Friday, December 07, 2007
(Before I start - weight today was 146.2 - NICE)
I just read several posts on a very interesting thread with the subject, "Does it help you to have a goal date?" After reading many of the posts, I realized that this question really taps into my core problem.
It's not about goal dates! It's about being fit and healthy and happy and thin for LIFE.
Yes, I've set goal dates, and they've been lifesavers. They've been the only thing that's consistently gotten me back on track after I fell off. First it was being in the 130s for the Cape in July. Then it was fitting into my bridesmaid dress by December 1. That one was obviously out of necessity...
But now that that's over, what a gift! Now I can TRULY experiment with things and find out what really works for the long term. It has NOTHING to do with a goal date (be quiet, voice in the back of my mind whispering, "What about Jamaica???")... it has EVERYTHING to do with figuring out how to be consistent, not yo-yo, keep the weight off, and live my life.
Actually, Jamaica's covered. If I really do have this down, it will be NO PROBLEM to stick with my plan. Even if I lose much more slowly this way, in the end I will WIN - and win by a lot, because it is infinitely better to slowly lose than to quickly lose a lot and then gain it all back.
Bad scenario (this won't happen): I diet too hard, push myself to the limits, get my weight back into the 130s, then fall off the wagon and go to Jamaica weighing around 150.
GOOD scenario (this is what WILL happen! because it's my choice!): I find the right balance, I lose half a pound a week (let's just say...who knows...but just for argument's sake)...and well, let's see, how many weeks til Jamaica? (Consults with calendar...) OK, about 10 weeks. If I lose .5 pounds per week, that's 5 pounds between now and Jamaica, and I'd go there weighing 141. Okay, I actually don't see it happening QUITE like that. I think I will lose faster than half a pound a week at first...while I'm still working on the weight I only recently gained. Let's say I manage to get back to the weight where it starts to become significantly more difficult to lose....say 140....one week from now. I honestly think that's realistic. THEN, I hit the half pound a week mark and lose an additional 4.5 pounds...I'd weigh 135.5 pounds for Jamaica. THAT's nice. I like that a lot. Weighing 135 and not be starving and lacking energy? Yeah.
Plus, I am loving my new fitness routine - 45 minutes of cardio and give or take 30 minutes of strength training per day, plus stretching. At the moment I'm loving running but that can vary as the mood strikes me. Now, as I get fitter, I will burn more calories in that 45 minute block, and I will increase my muscle mass with the strength training especially considering I'm eating a lot, so my metabolism will increase and my body will get more effective at burning those 1,600 calories....
It's all a win-win really. The ONLY thing I must not do is to not get right back on the horse after I fall off. Yes, I'm saying it that way deliberately - I meant to imply that even if I fall off it's OK. I'd rather not, of course. I'd rather say no bingeing whatsoever, and I will certainly coach myself before holiday parties and whatnot to make good choices. BUT, if I should happen to fall off, the only thing I am going to request of myself is that I get right back on the very next day, NO BINGEING the next day. That way, the damage done is not only limited, it disappears quickly, so I can continue to progress.
Sure, I am motivated by Jamaica... but the major point here is that it's NOT all about looking good for one particular date or event. It's about making this lifestyle PERMANENT. And I think I'm well on my way!!
(PS - despite the eating disaster in San Fran, I realize that I didn't even have to debate with myself about going for that walk/jog every morning - I really WANTED to! What a change from a year ago!)
Thursday, December 06, 2007
There is no way around it...either you learn it or you fail: It has to be a permanent lifestyle. NOT:
*a temporary diet
*something that is so strict you feel awful doing it (mentally or physically)
I hadn't learned this before. The OLD me wasn't doing it right: I ate whatever I want, didn't track or plan or count calories or balance nutrients, I was inconsistent in my exercise - either over an hour a day or none at all.
The WW/SP me of the past almost-year wasn't doing it right either: I planned and tracked an uncomfortably low number of calories, and when I inevitably hit the point where I couldn't live like that anymore, I'd fall WAY off the wagon and eat ridiculous amounts. (Though I must admit I've gotten pretty darn good with exercise already...)
Nope, no more. The consistent hard exercise (with no "freakouts" if I skip a day or two a week) stays, but the all-or-nothing attitude with diet is OVER. From now on, I will work with my calorie amount to find something where I feel like I'm eating enough to live my life. Still under control, but enough to feel good. Then, when I'm at an event where I can't plan ahead, I WON'T be crazy-hungry. I will recognize how much I need and will be able to stop when I've had enough. And if I do go overboard, it will be only a LITTLE bit overboard and I will get right back on track and a bad day/week will mean I've gained ONE pound, not 14!!
PS - weight is 147.8 today...but at WW meeting I weighed 151. My leader suggested lowering my goal weight, because my WW goal is 155 and she knows I want to be lower than that. But that'd mean I'd have to pay, so I don't think I'm going to. I actually think I'm in a REALLY good place mentally right now.
Sometimes I think I test my own limits, like a child does with a caretaker. Like last night, after I'd blogged about how great 1,600 calories was and I wasn't hungry, I thought about going on a binge - specifically, I wanted to eat another bag of nuts, which is 340 calories (2oz). After that I probably would have eaten a few other things too...maybe even more nuts....it would have been bad. What stopped me was knowing I had a weigh-in today, but now that I think back I think I was also testing my own resolve. I wasn't even hungry - I can honestly now say I KNOW what "hungry" feels like and I wasn't there. I was thirsty and tired, but I didn't need to eat, AND I DIDN'T!
Wednesday, December 05, 2007
It's 5:30 p.m. on a school day and I still have about 100 calories left to eat - a grapefruit and a cup of diet hot chocolate. This has been really nice and there hasn't really been a single moment all day when I felt overly hungry or wished I had more to eat. I can't get too excited because it's just the first day and who knows, maybe eventually I'll start to get "immune" to the "largeness" of 1,600 calories and feel hungry on this amount. The point is I can keep on playing with the number to find the best one for me. And I need to not be so afraid to do so! If I lose slower, that is a GOOD thing because it will be more likely to stay off. If I gain, it's not going to be nearly the same as going on a four-day, 14 pound binge - it might be a pound over the course of a week and then I'll know to dip my calorie number down a bit or increase my exercise. This is not a race - it is me trying to find a lifestyle that works. In fact, trying to race backfires - I don't want to be a yo-yo champion anymore!!
By the way, I was down to 148.8 today, which is quite a big loss considering yesterday I weighed 151.4. I wonder what all this yo-yoing has done to my body. Can't be good.
Oh, also, I scored "average" on the Stairmaster fit test yesterday for the first time in months - usually it's been "fair" lately. I'd just had a small coffee which may have something to do with it - coffee makes me temporarily fitter. But then I wasn't tired and fell asleep after midnight, which isn't good when you get up before 6:30 a.m.....
Tuesday, December 04, 2007
Down 4 pounds today...155 yesterday, 151 today. It's coming back off as fast as it came on, so far. I've stuck faithfully to my planned 1,500 calories, 45 minutes of cardio, and about a half hour of strength training per day both days since I have been back. I feel like right now my goal needs to be finding the balance for this to really become my long-term lifestyle. My latest theory, which I came up with when I was hungry at the grocery store this evening (and now that I'm at home and not quite as hungry, I'm not so sure....) is that maybe if I eat more when I'm dieting, I won't need to eat as much when I'm bingeing - or even better, that I won't feel the need to anymore. And if I deliberately lose weight more slowly, maybe it will be more likely to stay off?!
Plus, if I eat more I will have more energy to work out, so I will burn more calories. OK, I am going to try this. 1,600 calories tomorrow! Woohoo!!!
Monday, December 03, 2007
I gained 14 pounds in San Francisco - from 141 to 155. I had my scale with me and saw my weight going up, but didn't do anything about it. I guess I knew I could lose it when I came home and I STILL associate celebrating with food - oh do I ever. I ate soooo much. I gained 5 pounds the first day, 4 the second, 1 the third, and 4 the fourth.
There were SOME good things: I exercised every day (walk/jog on the gorgeous beach by the Golden Gate Bridge with Teddy!). I had my food planned and packed for today - the first day back home - and have been on plan today, even worked out over an hour. I was aware of what I was doing and consciously chose to eat and really appreciate food, knowing I'd take it off when I got home.
I just wish it didn't come on so crazy fast...but I did really enjoy it!
Going forward, I'm going to be at 1,500 calories a day for a while, plus 45 minutes of hard cardio and 30 minutes of strength training.
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