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2012 in Review: Gold Medal Year (with pics)

Tuesday, January 01, 2013




I started my SparkPeople journey from a very dark place a little over 2 years ago. I was at a breaking point where I was willing to try anything to make my life feel tolerable to me. I started to be more active on SparkPeople and make small changes to develop healthier habits. Gradually, new habits became ingrained and I started to lose weight. I learned to treat myself better and that other people need to treat me better, too. Ultimately, this year I found out what has been truly holding me back. I have always been wracked with so much guilt that I thought I did not deserve to be happy or loved. It was over this past year, with deep self-exploration, that I realized I have been punishing myself. I learned to forgive myself and use my experiences as learning opportunities.

With developing self-confidence, I wanted to try new things. I started doing Jiu Jitsu in October 2011. I never imagined I would be a grappler, nor that I would become a competitive athlete. I did a lot of Jiu Jitsu training this year. I trained a minimum of 3 days a week, usually 4-5 days. I have started to study more technique outside of class as well. I scaled back from doing high-intensity exercise other than Jiu Jitsu, and then realized that I needed to quit power lifting. I was working to failure too much between lifting weights and practicing Jiu Jitsu. I have instead been doing Pilates, yoga, and body weight exercises for strength training. I have lost several inches all over over the past few months. So, I will continue to use my own body weight for resistance for now. Of course, I get in some strength training with throwing the guys around at the gym.

The highlight of 2012 was winning second place in my first Jiu Jitsu tournament, and then first place in the next one. I never imagined that I would compete in a sport, let alone win. It was the support from the guys at the gym that helped me train and feel like an athlete. They had confidence in me, and I let that sink in. I look forward to future competitions and will be doing several in 2013.





My livelihood, Jiu Jitsu class.




After my first win at my first Jiu Jitsu competition, June 2012.




My first Jiu Jitsu competition, June 2012--I won second place.




My gold medal win at Jiu Jitsu competition November 2012.




The day I proved to myself that I can accomplish whatever I set my mind to.



I had a goal of losing 60 pounds by the end of December. I lost 30 pounds this year. I am fine with the amount lost. I also reached 50 pounds down in March. I was very excited to pass that milestone. I am currently about 65 pounds down. I am not going to set a specific number to reach in 2013. I DO know that I will be pretty ripped by the end of 2013, but I am not concerned with the number on the scale.

My diet had its ups and downs in 2012. I was consistent about tracking most of the time. Even when I didn't track, I noticed that I didn't treat my eating as a free-for-all. Even when I didn't track, I was eating more moderately. I eat an array of fruits and veggies throughout the day. For the most part, truly junky foods like refined foods are unappealing to me. After learning to really taste my food, I became more turned off by junk food. Luckily, good dark chocolate is a health food. emoticon




Progress pics: My "before" pictures and my progress pics from this year. I will post an updated progress pics blog this month!




February 2011, at about 295 pounds



March 2012, at 243 pounds (55 pounds down)



October 2012




February 2011



March 2012



October 2012




February 2011



March 2012



October 2012




Messing around yesterday while out with a friend (I was drawing a boot!).



I never thought I would reflect on a year and be completely satisfied with how it went. This was usually because I did not lose as much weight as I wanted. The less I cared about my weight, the more I was able to see what I did right everywhere else in my life. For me, losing weight used to be about me wanting to be someone else. I didn't want to be myself; I didn't really like anything about myself. Ultimately, my body weight was a culmination of imbalances throughout my life. Every pound lost is not just getting me closer to my goal weight; each pound is a reflection of months of self-exploration and loving myself. I came to realize that losing weight ultimately was not really about the weight. I am finally treating myself with the love and respect I have always deserved.

I don't have real specific goals this year, but I plan to continue with focusing on Jiu Jitsu. Everything required to become good at Jiu Jitsu promotes balance throughout my life. I will be kicking off 2013 with an exciting opportunity to train with some of the best in the world. A week from now I will be in Los Angeles with some of the guys from the gym. We will be doing a week of intensive training with Eddie Bravo, Rhasaan Orange, and hopefully Joe Rogan. I will also be going to see a taping of Conan O'Brien; I saw him live in New York, and now in Los Angeles. I can't wait to set eyes on the Pacific Ocean!

I'm ready, 2013.


Here are my end-of-the-year blogs from last year:


Hot By the Apocalypse: www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=4647623


The Year of Open Doors: 2011 in Review: www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=4646279





  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

THOMS1 1/13/2013 7:59PM

    emoticon

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WATERMELLEN 1/13/2013 7:26PM

    Very impressive: the pictures show huge progress but that is on the "outside" and it's clear that the inside progress is at least as dramatic!!

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MANDELOVICH 1/13/2013 7:19PM

    I love your focus on self-acceptance. This has been the piece lacking from my journey and I'm sure it's why I'm backsliding so severely. Good for you!

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JITZUROE 1/11/2013 10:35AM

    Your before and in progress pics are amazing! Plus, look at that smile in the last one. Your joy is coming through, and MAN have you kicked some serious butt this past year with your training. You're really talented at this sport. So glad that you are pursuing it! Of course, if I was the gal in the match against you, I'd probably be pretty bummed (since you would totally beat me, ha!).
I'm excited to see what 2013 has for you!!!
Bren

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SUNFLOWERSAVAGE 1/7/2013 6:49PM

    You are doing so awesome Erin!!!! I haven't been on for a long time and I really missed keeping up with your progress.
Congrats on your wins.
You look so happy.

emoticon ~D

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CANNIE50 1/6/2013 5:13PM

    Erin, this is a powerful blog and you are a powerful woman. You continue to inspire and educate me and I am appreciative. emoticon

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FRAN0426 1/3/2013 11:34PM

    Great blog and congrats on continueing on your journey. It is so much easier to exercise when you enjoy what your doing.

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MORTICIAADDAMS 1/2/2013 4:32PM

    You have had an amazing year. I look forward to seeing your progress this year.

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SMILINGTREE 1/2/2013 9:30AM

    "I am not concerned with the number on the scale." This is it! I have worried so long about the number on the scale, the number on the tag in my pants, the number on the measuring tape...

Thank you for being a great friend. You have taught me so much by allowing me to share a small portion of your journey and what you have learned.

Congratulations on all your successes, and prepare for many more!

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JILLYBEAN25 1/1/2013 11:34PM

    I can definitely see the changes/differences in your body that are the results of your amazing hard work! You totally are awesome and inspirational! I hope you have a great time in L.A. and I look forward to reading your blog recap of your experience!
emoticon Happy New Year!

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DOODIE59 1/1/2013 9:24PM

    All your hard work, internal and external, is paying off. The world's your oyster! Go get it:)
The sky's the limit in 2013.
Deirdre

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MJREIMERS 1/1/2013 8:43PM

    emoticon job and blog! You have found your balance and can see how wonderful you truly are! May 2013 help you finding more ways to appreciate all the talents that you have and to continue finding ways to love yourself.

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APED7969 1/1/2013 6:18PM

    Amazing job being able to reflect back on a whole year and be happy. I'm so happy to see all the positive changes you've made. I hope bringing in balance has helped with work as well. I know for me that having things outside of work has made work itself more pleasant. Happy new year and I can't wait to see what you accomplish in 2013!

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SPOONGIRLDEB 1/1/2013 6:11PM

    Wow, what a great blog! You have accomplished so much and are truly an inspiration. I wish I could find something to inspire me like Jiu Jitsu does for you. I'll just have to keep looking!!!!

I'm sure you will have an even better 2013, and I'm looking forward to getting to follow your journey as it continues :-).

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JENNIFERH625 1/1/2013 6:04PM

    You truly have done so much to be proud of! You look great! Keep up the amazing work! Here is to a wonderful 2013!

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FANGFACEKITTY 1/1/2013 4:33PM

    Happy New Year! You achieved some amazing things last year; I'm sure 2013 will be just as good, if not even better. Do you still take your saxophone lessons?

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The Week in Review: Pants Around My Ankles (with pics)

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

*Please note: There are no pictures with my pants around my ankles.* emoticon



I reached 66 pounds down this past week, which is about halfway to my goal weight. All of a sudden it seems that a lot of my clothes are way too big. My winter coat is very baggy. I have noticed shirts especially becoming very loose. I decided to go shopping in my own closet. I have a pair of brown corduroy pants that I had been waiting to fit back into. This week I wondered if they fit. I pulled them on, let go, and they fell down around my ankles. They are several sizes too big now. It is amazing how those changes sneak up on us.

It probably isn't so much that the changes are sudden, but rather we just don't notice them right away. Needless to say, it has been fun shopping in my own closet. I know that the general advice is to throw out clothes that don't fit any longer, but I did not throw out my clothes that fit me when I was thinner. I knew I would fit into them again. I am not going to keep the clothes that no longer fit me from being too loose, however. I never plan on fitting into those again.

Workouts have been going well. My body has felt much better since I stopped lifting weights. I've been doing a lot of Pilates, yoga, and body weight exercises. I have been trying to do anywhere from 30-60 minute workouts of Pilates, yoga, and body weight exercises 4-5 days a week. I have been doing kettlebell workouts once or twice a week, and those have felt pretty good. I like that I can get in some resistance training for my lower body with kettlebells. I now know that my body was just not able to recover adequately with doing both weight training and Jiu Jitsu. I feel more energetic during Jiu Jitsu now, although my right shoulder is still healing, so that arm is still fairly weak. Overall though, exercise has been great.




Picture from Jiu Jitsu class Saturday. I am in the gray shirt standing in the back; I was shocked at how lean I look, especially in the upper body. I will post progress pics over the next couple of weeks.



Eating has been going pretty well. I have been less ravenous since cutting out weight lifting. I believe my body is not demanding so much food for muscle recovery now. I have been tracking on most days. Even on days when I haven't been tracking accurately, I no longer go nuts on the food. Actually, my old cravings for foods like pasta, pizza, and other wheat/dairy foods have been virtually non-existent. I worked hard on training my brain that those foods are truly not good for my body and will just cause me to feel like crap. This is not to say that I will never have pizza or wheat pasta ever again, but they have both become very rare treats. I do feel fortunate, however, that dark chocolate is a health food. I have an ounce or 2 every day.

It has taken me over 2 years to lose 66 pounds, a pace that a lot of people would consider to be "too slow" (by the way, that averages to about 0.6 lbs/week, so that is a healthy pace to lose). I'm not living my life for weight loss, I am losing weight because I am finally living my life. Allowing myself to grow as a person and really getting know myself has caused me to lose weight naturally without having to drive myself nuts with "dieting." It truly does not matter how long it takes for me to reach my goal weight. I am already a new person, inside and out.









  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BECCAZEN7 1/13/2013 11:24PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon slow and steady wins!

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MUSICALLYMINDED 1/6/2013 2:44PM

    Losing the weight isn't your biggest accomplishment this year... it's just a side effect. I love your blogs. I can't believe it took me so long to read this one.

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SPOONGIRLDEB 12/13/2012 10:38PM

    Way to go! I saved one pair of big pants so I can try to get that "after" photo with both legs in one side :-).

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AHTRAP 12/13/2012 4:04AM

    take a pic of old pants around ankles, while wearing the new ones!

Nice job on the losing of the weight. Even more so for doing so at a pace that works for you.

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CANNIE50 12/11/2012 11:33PM

    You, my dear, are an inspiration. PS Congrats on losing your britches (have to admit I was relieved to hear it was when you were at home, in your closet emoticon emoticon PSS that photo is quite impressive PSSS I wish I could come stay with you and you could jiu jitsu my head so I stop eating wheaty foods - I know they just make me crave more more more

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JKGAVIN 12/11/2012 9:56PM

    Congratulations!

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APED7969 12/11/2012 9:05PM

    Congrats on the weight loss and making changes that are doing to last in the long term. Much more important than losing weight quickly!!

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MORTICIAADDAMS 12/11/2012 1:21PM

    Congrats on the weight loss. You look great and are really doing well on your plan.

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MARTY728 12/11/2012 1:03PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ELPHABABLUE 12/11/2012 12:06PM

    This is incredible! Taking if off slowly is the best way to go. I know from personal experience if it comes off too fast, it will come back (seemingly) without warning. You've changed your life and your outlook and I'm realizing that is harder than actually losing the weight. You're rewiring your brain. You're so amazing! Keep up the good work.

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LADYJ6942 12/11/2012 11:04AM

    Congrats!

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STELLASMYBEBE 12/11/2012 10:46AM

    emoticon

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The Week (and Month) in Review: 60 Pounds Gone and Gold Medal Wins

Thursday, December 06, 2012


My podium gold medal win at Jiu Jitsu competition on 11/17.



November marked one of the most defining moments in my entire life: winning a competition. Not just participating, but winning. If you had asked me a few years ago, when I was still the fat kid in gym class getting bullied about my weight, I would have said that winning a sporting event was out of the question. I still kind of can't believe it. But, the biggest reason that winning was a defining moment was that I proved to myself that I truly can reach my goals. I may have been surprised with my win, but my teammates weren't; most of them simply grinned and said, "I told you so." Ultimately, I have my teammates to thank. I have found that not only do I need to believe in myself, I need to allow others to truly believe in me. Being surrounded by such great support has allowed me to become free. The past year of doing Jiu Jitsu has been the best in my life, and I am so happy to only be at the beginning of this journey.

Overall, workouts have been going better. I never ever thought I would say this, but I need to back off on weight training. Heavy weight training just does not seem to agree with my body and does not seem to be an appropriate form of training for my body. This makes me sad, as I am a big believer in heavy lifting for weight loss. Every time I build up and then go heavy, my joints end up more painful than before and I get injured. It is not an issue of form or programming. The combination of Jiu Jitsu and heavy weight training is too much for my body. My body has been fighting itself; I can do Jiu Jitsu or powerlifting, but not both. Even with rest days incorporated, my body just can't tolerate being worked to failure by both weight training and Jiu Jitsu. So, I need to change up my strength training. I will be sticking primarily with body weight exercises (plyometrics, push-ups, dips, pull-ups, etc.), kettlebells, Pilates, dance/barre work, and yoga. Jiu Jitsu also doubles as strength training. I will need to focus on incorporating some explosive movements in order to gain the strength and power that would be accomplished through heavy weight training. Plus, trying to throw 200 pound dudes during practice certainly doubles as strength training.

My weight has been hovering in the mid-230s for a couple of weeks now, so I made my 60 pound loss official. I have been losing weight a little more steadily over the past month, but only when I am completely diligent about avoiding wheat and dairy. I can't deny my sensitivity to wheat and dairy. I used to think it was just that I would overeat things like pasta and pizza, but I don't lose (or actually gain) if I incorporate more than the occasional morsel of foods containing wheat or dairy. My body and brain are finally learning not to crave wheat and dairy foods so much now that I have made the connection of what it does to my body. As a matter of fact, I know that eating wheat and dairy for more than a couple of days puts on about 7 pounds (and I visibly bloat to boot). I have noticed that after I eat wheat/dairy and then return to my normal eating, I lose 7 pounds within a few days and my belly "deflates" again. I am working on a separate blog about diet.

In any case, I am excited to head towards my 75 pound loss. I remember when I started gaining weight, it was when I got into the 230s that I started to feel really out of shape. That was when my face really puffed out and I grew the spare tire. I am starting to actually feel like I am leaner again. My spare tire is much smaller and my gut doesn't get in the way of movements any more. A few days ago, when I put on my winter coat, I noticed that it was very baggy. After that, I noticed that a lot of the clothes that I have are getting pretty loose. Nothing like getting to shop for new stuff!

Today I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror as I was laughing, and I noticed that my face is leaning out and my dimples are back. Well, I'm glad for that, because the month of November gave me a lot to smile about.




  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CANNIE50 12/6/2012 10:02PM

    Oh, Erin, this makes me so happy. Count me among those not surprised about you taking the win. Of course you did! Your thoughts about wheat are timely for me - I am becoming more and more accepting of the fact that it does not agree with me. Letting go of it seems daunting, though - I eat a lot of wheat based food. Enough about me, though, I am thrilled for you!

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MORTICIAADDAMS 12/6/2012 9:29PM

    You are doing great. Congratulations on being 60 pounds down. That is amazing. I need to avoid the wheat too. It's hard to get a grasp on it. I keep fighting what I need to do.

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DOODIE59 12/6/2012 8:06PM

    You are amazing. Your attitude and willingness to explore options is a huge part of your success. Way to go!
Deirdre emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MEWHENRYSMAMA 12/6/2012 6:57PM

    Love, love, love this!
Congratulations on such a life changing success!
Your determination and pursurverance sure has paid off!
What an inspiration you are!
Love & Hugs,
Mary

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APED7969 12/6/2012 4:16PM

    Great blog and huge accomplishment, both with the weight loss and with your win. Awesome you are still adjusting and finding what works for you :-)

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MARTY728 12/6/2012 1:45PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SPOONGIRLDEB 12/6/2012 1:26PM

    What a great blog, and what great success you are having! I just "officially" reached 60lbs lost, been flirting around it for the last couple of weeks, so I know exactly where you are coming from on that one! It is great that you have found something that you can do that you love and are good at. I wouldn't sweat the weight training, what good would that do anyway? Do what you can do and you'll be able to reach your 75lb goal in no time!

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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The Week in Review: Guts, Glory, and Gold

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The end of October marked a year of doing Jiu Jitsu. My journey of Jiu Jitsu started with taking a small chance by trying out 1 class. I kept showing up, trying my best, and worked through the frustrations of the long learning curve of learning a martial art. After a year, I feel like the moves are becoming more intuitive and flowing together naturally.

I won second place in my division at my first Jiu Jitsu tournament in June. Afterwards, I consistently told my coaches that I was going to win first place in my next tournament. Somewhere deep down I thought I could do it, but self-doubt kept bubbling up. Admittedly, I wanted to back out. I tweaked my shoulder last week, and I thought I found my excuse not to compete. But then, I found that I REALLY wanted to do it. I was anxious about it, but I wanted to be challenged. I also had kept envisioning that I was alone there, but then I remembered that several teammates would be there. I babied my shoulder for a couple of days and meditated the night before, focusing on the goal of winning.

I got to the tournament and one of my teammates was there. About 10 people showed up altogether. I went towards the beginning, which was good. I got the take downs and won both of my matches by getting submissions. If you're familiar with the moves, Rear Naked Choke the first match and an arm bar the second. I won the tournament over the other 7 women.




This picture is almost unreal to me. I never thought I would be standing on a podium claiming a gold medal!



And a few hours later (I'm in the purple sweater) with some of the guys, watching UFC (and having a little too much to drink emoticon).



I have found myself through doing Jiu Jitsu. There is something transformative about the raw physical experience of grappling, and in practicing, my true self is emerging. Practicing Jiu Jitsu has taught me to boldly face my fears. The guys at my gym have been telling me since day 1 that they believe in me. Their words have slowly sunken in and helped uncover the champion in me. Winning the tournament was not crossing a goal line, it was a stepping stone. Winning just makes me want to train even harder, work on fine-tuning what I already know, and building up from there. It also made me feel more serious on focusing on losing weight steadily again. The first year was great, but he best is still yet to come.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HIPPICHICK1 1/11/2013 8:32AM

    WOW!! You're my first cup of awesome this morning!
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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LIBBYL1 11/27/2012 10:34PM

  Inspiring! ...

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PAMELA6289 11/27/2012 11:10AM

  Way to go, Hot Mama! I have missed you!

You should be very proud of your perseverance and your strength of mind and will in working through the uncomfortable stuff.

I am proud of you, my friend!

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MUSICALLYMINDED 11/25/2012 6:59PM

    Congrats again!

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TRAVELGRRL 11/23/2012 2:17PM

    I love that you have found your "inner champion!" CongratulaTions on your awesome accomplishment!~

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FANGFACEKITTY 11/22/2012 2:38PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon
Congratulations on your victory!

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MEWHENRYSMAMA 11/22/2012 7:05AM

    Just soooo awesome!
Congratulations!
Lov
e,
Mary

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JILLYBEAN25 11/21/2012 2:48AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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DOODIE59 11/20/2012 10:25PM

    I love your last paragraph -- you are on your way! WooHoo! Transformative's the word:)
You go!
Deirdre

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MORTICIAADDAMS 11/20/2012 7:54PM

    Fantastic!! Amazing that you have already accomplished this goal! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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VENISEW1 11/20/2012 2:38PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MARTY728 11/20/2012 12:51PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ARCHIMEDESII 11/20/2012 12:39PM

    emoticon

Congratulations on winning that gold medal. You worked hard to get to that podium ! I'm sure this is the first of many more medals you'll earn.

emoticon emoticon

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SPOONGIRLDEB 11/20/2012 9:10AM

    You are really an inspiration!!! CONGRATULATIONS!!!!

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JSALERNO 11/20/2012 6:07AM

    emoticon

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APED7969 11/20/2012 3:53AM

    Congrats!!! Awesome job :-) I love following your progress

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1HAPPYWOMAN 11/20/2012 1:46AM

    Congratulations, gold medallist! You rawk! emoticon

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Learn About Maintenance Before Losing Weight

Monday, November 05, 2012

I was happy to come across an article on CNN that discussed a study that demonstrated the importance of understanding weight maintenance before weight loss begins. Most people worry about losing the weight and then either mistakenly believe that maintenance will be natural, or, that "being thin is it's own reward" and that they will be so ecstatic to be thin that they will not let the weight come back on. The unfortunate truth is that a lot of people who lose weight regain it (myself included). This time, I armed myself with some knowledge and practice of weight maintenance before I started losing weight 2 years ago.

I wrote a blog last year about learning about maintenance before and during weight loss. It is important to understand the significance of weight maintenance partially because plateaus occur during weight loss and so that there is a game plan after reaching goal weight. I have "only" lost about 50 pounds over the past 2 years. I tend to go through long periods of maintaining my weight and then have a few weeks of losses. Considering I train hard for Jiu Jitsu, I am okay with this pattern because it means I am minimizing muscle loss. Learning about maintenance has also helped teach me to be patient with my weight loss. In any case, studies like this one might help steer weight loss methods in a new direction.


Here is the CNN article:

thechart.blogs.cnn.com/2012/10/30/kn
ow-how-to-keep-weight-off-before-you-l
ose-it/?hpt=he_t5




Here is my blog titled "Getting Ready to Stay the Same: Considering Maintenance While Losing":

www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=4332094

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HIPPICHICK1 1/11/2013 8:22AM

    emoticon
I've been missing your blogs. I must have somehow accidentally unsubscribed??

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JITZUROE 11/16/2012 11:00AM

    I lost the weight I wanted to lose and then it slowwwwly creeped back on. Boom, I gained it all back! Ad now here I go again on that same mission to lose it. Maddening!
Thanks for the link!
Bren

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LEONALIONESS 11/7/2012 8:01AM

    I've kept off about 50 of the original 60 I lost. It's been... almost three years? I think it's important to also realize that sometimes our goal weights *aren't* the weight our bodies want to sit at. To stay at 125 involved constant calorie counting, hunger and fatigue for me. To stay around 135 requires I stay active and eat well most of the time, without needing to obsessively nitpick my every food choice. Both weights are healthy BMIs. One is mid to high normal (23), one is low to mid normal (21.5ish). For me, it's been hard realizing that hey, I might not be able to *happily* stay that thin. If it's that hard and exhausting to maintain such a low BMI/size but so easy to stay where I am now, maybe I was shooting too low for my own good.

I still WANT to lose a bit of fat and I'm trying to do so slowly slowly slowly so I don't lose all my good runner muscle but I think 130-135 is my body's sweet spot. I might want to be lighter/smaller but the suffering it takes to get there and the mental issues it causes me to be so strict and restrictive just aren't worth it.

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SLENDERMAMA1 11/6/2012 5:21PM

    Nice post. I think I can learn from you. emoticon

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MORTICIAADDAMS 11/6/2012 2:23PM

    I tend to think that the real work begins when weight loss stops and maintaining starts.

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MARTY728 11/6/2012 1:44PM

    emoticon

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SPOONGIRLDEB 11/6/2012 1:41PM

    Great blog, and thanks for sharing the links! I hadn't read your "old" blog on weight maintenance previously, but you hit the nail on the head for sure with that one! I am still in the "weight loss" part of my journey, but I have high hopes that maintenance will be a success, especially since for the last couple of months I have been at a plateau, which basically means I was maintaining! If I can do it for 2 months, why not 2 years, or 20 years, or for the rest of my life????

Like you, I've lost weight before (although not as much) and then not been able to keep it off. This time, by being more aware and preparing ahead of time, like you said, the weight will stay off!!!

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SKEPCHICK 11/6/2012 9:30AM

  Yes, weight maintenance is key

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CRYSTALJEM 11/6/2012 9:14AM

    This was a really good read, thank you!

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ISHIIGIRL 11/6/2012 8:07AM

    That has always been my approach and how I keep maintaining. It is hard to consistently keep our eye on the prize but I agree with you. Thanks for sharing.

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WATERMELLEN 11/6/2012 7:37AM

    The CNN article is great: and your own blog ("losing the fat in our heads first, indeed") is even better.

Totally agree with you that maintenance has to come first or weight loss will be a recurring cycle . . . so interesting that you've made psychology and kinesiology your academic focus in the weight maintenance context!!

PS You may see that I've given this a shout-out on my own blog today . . .and also suggested that people consider joining the At Goal and Maintaining: Transition to Maintenance Team from day one of their journeys!

Comment edited on: 11/6/2012 8:29:48 AM

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GMO_JEN 11/5/2012 11:16PM

    That's really interesting. I try to prepare and learn, but I'm still struggling trying to get things moving...just got to keep trying to make all of the healthy choices.

Really helpful article though, thank you!

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 11/5/2012 10:57PM

    Yup, pretty much my story too.

I lost over 100# in my 20s, regained all of it plus almost 100 more.

This time around I was playing for keeps, because I was determined not to go through that again!

And so far, so good. In January I will have maintained for 3 years.

So yeah, keep doing what you're doing, and applying all of your resources. It works.

emoticon

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DDOORN 11/5/2012 9:50PM

    Yep, came across this too...smart stuff! Don't forget we have our SparkTeam filled with super helpful Maintainers:

http://teams.sp
arkpeople.com/maintaining
R>Don

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MUSICALLYMINDED 11/5/2012 8:36PM

    This really hits home for me... I remember someone asking that question, "Would you continue to make healthy choices if you knew you would never lose another pound?" I had to ask myself this: "Would you continue to make healthy choices if you knew you were just going to GAIN weight anyway???" Arghh!!! That is a tough one... I'm not doing that great making the healthiest choices, but I'm trying.

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SYZYGY922 11/5/2012 7:38PM

    Thanks for sharing this. It didn't occur to me until I was more than halfway to my goal that this was something I needed to worry about! I see a lot of posts on Sparkpeople where people talk about how they're going to stop tracking when they meet goal and I always kind of groan. I'm in it for the long haul!

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MISSHATTAWAY 11/5/2012 6:27PM

    Thanks for the information, I didn't know this was an issue.

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CHRISTINA791 11/5/2012 5:41PM

    Thanks for this. That was a really interesting article.

I've been kind of going by instinct, but I can tell you that maintenance is pretty different from how I pictured it (honestly, when I started losing weight, the idea of my maintenance self was just a hypothetical person that I didn't think about much. It seemed so impossible).

I think I decided early on that weight loss and maintenance were going to have to look pretty similar for me. I loosened up on the weight loss part of it a bit so I wasn't overly strict, and I tightened up on my maintenance mindset. The result is that I never had one day where I decided I was now maintaining - it was a very gradual shift (and honestly, I still shift back and forth between a holding pattern and more of a weight loss mentality, even though the actual pounds involved are tiny).

I'm okay with always having to keep an eye on my weight, activity and consumption. It took a while to really, genuinely get to a place where I can be okay with weighing my food (and myself) every day. A lot of people simply won't be okay with that, and need to find what works for them. Either way, figuring out what you're willing to live with for the rest of your life is important for both weight loss and maintenance, and it's something that takes time to learn.

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