Tuesday, April 26, 2011


For the first time in a long time, I feel free from obsessing about food. If I'm on a diet I obsess about what I will eat next, calculating calories/points/fat grams. What if I go out to dinner? What will I order? I stalk the online menus and seek out nutritional information online like a crazy person. If I am not on a diet, I obsess about what I just ate but shouldn't have, what I want to eat to celebrate...console...cry, when and what will I eat next.

With Medifast, I have nothing to obsess about. I eat a Medifast meal every 2-3 hours. I eat one "Lean & Green" meal of protein and vegetables. There's nothing to think about. Nothing to calculate. If I go out to dinner, as I did last week, I order chicken or fish or steak with vegetables as my side. No stalking the online menus.

The only thing I weigh is my portion of "lean" based on what the protein is, and I measure (sometimes) my servings of vegetables. I will admit, I am supposed to be keeping track of condiments and healthy fats, but I haven't done that yet. I figure that is something I can incorporate (maybe) if I hit a plateau. It's not like I am pouring a gallon of salad dressing or olive oil or BBQ sauce on my food, so I think it's OK.

At this week's weigh-in, I lost an additional 3+ lbs. After last week's amazing results, I will admit that I was expecting a bit more. I know that most of those 13.6 lbs were water weight, but still the 3lbs this week seemed to pale in comparison. But, who can complain about 16+ pounds in 2 weeks? Me, that's who. It's an illness, people, it's an illness. :)

Seriously, though, I am VERY happy with my progress both on the scale and in my head.

Weight Loss
Medifast Week 2: 3.2 lbs
Medifast Week 1: 13.6 lbs
Medifast Total (2 weeks): 16.8 lbs
Total in 2011: 25.4

Friday, April 22, 2011

Medifast Food Reviews

Imagine it's your first day of eating drastically less than you normally do. You've had a shake for your first "meal", a bar for your second "meal", and you are about to prepare your third "meal" of soup. Soup, you think, that's like real food. The anticipation is killing you. You are famished. Fingers shaking as you open your packet (visualize cup of soup packets) of cream of broccoli soup mix, and....

YOU WANT TO THROW UP from the horrid scent that emenates from the small plume of dust that puffs out of the package. Are you SERIOUS? This is the crap that I am going to eat!
This is exactly what happend to me. In fact, I was preparing this meal at my parents' house, and they were both horrified by the smell. Yet, I had nothing else to eat, so I prepared my soup, whisking away to get all the lumps out. Adding a little garlic and herb seasoning, and Old Bay (Old Bay makes everything better, right?). Making it extra hot so I would burn off all taste buds, thus eliminating any chance of actually tasting this crap. And, I ate it.

Fortunately, it didn't smell as horrible once it was prepared. I muddled through the bowl of soup as my father laughed hysterically in the background, making comments such as, "No wonder you lose weight on this diet. That shit is inedible." My mother showing her support with reassuring remarks like, "It doesn't smell too bad now," and "It's probably better with those spices in it." Meanwhile, I'm so hungry I want to throw the bowl of soup in both of their faces and resort to eating the packaging the soup came in.

Overall, though, it's really not that bad. Seriously. And now, a week and a half later, I've even kind of gotten used to the cream of broccoli soup. I think the key is that I wasn't expecting it to be gourmet food or even "real" food. I looked into other programs like Nutrisystem and Jenny Craig, where you get some frozen food and some "shelf stable" food as they call it. The reviews of the food were mediocre at best. I'd rather have the meal replacements of Medifast than eat gross meals that are supposed to be real-food "entrees".

Here is all the "food" I've had and what I think of it.

Orange Creme - MY FAV! Not just my favorite shake, but probably my favorite item overall. This is what I have for breakfast everyday. I blend it with a little ice, and I actually really like it. It tastes like a creamsicle. I ordered the Strawberry Creme in my next batch of food, so we'll see how that measures up.
Chocolate - Good. But not as good as the orange creme.
Next up: In addition to the Strawberry Creme, I also ordered the Banana Creme for Jay. (I don't like banana.)

Chocolate - I didn't care for it in pudding form. The texture was weird, and it seemed grainy. But I got some pointers online for making it more like a frosty with ice and some water. YUMMY! This is usually what I have as my 6th meal, after my Lean & Green dinner. Very dessert like.

Soft Serve
Mango - DIS. GUST. ING. Way too artificially flavored. Super weird after taste. Odd texture. I much prefer just making the chocolate pudding into soft serve.

Cream of Broccoli - Well, you know how I feel about that. I actually don't mind it too much anymore, but definitely not my favorite.
Maryland Crab - Probably my favorite of the soups I've tried. Added Old Bay, of course.
Chili - Since you only use a half cup of water to make it, it's a very small serving. I thought it was very weird the first time I made it. I read some pointers online (this actually applies to all the soups) about mixing them up the day before so the dried veggies have a chance to soften up and the flavors get better. So now I do that (for the Maryland crab too), mix in some extra seasonings, and it's fine. I have read that some people really hate this one though.
Next up: Beef Stew, Chicken Noodle, Cream of Tomato

Smore's; Chocolate Crunch; Peanut Butter Crunch: I'd rate these all about the same. They're pretty good. Not as good as the Fiber One bars I used to eat, but they'll do.
Lemon Meringue - Not as good as the others, but I like it for a change of pace from the others. Jay hated it.
Next up: Caramel Crunch, Cinnamon Roll

Puffs & Pretzels
Chili Nacho Cheese Puffs - My other fav, along with the orange creme shake. Little round psuedo cheese curls. They satisfy my need to munch. I usually have these as my mid-afternoon meal, along with a Diet Coke. Jay also said these are one of his favorite things so far.
Honey Mustard Pretzels - Not nearly as good as the puffs, in my opinion, but good for a change of pace.
Next up: Parmesan Cheese Puffs

The brownie is decent. A nice change from the frosties for dessert, but I definitely prefer my pudding frosty.

I didn't order any because I hate oatmeal. But, I have since read recipes for making the oatmeal into muffins. So, my next order includes blueberry oatmeal.

General Comments:
  • I think everything kind of has a weird after taste that you start to get used to.
  • Low expectations. Keep in mind that these are meal replacements and not gourmet food. Everything (except the puffs and pretzels) is made from adding water. What do you expect? It's pretty much exactly what I was expecting based on those expectations.
  • If you try something once and don't like it, don't give up on it. It may grow on you. Or, you may find a way of mixing it up (more water, less water, blending, shaking, etc) that makes it better.
  • I definitely like mixing up my meals. Shake for breakfast. Bar mid-morning. Soup for lunch. Puffs or pretzels mid-afternoon. Pudding frosty late evening.
  • There are some crazy creative people who have come up with recipes for making the cream soups into chips and "bread" using panini makers. I haven't tried them yet, but I plan to.
  • I have pretty much kept everything simple. That's what I was going for after all. But, after reading the discussion boards and other bloggers who write about Medifast, there are a lot of ways that you can split up the Lean & Green into smaller meals, or add bits of it to the Medifast meals and create very interesting meals. I'll let you know if I try anything.

So, this was super long, but I know some of my fans have been awaiting details of the foods. And, there you have it.


Today I wore PPJs: Pre-Pregnancy Jeans!

And, that is all.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The One?

I remember when I was single (particularly when I was single and all my friends were either dating, engaged, or married), and after every decent first date, I would wonder, could this be "THE ONE"? Well, that is what I am wondering now about Medifast. Is this the one? The one that is actually going to work for me? The one that I am going to stick to? The one that gets me on track with my health? If the first week (and now about a third of the way into my second week) is any indication, perhaps the answer is yes. And, if the answer is yes, the obvious next question is: Where have you been all my life?

Here's a quick synopsis of the first week.

Day 1:
  • Insanely hungry by noon.
  • Insane headache by 1pm.
  • Insane. Period. by 4 pm.
  • Felt like I was constantly watching the clock, waiting for my next "meal".
  • I have never been so damned excited to eat a freakin' piece of grilled chicken and green beans (my "Lean & Green" meal) in my whole freakin' life.
  • Thoughts: OK, they said the first few days to a week were the hardest. They said all of these things would happen. You got through the first day. Good job. Side note: I got a sick satisfaction out of feeling like I was starving, like I was really accomplishing something.
Day 2:
  • Pretty hungry by lunchtime.
  • Slight headache by late afternoon.
  • Thoughts: Hmmmm, seems like it's getting easier.
Day 3:
  • No longer watching the clock.
  • No longer feeling hungry.
  • No headache.
  • Thoughts: Wow, I think I can do this.
Day 4 :
  • Smooth sailing.
Days 5 - 7:
  • Several challenging social situations.
  • Friday, we went out to dinner with friends who were in town. I had no alcohol, ordered a big garden salad, and we all ate steamed crabs (leanest). Everyone ordered a bunch of appetizers, and I ate one piece of calamari, half of a chip with a tiny bit of guacamole, and 2 steamed shrimp.
  • Saturday was my daughter's 2nd birthday and I spent the day baking cupcakes/cake for her party the next day, and we had my family over to celebrate with make-your-own pizzas. I just had a big salad with grilled chicken. No cupcakes for me!
  • Sunday was her party, which we had at a park. I just took a couple Medifast bars and ate those, and passed on the sandwich tray, pasta salad and chips, actually I ate 2 chips. Still, no cake or cupcakes.
  • YAY me!!
Judgement Day aka Monday's Weigh-in:
  • I lost 13.6 lbs!! WHAT?!?!? I lost all of the weight I managed to put on during my 1 month + hyatis, plus an additional pound or so. WOOOO-WHOOOOO!!!!
Week 2:
  • Smooth sailing.
  • Not only do I not watch the clock, I have to remember to eat every 2-3 hours. Seriously, I am just not that hungry.
  • Haven't weighed myself yet, but today I wore freshly washed jeans, and they slipped right on. Usually there is a serious routine of squats, stretches, and not breathing for the first 10 minutes after putting them on.
  • I feel fully committed to this. I feel like it is going to work. I feel confident that I can do this.
  • I have more energy.
  • Jay is jealous and is starting the program tomorrow! :-)
Things I like:
  • Only having to plan one meal per day...and really enjoying that meal.
  • Not feeling hungry.
  • Not feeling overwhelmed with food preparation and constantly thinking about my next meal.
So, is Medifast the one? Only time will tell.

Stay tuned for another post with my commentary on the Medifast food. The good, the bad, and the repulsive.

Weight Loss
Total in 2011: 22.2 lbs
Medifast Week 1: 13.6 lbs

Sunday, April 10, 2011

All In. Cop Out.

That's kind of how I feel right now. With what I have decided to do, there's no doubt, I'm going ALL IN. At the same time, I feel a bit like it's a COP OUT. After several weeks and a lot of thinking, researching, and discussion with my hubs (really, there wasn't much else for me to fill my time with since I wasn't exercising...or planning healthy meals...or cooking nutritious food), I've decided to try out the Medifast plan.

The program was originally created 20 years ago for patients who were preparing to undergo bariatric surgery and needed to lose weight (fairly quickly) and learn to eat restricted calories before the surgery. It's gotta be good if it was designed by doctors and, I quote, "recommended by over 20,000 doctors." Right? :-)

Here is a quick overview from their website.


One simple plan, every day

The Medifast 5 & 1 Plan: Each day, you enjoy five Medifast Meals and one Lean & Green Meal.

Five Medifast Meals
Choose five Medifast Meals from over 70 different choices, including shakes, soups, stew, chili, oatmeal, eggs, fruit drinks, iced teas, hot beverages, crunch bars, pretzel sticks, cheese puffs, puddings, brownies, soft-serve, and pancakes.

One Lean & Green Meal
This includes a generous serving of lean protein along with three servings of non-starchy vegetables. You can choose dinnertime for your Lean & Green Meal, or enjoy it at any time that works with your schedule.

Basically, I'll eat 5 Medifast meals a day. Personally, I would hardly call them "MEALS". They are meal replacements consisting of bars, shakes, oatmeal, eggs, soups, and puffs. I hate oatmeal and fake eggs, so my options are even more limited. The puffs, well, we'll see. Supposedly, they will give me the satisfying crunch and semi-saltiness of the chips I so dearly love. Currently, I'm a skeptic on that one. The 6th meal will be a serving of a protein of my choosing and three servings of veggies. You eat every 2-3 hours throughout the day.

They also outline very comprehensive transition and maintenance phases, as they realize that no one will stay on this plan forever.

Here are some highlights that I find, oh, shall I say interesting?

  • If you are not currently exercising, they suggest not beginning a new exercise regime for 2-3 weeks as you adjust to the new eating program and calorie restrictions. Am I really being told NOT to exercise? SIGN ME UP!!!
  • For the first three days, you may feel tired, have headaches, and be irritable. Jay is soooo excited about that part. I told him it wouldn't be that different from any other day, when I already experience 2 out of 3 of those on a regular basis.
Biggest concerns:

  • Starving to death.
  • Missing "real" food.
  • Farting. A. Lot. Apparently, there is a lot of soy products in the "meals" which often leads to a tad bit of gassiness. Another thing Jay is excited about.
  • People thinking I am a pathetic loser, who can't just lose weight like a normal human being. Seriously, I am afraid of being judged, and I already keep telling myself all the things that I think people will think. "Well, it doesn't teach you healthy eating." "You can't stick to that forever." "Just do what everyone else does and eat right and exercise." On and on and on, these things go through my head. And, I wish it were that simple. But, when you have 50+ lbs to lose and feel like you are completely floundering and the finish line seems so very far away, it's hard to not grasp at straws and try something that is "taking the easy way out." Another thing that I hear in the endless soundtrack in my mind. I just really want a jump start.
  • Failing. Again.
On a positive note, I went into a local Medifast Center last week, and they did a full body analysis. It included all sorts of things like the usual weight, body fat percentage, and BMI, but also some additional things like lean muscle mass, body water percentage, basal metabolic rate, skeletal weight. Some of the results made me feel just a wee bit better about myself.

  • In the several weeks (actually, I've lost track at this point), probably a month, since I have fallen off the wagon (and, let's face it, gotten run over by it), I have only gained back 10 of the max 21 lbs I lost earlier in the year.
  • Yes, I am overweight (duh), but I also have above average muscle mass. Could have fooled me! I was pretty sure I had converted to nothing but a lump of suet. Fat and Strong. Fat and Strong. That's me.
  • Based on my skeletal and muscle mass, I don't need to lose as much weight as indicated by BMI standards in order to be healthy. This probably makes me happiest of all. As a 6' tall female, in order to be at a healthy BMI, I have to be at a ridiculous weight that I probably haven't seen since 9th grade, when I was not fat at all. It is nice to have other factors taken into consideration.
All this to say, tomorrow, I cop out and go all in.