Monday, December 28, 2009
I was pondering why it can be so hard to come by motivation during the winter. And I had a thought that had never occurred to me before. One of the most motivating things about losing weight is noticing the changes in our bodies, AND showing off those changes.
It's so much harder to notice OR show off those changes during the winter, because we're cocooned in so many extra layers of clothes. I get cold easily, so I am often swathed in at least 2 layers inside, often 3 (if we're not counting that big ole down jacket) outside. I feel like the little mummified kid who can barely move. All those clothes seem to literally weigh me down.
It's harder to feel good about myself. Well, I'm sure it would be easier if the scale were moving -- THAT's sure motivation. I am in awe of all the people who have continued to lose weight throughout the holidays, and if you are one of them, you deserve a big pat on the back.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not depressed, and exercise is my constant companion. It's just harder to see all the changes I've wrought.
What do you do to stay motivated through the winter?
On a side note, as noted in my friend feed, I'm having computer problems. I'm writing this on my husband's computer. Mine just locks up. It's a virus, I'm pretty sure, but I don't know WHICH virus. I've been trying to boot into safe mode, but so far I haven't been able to, and that is pretty much killing all my troubleshooting ideas. There isn't much troubleshooting that can be done when your computer is frozen!
Friday, December 25, 2009
How is your holiday going? Are you sticking to your plan? Drinking your water? Tracking what you eat?
If not, that's okay! Just get right back on the horse. One "bad" meal won't kill you. What will derail you is thinking you can start again tomorrow, on Monday, or heaven forbid, next year!
Nobody is perfect. We all eat too much or drink too much at times. That's not what makes us fat. What makes us fat is the guilt trips -- I already ate so much, I might as well just keep going.
One of the things I've learned this past year is that I tend to gain on vacations, no matter how careful I try to be. I still try to be careful, but I accept that I will most likely gain -- and get right back to my healthy habits as soon as I get home. And that weight comes off really quickly.
OTOH, several weeks of overeating can lead to more than just a few pounds, and we all know that those few extra pounds take forever to take back off.
Let's just say goodbye to all or nothing thinking with 2009!
Thursday, December 24, 2009
I know most of you are really busy today. I know some people like to take a cheat day, or just take a break from tracking on a holiday. But it's funny how tracking helps keep you on track.
Do you really want that cookie, or are you eating it because it's there? Because it's tradition? Because you're stressed? What do you think will happen if you have to put it in your tracker or write it down?
This may be too late for some of you, but if you're traveling, there's a printable tracker, too. It's under "Printable resources" on your Spark home page. I always print one out and take it with me when I'm traveling.
When I first began with SP and back at WW, I tracked both on SP and with WW trackers. I found most of the time I was hitting my nutritional goals, so I only track my points on paper now. I prefer to use a 6 month journal; that way I can go back and look at something I ate from several weeks ago or flag a really good day or week (only I never actually seem to do that -- maybe a goal for the new year).
Whatever works for you. There's a reason almost every "diet" out there asks you to track your food. Don't throw it all away over the next couple of days. Don't worry about friends and relatives thinking you're "weird". What's more important -- what other people think, or how you feel? And in the end, you're going to feel better if you track your food, even if you overindulge.
Track on, my friends!
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
It's trite, but it's true: if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. It's something my husband definitely doesn't get. He hates to plan. For instance, since there's just the 2 of us, and I rarely eat bread, I keep the bread in the freezer. If he wants it, he either has to remember to take it out of the freezer to defrost (or use the microwave). Most of the time he chooses something else instead, and gets angry that there isn't any bread available. If I don't keep it in the freezer it either gets hard or moldy.
Do you have a plan for your holiday? It is NOT too late to get one. Going to someone else's house? Can you bring a dish? Some food for yourself? Your pedometer or some resistance bands? What will you put on your plate? Can you ask what food will be served?
Are you doing the holiday meal? Great! You have control! Are you making all the old favorites? Can you lighten them up somehow? Can you add some healthy food in there? Have you decided how much you'll eat? Which dessert you'll eat, if at all?
What about exercise? Can you get the family started on a new tradition? Maybe a walk after dinner? Some touch football, if that's your thing? Can you maybe squeeze 10 minutes in every couple of hours (in one day, you could get in an hour's worth of exercising that way!)?
There is still time. You CAN do it. So make a plan, and work your plan. Don't say you'll start anew on New Year's. New Year's is too far away. Today is what you have -- make it count!
Tuesday, December 22, 2009
First, I want to thank the 10,000 steps a day team for making me team member of the week. I mostly lurk, so I don't really feel I deserve it, but I'm grateful for it, and I WILL get to thanking you all personally. It may just take a little while.
Next, how'd you do yesterday? Did you remember to take deep breaths before eating, or any time you were stressed? I admit I'm not 100% on this myself, but I keep working on it. The more we work on it, the more it becomes a habit. If anyone would have told me when I was a teenager that I wouldn't feel right if I didn't exercise 5 times a week, I would have died laughing.
Today's mission: drink more water. I've read in numerous places that it's truly a myth that we need 8 glasses of water a day. That you can tell how hydrated you are by the color of your pee (sorry if that offends); it should be almost clear.
The truth is that most of us are chronically dehydrated. By the time we feel thirsty, we're already dehydrated. And many of us mistake thirst for hunger. I have also personally found that when I'm getting 8 glasses of water (I include soymilk, my fruit smoothies, and herbal teas in the total), I am less hungry and less tired -- something we could all use right now.
I gave up alcohol many, many years ago. I was never a big drinker to begin with, and I just decided I'd rather eat than drink my calories (except for those smoothies). But if you do like to drink, there's nothing that says you can't -- IN moderation. Alcohol lowers our inhibitions, which tends to make most people overeat. So it can be a double whammy. If you do like to drink, try to make every second drink a glass of water.
Trust me, you will feel so much better if you get in 8 glasses of water over the next few days. Put water bottles in your car. Stash them in your gym bag. If you don't like straight water, add a few slices of lemon (it's actually very good for you, but I personally am not fond of the flavor). Do me a favor and stay away from those sweetened, no or low calorie waters. The more sweet flavored things you have, even if there are few or no calories, the more you are set up to crave sweets -- NOT good at this time of year.
So go forth and drink. Only make it water. Let me know if it makes a difference for you!
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