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Interesting question, Russ.
I guess as I sit here and think about it, I don't really know what part my weight loss had in my change, vs maturity (I was 23 when my "big" weight loss occurred) vs therapy, vs just deciding it was time to change my life!
And I still feel like a work in progress, and hopefully will until the day I die! I feel like I'm not so much making big changes, but evolving over time. As I learn more and more about the benefits of good nutrition, and exercise, I keep evolving in the way I view those things, so have gone from a teenager whose only vegetable she could palate was raw carrots, and could down a bag of Doritos in a setting, to a lover of fresh fruits and veggies, preferably home grown or local.
I also went from the teenage couch potato, to an athlete in my 40's. Again, not a big overnight change but a gradual, slow evolution.
Do I think the weight loss caused this evolution? No, but it did make it possible, and it was related, as I've always yo-yo'd since my big loss, from probably as high as 160, down to 120's and have settled where I am now, and it feels like my happy place!
In all this, I don't think my personality has changed dramatically, but again, evolution, I did go from extremely shy to being able to become a leader in my organization. I'm still an introvert by nature, but also able to make decisions, and have important conversations and express my opinions as needed.
Does any of this sound subtle...believe me this was a 20 year transformation, and those changes though great were gradual, so perhaps subtle is a good word for them.
Thanks for such a thought provoking question...
highest weight ever:202, SP starting weight: 143
New goal: more practical new goal, 129, update ticker to reflect that goal.
H: 5''4" 50 y.o.
"Don''t let yesterday use up too much of today." Will Rogers
"Eat Food, Not Too Much, Mostly Plants" Michael Pollan
@Sandy, I have heard and read that you must accept yourself as you are or the weight loss just won't do it. So that is what you are going through now - but it sounds to me like you are winning this battle too! Recognizing a problem is half-way to solving it.
@ Shrlzi, Good Morning!
@ Watermellen, yes, I too am dealing with the "no dramatic change" as I enter Maintenance. I am having to accept the 5 lbs range for maintaining my weight.
@Sarbah77, I walk looking down from my NYC training - not to step in *ahem*! That is so cool about the new people thinking you were always so trim and healthy!!
@ Russlane, thanks for a wonderful post! I find I am less self-conscious about my "wiggle" when I walk. Swinging my smaller hips when I walk uses more muscles and works my obliques (that is what I tell myself *grin*) and I really like knowing that all my clothes will fit me now.
Have a great day y'all.
Central Time Zone
page 39 in The Spark
I went from 210-120 in 16 months with SparkPeople!
In Maintenance since 8/11/09!! (backslid without internet but still within normal range!)
Lifetime Spirited Underdog!
I didn't "make it happen" the first time, I "made it happen" the last time!
For me, I guess the biggest change was holding my head up. I don't know why I didn't before or why losing weight made me start... but I'd walk, and I'd stare at the ground in front of me. Now I walk, looking ahead.
But, you know, it could be that I'd had a big surgery on my knee (not to be confused with next week's MAJOR surgery on my knee) and recovery was lengthy. perhaps looking at the ground was a survival "don't trip, fall, and reinjure myself" mode. Perhaps it wasn't, but it was more a confidence thing.
In 2008, I switched departments... and it was SO STRANGE to be working with women who knew at my current weight, not the ones who'd watched me lose (and keep off!) the weight. To them, I am and have always been a healthy person. That was so strange at first and REALLY helped adjust my thinking. I am a healthy person; I can always be a healthy person. There's no preconceived notion here about who I was or where I could slip back to.
It's kinda cool. :)
Really awesome replies and as always, y'all keep me honest and give me a lot to think about.
The whole idea of being ok with no huge change BEING the huge change is really, really awesome. I can overlook that -- basically I lost weight, came out and learned the dating game, dealt with being a food writer, dealt with some childhood issues rearing its ugly head (again) and my mother's brain cancer all at the same time. You could play armchair shrink with me all d*** day lol.
In one sense, I don't mind talking about all that because my personal example was so extreme it's easy to pick things out. But the more folks I talk to, the more the Big Things I dealt with reveal themselves in subtle ways to others. Regardless of scale (pun intended), "now what?" is something we all face. And it's something we all address on our own terms -- even if it's not letting something settle. Wow.
And I get the introvert thing, darlin'. That's why the Today thing was so hard for me (man, it brought up all sorts of stuff for me). I suppose, and naively so, that the weight loss would make me less introverted. Didn't work out that way. On the other hand, I saw it as a catalyst ... if I could lose my weight, what else can I do? And since my whole life revolved around my waist size, who am I now that my waist size is normal? I didn't have the answers to those things, and I kind of figured it out as I went. And yes, for a time there I was a total mess as I figured all that out.
I'm still going to focus on the thorny issues of weight management -- when I started SH I basically felt I needed to start with those articles as if to say "this stuff happens." But I want to get into the fun stuff -- the unexpected directions or the sense of peace calm -- too.
As always, a fascinating thread topic Russ: thanks. Want to hear all the details about the phoenix tatts!
My life has NOT dramatically changed since I lost weight (big whack of 8o pounds in 2000-2001, and then relost the last 20 pounds since May this year with SP). At least not on the outside. But learning to be OK with "no dramatic change" was in itself the big change which made keeping the weight off possible. And beyond that -- focusing not on the weight loss so much as how much better I feel without the weight; that was the other part. Used to experience self-loathing about weight as last thought before falling asleep, first thought upon waking in the morning. Don't feel that way anymore. Never want to feel that way again. No weigh!
wow- weight loss as permission to change your life. I love it! This has not been such an issue for me, as the things I wanted to do that I couldn't do at my peak weight mostly had to do with physical exercise things ... and I had to start exercising to help lose the weight so achieving some goals went hand-in-hand with the weight loss effort. Can't wait to hear more on this!
...there is a place in you where you have never been wounded, where there's still a sureness in you, where there's a seamlessness in you, and where there is a confidence and tranquility in you. ~John O'Donohue
You come up with some great threads. My battles post weight loss have been internal. I fight depression, outwardly I seem outgoing, inwardly - a quivering introvert. I found out that the weight loss made no difference to this and had to recognise that the battle had to be fought through knowledge and getting illness under control. It's on going and one I'll be fighting for life, but the good thing is I have this wonderful outlet.
"Have patience with all things, but chiefly have patience with yourself. Do not lose courage in considering your own imperfections but instantly set about remedying them -- every day begin the task anew."
Saint Francis de Sales
Hey guys --
I'm working on a story, and I'd love y'all's input on as I'm getting started.
Y'all hear me prattle about this all the time *laughs* The key thing, in my mind, is daring yourself to actually do the things you would have never done pre-weight loss ... literally making your life look very different. That doesn't just happen with the weight loss.
But the indirect, sutbtle stuff -- the activities and actions you take -- is the reminder that "that was then and this is now" ... when your life looks different, it's more difficult for old habits to kick in.
It's no coincidence the last few weeks have been rough for me, maintenance wise, because I got pretty isolated.
For me personally, that's learning to cook, getting my phoenix tatoos, travel, pushing myself to try on clothes styles I normally wouldn't, relationships, get out of my introverted self hiding in my room eating. Basically, to have the life I imagined my life to be when I lost weight, but then realized losing weight by itself wouldn't accomplish.
That's my version of the actions I took post-weight: let's hear yours.