Panagos World

A New Beginning

by Jul 20, 20180 comments

Reading Time: 6 minutes

After many years of letting ourselves go and using every excuse possible to eat, we had to make some changes before it became too late.  Andrew’s health is already affected by his weight gain, and it wouldn’t be long until my unhealthy choices would catch up with me.  My perception of myself was that I wasn’t that bad.  I’m rarely sick, and I’m on no medication, I’m healthy, right?  But that’s not true.   I know if I don’t take the necessary actions NOW, I would be following in my parent’s footsteps who both struggled with their weight.  So as of June 27, 2018,  we have started on our journey to having optimal health.

Like everyone else, we have tried several diets over the years.  We started exercising at one point and even saw some pounds drop off.  All these diets and exercising didn’t work out for us because we eventually gave up on that diet/exercise and the weight returned and even increased. To be honest, we were not serious about our health, and we had no motivation to make the necessary changes or put in the hard work.

So knowing that we tried diets in the past and have failed miserably at them, what is going to be different this time around?


In the past, our focus was to lose weight!  Now don’t get me wrong, that is a great goal, but what would happen once we lost the weight?  Would we be like most people who go on a diet with no behavioral change and gain their weight back within two years?  We don’t want that to happen!

We had to start asking questions like ” What would our life be like if we lost a certain amount of weight?” and   “What would we be able to do that we couldn’t do now?” Instead of just focusing on losing weight, we are focusing on what our life could be like after we lost this weight. This is causing us to dream about our future instead of being depressed because of the state we are in.

Our Focus is being a healthier US!


What will help us keep our focus on creating a healthier US?

Create a list of the “WHYS.”

Creating a list of the “WHYS” is helping us keep our focus.  When those hard days come, and the will, we can look at our list and remember why we are doing this.  Here are some of our WHYS!

  • We want to live a long life and enjoy our family.
  • We want to be able to go outdoors and enjoy activities with our family.
  • We want to be able to ride our bikes.
  • We want to be off high blood pressure and diabetes medications.
  • We want to enjoy our future grandkids and be able to run around with them and have fun.
  • We want to help others reach their goals of having a healthier lifestyle.

This is only a few of our WHYS.  Our list of reasons WHY to get healthier is growing each day!

The Journey Begins

The night before. (just being honest)

We have a food addiction! We love to cook, and we love to eat the food we cook! We knew that going into this program there would be some significant changes in the way we eat.  So our plan was to eat some of our favorite dishes the night before we started since we were not sure if we would ever have them again.  Letting go the night before was hard.

Week #1

We did well on our new health journey plan during week one.   We’re getting used to eating smaller portions and drinking more water.  The first lean and green meal we made was Mahi Mahi with grilled peppers and zucchini and it was a success.  The grilled peppers that we had tasted AMAZING!

The struggle was there throughout the whole week.  Thinking about all the foods we use to eat were continually coming to our mind.  Going grocery shopping for the first time while on our new journey and passing by foods that would typically end up in our cart was tough.  Dealing with hunger pains throughout the week was there.  Learning to drink more water each day was a struggle.

When we made it through week one, we had a little happy dance and gave each other a high five!  We made it!

Andrew lost 15.4 lbs, and I lost 5.6 lbs at the end of week one.  Wow!!

Week  #2

The beginning of week two was also tough!  It was the 4th of July, and we usually have a large BBQ spread of food.  It was so hard to figure out what we would eat that day.  We wanted to have some of our BBQ dishes, but we knew we had to stay focused. Trust me, the conversations went back on forth that we could have just a little, it won’t hurt.  We decided to stay on course and make some chicken fajitas lettuce wraps for dinner.   We’re thankful that it rained most of the day as we didn’t feel like we were missing out on grilling!

The next day, I was invited to play Bunco!  When there’s a group of ladies playing Bunco, there will always be food.  Eating my lean and green meal before going to Bunco did help me not to have the urge to eat while I was there.

Then the very next day, we had an Astros game with our church family!  THAT WAS TOUGH!!!  The smell of hot dogs, nachos, chicken tenders, you name it, was driving us crazy.  Everyone was eating around us, and we had to say NO!   We were glad that we decided to eat our lean and green meal before going to the game.  That helped a lot, plus we also snuck in a few of our healthy snacks to tide us through the game.  We were extremely proud of ourselves for resisting all those temptations.  It wasn’t easy, but it was so worth it!!!!

With week two, we noticed even more weight loss.  Drinking the recommended eight 8oz glasses of water is getting easier. By the end of week two, we are seeing that we are getting full and sometimes finding it hard to finish our meal.  We enjoy cooking our lean and green meals each night, and our kids are starting to take care of their health and making better decisions.  We are excited to see that our whole family is on the journey of changing their lifestyle.

At the end of our week 2, Andrew lost another 5.4 lbs which brought his total weight loss to 23.2 lbs, and I lost 2.8 lbs bringing my total weight loss to 8.4 lbs.  We were both excited to see the weight come off.  We took some more photos, and we were surprised that you could see the difference in just two weeks.   Seeing these pictures help to reinforce that we are on the right path to getting healthy.


Week #3

Planning our Lean and Green meals has been highly successful.  We are creating a new meal plan every week and finding out that we can enjoy so many dishes.  We have tried something new every night, and every one of them has been a winner!  Ok, maybe one of them wasn’t that great, but thankfully, we had a backup meal to the rescue.  In the past, if our meals didn’t work out, we would have gotten take out.  Not anymore!

When we went grocery shopping for this week, it was there in the produce section that we realized that we have never gone past two weeks EVER on a diet!  I love that this is not a diet, but a lifestyle change!  We are so pumped to continue on this journey!

Other changes that we are noticing is that we can drink half our body weight in water now and that our energy levels are increasing.  We are starting to get a good night’s sleep each night, and I’m not feeling drained in the late afternoon anymore.  I would typically crash out on the couch around 4 or 5 pm and take a short nap. Also, I haven’t had to take any TUMS at night for indigestion that I regularly had each evening before starting this journey.

At the end of week three, Andrew had lost another  5.4 lbs which brings his total weight loss to 26.2 lbs, and I lost 3.8 lbs bringing my total to 12.2 lbs!

 Thanks for following our journey.  Sharing our story to the world is not easy and posting our pictures is WAY out of our comfort zone. We realize the struggle is real for many and we wanted to document what we are doing for two reasons.

One, to help hold us accountable!   We are at the beginning of our journey and we know that we have a long road ahead of us.

Two, we want to encourage others to help take their health back!  It’s never too late! The hardest part about starting this journey is just saying YES to a healthier YOU!!

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