First off- I’m sorry, but the technology powers that be keep periodically ruining our lives and in this case, the entire visual recording of our interview just decided to freeze a couple minutes in to the interview….so, please just enjoy the audio.
Hello lovely hCGers. This interview is part of what is now a plethora of weight loss success stories with real everyday women (and men! There’s a few dude interviews in there) who have used either hCG injections or drops with the hCG diet protocol to lose between 20 and 150 lbs. You can see the current episodes available here.
TAMARA’S BASIC STATS:
- 51 years old
- 5’4” tall
- Current weight: 120 lbs
- Starting weight: 170 lbs
- Weight loss with hCG: 50 lbs
- Size change: Size 12 to Size 2
- Lbs lost: 50 lbs
- Prior health conditions: Menopause and hormonal imbalance. She is very low in the following: Thyroid, Progesterone, Testosterone.
Show Note Links:
- hCGChica’s Dosing Article – I talked about the “hunger hormone” Ghrelin in this blog post here.
- Phosphatidylserine – this helps Tamara sleep like a baby. This significantly lowers cortisol levels, reducing stress levels and in result makes you feel more relaxed. This also supports memory function & cognition. You can read more about it here.
- Some stuff that Tamara uses on P2 – these are off-protocol foods that doesn’t cause her weight loss to stall.
- DEXA or DXA scan for body composition – scans your body, fully clothed (different than for bone density DEXA- you MUST specify- requires different calibration of machine to be accurate.
- Hydrostatic Bodyfat Test – done in water
- Bodpod – uses air displacement
You can google “your area” + “dexa scan” or “hydrostatic body fat test” or “bodpod” to find a location in your area that does these sorts of tests.
Cost is typically between $40-70. Bodpod is the cheapest, Hydrostatic is mid-range (I can mine as a pack of 3 tests to be used whenever I want for $100 which is $33 each instead of $45 to buy 1), and DEXA is the pricier but much more specific kind.
A Note About “Bodyfat Percent” on Home Scales
I would not trust these. They are frequently inaccurate. I’d like to give you a real example of this below, at the end of Debbie’s story.
Tamara’s hCG Injection Weight Loss Story in Her Words:
Basics: (age, height, menopause? any medical details you feel are important- ie thyroid etc).
- Age: 51
- Height: 5’4
- Post Menopause (4 years now)
- Had to get my Hormones in check – was very low in the following: Thyroid, Progesterone, Testosterone. Use a very low dosage of Hormone Replacement from my Doctor to supplement these and bring me to a normal range for my age.
How much weight you’ve lost with hCG/starting weight/ending weight/ clothing size change. How many rounds did you do, how long was each round? stuff like that.
Started Feb 2016 – weighed in at 170 and ending at 120 – Lost 50 lbs went from 33% body fat to 19%
Starting size: 12 – ending size 2 – I did 2 rounds of HCG. 1st one was 40 days – took 21day reset and second round was 24 days.
How long have you currently been maintaining (or where are you currently at in your hCG journey)?
Goal weight was reached – May 2016 and have been maintaining it for a year now.
Tell us how you came to be overweight and your struggles with that?
I have been thin and active all my life but as I got older found it was harder to maintain my weight. I have always worked out and ate healthy but noticed a change in my weight drastically 5 years ago. This was due to a hormonal imbalance – which lead me to feel tired, overeat, indulge more in things that I had usually use to pay attention too. Carbs, wine, etc.
What type of hCG did you use? If injections or prescription drops, what dose worked best for you?
I used injections at 125iu.
Did you ever use b12 or lipo shots and if you did what was your opinion of them?
YES and totally recommend them. They helped me feel alert. My hCG was mixed with the vitamin B. But also took the b12 and lipo shots randomly while on hCG for that extra boost. I also used lipo shots during my Phase 3 helped me out a lot. Keeping me in line with my goal and keeping me alert. I still use b12 to this day and lipo shots during the Holidays (i.e. Thanksgiving and Christmas, New Years).
Rayzel’s note: You can purchase b12 shots WITH your hcg kit from the vendors on my recommendations page here:
What would you say your experience was the first week on phase 2? Easy or hard? Explain.
Easy because I really wanted to make a change and was prepared to do whatever I had to do to get to my goal. I was also very excited so see how hCG worked. I made sure I was at the right dosage which helped and is very important to make the journey seamless.
Could also discuss how you loaded if you like.
I loaded clean and kept out bad carbs and sugars. I did eat more fats ( i.e. Butter, cheeses, oils, bacon, etc.). Which helps because I am a slave to bad carbs and sugary treats.
What parts of the protocol were easier for you and which parts were more challenging? How did you handle the challenging aspects?
I would say the 2 rounds were easy for me because I prepared myself with a variety of options to keep it interesting – seasoned everything to make it edible and stayed away from restaurants and social gatherings to keep temptation at bay. Followed your website HCGchica through the whole thing for guidance and ideas to help manage cravings.
What did you find yourself liking to eat during Phase 2/vlcd – how would you prepare your meals?
- I start work early so by 10am I wanted something –
- I would cut up a Grannie Smith apple and sprinkle cinnamon and stevia on it and warm it up in the microwave.
- Cup of black coffee ( usually drink it that way anyway)
- An orange sparkling flavored water. i.e. Sparkling ICE brand and a scoop of l-glutamine 4.5g to keep my sweet tooth at bay.
- Lunch :
- 3.5 ounces of any kind of low fat meat, Fish or Poultry which I prepared in a crock pot with spices (Mrs. Dash of all flavors)
- Vegetable medley: Cucumber, bell pepper, red onion with balsamic.
- 3.5 ounces of a protein like Lunch but make sure it wasn’t the same to give me a variety and keep myself motivated and not bored eating the same stuff.
- Grilled veggies i.e., broccoli, Brussel sprouts or asparagus, seasoned with Mrs. Dash (any of the flavors) and sprayed with just a couple of sprays of “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter!” so make it stick and grill well.
- In the evening I would have 10 unsalted mini gluten free pretzels, dip it in mustard and a diet coke.
- Extra treat would be sugar free Jell-O. (Kept a variety of that too)
- Sometimes I would skip the apple and pretzels and have a Fage 0 Greek yogurt with cinnamon and stevia or make a morning mocha using “Muscle Milk Light.” Also, plenty of H2o!! and sparkled flavored.
What tricks do you have up your sleeve to stay sane while on Phase 2?
Variety, variety, variety as mentioned previously in my daily menu. Not eating the same thing every day.
One day I wanted lobster so I made that with a little steak which they both weighed up to my 3.5 serving total, grilled veggies, Bai sparkling water in a champagne glass.
Desert: I had 1 single serving of “Artic Zero” salted caramel which is only 35 calories. – This gave me that feeling of going out to a fancy dinner. Yep, nice plate, music and even dressed up. I was in my home but hey, I wanted to make it fancy!! lol
What Lessons have you learned during Phase 3 – give us the good and the bad! What types of things did you discover when it came to maintenance that did and didn’t work?
A very important lesson I learned in Phase 3 is that I am a structured type and to keep everything all ready to go, weighed, prepackaged so I can grab and go in auto mode without having to put too much thought into it.
I also know that I can never go back to Bad Carbs and Sugary Foods, they are my crack and I know I cannot have just a little. It’s easy to turn it down than to stop eating it.
I tried a treat during phase 3 and ended up eating the whole bag of yogurt covered pretzels. Was it worth it? At the time it was, but 10 minutes later is wasn’t. I of course forgave myself, had a steak day the next day and told myself there are so many other things I can have that agree with me and since I am doing this for the long haul, it’s not worth it. I don’t like when people try to control me so imagine a bag of cookies doing that. Why give them (junk food) the power!!? lol
In Phase 4: Can you tell us what types of foods you eat now in everyday life? And how is this different from what you used to eat on a normal basis?
I can eat up to 1800 calories and more if I strenuously work out (go hiking), so Breakfast, Lunch Dinner and 3 snacks in between.
I do choose wisely and make healthy choices. I have added fats in my diet – nuts, protein, etc. this keeps me satisfied and not hungry at all. I stick to the structure of the Phase 3. Just more proteins, veggies, low glycemic fruit, gluten free products, and my favorite Arctic Zero, which I treat myself to every night. I also add a glass of wine or two but keep it to a 2 day thing. I get to choose. Fri/Sat or Sat/Sun but try to keep it at that since it can lead to bad habit eating.
My eating habits now are healthier choices.
My mantra is “forever young!” (youth; mind, body and soul with the benefit of appearance! Lol) Also, bad foods are always going to be around so if I have to have something I can but weigh out the consequences. I’m the one choosing, no one else. If I decide to, I have no one to blame except myself. Power of control is awesome.
What have been your tools for maintaining your weight loss?
- Underwater weighing 2 times a year to keep motivated and in track.
- New goals to look forward to and keep my life exciting. (trips, outings, etc.)
- Weight training twice a week; Yoga twice a week (Vinyasa Flow and Hatha)
- Walking my 4 doggies; hiking with friends.
- Sleeping in on the weekends!!!!
- Creating my personal Feng Shui with positive surroundings.
- Helping out others that want to lose weight and keep a positive healthy lifestyle.
- I love clothes too so that helps as well.
Do you have any memories of your life/body pre hCG that are totally different for you now?
I wished I would have known about hCG 5 years ago!! Lol!! But honestly everything in life comes in time for its own reasons. I believe all experiences good and bad in our life build a stronger person. Lessons are learned from our “stepping stones” of challenges. I am glad everything happen in my life when it did, it only makes my story more interesting and helps me guide my friends and family in a more healthier direction. No regrets just all respects!!! Lol!
When you want a treat now, give us a couple examples of what you might eat? Also, are you ever able to indulge in a regular treat, like cake at a party, and still maintain?
A treat now would be my Arctic Ice,, Sugar Free Pudding cup, sugar free Jell-o, baked veggies from sprouts dipped in hummus.
As far as a regular treat, if I am at a party there are usually other friends that are watching their weight too, so we all share a dessert. We call it sweet bonding!! lol
What factors have you noticed to play a role in people NOT succeeding on hCG?
- Planning to do hCG at a busy time when they have a lot of events to go to which if not prepared with lead them to fall back into bad habits and cravings
- Not being able to forgive oneself if they slip up
- Negative thinking and letting others feed you with negative thoughts
- Not enough sleep.
What do you feel are the most important keys to success on the hCG protocol? If someone said they want to have the same results you have, what would you tell them?
It’s totally worth it!!! You have to go into it prepared and in control.
Enough Sleep. Change your bad habits and craving to new ones because there are so many yummy things out there and things to do that are worth looking into, change is awesome!!
It’s nice to have a support group as well. Keep in mind you are investing in the best thing ever, your health which is the most precious thing ever. Forgive if you slip up, we are all human and have slipped as well.
The most important thing is to believe in yourself.
This is Tamara’s most recent body fat testing result:
Needing Support? Motivation?
I can help you stay on track.
- pep talks by yours truly
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