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Progress and the quarter-pounder

Saturday, December 08, 2012

With another season of Biggest Loser being advertised on TV, I've had to remind myself that slow, steady weight loss is the safe and sustainable way to go. It's so important for all of us not to get seduced in to the sort of thinking that suggests anything less than a double-digit loss every week is a devastating failure.

Only 5 pounds? Oh no! You are in danger of getting kicked off! Only 2 pounds in a whole week? Oh, the horror!

We all know that's not right -- deep down inside, every one of us knows it. But the unreality of reality TV becomes its own new reality, and sucks us (well, at least me) back in. Every time.

To combat the "big numbers" mentality, here are some things I'm going to remind myself:

* Slow and steady is the way to go. No question. 1 to 2 pounds a week is a healthy rate.

* 1 pound a week means I reach my goal in 43 weeks -- less than a year! And it took me far more than a year to put all this weight on in the first place.

* 1 pound a week means that I don't have to quit my job and leave my family in order to make fitness and weight loss my sole focus 24/7. Seriously, how many of us can do that?

* 1 pound a week means that if I lose 2 or even 3 pounds, I'm delighted. Ecstatic. Joyous. Thrilled. Not in the slightest bit devastated.

Here's where the quarter-pounder fits in. And, no, it's not that kind of quarter-pounder.

I strength-train 4 times a week, giving it my all each time. It's tough. I'm working muscles I didn't know existed. I'm always sore the next day. I must look ridiculous at the gym -- one of those overweight middle aged ladies heaving the weights like the hot young body builder guys. I meet with a trainer every other week to make sure I'm doing it right, and to mix up my routine. I tell him I call it my "prescription."

As I left the gym yesterday, totally spent, I did the math: if I strength train 4 days a week and do cardio the rest, and if I stay within my nutrition ranges for the most part, that is my 1 pound a week. So, each of my 4 strength training sessions might just account for 1/4 of that lost pound. At the end of each workout, I can tell myself it was good for losing a quarter pound.

I know this isn't "real" math, but it sure motivates me to keep working those muscles.

Therefore: each workout is my quarter-pounder. Hold the cheese.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    emoticon I like the way you think. I know you are right but I have to fight with myself in order to accept a weight loss of only 1 or 2 lbs a week. I am getting better at it, however. I don't watch reality TV which is probably a good thing. And, I don't care for Jillian Michaels. Keep up the good work and the positive attitude. emoticon emoticon

    After thought ~ I looked up the interview that Karynwho recommended in her comment and it blew me away. Who would want to live like that? The only reason would BE for $$$.
    1901 days ago

    Comment edited on: 12/9/2012 1:56:10 AM
    Your math is way better than the big numbers mentality, and never forget it!!!

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

    I actually haven't been able to watch The Biggest Loser since I read about Kai Hibbard coming out about her experiences on the show.

    (The link: http://www.bodylovewellness.com/201
    er-finalist-part-1-of-3/ )

    I may be more of a cynic because I work in the industry... but I know who wins and loses on those shows, and none of the contestants are winners compared to the corporations and individuals that rake in profit from the show. It just makes me ill to know that people are putting their bodies through so much harm in order to fuel the very reality television money-making machine that, in turn, has so little regard for their health and safety. :(

    (See also: http://www.healthforthewholeself.co
    iggest-loser/ )
    1901 days ago
    I love that thought of yours !! Lol)) i thought your are talking about the MickeyD's.. You make me smile on my face. :) your blog make sense to me 100%. Every one would like quick weight loss. But that is not healthy way. This journey is not just short time journey, it is your life time journey, so better to take it easy. I like the words " slowly but for surely".

    Have a great weekend !!

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1901 days ago
    That's funny and true!!! Good job slinging weights!!! I'm close to 40 and really wish I had caught on sooner!!
    1902 days ago
    Love this. My friend who is a die hard fan of that show and a personal trainer hates how they make it seem healthy to lose so much weight in a week. She also said most of them starve themselves and right after the show it's easy to put back that weight. Healthy way is the right way!!!
    1902 days ago
    I love your math!
    1902 days ago
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