It’s been a month and I lost 7 pounds. Truly, that’s just freaky. I’ll tell you why in a minute.
I’m now at 204 and I’ve lost 79 pounds. I’m at 30.1% BMI, just .1 away from being in the “overweight” category. I’ve gone from morbidly obese to .1 away from moving out of the “obese” category. I’ve lost 27.9% of my overall body weight. I’ve gone from 41.8% BMI to the 30.1%. At this point, as far as I can see, my goal is 187. Then, I’m going to just sort of hang out and watch while I continue to eat well. I’m thinking of 175 as my ultimate goal, though I’m undecided.
This is the kind of stuff I’ve always wanted to ask people who are losing/have lost weigh. What are you doing? How does it work?
The reason I wanted to lighten up and tell myself that it’s ok if I only lose 3-4 pounds a month from now on, is that I want to start learning to maintain, even now, by slowly, slowly starting to loosen up a little bit. It’s working just fine and I feel so much more trusting of myself because of it.
I’m learning how to let myself go, just a little, then pull myself back. I believe I’ll be at my final goal weight by December, 1 year after I began. When I get there, I want it to be a simple matter of adding back in a few things in order to maintain. I don’t want to do it by trial and error. Too many people just go nuts when they get to goal. I know. I’ve been there-done that. I want to approach it carefully and thoughtfully, practicing as I go along these last several months.
It helped so very much to have only 1 official weigh-in day per month. Sure, I weigh myself more often, every day in fact, but by weighing in and officially reporting my weight just once a month, it takes all of the pressure off of me. I know that I have time to lose 3-4 pounds. In fact, twice this past month, I gained 2-3 pounds after vacations, but just 2 days later, it was gone. It helped my mind to know that I had the whole month to achieve that months goal…but I had to be truthful with myself about it. The whole MONTH mattered. It would be easy to say, hmm…I’ll just eat like a crazy person and then try to pull off a loss in the last week of the month. So I had to keep my intention in the forefront of my mind, every time my feet hit the floor in the morning.
In this past 4 weeks it’s been really hot around the country in the places I’ve been, and in the case of Michigan, hot and muggy. Hot makes my MS flare-up so this past month, I haven’t been able to exercise every single day like I like-it’s been along the lines of 4-5 days a week, sometimes 3. I’ve been walking only, though I’m really proud to say that for the past week I’ve been running: running/walking for 25 minutes at a time and it feels good!
I eat 1400 calories a day, sometimes I go over by 100 but rarely, sometimes I go under by 100 but rarely. I try to keep it at 1400. I focus on fruits, veggies and whole grains but I eat whole wheat bread-I don’t rule out breads. My diet is really along the lines of the McDougal diet which focuses on carbs and getting proteins from plant sources. My protein intake has been right on.
This month we’ve traveled a lot, had parties, dinners with friends, camping trip with friends and 2 three- day vacations in which I ate things I don’t normally eat: cupcake, pork, beef, eggs, cheeses and once, a homemade ice cream cone that was-I kid you not, about 10” tall! If I know we’ll be going out in the evening, I’ll eat very healthy in the morning, at lunch, have fruit for a snack, then will go to dinner with an INTENTION. I plan on eating healthy, but indulging too and my first thought is that I’ll probably eat only half and take the rest home. That works really well because it’s very hard to overeat now-it just hurts, plain and simple. I don’t like feeling stuffed or even overly full now. I eat until I’m satisfied and not at all hungry, and that’s it, I’m done.
Because we’ve had so many functions to attend, it’s difficult to keep the calories right on, so occasionally I did go over by 300 or so, but the next day I reined myself in and made sure to walk for 30 minutes or so and to have about 200 calories less during the day, focusing on fruits, veggies and whole grains, no breads.
My basic rule is that if I’m going to eat out one day, or have something that I know is not good for my body (like that ice cream cone), is that the next day I eat extremely cleanly-not to punish myself, and not to “un-do the damage” but to remind myself that THIS is my normal way of eating: a vegan diet, heavy on the veggies and fruits, whole foods only, no junk food/fast food or restaurant foods.
If I eat out, etc, 2 days in a row, such as for vacation, then I truly have to spend a day or two pulling myself back and balancing that eating ou,t by eating only excellent foods for 1 or 2 of the other meals of that particular day. I simply can’t see going on vacation and eating out 3 meals a day, plus snacks. That’s so horribly unhealthy, and after spending a few days creating a bad habit like that, it’s very difficult to rein yourself back in.
I believe it’s all about HABITS. That’s why I feel it’s important to approach a function, a meal, a day, a week, with eyes wide open, putting truth on the table. It’s so easy to lie. To say it doesn’t really matter, that this is a special occasion, this is vacation…it matters. It matters. It matters. You CAN enjoy the richer food items, but it’s crucial to do it within a framework of your overall diet being pure and healthy.
This is what people mean when they say your diet should be very good 80-90% of the time, allowing bad-for-you foods no more than 10-20% of the time. The problem with that is that we lie. We pretend that the unhealthy “treat” foods we’re eating are just a SMALL part of our diet, when really, they’re 50% or more. That’s why intention is crucial…earth-shakingly crucial.
If you have a birthday party you’re throwing for a loved one, enjoy it! If pizza and ice cream is on the menu, enjoy! But go into it with a strong intention of enjoying the people and the fun, far more than you do the food. The food is completely incidental to the celebration.
With intention, plan it out. It’s as simple as including a salad that everyone can enjoy. Eat a plate of salad first, have some grapes on the side, then eat a piece or two of pizza, have a ½ cup of ice cream with sprinkles…not a huge bowl. Eat it slowly and savor it, and I promise you’ll be full and satisfied in the end.
The next day, forget about it. No leftovers. Today is a new day. I usually end up throwing away my leftovers or forcing them on someone else, because for me…eating rich foods two days in a row is opening that door to unhealthy habits.
A habit is something you do and then repeat. I choose to repeat healthy eating and exercise.
Choose what you want to repeat. The other things, the lack of exercise or the eating of rich, unhealthy foods cannot be the habit…they must be the “also rans” in your life. This is also what they mean when they say, “You are what you eat.” 90% of the time, choose health and happiness. Focus with intention on a life of activity and enjoyment of people and circumstances.
Then, when things all go wrong and you’re an emotional wreck, you’ll see…you won’t have a thought of turning to food for comfort. You’ll want to walk, to work out, to seek out companionship, to journal it out.
Put yourself in the right place. Live with intention.