheese now. And nuts. And full-fat dressing. But either I'm so paranoid about eating them because of the fat, or they just don't offer me any kind of satisfying feeling. Because I still find myself obsessing about carbs and sugar. Way worse than any diet I've ever been on before.

Which explains why, today, when I had a complete lack-of-sugar meltdown, I made cookie dough and ate three heaping spoonfuls of it, plus two cookies, and sucked them down with the same fervor and joy that a person would do to water after wandering in the desert. It was like I was eating for the first time in years. That's how it felt. It was AMAZING.

The aftermath? I'm sure it won't be pretty. Despite a lot of exercise today (walking a mile while picking up trash with the Scouts, playing volleyball and Frisbee golf, washing the cars) I may see a big gain tomorrow. But for right now, while the memory of brown sugar and butter and flour and chocolate chips is still lingering on my tongue, it was heaven. And it was worth it.


just call me jo said...

I've found that restrictive diets just make me crave certain foods more and eventually just eat everything forbidden in sight. I really wish you'd just eat everything in smaller portions and give up the torture. I feel hungry just reading your posts.

Hildie said...

First of all, just having bacon for breakfast sounds wonderful!

Secondly, I bagged the "no carbs" thing lickety split. It just killed me!

Unknown said...

Im in a plateau myself. I am just not losing the weight as fast as I did after my first baby and I want to just give up! I hear you sister!
Just keep swimming, it has to pay off soon right?

Mia said...

The best thing ever for me was the carb ratios I lived by during my second pregnancy (and a long time after) when I had gestational diabetes. 30g for breakfast, 45g for lunch and 45g for dinner with two 15g snacks. The say to snack at the same time every day picking two of the three times mid morning, mid afternoon, or mid evening (which is discouraged, but when I would normally eat something to quash the late night dessert cravings). It is a surprisingly large amount of carbs once you get used to it and you don't have the cravings and the melt downs. When I live by those ratios I feel best, and have the best success at weight maintenance. Of course I fall off the wagon (like the entire first year of my third child's life...) every once in a while and have to get back on.

Stick with the HCG plan for a little while longer and if is just isn't working then un-guilt yourself and try something that works better for you.

Chelsea said...

I hear ya, the low carb thing is really hard when you have a sweet tooth!

Anonymous said...

I was thrilled when I got to the 1500 calorie maintenance part. I would eat low-sugar yogurts for breakfast, string cheese for snacks, and would add tons of different fruits to my smoothies. It really seemed to help. Plus then I added ham to my meats, salmon instead of just a white fish, even quiche made with non-fat cream. There are a lot of more options, you just have to look for them. But I know it is hard to still not have the carbs. Even when I came off the diet completely, I still didn't dare to eat breads or pastas. I did good when I opted for whole grains, but white flour like in pizza, killed me.

Anonymous said...

make cookies etc with almond or coconut flower hun.. even pancakes i have and i am fine +0 sadly i found out on this diet my body hates starch period so .. look it up =)