Duane and i completed 24 days of hCG and each lost about 15 pounds. We are more than a week into the 3 week "maintenance" part of this diet. Duane is greatly looking forward to eating chips and pizza and bread again. Since he loses so easily, i've encouraged him to eat now, if he wants. But he is stubborn and when he sets his mind to something, he sticks to it.
We both have maintained our loss so far. I do see the scale vary a couple of pounds, and i think my most common weight now is about half a pound higher than my lowest weight. But i'm quite happy. I could start another round the very end of July, and part of me wants to. BUT this is summer with lots of good things available (peaches and raspberries!) and so i think i'll wait until mid-August before beginning again.
I don't think i'll do more than 21 days on the hCG drops, unless this next cycle is different than this one. I did find myself hungry most of the time. I think it is because i eat mostly vegetarian. On the days i had fish i think i was a bit less hungry. When we reached day 21, i honestly could not imagine going another 19 days. (The longest recommended is 40 days, and then you skip the drops every 7th day so your body doesn't become immune to the hCG.) But if i find that i'm not hungry next cycle, maybe i will go longer.
I STILL am having sugar cravings. I don't give into them and eat what i am not suppose to (like a candy bar), but i still am craving apple pie, and cherry pie, and brownies, and Almond Joy, and the list goes on and on. I can't help but wonder if i would lose that craving if i allowed myself no sweetener at all. I've been using stevia in my tea and making lemonade with it, and using it in yogurt and other things. Stevia is a natural, no-calorie sweetener. I don't have issues with it the way i do with Splenda or aspartame. It is very sweet, and i wonder if just the taste of it is enough to kick in my cravings. I hate the thought of giving up everything that is sweet! I did try making a homemade ice cream sweetened with stevia and xylitol. I was disappointed in the results.
However, all that said, i am doing well. We have not eaten out at all since we began this 4+ weeks ago. This from people who were eating out at least 3 times a week. I do have a kind of meal plan down better than i did before, but a very simple one that fits us. In that respect, i've not really missed the "before" meals, which kind of surprises me. Also, i noticed today that i can't remember when i last had a headache. I think i was getting minor levels of poisoning when we were eating out. I had been getting a number of small migraines. I was in some pain the first week or so on the diet - and missing my cherry juice. Tart cherries have been shown to be as effective as ibuprofen for inflammation and pain. I tend to drink about 8 oz of tart cherry juice a day to deal with chronic pain. But this is a no sugar diet for its entirety (even during maintenance) and so i've not had any fruit drink.
I'm very pleased with the results. I'm anxious to begin again, but as i said, probably not until the middle of August. If i do 2 more cycles and i continue to lose at the rate i did this time, i should reach my goal and be thru with the 3 week "maintenance" a week or so after Halloween. In time for Thanksgiving! :) Not that that matters much. I don't usually eat much at Thanksgiving and i don't over-indulge.
Now, passing up candy at Christmas - that will be another matter! :)
So, what is your downfall? Mine is sugar/chocolate/sweets, but i know lots of folks who like chips or soda or whatever. What do you have trouble letting go of?