So. I started this post a few weeks ago. Then I noticed a few things. So its been edited, and now I’m not so sure of myself.
August 31, 2010. First. This is the hardest one to say out loud. For now, I’m calling it quits on trying to lose more weight. I guess I’ve lost enough. Its hard enough trying to maintain this 100 pound weight loss. And though it is a little disappointing to think that this is as far as I’m gonna go, that’s reality. Quick weight loss recap: Starting about Jan. 1, 2005, at 50 years of age, I joined weight watchers at a starting weight of 255.5. It took about a year and a half to lose 87 pounds, putting me at 168 pounds. That puts us at about July 2006. After that, it took a great deal of effort and probably about 4-6 months to lose another thirteen pounds to get me to 155.5, my 100 pound weight loss. Since that time, I regained 13 of those pounds (back to 168,) then started working out with a personal trainer and re-lost those 13 pounds. I have really not gone below 155.5 except for maybe a day or two in all that time. Today, after taking a wee break from vigilant maintenance my weight is again at 168. (The overachiever in me feels the need to point out that ALL the 168 weights were fully clothed and in the middle of the afternoon …)
Recently, they started something called ‘My Chart’ online, where you can look at your medical record. It was a bit jarring to see 168-167-168 on my medical record, EVERY TIME I have gone to the doctor’s in the last four years! Seems like my body would prefer to be at 168, and not 155. However I am not. Darn it, this is complex! Okay first I have to admit. I just like saying I have lost 100 pounds. Must be the Monk in me. Its such a nice even number. And so much more impressive than 87. But that’s just a silly reason. For someone who isn’t really even 5’1″, 155 pounds is still very heavy. Intellectually, its the max I can consider carrying, But my body seems to be saying–hey, we (the cellular we) think 87 pounds is a very generous amount to give up. We’re really not comfortable living with less. Aack. More negotiations to follow.
Currently I am working my way through the ‘Do You Use Food to Cope?’ workbook, and I am doing pretty good with some of the suggestions and information. This book runs along the same lines as mindful or intuitive eating. I am not weighing myself, and I am not tracking my food 100 percent, although on most days I could tell you EXACTLY what I ate, when I ate it, and how good it tasted. And I would know an approximate calorie count too. I am still eating the same very healthy food that I have learned to eat over the years. Still eating 5- 6 meal/snacks per day. That’s the next enough. To maintain this weight, I get to eat enough food to be happy and satisfied each day. [ added today: I made myself finish the book last night. I learned a few important things from this book about how my obsession with food started, or was nurtured. I also realize that I like to eat 'recreationally,' and that is not gone. For example, when I watch my bi-weekly quilt show, I like to have popcorn and a little chocolate, EVEN IF I'M NOT HUNGRY.]
I am very happy with the exercise I am getting on a daily basis. The best information we have (NWCR) says that people who have maintained a weight loss for a long period of time exercise approximately one hour a day. Thanks to Mr. Noah, I am meeting that goal easily. Sometimes I run, but I am never going to be a runner. I have enough joint damage and mild arthritis that there are too many days I don’t think it would be wise to run. So its hard to improve your time and/or distance when you can’t be consistent. But I can walk and hike with the best of them. I am going to the gym regularly. Get in the pool at least twice a week, and I do some pretty heavy duty lifting. I am doing enough exercise.
I haven’t mentioned being creative lately, but I am pretty happy with how that is going too. The reason I haven’t talked about it is because I have been working on my Pay It Forward challenges. Lots of creative fun. Just can’t share it with you. And as I am with most projects, I am anxious to finish these now so I can get on to the next project. I am getting enough creative time. [obviously, written a few weeks ago.]
Spiritually, I am also happier with my choices. I am (most days) spending time reading spiritual books, the Bible, journaling, and spending time in prayer BEFORE I hit the computer for blog reading. [oops. Except today, I started writing this first. Because I was thinking about it a LOT yesterday.]
Added today: This morning I checked out Dietgirl’s blog, and she wrote about her struggles and her stint with intuitive eating. (loved Pubsgal’s comment on this blog.) Dietgirl’s been at this A LONG TIME. It gives me hope, and helps me to realize that its okay to still be having these struggles. I do feel a little pressure to be a ‘role model’ of a ‘maintainer’ when my weight fluctuates rather consistently between these ranges.
However, onward and upward. The trail mix crack is out of the house. No, I did not throw one single bit of it away, even though I realized it was not something I could eat in a controlled manner. It is something that has to be relegated to the kingdom of chocolate chip cookies–a food that is so perfect to me that I will only have it once in a while, bought for a one time treat. Not kept in the house. Period. I will continue to work at getting to 155 and STAYING THERE. I know its not optimal to have your weight fluctuate this much. Some days I am tracking my food instead of listening to my hunger signals. Some days I weigh myself (funny thing was, in the middle of all this, my scale died. so I had to stop weighing. But there is still a scale at the gym, so I can check once in a while. The NWCR also says that most maintainers weigh regularly.) I know I’m not going back.
Stay tuned for the further adventures of…debby, a short formerly fat middle aged woman who still loves food.