Had a conversation with myself and wondered why so many people want to lose weight 'super fast'. Not many have the patience to lose a pound a week, rather they would like to have been chunks come off each week.
Then it dawned on me the reason I want to lose weight fast is because then I can go back to eating crappy again, kind of like a reward for myself.
Yipes this is not good thinking on my part. :o
I figure the quicker I lose it then I can hurry up to the 'goal' line and then have a sigh of relief "I made it", then reward myself with crappy food.
No no no! This is a horrible mindset I said to myself.
I've since changed my attitude to a 'slow, but steady' mindset. No hurry to lose 'x' amount of pounds.
Why does it take me so long to finally figure out things???
05-06-2009, 08:26 AM
For me loads of anxiety goes with it. I panic about what I'm eating and whether I'll lose weight this week or not.
I'm looking forward to the finish, not so I can eat crappily again but so I'm 'there'. Am actually looking forward to shopping for low-fat and healthy stuff and being able to eat more of it once I'm at my goal (am calorie counting).
It's like when you're decorating; you want to get on with it so that you can sit in your new room and enjoy it.
I want to sit in my new body and enjoy it!!
05-06-2009, 08:42 AM
For me it's rewarding to see a good chunk of weight come off in a short period of time. I look at it as that's my body's way of rewarding me for all the hard work. I don't necessarily want to lose it fast nor do have that mindset. I can see and feel the affects of living better even without the drop and that is enough to keep me going. Slow and steady definitely wins the race---or so I've heard. ;)
05-07-2009, 06:26 AM
Honestly, it's the American "fast-food, fast-everything" mentality. we're reared in an environment that stresses instant results... be it food or weight for instance :)
05-07-2009, 09:51 AM
We're socially conditioned to want and expect to lose it fast. When have you ever seen a women's magazine advertise a "slow" weight loss plan on the cover? I've seen crazy titles like, "lose up to 30 lbs a week" - and they'll feature a person who lost that much (although the person would have a starting weight of like 575 lb). Not only is the result impossible for an average person, but even the vasty majority of the most severely obese - certainly not the "average reader").
Diet books sell based on how fast they deliver weight loss. I suspect it's the actual reason that most popular diets start with a "jump start," phase. I've never found that following a low carb diet first phase eliminates cravings, as they generally claim as justification. I think it's the "hook" to pull you in ("wow, I lost 6 lbs my first week!")
We have so many diet and food traditions that work against weight loss. Finding and eliminating their influence, can be a real challenge. I had to unlearn so much, in order to lose weight. We don't just learn the obvious "rules," we learn the unstated rules, even those we know we "shouldn't" follow. When I was 8, and already a Weight Watcher's member, I already knew that when a person on a diet "slips," the normal response is to eat whatever you want or even more than you want until the end of the day - or the rest of the weekend. I didn't "invent" the rule, I just saw my own mother follow it, and all the women in the WW meetings talking about it, and even though everyone agreed they shouldn't do it, they did anyway (examples are always the strongest teachers, which is why "do as I say, not as I do," is a very lame and ineffective teaching device).
I'm not dismissing personal responsibility, but social expectations are an obstacle a person needs to recognize as the first step in eliminating those particlular type of obstacle (to make things complicated, their are countless other types of obstacles, also). If you don't see the potholes, and have a strategy for going around or over them, you're going to fall in them every time.
Thighs Be Gone
05-07-2009, 09:59 AM
For me, I did not want to spend one more day in my obese body. I was tired of hiding my breathing when I was on the phone with someone. I was tired of rushing into the water at the pool after I took off my long coverup. I was tired of feeling like I was chopped liver on my hubby's arm. I was tired of not feeling pretty.
Much more important than any vanity--I have three sisters with chronic illnesses--breast cancer and Multiple Sclerosis. I have parents with heart disease and diabetes. How STUPID for me to remain fat when I see the writing on the wall and have two little kids to raise. If I am incapacitated or become some financial burden to my family I want to be able to look them in the eye and say, "Momma tried everything she could."
I just won't have it any other way. That was my motivation--I didn't have to lose it overnight but I did want to make my way down the path at a healthy rate and keep on clippin'.
05-07-2009, 10:04 AM
I find for me it's that I'm a very competitive person, especially with myself. I keep catching myself wanting to try little tricks to lose weight faster, like, trimming off a few more calories by using sugar substitutes, or extracts and supplements. I have to remind myself that when I stay OP, I lose weight at a reasonable pace, 1-2 pounds/week, and that this is a very good pace for someone who needs not only to lose, but to learn and maintain good eating habits.
Besides all that, if I lose all the weight too quickly, my skin won't have a chance to shrink back and I'll be left with wings and flaps that I could have mostly avoided by being patient (here's hoping).
The mindset I keep catching myself with is forgetting that what I'm doing now is working, I don't need to tweek a system that is getting results. If it ain't broke, etc etc.
05-07-2009, 10:12 AM
I'm sure everyone has slightly different reasons for wanting to lose quickly. I've experienced everything that has been mentioned so far: wanting to get back to "normal" eating, tired of constantly worrying about what I'm going to eat/exercise/lose each week, just wanting it to be over with because I have no patience, etc. But now, after spending 19 month losing over 60 pounds, I just want to not have to keep buying a new wardrobe every 6 weeks! ;) I like to buy clothes, and once I get down to my goal size I'll probably acquire an awesome wardrobe, but I am so tired of never having anything that fits (well, maybe it fits for 2-3 days......*sigh*)
05-07-2009, 10:42 AM
I think that much of my life, certainly from kindergarten through college, my biggest reason for wanting to lose rapidly WAS because fat, and therefore I was so disgusting, that of course I wanted to get it off quickly. If you're covered in feces, you don't want to get it off slowly you want it off NOW!
The problem was that it never came off fast enough. Each morning, I still woke up disgusting. I did CRAZY things to try to get it off quickly (I spent a good part of high school trying to get by on 500 calories or less, at least during the week. I had boyfriends, so I would eat only on date nights).
I set myself up for failure, because of the panic. And of course, since I was so disgusting, I lacked confidence that I could change, as every mistake "proved" that I was not only disgusting, but weak-willed, lazy, crazy or stupid.
I had to stop being my worst enemy, before I could make lasting changes. Until then, I made weight loss so miserable, that no one in their right mind would have been able to sustain that kind of punishment, for very long. I lived BY the scale, if it went up (even during TOM) I was BAD, and if it went down I was GOOD, and how good depended on how much I lost. So I was BEST if I wasn't eating at all. It got very crazy, and even though my rational mind knew it was the worst, most unsustainable method of weight loss and was crossing into an eating disorder, the part of me that knew that fat was the worst sin on the planet didn't care. "Fast or not at all," was really my battle cry.
I needed to learn to be an ally, not an enemy to myself. That was a lot harder to learn, than I ever would have expected - because I mostly liked myself. I didn't have (at least I thought) the self-loathing or lack of confidence (except when it came to fat) that I saw in a lot of people and some of my friends (even of normal weight).
I had to learn to work smarter, not harder (as they say so often in the workplace), and part of that was learning that "as fast as possible," couldn't be my focus, or I would destroy myself.
05-07-2009, 11:04 AM
I agree with all of the above. For me, I'm especially disappointed when I have a week like this week where I stayed right at my calorie limit, exercised faithfully and enthusiastically, and it still looks like I will not have a loss this week. I know enough now to not be upset or freaked out because I'm doing the right things and the scale will move again soon, but I guess it's that idea that hard work should be rewarded. So when the scale doesn't move, I feel deprived or like I've been unfairly treated!
An idea occurred to me when I was writing this. Bunny43 mentioned that part of it might be the subconscious thought that we can go back to our old ways once the goal is met (which we all know is NOT possible). So maybe I can look at this from the flip side, and think of weeks where I've had no "scale reward" as being practice for Maintenance. When we reach maintenance, there will be no scale rewards to look forward to. There will be other rewards, such as continuing health and ability to do lots of fun physical things, but we won't have that declining number on the scale to look forward to. So this week is Maintenance practice for me. Yay! I did good!
05-07-2009, 11:28 AM
There is so much truth to your personal insight into this. As a rewards based person, I'm trotting towards that weightloss finish line in anticipation of my "reward".
I can only hope that as I inch closer to each mini goal and final realize my final goal, whenever it may come, that the reward of being healthier and (hopefully) more confident in public, will be all that I need.
The truth is, maybe I too am already looking forward to that crap food bonanza at the end of the rainbow. I'm grateful that you've brought this possibility up because we have to all remember that this journey should change our habits as it changes our sizes. All this work will have been for nothing at all if our way of celebrating is to eat ourselves back into the fat depression that once was.
05-07-2009, 12:16 PM
I had to stop being my worst enemy, before I could make lasting changes.
Me too, Colleen.
Before this, I was always one of those who was really looking forward to reaching a mythical "goal" weight so I could go back to "normal" eating ~ e.g., stuffing myself with crap. Now, I'm looking forward to goal so I can continue to lead a healthful lifestyle and continue to be rewarded by looking better and feeling great.
I turned a page last August. The lightbulb went on all at once and I finally decided not to be fat anymore. It's not who I am. I am not fat on the inside anymore, only on the outside. So, yeah, I want the outside to match the inside as quickly as possible. So I'm doing everything in my power to get to goal weight as quickly as possible. But that doesn't mean I'm starving, far from it, or doing anything unhealthful. It does mean I am really not tempted to cheat, at least, not much, because it will keep me from hitting goal as quickly as possible. When I am tempted I just walk away. I'd rather be a normal weight.
05-07-2009, 12:31 PM
I agree with everything everyone has said. when i opened up this thread i was actually scared because i realized that i was thinking the same way.. about being able to go back to eating crappy food. Even though i know i wont let myself do it, i guess its just the satisfaction of knowing that if i want to go out to dinner with friends and split a dessert once in a while, it wont hinder me on the scale that week, because im only maintaining a healthy life style not trying to obtain a certain number. Also, i am a 20 year old girl. my number one favorite thing to do.. is SHOP! i can NOT WAIT. to go shopping. i wish that.. i could wake up tomorrow, and be at goal, so i could go shopping for a new wardrobe and know what size i need, and then the next day.. go back to where i am now.. and then keep working to goal.. lol JUST SO I CAN SHOP. i miss it. and i refuse to spend money on clothes that wont fit me in.. 2 weeks.
05-07-2009, 12:37 PM
A few years ago I started losing weight, made up my mind that I wanted to be healthy, so I started on this "Daniel Fast" before my church had asked us to do it corporately. My mother was in remission, so I thought, perfect timing. I lost 15lbs in 10 days. I thought I was hot $!@#. I got down to about 215, the lowest I had been in years! Plus that was the fastest I had ever lost weight, I thought it was fantastic. I got compliments from my mom, who (rest her soul) told me all the time how cute I was if I could just lose the weight (of course she was 5'3 135), from my brothers, the nurses who treated my mom all of that. Then, the 21 days was up and I ate some pizza..I gained 8lbs in one day! I was devastated and just ate and ate and ate until I got up to 270.
What I did was "stuff down" the emotions I was feeling watching my young mother die of cancer while I was the only one of her children to take care of her. She died not too much after that and I ate even more to deal with the grief. After that, I tried every get skinny quick scheme I could think of and nothing worked. I just wanted someone to notice me now to fill the void my mom left.
What I know now is this, there is no way I want to lose weight super fast. I want to keep it off and feel good about what I did. In our microwave society we give away too much too soon and its really a shame. I'm done with the microwave, I'm going back to heating things in the oven, no matter how long it takes ;)
05-07-2009, 01:11 PM
I don't think there's anything wrong with the desire to lose weight as quickly as possible, assuming there is some emotionally-healthy reason behind that desire. Yes, I DO want to lose my fat as quickly as possible, in a healthy manner, because there are other things I want to do that I cannot do while I am actively losing weight. For example, I want to ramp up my athletic training--weight lifting and endurance sports--and for me, it is not possible to be physically gung-ho about training while I am eating in a deficit. And for many sports, it is important to be lighter than I currently am in order to feel competent and to reduce the risk of injury. So, I am frustrated with my rate of loss (despite the fact that it's in the range of 1.5 to 2 pounds per week), simply because my current weight and the need to lose more IS holding me back from stuff I want to do.
Additionally, weight loss is currently the only "hobby" I really have much time for, and I would like to spend a lot less time obsessing over it, and more time doing other things.
There are other things I want to do that I cannot do while I am losing weight, also--like build a nice wardrobe. There is just no sense in spending real money on clothes, beyond an item or two here or there, until I am smaller. Already the jeans I bought a couple months ago are hanging from my bottom and becoming really annoying, but I don't have the budget to buy new clothing in every size I hit. Losing weight faster means less time that I stay in this annoying state of in-between wardrobes.
And the final reason I want to lose weight as quickly as possible: I am tired of being on a diet, in the sense of having to restrict my calories so extensively. There are things I have had to cut from my diet that are healthy, wonderful foods, that simply don't fit in my daily calorie count at the moment; but which I know from present experience I will be able to fit in when I am able to eat at a maintenance level. I am just tired of having to say no to things like avocados. I took a one-week planned break from my diet a couple weeks ago (where I intentionally ate at maintenance level, basically the same diet but just more food), and it was HEAVENLY.
So, IMO, there's absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to be done with "dieting" as quickly as possible, and on to the business of living my life.