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EMMA579's Photo EMMA579 Posts: 116
5/16/10 10:46 A

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Getting excited about a loss is celebrating a victory. It has nothing to do with how you react to a gain. Sometimes, the only change you can see for a week (depending on how often you weigh) is the change in the scale.

I have a lot to lose. 10 pounds lost on the scale is a huge win, but is barely visible in my body - whether I look in the mirror or judge my clothing.

As long as you understand that changes are occurring beyond the scale, then you can put it in perspective. A huge loss is usually water weight and not fat loss. A small gain can be because fat is being made into muscle or because hormones are causing water retention.

Celebrate every win -- just not with food. Wins are sometimes hard to find in this life, so it's important to recognize them. You did this. Not your family or your friends or your doctor. You lost this weight.

Keep it in perspective. A win today does not guarantee a win tomorrow. Be vigilant about what you do to keep losing.

Relax. One day, one meal, does not make or break you. It's the big picture when it comes to falling off plan.

Stick to it. You can do it.


 current weight: 315.4 
MOMMYDOC3's Photo MOMMYDOC3 Posts: 299
5/14/10 9:55 P

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I am so glad to have found this thread! Not sure I have much to add but it certainly answered the question I'd asked a couple times about my recent success: is it okay to get excited about a loss if we are trying not to get distraught about a gain?

My answer now is yes, it is okay. Because that steady progress (with mini-ups and downs within the downward trend) is one of many things we get excited about. And we want reasons to get excited about our program.

This is different from not getting distraught about a gain, because again the weight is just one piece of the big picture. Our goal now is not to have something discourage us into the cycle of self-loathing and overeating that causes the yo-yo to go back up. So we recognize our successes with great elation, no matter what they are. If something doesn't count as a success, we acknowledge it, let it go, and move on. This is health, not obsession.

 current weight: 165.1 
5/8/10 9:11 P

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Wow! I sure picked the right place to bring this!

This tricky balance stuff and learning moderation in all things, even in how I view numbers, weight, progress, etc. is a tough lesson. I don't think I can do it without companions on the journey. Fully engaging in that as honestly as I can is key for me right now. Possibly always.

There is a lot of collective wisdom in this thread and I treasure each of you who took the time to answer as honestly and fully as you did. I plan to revisit this thread periodically to keep letting it sink in.

The huge irony???

Weight being the way it is, I stepped on the scale this morning and of course, it's up a pound. So, a whole lot of panic over nothing? No, not really. To be honest, it wasn't really panic and it's not really over nothing either. The scale is still trending down and that number is coming. For the most part I'm trying to just look and say to myself "oh, it's X. hmmm."

Also coming is that day that someone notices that I'm smaller. Or the day that I can do that stupid all the way up from the ground to sitting up yoga exercise. Or the day that I suddenly don't severely modify a dvd. Or the day when .... there are endless fill-ins for this. Maybe the point is to treat them all as equally important measures of accomplishment. Frankly even desperately missing veggies when we were out of town last week was a sign of a huge accomplishment. The fact that shopping isn't as scary as it was when we first started eating more healthfully is a big deal too. All good. Very good

And I truly thank each of you.

BARBARA_BOO's Photo BARBARA_BOO Posts: 9,794
5/8/10 2:30 P

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I'll add my ditto. So much helpful info from everyone.

I was still thinking about SALEE100's comments about fears, which really make a lot of sense to me, as I was reading today's "Healthy Reflections about "worry".

Among other things, it says, "To get rid of worry, think more confidently. Know that you can handle anything that comes along. Know that with loss comes opportunity. Know that things generally have a way of working out."

I do think we can handle anything that comes along. We have the rough patches, as LALA says. I know she'll work through hers. She always does.

Whether we weigh ourselves daily or weekly, we don't want to live our lives obsessing about numbers on the scale. I personally have done enough of that for a lifetime already.

I used to avoid the scale, if I knew I was gaining. Then, when I was doing well, I would get on it a zillion times a day. If I was in one of those "see who can lose more" challenges (barf), I would do all sorts of crazy things the day before weigh-in. And if I still couldn't "will" the scale number to drop enough, I would feel embarrassed and want to quit. That's no way to live. There's more to life than "how much I weigh", and I want to experience what those other things are.

I'm not a NY's Resolution person, but this January I felt like changing something about my scale fears. As I believe I've already mentioned, I switched to trying to make my daily weigh-ins, just a ROUTINE (no expectations of loss), in order to train myself, as LALA says, " not let that number be important. It's a number, I record it, I move on."

So far, it agrees with me. I'm learning more about how my body works. In case you're curious, there's a graph of the data in my latest blog. It shows the zigs and zags, even when the food and exercise are pretty much the same from day to day. It also shows my January/February rough patch, as well as the recovery.

Back in the day when I would starve to get into a certain size for an event and then eat myself into oblivion the day after, I couldn't care less about my health. And where did that get me? A yoyo championship, at best.

Now, my health matters. I want to feel good and stop abusing my body. I want to avoid weight-related illness and dependency. I want life to be about me, and not my weight.

From what you've all said, I know I'm not alone.
I wish this emoticon said WE.

Edited by: BARBARA_BOO at: 5/8/2010 (14:34)
Boo, Barb, BSue, Queen Legarathien of Nargothrond


~Team Leader, Separation of Church and Weight

~Team Leader, The Darker Side of SparkPeople

 current weight: 152.5 
DALAI_LALA's Photo DALAI_LALA Posts: 2,716
5/8/10 7:59 A

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First, I want to say ditto to all of the wonderful things our friends have said. They are all wise and wonderful!

Then, I'll add that there are two ways to deal with The Number. Weigh every day or don't weigh at all. I see so much anxiety come up about the dreaded "Weigh In Day" - I have no need for that kind of anxiety! For me, I weigh every day as a way to get an idea of what certain foods or activities will do for me.

I have trained myself, over time, to not let that number be Important. It's a number, I record it, I move on. Mostly. Whenever I get into a phase where I cannot do that, I stop weighing for a while until I get my head back on straight.

Today I didn't weigh, and I probably won't for a little while, because I'm in a rough patch, and so I would have allowed that number to consume me and tell me what a fat loser I am. I have worked pretty hard to get that beastly little voice out of my head, and it ain't coming back without a fight!

Good luck to you. If you can let the number just be a number, weigh as often as you'd like and just concentrate on things like how you feel, how the clothes fit, how much more physical activity you can do, and so on. If you can't refuse to give the number that power, then get rid of the scale, or maybe check in with it once a month.

Take care of you!


"Being defeated is often temporary, giving up makes it permanent." - Marilyn vos Savant

"We expect these things to change by waking up, and suddenly there they are." - Toad

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SALEE100's Photo SALEE100 SparkPoints: (0)
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5/8/10 1:00 A

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Congratulations on your weight loss!

I am in maintenance, I've been here before and gained the weight back. I can tell you that the first time I lost the weight I thought all my troubles would be gone, they were not. I thought my BF would love me more, that I'd love me more... Again, these things didn't happen. I thought I'd be a happier person, I wasn't. All I was, was skinnier.

You have to start by loving and appreciating your body... your legs for carrying you around, your intestines for absorbing the nutrients that allow you to live, your brain for the amazing way it figures out math problems. You are amazing and you have to know it to love yourself. You are worthwhile at your current weight, or at your highest weight. Once you love yourself, that can be a great motivation for making yourself healthier.

I also have issues with declaring how much I want to lose and by when... it never happened the way it was supposed to. So, I focused only on behavior... I weighed myself daily so I could get an idea of whether I was losing or just maintaining. I still only focus on behavior, when the scale drops I see it as positive feedback that I'm doing the right things. Not everyone should weigh themselves daily though, you have to find what works for you.

Yes, be scared, that's normal. Allow yourself to feel scared and keep putting one foot in front of the other and then suddenly you'll realize that you're not scared anymore. Yes, you'll be scared again later when you drop more weight... again, feel what you're feeling, know that you're on the right course. It will be ok, just keep reassuring yourself. Distract yourself with a favorite activity to help get yourself through the tough times if you have to. Anticipate your emotions and plan how you'll handle them.

I'm rooting for you! emoticon

~ Susan

Even if our efforts of attention seem for years to be producing no results, one day a light in the exact proportion to them will flood the soul.
~Simone Weal

 current weight: 148.9 
WILDFLOWER-'s Photo WILDFLOWER- Posts: 1,389
5/8/10 12:17 A

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Rina - Congrats on your 20 pound loss!! That's awesome and it - in itself - is a huge change. And change is scary.

On one hand you know you've made some really great strides in your diet & activities. On the other hand your afraid that the change is only going to be temporary or maybe that you'll fail. If I understand what your saying - it's almost like you want to pinch yourself to be sure it's real. I was there. Some days I'm still there.

To overcome this I've learned to celebrate every pound that's disappeared. And I keep my eye on the prize/goal -- good health.

I don't have a time frame on my weight loss goals. And to figure out what my goal was going to be I worked with my doctor who suggested a 20 pound range for me to be in. And once I'm in that range and I obtain a healthy hip to waist ratio I will declare myself in maintenance. Hip to waist ratio is something several doctors seem to think is a fair/good way to know your at a healthy weight or size.

Keeping track of your measurements is a great way to see progress too. I went from a 54.5" waist to 32.5" waist. Watching that progress on the reports here on Sparkpeople has been pretty awesome - and sure makes me feel pretty damn good.

But to get there - I go with baby step goals. Simply make good choices for today and repeat. And finally - I never, ever, ever, ever give up. And that will continue even after I hit my goal - what ever that number ends up being.

You can do this. Don't give up trying to find out what will work best for you. That's the most important - simply don't give up.

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Be Peaceful. Shine On.
~ Debra

Do or do not... there is no try. - Yoda, Star Wars

Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by the rulers as useful. - Lucius Annaeus Seneca (c. 4 BC AD 65)

 current weight: 174.8 
ANN5497's Photo ANN5497 Posts: 1,591
5/7/10 10:42 P

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When you are overweight or obese, it is difficult not to obsess about whether you are losing weight.

When I joined SP, I was determined not to fall in the same old dieting traps - thinking that this was a short term thing, that once I lost the weight I would go back to eating whatever I wanted and not keeping track, etc. You know the drill.

So, I set myself up with a very reasonable goal - lose 1/2 pound a week. On average. I figured that SP's recommended calorie range for a modest weight loss goal like that would put me near a "normal" range for someone who is trying to maintain a healthy weight. And it did - my range is about 1500 to 1900 calories (which also assumes lots of vigorous walking). Which is great b/c it makes me feel like I am simply adopting a new lifestyle, not dieting.

Then, I set my focus on exercising a lot and trying to eat healthy foods with my 1500-1900 cal. And it is working. I have not lost weight every week, I have gained weight some weeks, but overall, the progress has been downward on a slow, steady decline.

And now I have new points of obsession. I am addicted to walking. Most days I am anxious to get out there and move - even when it is bitter cold or gray, wet and gloomy. I am training to walk a half marathon this year. Never thought I could do that.

And I have new ways of measuring my progress. My resting heart rate is about 50. That's close to distance runner territory. Stats like that make me feel SO much better than a half pound weight loss.

Don't let the scale demon trap you. Find new "magic numbers" that make you feel good about yourself.

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage. Anais Nin

 current weight: 187.0 
CASSIES's Photo CASSIES Posts: 1,376
5/7/10 8:34 P

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This is a wonderful post and I am so impressed by your approach.

I struggle to not let myself bedefined by my weight loss or numbers. And every step of the way I feel I am not doing well. Every accomplplishment is short lived. And I am particularly tired and self loathing tonight. So I will embrace your words and the words of our team members posted here as best I can.

I truly admire what you have accomplished. emoticon

�The more we witness our emotional reactions and understand how they work, the easier it is to refrain.� ― Pema Ch�dr�n

 current weight: 221.0 
BARBARA_BOO's Photo BARBARA_BOO Posts: 9,794
5/7/10 6:35 P

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REIGNWATER, your statement shows that you have a very healthy understanding of what is most important.

Dropping the lbs is just one of the results that comes from making better choices about what we eat and how active we are. The weight loss is a symbol of the work you are doing with your behaviors, habits and thoughts. Congrats! You deserve to feel proud of it. It's a sign that you're getting healthier.

I don't believe we are defined by what we weigh. I wish more people knew what you know.

I really dislike challenges that are geared to focusing solely on losing lbs. Personally, when I set a goal for ME, I focus on something I can control (like behaviors or minutes of fitness).

I have learned that I don't like putting myself under pressure to lose "x" number of lbs by a certain date, because I can't control weight fluctuations, and it does give too much importance to the number.

And that magical number "Goal Weight" does not guarantee happiness, either. Life is life.

I hope some of this helps. I think YOU are on the right track. I say, keep doing what you're doing.


Boo, Barb, BSue, Queen Legarathien of Nargothrond


~Team Leader, Separation of Church and Weight

~Team Leader, The Darker Side of SparkPeople

 current weight: 152.5 
5/7/10 5:23 P

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Here's something to think about that might help. 27 years ago I sobered up in AA. And one of the things they do is recognize "birthdays", years of sobriety. 1 year, 2 years, 10, whatever.

But there was always a certain phenomenon. A few individuals would reach some sort of milestone and then celebrate by having a drink!!

One of the real old-timers, always stressed that it didn't matter one bit if they were sober 1 year or 10 years of 50 years. What mattered was they were sober today.

I am sober today.

So in terms of eating right, it doesn't matter if I've lost 1 pound or 10 or whatever. It matters that I eat sensibly today. I'll let tomorrow take care of tomorrow.

If that helps, use it.


Once one dismisses the rest of all possible worlds,

One finds that this is the best of all possible worlds.

 current weight: 213.0 
5/7/10 4:35 P

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I think that feeling after losing 20 lbs. is called 'motivation'. Nothing wrong with that!
Are you afraid of failure? Of self sabotage? hmmm?
Your doing so well, and you feel better! Go with that!
I know it seems like a full time job to take care of yourself, but it will become habit.

it's been up to me to inspire me.
~ Eric Clapton ~

"Atheism is a non-prophet
~George Carlin~

When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace.
~Jimi Hendrix~

"A dream you dream alone is only a dream. A dream you dream together is reality."
~John Lennon~

70 lbs. done!

398 Maintenance Weeks
JAZZIEGIRL05's Photo JAZZIEGIRL05 Posts: 1,178
5/7/10 11:55 A

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Hang on...there are people on this team that share your ambivalence/concern/frustration with the mind & numbers game. I've seen their posts! I'm sure they'll be popping in here any moment to offer sage advice.


Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.
-Samuel Beckett

Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind.
-Dr. Seuss

These are my principles. If you dont like them, Ive got others.
- Groucho Marx

 current weight: 155.5 
5/7/10 11:22 A

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At the risk of being laughed out of the team, you guys seem like a relatively sane bunch to discuss this with. Perhaps understanding and even relating to, my ambivalence (not meaning to caring but rather torn in 2 directions).

I'm doing well. I'm eating much better than in the past (no more mcnuggets!) and exercising daily in some form. I feel really good for the most part - mood and physical feeling good. I'm not finding it difficult, except for occasional challenges which I can usually see coming. I am NOT dieting, simply eating more healthfully and you will notice that none of my stated goals have ANYTHING to do with the number that the scale says.

However, one of the expected by products of this is that the number on the scale is changing. It's going down. And that is good. It's not good for me to be this heavy. It's not good for my self esteem or my health. The additional weight increases a whole range of problems including insulin resistance so weight going down equals good.

Here's the deal though. I don't want my weight to be how I measure myself. I don't want there to be magic numbers which equal self worth or success. It can be one aspect of it I suppose but one of the things I have stayed away from on spark is teams or challenges that are "lose X lbs" - that does bad things to my mind triggering all sorts of inappropriate behavior.

But, I did step on the scale this morning and I'm half a pound away from 250 lbs. That's nearly a 20 lb loss (from 270) and I am proud of it. Furthermore I can't remember the last time I weighed 250 or less and it feels good. But it also feels a little scary. I don't want it to get out of proportion in my feelings and mind. Yet, I am and should be pleased.

Do I sound confused? I think I am. Talk me down please.


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