MissRuth, I LOVE the "old shoes" analogy. So true - and I just finally parted with this pair of camper boots I've been holding onto for what seems like forever. They are no longer in the back of my closet ready for me to slide them on... I think the same is true for my old food habits.
I think I fall into old, comfortable bad habits when I feel overwhelmed and stressed with my life... I start to eat a little more than I should one day and that slides into a whole lot of days until finally my stomach has expanded and gotten used to it. It takes a while to get used to eating less, but I'm getting there, slowly but surely.
I have decided the next time I have a major life change - like moving, or switching jobs, I will take it easy and give myself a break. I think I was unrealistic about how quickly I could set up house. I don't live in a studio apt anymore... so it takes a while. Next time I am giving myself a month, I think. I notice that I don't overeat when I feel settled.
Thanks also for your support re: the unsympathetic trainer.
Well not everyone in a position to *know* better, really DOES know better. sigh. Spark is an excellent source of REAL information.
I think when we gain the weight back (no matter how we lost it), it's because we slide back into our old habits. They say it takes 3 weeks to form a new habit, but I don't know.... those old bad habits are like the broken down shoes in the back of the closet-- always there, always waiting for us to slip them back on. Because they are so darned comfortable.
I know after I hit maintenance, at first I did fine. And then a bunch of stuff happened, and it was easy to skip tracking my food. To overdo it at a birthday or other celebration. To let one bad day become a week. To be too busy to exercise. Fortunately, I had gotten rid of all my "fat" clothes and nipped the gain in the bud.
And it helps a great deal, to have goals that have nothing to do with the scale. For example, to be able to actually jog a mile. Or take the stairs at work without needing paramedics when you reach the top. (Don't laugh! One of my original goals when I first got serious about this, was to make it to the top of the hill to the parking lot at work, without feeling like I needed paramedics with oxygen at the top.) If your cholesterol is high or blood sugar is high or blood pressure is high, a goal could be to lower your numbers. Because it really is NOT just about the number on the scale. I could be a "healthy" BMI but not really be healthy, unless I was doing some cardio and strength training.
I know that I will eventually lose the 20 lbs I gained. The thing that bugs me, is that I lost is slowly over 6 months the first time. Then, I put the weight on even more slowly (over the course of a year)... it just crept up on me... it was like, oh, I'm 4 lbs over -maybe it's water fluctuation, then another 4 lbs, then another.... I know the wisdom of losing slowly to keep it off, but I'm sad that I put the weight back on in the first place.
Thanks for the encouragement! Sometimes I get impatient and want to just go on a cleanse, or crash diet, but then I remember how grumpy I will probably be, and how bad that is for your metabolism.
It didn't help that a trainer told me: "weight loss is a short term goal, if it's taking you more than a couple weeks to lose weight, you are doing something wrong."
When you don't have a lot of weight to lose, your loss will probably be slower. Your ticker indicates you want to lose 20 pounds-- so you're looking at probably around 1/2 pound a week. I didn't have a ton to lose either, and that's about what my loss averaged out to. One memorable week, I did everything "right" and lost a whopping one TENTH of a pound.
The good news in all that, is that we have a much better chance at keeping it off, if we lose it slowly.
Losing weight is mostly about what and how much we eat; the Nutrition Tracker is such an excellent tool! You cannot out-exercise a bad diet, so I think it's really important to get the calories per day down into the right range.
If it's hard for you to eat under 1400 calories a day, well then don't bother trying, just eat 1400 calories a day. I think Spark's lowest calorie range is like 1200 - 1500 or 1550 anyway, so you're well within that range. I don't know how many calories you burn in a week-- I'd suggest upping the exercise. On the days that you don't currently work out, you could add in a brisk walk or a SparkPeople video, so your weekly burn is higher.
Looking over my last week, I did better than in the past... I averaged about 1700 calories a day (ranging from 1400-1900). My maintenance calorie range with exercise is 1800, without exercise it is 1600. I worked out 3 times this week. I guess before you can start losing weight, you have to stop gaining it, right? I can't believe how hard it has been for me to bring my calories down below 1400 a day. Keep trying, I guess, right? Has anyone else had an experience like this? I have been on SparkPeople since November, and I am experiencing very slow results.
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