I have been noticing that the further that the menopause moves along, my weight bothers me. I have been blessed with none of the common symptoms that many women complain of. No hot flashes or anything. What I have noticed though is that I have gradually begun to gain weight. Not enough to have to buy new clothing, but enough to get my attention.
Years ago, I had a significant weight loss of nearly 150 pounds. I have been so happy to have kept most of that weight off, even after having 2 more babies while in my mid-40’s. I know that the older you are, the harder it is to lose weight and keep it off. So, this weight gain is not a welcome thing.
I am great about the kids’ eating habits. They have 3 meals a day in addition to 2-3 healthy snacks in between meals. A healthy snack meaning granola bars, fruit, or a bagel with cream cheese. That type of thing is typical for snacking in our home.
When it comes to my own eating habits, I started to really pay attention once I realized I was gaining weight. Ever since I was a teenager, I have rarely (more like never) felt hunger. I literally do not feel any sensation in my body that tells me when it is time to eat. I can go all day long and not eat anything only to suddenly realize at night that I forgot to eat that day. The problem is that if I don’t feel hungry when I am feeding the kids, then I just go on about my day after they are done eating.
This means that my body’s metabolism is very low. It isn’t burning the calories that I do take in very effectively. The end result being that even though I take in a low amount of calories, my body is still gaining weight.
So, here is my challenge that I am taking on. Each time I feed the kids, I am eating. It is a real change for me. I am actually having to eat more to lose weight. What got to me was that I kept track of my daily calorie intake and I was averaging about 750 calories on a really day, versus the kids averaging about 1800 calories or more a day. The kids’ caloric intake is right on track for their ages and activity level. According to WebMD, I should be taking in 1800-2000 calories per day for my lifestyle.
Eating a vegan diet, I sometimes wonder just how I am supposed to get that many calories. It seems a high amount when I eat a lot of vegetables and foods that are low calorie.
I am also increasing my activity. LOL Yeah, you would think that living off-grid that I would be active enough to keep my metabolism on track. Well, since it seems to be sleeping, I have to wake it up. So, I am exercising for an hour each day. I start by doing some stretches that I learned in martial arts, then bellydance or some other exercise.
With the increase in exercise and calorie intake, I am beginning to feel a difference. Now, to get creative in how to get the caloric intake I am supposed to have while eating mostly grains, vegetables, and fruit.