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"How did you do it?"

Thursday, April 25, 2013

One of the most satisfying things about shedding 50 pounds is running into people that I haven't seen in awhile. The number one question I get is "How did you lose the weight?" I tell them about exercise and eating mindfully, but it seems as though their eyes glaze over after the first few sentences. I talk about adopting a new lifestyle and how I still eat junkier stuff, but eat quality foods 80% of the time. The "on-a-diet/off-a-diet" mentality is prevalent. It's that all or nothing thinking that dooms most people.

Last year, I struggled with finding time to exercise, making healthier food choices and being consistent. This year, I struggle with finding time to exercise, making healthier food choices and being consistent. What's changed between this year and last year? Persistence, I guess. No matter how many times I skipped exercise, ate something junky or neglected my food diary, I returned to the program.

I didn't do it perfectly because I'm not a perfect person. I just forgave myself and tried better the next day/meal/hour. I paid attention to my moods and enlisted the help of a girlfriend who would encourage me to exercise whenever I was stressin' over something. I read everything I could about healthier eating and exercise. I bought magazines, read blogs, read SP articles--anything I could to keep this healthier lifestyle in the front of my mind.

Somehow, I put enough pieces of the puzzle together to start dropping weight. It didn't drop off in a consistent pattern. I had weeks where I stayed the same or gained. Other weeks, 3 pounds would mysteriously disappear and I'd rejoice. Through it all, I used this blog to vent, celebrate, whine, complain, pitch a b!tch, fuss--whatever was on my mind. This blog became my therapy where I exorcised my demons.

The hardest thing to realize is that the battle is not over for me. I've been on an accidental/self-imposed plateau with 15 pounds left to reach goal. The reality is that my new habits are great for keeping me at my current weight, but to get to goal, requires more change. I'm focusing on the next 5 pounds, right now. The good news is that I'm pretty happy where I'm at weight-wise. I feel more energetic and confident. Sure, it would be cool to wear a size 8 or 10, but I tell you what; a size 12 feels a heckuva lot better than those 2x's I was rockin' over a year ago.

I've been focused on continuing to choose good food and to not let too much time go by without exercising. This week, I made it to two kickboxing classes and worked out with weights another day. Three days isn't going to help me shed, but it's going to help me maintain.

I'm thinking about hiring another personal trainer. It might kickstart my summer progress. My class reunion is in August. So I've got May, June and July to drop 15 pounds. Doable, but it's tough because I've been talking about it for so long. A personal trainer might light a fire under me. I have the money--now, I need to find the time.

The other idea I have is getting up early and walking a couple of miles in the morning. I hate getting up early. Hate it, hate it, Hate it! Did I say I hate mornings? Okay, but if I want to lose the weight, this is the perfect time of year to work out in the mornings.

So I'm continuing to contemplate how I can kick up my habits a notch and do it consistently. In the meantime, I am still having fun watching how people react when they see me for the first time in a couple of years.
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