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Maintenance... Really!?

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Thursday, February 07, 2013

I was thinking tonight, about maintenance.
What does it mean?

Clearly it means not gaining back the weight that you have so painstakingly lost.

How do you do that?
You continue your healthy living habits you have acquired.

End of the road? Is that all?
Do you really just want to stay stagnant, maintain the status quo?
Continue to measure, weigh, log?

In life nothing ever stands still.

Even in maintenance there is room for improvement. Lots of room.
For me, exercise plays a huge role. Now more than ever.
Replacing some of my fat with muscle is an ongoing project.

Okay, I admit it, I'm addicted to hiking. It has really gotten under my skin.

Tonight I discovered some really mean thigh muscles.
I managed to lose 1 inch off my thighs and I'm rocking those skinny jeans. It took 10 months to lose this 1 inch, so persistence definitely pays.

And if you're hugely active the topic "food" becomes a really small part of your life. It is now what I've always wanted it to be - fuel.

In the last 2 months I dropped 6 lbs. Don't really know how that happened. Well, had a bit of turmoil going on and can definitely say that I'm not a stress eater.

Can't really afford to lose much more weight but will attempt to maintain at this new lower weight. To tell you a secret, it's my dream weight which I was never able to reach when I was actively trying. Go figure.

Keeping on topic with the SparkPeople theme: Life is good on the maintenance front.

Outside of that, I'd have some crazy stories to tell... I finally figured it out - you've got to live a little. And promptly I got myself into trouble. Isn't life delicious?
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    1910 days ago
    Maintenance is going to be hard for me someday...but I'm trying to learn that this is a healthy lifestyle adjustment and not just a phase I'm going thru. Hopefully when I get to the end of my journey I'll realize it wasn't the end of my journey afterall, it was just the dancing in the rain part!

    It looks like you've got it all figured out. Good job! That's really awesome to hear!! :)
    1910 days ago
    I loved this blog. Maintenance scares me and I'm not even anywhere close now (i've gained it all back + some in the past). Your words help!! :)
    1915 days ago
    emoticon Live life to its fullest and laugh in trouble's face!! Yes that a great weight loss formula!! Love it!!
    1915 days ago
  • TANYA602
    I'm just catching up with your blogs and loving them. Congratulations on your maintenance, and those mean thighs!! I also live in So Cal and have finally succumbed to hiking and turns out I am loving it, as well, now that I'm 40 lbs lighter. Also found some snow last week and had a blast!
    Keep the blogs and inspiration coming! We have so much we can learn from your journey!
    1915 days ago
    This is such an encouraging blog! Showing that it is possible not to be obsessed with food anymore... To be honest, I rarely read blogs about maintenance here on SP where I can say the person who wrote it is 'free'. You are free from the food addiction and that is wonderful!
    1915 days ago
    I have trouble with maintenance, but I hope my exercise is paying off and exchanging fat for muscles.
    1915 days ago
    Kricket! I loved this blog! Thank you! You are an inspiration. Keep up the good job of maintaining!
    1916 days ago
    Great blog with a key idea: that maintenance isn't stagnation, and that there's always room for continuous improvement that doesn't have to focus just on weight! Love the cheeky attitude!
    1916 days ago
    I'm not an exercise junkie, but there are other goals that can come front and center once the weight obsession lifts and maintenance becomes comfortable.
    1916 days ago
    Awesome blog. I'm learning the truths of your blog, but have only been in maintenance for about 2 mos. Congrats on your success with maintenance and further weight loss. That's fabulous. I'm addicted to hiking too - love it. All the best to you friend. emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1916 days ago
    Great blog and what a beautiful picture on your page!

    Love this! "In life nothing ever stands still. "

    I'm not at maintenance yet (about 10 lbs to go I think) but I'm learning from maintainers like you. So thank yoiu for sharing!
    1916 days ago
    Good job!
    1916 days ago
    emoticon emoticon Great blog!!! Isn't it fun when our weight goes to that before dreamed of weight all by itself?
    1916 days ago
  • _LINDA
    I am an exercise junkie and food is my fuel and it won't run properly without the best nutrition. I love to hike too, but there are few opportunities here in the prairies. I also love Zumba and Boxercise. Its my love of exercise that has seen me through two years of maintenance. I still track everything I eat and do though, just for fun and reality checks. But also because I have met some terrific people here on Sparks and I am sharing their journeys. Nothing like the support of a few friends through good times and bad.
    Happy maintaining at the new weight!!
    1917 days ago
    maintenance is fun, though! sure, there's still tracking the food and working out. but the other activities, like your hiking or my outrigger canoeing, are a lot more enjoyable.

    I like your comment about rocking the skinny jeans. I feel the same way when I put on my underarmour shirt prior to my paddling.
    1917 days ago
    Wish I could learn to appreciate the cold weather more, but you are right, maintenance is a learning process and as I continue on, I will continue to learn and this maintenance thing will get easier and I will become more consistent.
    1917 days ago
    Thanks for sharing!! Very nice.

    I need to remember food is fuel. My diet is the hardest part for me, but I am doing ok. Especially, if I keep reading blogs like this one.
    1917 days ago
  • MKELLY72
    Nice straight forward, simple approach--and so true! It's emotionally hard--even though we (as maintainers) have all the tools and know how to use them.
    Thanks for posting!
    1917 days ago
    Food to me is medicine and what I eat now makes all the difference in how I feel.
    Here's to continued good health!
    1917 days ago
  • MY1FAN
    1917 days ago
    I love that you say that food is now just fuel, that you don't stress eat, and that you can't afford to lose any more weight (what a great problem to have).
    Tina said you were able to overcome binge eating. I'd love know your strategies. I got to goal and then binged my way right back to where I started. Please share any tips!!
    1917 days ago
  • MARTY728
    emoticon I really am looking forward to being where you are maintenance-wise.
    1917 days ago
    Inspiring! Back when I was a maintenance wannabe (close but no cigar), I read a blog about continuing to improve once the hoopla surrounding the weight loss died down. I adopted "maintaining but not done improving" as a sort of mantra, and I have to admit there has been a lot of personal growth in other areas of my life in the last couple of years.
    1917 days ago
  • KANOE10
    Great blog and great attitude. Enjoy your hiking. Congrats on maintaining your loss and losing 6 more pounds.
    1917 days ago
  • MOMMY445
    congraulations! that is awesome! have an amazing day!
    1917 days ago
  • DSJB9999
    emoticon emoticon
    1917 days ago
    Congrats on those numbers! I'm very happy for you! You are doing great!
    1917 days ago
    I agree! There's always room for improvement!! Congrats on the thighs and the scale number. Hiking seems like a great hobby. Good for you!! Take care and keep Sparking'! Love to see maintainers doing it!! Very inspiring!
    1917 days ago
    Great blog. I'm especially impressed with that thigh reduction. Slow and steady is just fine with me.

    1917 days ago
    I am in awe of all you have done. Congratultions
    1917 days ago
    I have way to go till I reach maintenance! Maintenance is hard but it is inspiring to see that there is room for improvement and that now you see food as a fuel. That's what it is actually and since I am an emotional eater I do whatever I can to control cravings and consider food as fuel.
    I hope one day I will reach maintenance level and celebrate my success!
    1917 days ago
    What a great blog to start my day with! You seem to have it all figured out. Food as fuel, addicted to hiking and seeking room for improvement in exercise. That's just great.
    I'd really like to be where you are one day. I feel exercise is my second nature now, too, but when it comes to food I still have issues to solve.
    But as you said, persistence always pays!
    Thank you for the motivational start to my day and have an awesome Thursday!
    1917 days ago
    "Looks like you made it...." Oh, I'm showing my age! It sounds like you have truly learned how to live this new lifestyle change. Food as fuel, an exercise you love and rock'n those skinny jeans. It sounds like you are loving "your new skin" and that's what it's all about.

    I love hiking, too! We don't live in the best area for hiking, but we definitely can explore some terrain once the snow melts.

    emoticon on your journey to a healthier you. It does sound like "you've made it." emoticon
    1917 days ago
    Although I am about 26 pounds away from maintenance, I find your blog extremely inspiring!!!! Thanks for the motivation. I just had two days of not doing too well, and got back into healthier habits this morning and feel great. Happy hiking!
    1929 days ago
  • BOVEY63
    I can see how you would become addicted to hiking with all the amazing places you can go!

    Congrats on all your success - you will rock maintenance!
    1930 days ago
    It sounds like you are in a good place. I'm happy for you.
    1930 days ago
    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon I agree you have to live a little.
    1930 days ago
    Way to go. You are absolutely correct. Maintenance involves improvement. There is always an opportunity for upgrades.
    1930 days ago
    1930 days ago
    Awesome! You are one strong cookie ---- er, steel cut oat! emoticon

    I'm glad that you have found your way and are living the life you deserve!
    1930 days ago
    Congrats on your progress!
    1931 days ago
    Woo Hoo!!!! Maintenance is tough sometimes, but it's a continuous journey in life! We learn new things every day, and those new things help tweak our healthy lifestyle!

    1931 days ago
  • TEDYBEAR2838
    So glad you define your new ground. Thinking about
    things in a good way keeps you focused and on track.

    Thanks for sharing so much of you, with us!
    1931 days ago
    You mean it can really happen? Reaching your goal and maintaining? I'm still working out the kinks in myself but i'm moving. Whether slow or steady i'm not sure yet but i'm liking the new me that is coming out. Less critical of this me.
    1931 days ago
  • CHERYLA2012
    Eat to live, as opposed to live to eat!

    Thank you for the positive and thought provoking post.

    I am within 20 pounds of maintenance and am already thinking about what that entails. I've bookmarked a couple of SP groups to look into when I'm closer.

    It's so helpful to me to see what other people are positively thinking about this subject and to realize that I am not far off base.

    Just continue to do what I'm doing and keep on my journey.

    1931 days ago

    Comment edited on: 2/7/2013 7:45:25 AM
    One day I hope to be where you are! "Food as fuel" is still an elusive concept for me. But you are wicked awesome!!
    1931 days ago
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