First of all, I haven't been posting as much as I'd like because life is just plain crazy. I do lurk frequently though and appreciate the support I get from these boards.
I'm stuck. Desserts have creeped their evil way back into my diet, and I haven't been getting nearly enough cardio into my workouts. In fact, I recently discovered yoga and found a studio I'm in love with. I've been going four or five times a week and I love the way it makes me feel!
My weight is holding steady. I fluctuate from 209-212. It's up and down and up and down.
I don't want to give up, but I'm content. I have to ask myself if that's so wrong? I've lost about 80 pounds and gone from a size 26 to a 16. I love the things my body is able to do now and the way I feel now.
I suppose I'm just looking for encouragement or someone to say it's ok to be where I am. We put such pressure on ourselves I think we lose sight of what's really important, y'know what I mean?
That decision is really yours to make - only you can say what is right for you. You can stay where you are, and if you like it, that's great. If down the line you feel like taking off a bit more, then do that too. There's no law saying it has to come off today, this week, this month, or this year.
The only considerations that I can see are a) health and b) how you feel. Check in with your doc and see if s/he has anything useful to say. You're feeling pretty good, so that is not an issue right now. It is nice to see someone on the forum who is happy with herself!
First of all, congratulations! You should be extremely proud of yourself. I also completely understand how you feel. When I got down to 190, I was stuck for several months. I was proud that I had lost 60 pounds, and everyone said I looked great. Because I was so excited about my weight loss and the comments I ad received, I simply ignored the fact that my ultimate goal is to get down to 150. We are the same height, so at 190, I was still obese. After counting calories so long, I decided to join Weight Watchers to help keep me accountable. I dropped another 15 there. Now I fluctuate between 170 and 175, and Im determined to keep going. Aside from the health benefits of dropping more weight, I think you have to ask yourself why you set your initial goal weight lower anyway. I know a size 16 feels good, but a 12 felt even better to me. 80 pounds lost is awesome! Imagine how you'll look and feel if you lose 100 or more.
I can't wait until I'm able to buy a size that doesn't have a W or an X behind it. Though I know I will still be overweight or possibly still obese when I get to those sizes. My goal is to get to at least 150 to put me at a healthy weight.
Mini Goals: 275lbs 5/14/12 249lbs 8/6/12 224lbs 12/17/12 204/199lbs
Only you can decide when you're done, but you don't have to commit to any decision forever. If you want to practice maintenance for a while, that doesn't have to be a forever decision.
Ironically, when I started this journey, I wasn't trying to lose weight - not really. I was afraid to diet because weight loss attempts always ended up with weight gain. I didn't think I could lose weight without eventually gaining it all back and then some. Then I accidentally lost 20 lbs due to cpap therapy for sleep apnea.
I decided to focus on weight maintenance - maintaining those 20 lbs lost - and while I was at it I thought if I lost a pound or two more I would then work to maintain those pounds too. I ended up losing 105 lbs just by focusing on "not gaining (and maybe losing one more)."
So what about trying that. Focus on the "not gaining," but if you DO happen to lose a pound here or there, keep focusing on the "not gaining" and everythying else is gravy.
You don't have to do more than you're ready to do. If you're not ready to make more changes to your diet or activity level, then don't - but focus on not backsliding.
Maybe if you practice maintenance for a while, you'll soon decide you're ready to do more - or not.
The most important thing is keeping your weight, your choice. And to do that, you have to focus on it. You still have to keep weighing daily (or weekly), and you still have to stay on top of your weight if you don't want to regain.
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So what about trying that. Focus on the "not gaining," but if you DO happen to lose a pound here or there, keep focusing on the "not gaining" and everything else is gravy.
I think this is excellent advice, and advice I happened to need to hear right now myself. I've been battling the scale, desperately wanting the numbers to go down, instead of focusing on maintaining the weight I have lost (and if I lose another pound, then maintaining that loss). So thanks for this, kaplods!
I think it can be useful to give our bodies a bit of a break by maintaining our weight loss for a period. Perhaps this time will help with your possible future weight loss, as when you decide you're ready to lose more weight (whenever that may be), your body may respond better.
You're not done, mainly because it sounds like you've relapsed back into an unhealthy lifestyle, despite the fact that you may not be gaining more weight. And just because you feel alot better than you did 80lbs ago, whose to say you won't feel 1000x better after another 20-30lbs? Maybe it can be life changing. Basically you shouldn't stop just cos you feel "better" and your lifestyle shouldn't consist of little to no workouts and alot of dessert, it's more than about weight; its about health.
Give up before you reach Onederland?! Absolutely NOT! You deserve to have a ONE at the beginning of your weight. Desserts do not deserve to keep you in the 200s!
Does that mean that you can't be happy now? No. You can be happy at any weight.
Does this mean that if you're not losing right now, you should be trying harder, doing more cardio, eating differently? No. By all means, this may be a slower process that the first 80 pounds. You're moving into a lifestyle range where what you did for the first 80 pounds might not be what you want to do for the rest of your life. Yoga is all about body awareness and I think that making yoga as a major part of your life is a fantastic idea.
But do I think you're done? No. And I have a sneaking suspicion that you don't think you're done either.
I think it's also very important to realize that we're never done (unless we want to gain all the weight back).
For most people, maintenance is every bit as much work as weight loss, and yet (usually) not as rewarding. We're culturally trained to celebrate and be thrilled by weight loss, but not by weight maintenance. So it's all the work, without the rewards.
And I think that's really why most people regain - it's because they've stopped being rewarded. To succeed permanently, you've got to see the "not gaining" as every bit as rewarding as the losing - otherwise it's very tempting to regain (if only to experience the thrill of losing again).
So if you're going to be doing all that work anyway, you might as well just put in the work you're willing to do, and be satisfied with whatever result that work accomplishes.
If you decide that you're putting in more work than you can handle right now, you've got to be satisfied with whatever you can do - and the potential consequences.
I always know that I could backslide with my diet and exercise if I wanted to or needed to, but I'd have to be content with the results (stalls or gains). I can decide to do less (or because of circumstances beyond my control, I could end up unable to do less despite my wishes to do more). Either way, I will have to accept the results or try to find other strategies to get what I want.
The only thing I have to remember is that I can't get have it all - or any of it, If I don't want to do the work it takes to get the results I want. I either have to do what it takes to get the results I want - or I have to accept the results of what I am willing to do.
So if you're not ready or willing to do more than you're doing now, that is fine, but you have to be prepared for the possible results (weight stalls or even gains if you decide you need to take a break from some of your current efforts).
It's really as simple as doing what you're willing to do, and accepting whatever consequences that brings. If you're not happy with the consequences, you have to be willing to do what it takes.
Of course you can give up the work or some of it, and be unhappy with the consequences (that's sadly our cultural norm), but I choose the route to being happy - and that means doing what I'm willing to and being happy with whatever results that brings. And being happy means doing what I'm ready and able to do, and just accepting the results whatever they are.
If tomorrow I decide I just can't (or won't) do any more than what I am doing, that's ok, but I don't let myself want it all (no work AND great results). I can "settle" for any amount of work I want, but I have to accept the consequences of that decision.
There's nothing wrong with deciding you can't or aren't ready to do any more than you're doing, but accept the consequences of that. Then you'll at least be in conscious control.
What most of us do (because it's the cultural norm, and we see everyone else doing it) is decide that we don't have what it takes to lose more, but because we're not ok with the results, we decide that the whole process isn't worth it with a thought cycle that works like this.
If I don't work harder, I'm not going to reach my goal weight
I just can't imagine putting more work into this, I'm physically and emotionally exhausted
I'm never going to reach my goal weight
If I don't reach my goal weight, all this work will have been useless (This is the faulty logic - thinking that only the goal weight counts for anything)
I'm going to be fat forever, no matter what I do (again faulty logic, catastrophising the situation - because we've been taught to)
If I'm going to be fat forever, no matter what I do, I might as well at least get to eat whatever I want.
We blame ourselves for being lazy, crazy, or stupid when we fall down that path, because we're taught to do that as well. It's how weight loss (and to a lesser extent all beauty effort) "is done" in our culture. We've convinced ourselves that if we can't be perfect, then none of the efforts matter at all.
We often treat weight loss as if there are only two options
1. Be at a perfect weight or strive perfectly to attain that weight
If we're unable or unwilling to accomplish #1 in a manner we consider acceptable
2. Don't make any effort at all. Eat what you want because if you're not perfect, what does it matter.
I firmly believe, it's the myth that only perfection matters, that accounts for much of the weight loss failure rate. Folks don't see their success because they only define perfection as success.
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