Sunday, July 29, 2012

You're not doing this alone!

When I first decided to go on this weight loss journey through Optifast, I hardly told anyone.  It was such a private decision and I didn't want to hear a comment like, "It's about time!"  I wasn't doing it for anybody else, just for me.  However, it wasn't long before I realized that I could not walk in this foreign land alone.  I had to have some support, even if it was just a friend giving me a hug to encourage me.  To keep the fact that not only was I venturing to lose weight, but that I would be going on a full-fast with absolutely no food for months on end felt like a huge secret and I didn't want to have any shame around it.  Besides, people would start noticing soon enough, I hoped, with all the weight loss.  Man, has that been the understatement of the year!  Not only do people notice, but they completely gasp when they see me now if they haven't seen me in a while or at all since I started.

In addition to friends and family, I have found that seeking out support from other people going through the same experience as I am has been vital.  I have a weekly Optifast group that I go to at the Kaiser clinic, which is great for in-person connections.  We have shared some very personal things with one another and have rooted on each other as the weeks have progressed.  I have also gone online and not only discovered that other people exist out there that have gone through the same thing, but have developed some great new friendships along the way.  For example, I met fellow blogger, Sara, from This Big Heart this morning for a lovely walk.  I got to meet her adorable little boy, husband and two doggies at the same time.  That would have never happened if we both were not blogging.  If you're looking for some online resources of Optifast support, here are a few great places to consider:

  • Set up your own blog!  Trust me, people will find you and you will find other people.  I do mine through Google's Blogger, but I know people are also doing it through WordPress and other resources.  They are free and a great way to journal as you travel along in your journey.
  • Facebook - some really great public and private pages are available, depending on your flavor (I'm not sure how to get to the pages directly, but I will note below in red text the name of the page that you can type in the Facebook search bar):
    • Optifast (look for the one that says Company) - People post here from all over the world to talk about their progress, ask questions or just share experiences.  This is a public page, so anyone can see it.
    • Optifast Chat Support - This is a closed group for people currently on Optifast looking for a place to find others going through their same experiences.  There is some fabulous sharing in this group that I would HIGHLY recommend.  You do need to request to join this group since it's private, but it's well worth it.
    • Optifast Support Group - This is also a closed group, similar to the one above.  It's an up and coming group with less seasoned members, but it also is another good resource.
  • Liquid Diet Discussion Board - people from different liquid programs are on here.  They don't post as much as the Facebook pages, but there are some great tools on the page, including before and after pictures, weight loss and vital statistic trackers and more.  They also have projections on how long it will take to complete this phase of the program if you input your information, although there is a little fee that goes with it.  Check out a couple of my charts below:


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