Lindora works! It really, really works!

An extremely encouraging visit to the Lindora clinic today.

Starting weight: 224.7
Today’s weight: 211.0    -13.7 lbs!

Lost a bunch of inches, too!
– 5.5” waist
– 1.5” bust
– 1” hips
– 2” thighs

Blood pressure: 110/78

I love this program! Such progress in only 3 weeks!!!

I am encouraged by my coworkers who are telling me that I’m having a really good attitude and I’m not being a big whiney-butt about the diet – like when I don’t get to eat celebratory cake. I’m happy that they’re noticing my mood. Cheating is simply not an option. I’m on the wagon. Why fret about it.  I’m amazed at the overall lack of cravings I’m feeling. I credit it to the ZonePerfect bars – one per day, in the afternoon.

Here’s my menu for the past week… (still eating Dannon Light & Fit yogurt; didn’t want to throw it away; need to go find the Ralph’s Carb Master and Fage Greek Yogurt) : )

Sunday, August 14, 2011
Exercise: Nothing formal; walked around the mall before going to a movie

  • 9:30am 3/4 c Cheerios (12), 1 c skim milk (12), Coffee (0) with 2 Tbsp sugar free Coffee-mate vanilla creamer (2), 2 chewable adult vitamins (3) (According to Lindora, I don’t need to count the carbs in my daily Metamucil sugar free fiber)
  • 12pm Chocolate Mint Julip: Lindora Chocolate Pudding (7), Diet Squirt (0), 2 drops of peppermint extract (Source: Lindora Lean for Life Recipe Collection. Nasty, ick, yuck, puke. Tasted like toothpaste. Grossed me out for hours. Weird how much a bad tasting snack bummed me out and made me mad.)
  • 2:30pm El Pollo Loco chicken breast (0), Salad (3), ½ c pico di gallo (5), Diet Pepsi (0)
  • 8:30pm ZonePerfect bar (13)
  • Total carbs: 59

Monday, August 15, 2011
Pedometer steps: 10,983
Exercise: 30 minutes treadmill, 30 minutes upper body strength training

  • 7:30am 3/4 c Cheerios (12), 1 c skim milk (12), Coffee (0) with 2 Tbsp sugar free Coffee-mate vanilla creamer (2), 2 chewable adult vitamins (3), Metamucil sugar free fiber
  • 10:30am  0.5 oz string cheese (0.5), 1.25 oz turkey (0.5)
  • 1pm  ½ c cottage cheese (4), ½ c pineapple (11), 2 c Romaine lettuce (3), ½ c cucumber (1.5), ¼ c celery (1.5), Diet Squirt (0) (Notes: Too much cottage cheese! It needs to be disguised more. I can’t believe I’m eating cottage cheese.)
  • 3pm ZonePerfect bar (13)
  • 7:30pm  2.5 oz shrimp (1), 1 t olive oil, lemon wedge (1.5), 2 c Romaine lettuce (3), ½ c cucumber (1.5), Orange (14)
  • 10:30pm  2.5 oz turkey (1)
  • Total carbs: 86

Tuesday, August 16, 2011
Weighed in at Lindora:  Lost 1.5 lbs since Friday
Exercise: None
First bad day on this journey. Felt extremely crummy today—burning eyes, aching body. Thought I was getting super sick; went home early at 1pm. No gym. For some reason I was disappointed that I’d only lost 1.5 lbs since Friday, which is kinda crazy. Felt a little crazy today. Negative thoughts like “what’s the point?” Pushed through it.

  • 7:30am 3/4 c Cheerios (12), 1 c skim milk (12), Coffee (0) with 2 Tbsp sugar free Coffee-mate vanilla creamer (2), 2 chewable adult vitamins (3), Metamucil sugar free fiber
  • 10am  1oz string cheese (1)
  • 2pm ½ c Dannon Light & Fit Yogurt (10), 1 c strawberries (11), 2 c Romaine lettuce (3), ½ c cucumber (1.5), Diet Squirt (0)
  • 4:30pm ZonePerfect bar (13)
  • 7pm ZonePerfect bar (13)
  • Total carbs: 81.5

Wednesday, August 17, 2011
Exercise: 20 minutes treadmill, 30 minutes lower body strength training

  • 7:30am 3/4 c Cheerios (12), 1 c skim milk (12), Coffee (0) with 2 Tbsp sugar free Coffee-mate vanilla creamer (2), 2 chewable adult vitamins (3), Metamucil sugar free fiber
  • 10:15am  1oz string cheese (1)
  • 1pm ½ c Dannon Light & Fit Yogurt (10), 1 c strawberries (11), 2 c Romaine lettuce (3), ½ c carrots (8), Diet Pepsi (0)
  • 4pm Coffee with 1 creamer (3), ZonePerfect bar (13)
  • 7pm Veggie Omelet: 1 egg (1), ¼ c onions (3), ½ Roma tomato (2.5), 1 tsp olive oil, clove of garlic; 2 c Romaine lettuce (3), no fruit
  • 10:30pm Lindora Strawberry & Kiwi protein drink (1)
  • Total carbs: 88.5

Thursday, August 18, 2011
Exercise: none. Did a bunch of necessary errands instead.

  • 7:30am 3/4 c Cheerios (12), 1 c skim milk (12), Coffee (0) with 2 Tbsp sugar free Coffee-mate vanilla creamer (2), 2 chewable adult vitamins (3), Metamucil sugar free fiber
  • 10:30am  0.5 oz string cheese (0.5), 1.25 oz turkey (0.5)
  • 1:30pm ½ c Dannon Light & Fit Yogurt (10), 1 c strawberries (11), 2 c Romaine lettuce (3), ½ c cucumber (1.5), Diet Squirt (0)
  • 4:30pm ZonePerfect bar (13)
  • 8pm El Pollo Loco chicken breast (0), Salad with ½ c salsa (5), Diet Coke. The salad had their cilantro creamy dressing on it, even though I asked for no dressing. I opted to go ahead and eat it. It was so good!

Friday, August 19, 2011 – Weekly Protein Day
Weighed in at Lindora:  Lost 3 lbs since Tuesday!!!!!! Wahoo!!!
Exercise: 30 minutes treadmill, 30 minutes upper body strength training

  • 8am 1 c skim milk (12), 2 chewable adult vitamins (3), Metamucil sugar free fiber
  • 10:15am Lindora Oatmeal Raisin protein bar (13), coffee with 1 Tbsp creamer (3)
  • 1:30pm Lindora BBQ Soy Puffs (8), 12 oz Diet Squirt (0)
  • 3:15pm 0.5 oz string cheese (0.5), 1.25 oz turkey (0.5)
  • 5pm ½ c Dannon Light & Fit Yogurt (10)
  • 7pm ZonePerfect Cashew Pretzel protein bar (13)
  • 10:30pm Lindora Strawberry & Kiwi protein drink (1)
  • Total carbs: 64
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Blood Test Results & The Official Start of Lindora

I received my blood test results this past Thursday from the Lindora nurse. My thyroid is normal. I’m not at all anemic. And my glucose is great (so no risk of diabetes). However, I have several risk factors that make me highly sensitive to developing heart disease:

  • High cholesterol – My overall cholesterol is too high (202 – should be between 135-200).
    My good cholesterol (HDL) is too low at 39 (should be over 50).
    My bad cholesterol (LDL) is too high at 135 (should be under 100).
  • Abdominal Obesity (Women > 35″  Men > 40″ Waist Circumference) – mine is 43.5″ (Okay, I can’t believe I’m publishing this stuff, but this is so I am even more publicly motivated to take care of this problem.)
  • Blood Pressure (>=130/>=85) – Mine was 140 / 100 on Thursday. However, on Friday, it was 120/70, so it fluctuates – I’m not terribly worried about this factor.

The nurse gave me a “Metabolic Syndrome Treatment Plan” which lists two other risk factors that don’t apply to me: high blood sugar level and high triglycerides. Thank God. The treatment for the “syndrome” is basically to follow the Lindora program.

Lindora’s 3 Prep Days: An Exercise in Moderation
After my pre-Lindora-Clinic, unofficial start the first week of August (where I stayed on track every day), I had three official Prep Days (Tuesday through Thursday) where it was okay to splurge. This was an exercise in moderation. For snacks during the day, I had dry roasted peanuts. For dinner, I enjoyed a big slice of Costco pepperoni pizza the first night, a Tommy’s burger and chili cheese fries the next, and on my final night, a taco plate (2 shredded beef tacos, rice and beans with chips and salsa). I reported this to my Lindora consultant and she nodded and smiled.

I didn’t splurge on sweets at all during those three days—no cakes, cookies, ice cream or candy. And when I weighed in Friday morning, I hadn’t gained anything!

My overarching goal with my weight loss is to learn moderation—to be able to go off track and get right back on it the next day. To know I can enjoy a break from the program and not go crazy off kilter was very encouraging. I plan to be on this train for a very long time. If I’m going to splurge, it seems perhaps I can overdo it on protein without taking too many steps backward.

Lindora’s 3 Protein Days
These days aren’t easy. Hunger is a pretty constant companion—you must eat a protein serving every 1-1/2 to 2 hours. Because I had to eat so often, I was thinking about food all the time. I got a headache my first day and felt pretty groovy my second day. Felt pretty tired and headachey on my third day, and looking forward to eating fruits and veggies tomorrow.

If it weren’t for Lindora’s protein products, I couldn’t stand it. I’m not a huge fan of chicken or beef—I like it much better when it’s mixed with a salad or a sauce or something (or between two pieces of bread)—not straight up plain.

Friday was my first on-program visit to the Lindora clinic. I waited about ten minutes before my name was called and I was ushered into a room. I stood on the scale. The consultant advised me to complete my daily action plan, to eat between 50 and 80 carbs a day, to drink 80 ounces of water throughout the day (but to limit my diet soda to two 12-ounce serving per day), to take my vitamins and sugar-free fiber supplement. I was given a B-12 shot in the arm to increase my metabolism, give me a boost of energy, and improve my mood.

I asked the consultant, “When I’m on the weight loss menu plan, about how many grams of fat am I taking in?”

She said, “Under 20. Basically, you need to stay under 20 grams of fat per day to lose weight.”

I also asked, “Back in 2002, when I did this program, I was told to only count 13 of the carbs in the protein bars. The package says 21 carbs. Is that still correct?”

She said, “Yes. Read the label, take the total carbs and subtract the grams of fiber. That will give you your total useable carbs that need to be counted.”

Here’s my food for the 3 Protein Days:

Friday, August 5, 2011
Pedometer steps: 11,417
Exercise: Nothing formal. Walked around an antique auction preview during my lunch break. Walked to and from my car at work (up a very steep hill and back down again). Went to the movies with my husband, and walked 2 laps around the enormous Edwards Theatre and then up and down the stadium-seating style steps twice.

  • 7:30am 1 c skim milk (12), 1 tsp. Sugar-free Metamucil fiber (2), 2 chewable vitamins (3)
  • 9:30am Lindora Oatmeal Raisin protein bar (13), coffee (black)
  • 11am 1 oz. String Cheese (1)
  • 1:15pm Lindora BBQ Soy Puffs (8), 12 oz. Diet Coke (0)
  • 2:45pm 1/2 c Dannon fat free vanilla yogurt (10)
  • 5:15pm Lindora Chocolate Chocolate protein bar (13)
  • 7:45pm 2.5 oz El Pollo Loco Chicken breast (0), 32 oz. Diet Coke
  • 10pm Lindora Strawberry Kiwi protein drink (0.5) – Nasty. I didn’t like it at all.
  • Total Carbs: 62.5

Saturday, August 6, 2011
Pedometer steps: 10,363
Exercise: Nothing formal, again. Cleaned house all morning. Mowed the lawn in the evening.

  • 7:30am 1 c skim milk (12), 1 tsp. Sugar-free Metamucil fiber (2), 2 chewable vitamins (3), coffee (0), Coffee-mate sugar free creamer (2)
  • 10:30am 1 oz. String Cheese (1)
  • 12:15pm  2.5 oz. chicken (0), fried in 1 t. olive oil (0), 12 oz. Diet Squirt (0)
  • 2:30pm Lindora Chocolate Chocolate protein bar (13)
  • 5:45pm  4 Lindora Vanilla Orange Dream Cookies (6) – NEW! See Desserts for recipe.
  • 8:15pm Lindora Oatmeal Raisin protein bar (13)
  • 10pm Lindora Creamy Hot Cocoa (6)
  • Total Carbs: 58

Sunday, August 7, 2011
Pedometer steps: 11,438
Exercise: This evening, I took a 1 hour, 15 minute walk in my neighborhood. It felt fantastic! I found a huge stretch of nice, level sidewalk with no driveway dips. Listening to workout music on my iPod, I got into a great rhythm. There were lots of people out with their dogs or their babies in strollers or by themselves taking a walk/jog.

  • 9:30am Lindora Oatmeal Raisin protein bar (13), Sugar-free Metamucil fiber (2), 2 chewable vitamins (3), coffee (0), Coffee-mate sugar free creamer (2)
  • 11:30am 1 c skim milk (12)
  • 1:45pm 1/2 c Dannon fat-free yogurt (10)
  • 3:30pm 2.5 oz Lemon Garlic Shrimp (1) – superb! See Main Dishes for recipe. It included 1 tsp olive oil and a lemon wedge (1); 12 oz. Diet Squirt
  • 5:30pm Lindora Chocolate Chocolate protein bar (13)
  • 8:30pm 4 Lindora Vanilla Orange Dream Cookies (6)
  • Total Carbs: 63

Variety & a Recipe: Vanilla Almond Dream Cookies

My strategy for keeping on the Lindora weight loss menu plan is variety. I need to change things up and not get too locked into the same foods, day in and day out.

One of the unexpected perks with the menu is… I really, really like this food! Left to my own devices, I’ll choose a bag of chips over a salad with cucumber and celery. I’ll choose a Twix candy bar over an orange. But when my choices are limited to certain foods, veggies and fruits become more delicious.

It’s like discovering an old friend. Hey, I know you, cucumber. Long time no see, nectarine! You’re new—your name is jicama? How do you say that again? Hickama? Well aren’t you tasty? And crunchy, too!

In my quest for variety, I discovered this nifty little recipe in my old Lindora Recipe Collection Book (published in 1998). Check it out:

Vanilla Almond Dream Cookies

Vanilla Almond Dream Cookies

Vanilla Almond Dream Cookies
Source: Lindora Recipe Collection Book
2 servings
Total carbs:
6.25

  • 1 pkt Lean for Life Creamy Vanilla Shake mix (11)
  • 3 egg whites (1.5)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract (I used 1/2 tsp orange extract instead)
  • Sprinkle cinnamon and nutmeg on top after baking (my addition to the recipe) : )
  • Non-stick cooking spray

Beat egg whites with electric mixer until very stiff, like meringue (this will take a few minutes). Using a rubber spatula, gently fold in the extracts and the vanilla drink powder mix. Do not over mix! Drop by teaspoonfuls on a baking sheet coated with non-stick cooking spray to make 8 cookies. Bake at 350 degrees for 5 minutes. If desired, tops may be browned under broiler for 15 seconds. Store remainder in refrigerator.

Notes
The last step—browning the tops under the broiler—I’m going to leave them in 30 seconds next time. They barely got brown on top.

I wish the recipe told us how these are supposed to turn out so I could know if I did it right. I was expecting the cookies to turn out crunchy. They were soft, and had the consistency of quiche. I sprinkled cinnamon and nutmeg on top and they were excellent. The only bad thing: it felt as if I hadn’t eaten anything. They were so light, fluffy and insubstantial, I was hungry almost immediately. But if I’m craving a certain taste, I’ll definitely make these again.

The Lindora Recipe Collection Book calls this 4 servings, which doesn’t make sense. You’d only be eating 1/4 of the vanilla drink and less than 1/2 of the egg white portion (2 egg whites is considered 1 protein serving). So I ate 4 of the 8 “cookies.”

Getting Started on Lindora’s Four-Week Program

My husband helped get me started back on Lindora—a medical weight control clinic—by purchasing a 4-week program for $179 from Groupon.com. It includes:

  • Lab work ($151 value)
  • Physical exam ($75 value)
  • Lean for Life Workbook ($19 value)
  • Check in 2 times a week with a nurse ($260 value)

Yesterday, I called my local Lindora clinic to let them know I’d received the four-week program as a gift. Georgene, who has consistently followed up with me via phone since my false start in 2009, enthusiastically welcomed me and asked when I wanted to get started.

“Immediately,” I said.

She asked me to come first thing in the morning to get my blood drawn. She reminded me to fast for ten hours prior to that but to drink lots of water. “We want your veins nice and plump.”

I left the house early this morning to make it to my appointment at the clinic, which is  close to my workplace. A nurse practitioner welcomed me and asked me to complete two pages of forms—similar to forms you would fill out at your doctor’s office.

Next, I was taken to Georgene’s office where she went over what was included in my 4-week membership. She asked me to follow her to a Body Composition Analysis machine. I stood on a platform and with both hands, grasped metallic handles while the machine did its work. Moments later, she printed out the report and talked it over with me. Here’s what it said:

  • Weight: 224.7
  • Total Body Fat: 45.6% (normal range is 19-26%), or 102.5 lbs.
  • Fat Free Mass: 54.4%, or 122.2 lbs
  • Total Body Water: 42% (normal range is 50% and greater)

None of it is a surprise. Not really. But to see that almost 103 lbs of my body is straight fat? It’s hard to grasp. It’s also quite motivating.

We made appointments for my physical exam (over a week away—after the lab reports come in), my protein day informational session, and my carbohydrate informational session. She scheduled my three prep days, where I am to basically eat foods that include moderate protein, high fat and low carbohydrates.

She then scheduled my three protein days. These are days I dread as I’ll basically be going cold turkey from all sugar and bread—two of my most favorite things in the world. I am only supposed to eat approved meat or dairy products, or Lindora’s delicious protein supplements (a great perk to the program!). I was excited when she told me I could eat low fat string cheese as a protein. It would only count as 1 carb.

I didn’t tell her that I already started the weight loss menu yesterday. I don’t want to wait another week. I know what to do as I’ve done this before. I think it will make those three protein days a bit easier this time. It won’t be such a shock to my system.

She asked if I wanted to purchase any protein supplements. Yes. She handed me a list of product—almost 100 options. Over $50 later, I took home:

  • Lindora Hot Cocoa (perfect low carb snack before bedtime)
  • Double Chocolate Protein Bars (deadly good!)
  • Oatmeal Cinnamon Raisin Bar (perfect with a black cup of coffee)
  • Strawberry Kiwi Protein Drink (Georgene recommended having this on hand for high carb days)

The nurse practitioner was now ready to take my blood. She was chatty which helped to distract me from the needle. Her comments stuck with me.

“The Lindora program is great. As a nurse, it’s so gratifying to see people’s blood work go from bad to good. After just twelve weeks, it comes back clean and healthy. Some people even get to go off their high blood pressure meds. It’s so exciting.”

I’m already feeling lighter—buoyant even—just knowing that I’m taking steps toward better health in all areas: spiritually, emotionally, physically, mentally.

How about you? Have you ever started a program with Lindora? What was your first experience like at the clinic?