Wednesday, July 08, 2009

weight loss!

I know my last post was a bit of a downer, so I wanted to add a small, new post here about something positive. I have been trying really hard to lose weight for the past couple of months, and I managed to lose 16 pounds so far. I have a LOT more to go; as I am overweight officially by about 50 pounds (according to those diet program charts), and my ideal weight would require me to lose more like 80 pounds. I know that sounds ridiculously high, but I am determined to do it. I know that it will take a long time, and that is frustrating. Nevertheless, I am not going to give up any time soon.

Unfortunately, the only way I have been able to do this was to use a diet pill to combat the constant hunger that comes from my antipsychotic medications. I went to an endocrinologist and he prescribed Phentermine. I'm not stupid, so I realize that I can't take a diet pill forever, and also that when I go off the diet pill I am likely still going to have to take the antipsychotics for the rest of my life. What to do about that? I'm not sure yet. I'm hoping new drugs for Schizophrenia will be developed soon, and I know that there is one in the works. I can only hope that one of these new meds will work for me and not cause weight gain like the others have. I have to hang onto that hope, otherwise I'll be morbidly depressed and lose heart. So, for now, I am really working at this.

I do not just rely on these pills to work. Mostly, what is working for me is my own self-discipline. I'm eating about 1200-1400 calories a day, trying to stick to the 1200 as much as possible. I am walking 4-5 days a week, 30-45 minutes and when it rains, I go to the mall and walk there until I've put my time in. I tried to get my mom onto this walking kick, so we went to the mall together to walk yesterday, but my mom loves to shop too much, so that did not work out so well! Also, I am not eating a lot of sweets or junk food. I'm a vegetarian and I don't eat a lot of fatty foods. I know that the low-carb diet is all the rage, but I'm not doing it that way right now. If I have to do that, then I will institute that diet into my regimen. So far, I am seeing some (albeit rather slow) results this way, and I hope to continue in this vein for as long as it takes.

Kate, if you read this, I wanted to mention you inspired me to work harder at weight loss, and I really appreciate that.


  1. Jen, I am, once again, so proud of you! 16 pounds is a great start. And 80 pounds IS doable, just know that it will take, say, a year and a half, preferably without the diet pills. I strongly advise that you keep a food log and try to eat small meals every 3-5 hours which really helps to make you feel as if you're not depriving yourself. And keep walking if you can. The main thing is that now you know that you CAN lose weight even while taking the anti-psychotic meds. It's just a matter of sticking to this life style change from now on and committing to it for the long haul. You might want to try finding a weight loss support group on or off line. I haven't been doing this and that's why I think I'm plateauing now. I have to get back to the Anne Collins site. Other people can be very motivating and it helps to cut through the sense of isolation. You are so cool and you can do this. In the long run you can see this as a good thing, because it's made you commit to a healthier lifestyle. It's the lifestyle that will keep you from regaining the weight you will lose. You go girl!

  2. Jen, my name is Ray and i post as ysraal and I am a person with schizoaffecyive disorder and I am on a strong cocktail of geodon, seroquel and topamax and i have also had suicidal ideations and commands and i applaud you for your coice to live. I had to make the same choice. Yes good treatment is the key along with first, acceptance.Exercise will help but also remember that our illness is baffling and patient and we must be patient with it. Do not worry about the taking a long time to lose the other pounds, losing one pound is a great accomplishment and milestone in thinking about the other. you are doing good and just keep it up. You can. I do and i am only human like you. Last year I met a doctor who shook my hand and told me good job for fighting the suicidal ideation. I say to you, good job.

  3. I am so happy that you have such a great attitude about trying to stay healthy and fit. My brother hates the weight gain as well and this is usually the reason he goes off his meds. I try to get him in to a work out routine and to eat right, but he always thinks of how it was much easier before he got sick. If you want any advice, I have a few tips. I actually cut most carbs out when I was in college and became too thin. You could still eat carbs but cut the processed kinds (breads, pasta, etc) after lunch. Your body burns most calories starting in the morning. Around dinnertime, your body is winding down and this can be the time when less calories are burned. Try to eat whole grains since they use less energy to break down. Other important foods to eat are apples (they burns calories), lots of greens, the greener the better. Peanuts may suppress hunger because protein makes you feel full. Of course, exercise is essential to keeping your metabolism up. Anyway, you are doing such a great job and I would love to hear about your progress.

  4. That is absolutely wonderful, Jen! 16 pounds is enough to really impact your health as well as your appearance. You can do the rest too. Phentermine helped me a lot. I lost 116 pounds adn have kept all of about 8 pounds of it off for nine years now. It takes absolute dedication, but it is possible. As you lose weight, exercise becomes easier adn much more fun. YOu will meet more people who want to do active things with you. I used the phentermine for three months adn then took a month off adn then another three on until I lost all the weight I needed. I foud if I did not, it seemed to lose effectiveness after about three months. Now I use ALLI which is an OTC drug. It helps me keep the fats down. I eat a lot oa meat, unlike you, and the fats are a real problem for me. But I wear a size 2 now adn I am not going to regain the weight--ever! Keep writing. We are all there with you.


  5. Awesome blog. So glad you've chosen to be open and continue on ... and great job on the weight loss. I take meds for anxiety/depression and they work great but make weight gain an issue. I've managed to lose apx. 6 lbs but going for another 11 more. I just tweeted your blog at - hope that's o.k. I'd love more people to have you as an example and resource. Best.

  6. Do you share your facebook with others? I have one and would love to add you. Just let me know.
    NAMI Mom in TN

  7. I forgot to tell you. I did the NAMI presentation on Tuesday and I was so nervous, I just rambled and did not feel good about my talk. Oh well, maybe they at least got that our NAMI has some good support around here. Thought you would want to know how it went.
    Janet (NAMI Mom in TN)

  8. Just wanted to say:

    Thank you all for your comments! Yes, I am on Facebook (as Jennifer Robinson in Clearwater, FL). Thanks Sue for posting this blog on Twitter. I actually haven't used Twitter yet. I am so behind-the-times with I appreciate it.


I welcome comments from all readers and encourage you to leave them! Please do. However, due to spam, I review each comment before it can be posted, so it may take 24-48 hours before your comment appears on the blog. Please be patient. I post comments that are not spam.Note: my definition of "spam" includes ALL links to sites claiming to cure or provide "the solution" for incurable diseases such as Schizoaffective Disorder and Schizophrenia. Vulnerable people come to my blog, and I will not let them be preyed upon, but people who post snake oil remedies on the internets. Take your garbage and peddle it elsewhere. Since Blogger doesn't weed all that garbage out, I've been doing it myself for years.