I finally hit one of my weight loss goals today: 10 pounds lost! I feel so proud of myself. It has taken me a long time to lose it (8 months to the day since I have joined SP), but that's fine with me. Over the past 8 months, I have been learning about myself and my attitudes toward food, exercise, weight loss, my health, and my appearance. This morning, when I logged my current weight, my first thought was, "I can't believe it took this long to drop 10 pounds. Other people have lost 10 pounds in a quarter of the time! I must really be a slacker." But then I decided that I was not talking nicely to myself and that I would never make a comment like that to someone else. If anyone else told me that they had lost 10 pounds over the last 8 months, I would never belittle their progress. I need to do the same for myself. I also feel proud that I have lost another half inch off my waist in the last month. Awesome!
As I was making breakfast (yummy scramble made with spinach, leftover potato, one egg and one egg white), I thought about why my progress has been slower than I initially thought it would be. I fell off the wagon this summer with eating and drinking too much beer and not exercising enough, so that is one big reason. Another reason is that I am focusing more on making small changes than big, sweeping ones. Take this morning's breakfast, for example. A year ago, that breakfast would have been 2 whole eggs scrambled with lots of cheese and no veggies. And yesterday, when I went with a group of friends to Pizza Hut for a farewell lunch for my co-teacher (sob!), we all ate off the lunch buffet. I started with salad and took my time eating it. I ordered water to drink. Then I walked around the buffet, looking at all the pizza choices. I chose the pizza that had the most veggies and the thinnest crust and I enjoyed every bite. Those are small changes that I can live with. I'm not willing to give up pizza forever, but I am willing to make an effort to eat healthier pizza. Will I choose healthier pizza every single time for the rest of my life? I seriously doubt it. Will I make an effort to choose healthier pizza 80% of the time? Yes, I can do that, even if it means it takes me another 8 months to lose another 10 pounds. I'm okay with that.
I also realized that my slower weight loss is reflective of my personality. I am not a type-A, goal driven, charge ahead kind of person. I am a meanderer, I am easily distracted, I wander around, enjoying the view, and eventually getting where I need to go. I rarely feel the need to hurry, and I am not very competitive. I know I am headed in the right direction with weight loss, so I am not going to get down on myself for taking my time with it, the same way I take my time with other things in my life.
I also changed my goal weight today. When I joined SP, I had a hard time picking a goal weight. I remember weighing about 185 or so in the past, which made me about a size 12-14, which felt like a comfortable weight to me. I have a big frame, so picturing myself smaller than a size 12 seems weirdly skinny to me. I like being curvy. Anyway, when I joined SP and was setting my goal weight, I saw the BMI tool that said that a 5'7" woman at 185 was still considered overweight. Not wanting to "settle" for overweight, I set my goal weight as 155. Now that I know more about my body, weight loss, and BMI, I realize that I can be healthy even if I am heavier than 155 and that the BMI numbers are not set in stone. It's okay to set a goal weight in the "overweight" catergory. 155 is only about 5 pounds more than I weighed in high school, more than 20 years ago. When I think of it that way, 155 seems a bit unrealistic. My goal is to be healthy, not look like I did when I was 18. So I changed my goal weight to 170, which seems more attainable and is definitely more healthy than 253, which was my starting weight. And a goal weight is just that: a goal. It's not the finish line, the be-all, end-all of good health. It's a goal to work toward.