Keto for a month

I started a keto diet on Jun 1 and have lost 10 pounds so far, after 6 weeks. One motivation is to cut some weight before a backpacking trip I planned for late Aug. Every extra pound will count at that time. Another reason is my weight has reached a peak number in the past 10+ years, which is how I got vaccinated in an earlier batch… I Gotta do something about it.

I did an Atkins diet years ago and lost probably 15+ pounds in two or three months. Keto’s basic idea is not so different from Atkins except keto recommends taking in more fat. So I know this kind of low-carb diet will work for me. On the other hand, I know exercising without diet control doesn’t really work for me. I did quite a lot of exercises earlier this year, then stopped after the fever from the second vaccine shot, then my weight peaked.

After starting keto, I found it much easier than when I did Atkins in China. In this work-from-home era, it’s easy to cook my own meals. My cooking style has switched to a mostly American style over the years: bake bacon and salmon and all kinds of vegetables in the oven; pour some balsamic into a box of leaves and call it a salad; grill a ribeye steak or lamb chops. All of these are pretty convenient options. Unsweetened almond milk, pine nuts, and chia seeds are my go-to snacks.

I probably still order half of our meals from delivery. Options are much more limited, especially for Asian food (bye noodles, rice, and sandwiches…) but there are still some options. Restaurants that mainly serve salads and mark themselves as “healthy” usually have plenty of safe choices. Midterrianian and BBQ places are more keto-friendly. Chinese/Japanese/Korean restaurants have very limited low-carb options in general…

Social occasions can be challenging when doing a strict keto diet. Alcohol is a big no-no, so I’m often drinking some almond water or club soda when hanging out with friends. I also become the picky person when picking restaurants. Fortunately, there are fewer social occasions these days due to the pandemic. Last year was really a good opportunity for doing a diet.

I went into ketosis pretty easily this time. No “keto flu” or any other uncomfortable feelings in the first few days, unlike the last time. And the urine strip turned very purple when I tested at the end of the first week. The weight loss progress was as expected, rapid 4~5 pounds of water weight loss in the first week, then a gradual decline of ~1 pound per week. I weigh myself a lot more these days, usually before sleep and after wakeup. I’m surprised how much my weight changes after a night of sleep, often 2 or 3 pounds! I’d imagine myself emitting steams at night.

I do drink a lot more water these days. The theory is after losing those water weight, I don’t have as much “reservoir” as before. Having a big water bottle at hands definitely helps… I use a 2-liter jug and go through about 3 jugs of water every day.

I’ve been also doing regular workouts about 5 or 6 days a week, mostly with Apple Fitness+, alternating between HIIT and strength exercises. I make sure to get some workout at night if I don’t go out all day. It makes me feel more energetic.

I plan to continue on for 2 more months. See if I can hit my goal of losing 20 pounds, then probably continue with a limited-carb diet. From last time, I knew I’d quickly gain all the lost weight back if I just go back to my previous usual way of eating…

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