Renewal in 2022: Project 135 is back!

Picture of Dr. Jen Kerns

Dr. Jen Kerns

Happy New Year! It’s been a doozy of a year for me, and I find myself entering 2022 weighing 11 pounds more than I did exactly one year ago on 01/01/21. (And just to prove I’m human, that was 7 pounds more than my recent lowest weight in November 2020, so I am a full 18 pounds up since then.) I weighed in at 164.4 today, higher than I’ve seen in 3 years:I most recently posted on August 1 about the events in my life leading up to my seeking help from Cornell’s Alzheimer’s Prevention Clinic in NYC, but have fallen off the blogging wagon since then: it’s been 5 whole months since we talked! I thought I’d use those 5 months off to eat all the things and not worry about my weight. 😬 Well, I worried, but chose not to do anything about it. I continued exercising and continued my daily weigh-ins, but ate sugar and flour every day.

You know how I am always preaching that the one basic change that I believe will help nearly everyone who struggles with overweight or obesity is to stop eating sugar and flour? Well, my 6 month hiatus from this basic tenet proved my point: my weight crept up 10 pounds even as I rode my Peloton and drank my water and slept enough. (And the overall 18 pound gain since November 2020 is attributed to the same thing: me eating sugar and flour.) It’s like, I had a stressful summer at work which left me putting everything else in my life on the sidelines (this happens in life, and it was perfectly OK!)… but then when that difficult period was over, the momentum of the dopamine train just kept me riding. Instead of planning my healthful unprocessed meals in advance and consuming podcasts about Alzheimer’s prevention and weight management, I was binge watching The Bachelorette and The Great British Bake Off and eating toast with jam and cake. I kept telling myself I just needed a break. And it felt good in the moment to get those dopamine and endorphin hits from mindless videos and sweet treats. Well, my “break” apparently turned into a new lifestyle as days led into weeks, and that led to more back pain, more fatigue, more dissatisfaction with how my body feels and how my clothes look.

I knew that I’d soon return to my beloved sugar-free lifestyle come January 1, because that’s when I feel best. When the desire dies down (after a few days or weeks of suffering the withdrawal) and I no longer have the will-I-won’t-I drama in my head. When my lighter body makes running up a flight of steps feels easy. Right now it’s a plod. I am excited to feel good again in my body and mind. January 1 brings a fresh sense of renewal, but  “renewal” for me doesn’t bring anything new. It brings the old, the tried and true. When I stop consuming refined carbs like sugar and flour, I drop weight. The mind drama around it is the difficult part, not the principle itself. So, I hereby declare Project 135 resurrected! At a new starting weight of 164.4, that puts me 29.4 pounds away from my dream goal. Anyone care to join me? 🥰

With love and vibes of renewal, and a joyous 2022 to all,




2 Responses

  1. Jen, how can a follow your journey and try to “copy” or “follow” your plan? Is it just about not eating sugar and flour?

    1. Hi Brooke! Avoiding added sugars and refined grains is one of the basics, but there are a few other bits as well. I’ll make my next post about the other basics!

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