Sunday, August 26, 2012
..your weight, weight loss, eating, fitness, calories, etc. etc. etc. ?
I ask, because my husband commented last night that I have seemed distracted for the last few months, like my mind is often elsewhere. I realized once he said it, that he's right. I'm pretty much always thinking about losing weight. I'm calculating my calories in my head (either that I've eaten or that I've burned off), I'm predicting what my weekly weigh in will be, I'm figuring out how many more weeks until my goal weight is reached, I'm imagining what I'll look like in certain sizes, I'm calculating how fast I can bring my 5k time down, I'm thinking about what I'll need to do to maintain my weight--what I will and won't eat, how I'll keep up my healthy habits, when people will stop remembering that I used to be fat, etc. Or, of course, I'm reading/posting on SP, tracking my exercise, updating my excel spreadsheets (weight tracking and running log), mapping my runs, and doing all the other record keeping that goes along with this process. Is this common, or am I an outlier here?
I know I've always lived "in my head" a lot--spinning fantasies of what life would be like if I had a different job, imagining what my kids will be like when they grow up, picturing what I would say if I ran into an ex-boyfriend, etc. But now it seems like all that mental energy gets directed in one place--my weight & health. I'm not necessarily complaining, because I think that one-track, single-minded focus is what has allowed me to be successful. In fact, in an earlier blog post, I actually recommended getting obsessed with the weight loss process, mainly because I see a lot of people who do it kind of half-committed, make a lot of bad choices, beat themselves up over it, and then at the same time wonder why they're not making progress. My general modus operandi has always been 100% focus on whatever I'm doing, and it seems to work well for me.
But I think it comes at a price--it takes over your life. For example, I'm going out of town again (just up to the cabin) for a week. I know that I'll probably be spending a lot of time obsessing about my weight. Since I don't have a scale up there, it will be tempting to think multiple times a day about what I'll weigh when I get back, predicting, judging, guessing, fantasizing, preparing for that weigh in. And yet, if I do that, I'll miss out on one of the joys of being up there: being totally disconnected from technology and everyday life, able to just BE.
This is part of the reason why I signed up for a Mindfulness Meditation seminar this fall at our local Zen Center--to learn how to just be in the moment, without thinking about it so much. I'm also hoping that once I get to goal, I'll be able to take a lot of the time I spend thinking about losing and gradually shift it to other things in my life (though not so much that I slip into old habits!). I'm wondering if that will be possible, though, and how I'll do it.
So I'm wondering, how much do you think about weight/weight loss? And has it changed over time? Were you able to "turn down" the focus at some appropriate point? Any hints on how to do that?