Maintenance is so much more frustrating than losing weight.
Science says that the longer you keep off weight loss, the more likely you are to keep it off in the future. In the two years since I hit my goal weight, I *have* managed to keep off 100 of the 115 lbs I've lost. This is what I wrote about maintenance last year on my 1-year anniversary:
"Adding weight training makes you gain weight. In the past year I have fluctuated between 167 and 174 lbs, which, you will note, is above my goal weight. However, I’ve lost inches and am wearing clothing that is 2 sizes smaller than I was a year ago."
You can read the rest of the blog here: ameasuredlife.co
So why am I so discouraged this year? This year I've fluctuated between 164 and 174 lbs. In my eyes, I look exactly the same as I did a year ago, although some of you will argue that I have more definition. A dear SparkFriend put it into perspective to me on my recent bikini comparison photos:
"KONRAD695: Let me see if I understand this correctly. You've just had a rough patch, overate, fitness has faltered, and coming off a little stress. With all that- you look a minimum, as good as last year. Either moved forward or stayed the same, but didn't go backwards. You will only get better from here. Just my thoughts, Konrad"
He's right. If I compare this year to last year, I've maintained PERFECTLY. I'm in the exact same weight range as last year. I'm stronger and using heavier weights than last year. I can run 2 miles without stopping which I couldn't do last year. I'm wearing the same clothes as last year. So why do I feel like such a failure? I wish I knew. My best guess would be I'm a person who strives to constantly improve myself. I'm improving myself internally, but I'm having trouble with the lack of perceived improvement on my exterior.
Perhaps part of it is the fact that I've been recognized for my weight loss this year. You've heard me mention a magazine article. It's in its final stages and will be out in October. Soon there may be thousands of strangers checking out my other blog, reading my story and seeking to gain some insight. My biggest worry is being a disappointment.
The scariest part of it all to me is the possibility of breaking back under the 100 lbs lost threshold. I got really close to that last month, and it scared the sh*t out of me. I don't want that at all. Unfortunately, I've learned that I've been lying to myself this year. I kept telling myself that I'm not an emotional eater because when I'm angry or sad I don't eat. But I DO eat when I'm stressed. That's emotional eating, too. So I need to find a way to better cope with my stress. It's always at night, too, when I'm tired and my defenses are low. It's something to work on.
I'm feeling less joyous on this anniversary and more introspective.