Weight Loss Support - Help me make sense of my post vacation weigh-ins, please.




norjdont
12-02-2010, 04:46 AM
Hello there!

I have been registered here for what seems like forever but never posted. This seems to be the place I stumble back to when I need inspiration or have a question. I've never actually had to ask a question before because I've always been able to find the answer with a search. This time, well, I guess I don't know what to search for. Here it is...

I KNOW there are many factors that can contribute to weight fluctuations. But what I've noticed is, I believe, a pattern. The most recent occurrence was over Thanksgiving. I weighed myself the day before I drove 8 hours to spend a 5 day Thanksgiving break with my family. It was a typical Thanksgiving dinner - full blown overindulgence. As for the rest of my stay, we ate out at least once a day and had lots of leftovers. I didn't restrict anything and lived in stretchy waist pants.

When I came home, I waited two days to weigh myself because I was afraid of the damage I'd done. Plus I only weigh 2x per week, so I didn't want to throw off my schedule. Turns out I shouldn't have been worried. I'd lost .02 pounds. I'm not complaining, I just thought it odd.

Since I've been back, I haven't returned to my eating plan. But I've not been eating like I was while I was on my trip either. I went ahead with my second weigh in as scheduled, and I've gained 8 pounds!!!!

Now I'm confused. I can't think of anything that would cause such a swing. It's not PMS, and even if it was, the most I've ever varied by is 4 pounds. Big binges, like this Thanksgiving break, usually hit me much faster than this. Hence my hesitance to weigh in immediately after I got home.

The issue isn't the weight gain, not exactly. It's the pattern. When I travel, even though I don't restrict my eating at all, I always (ALWAYS) come home weighing roughly the same give or take a pound or two as when I left. Typically a few days later, I don't gain, but I'll still be stuck at the weight I came home with even when I immediately go back to plan. And regaining that weight loss momentum seems to take a couple of weeks before the weight is dropping consistently again.

What's the heck is going on? I go on vacation and maintain sometimes even lose regardless of how I eat???? Yet when I'm at home, I can't maintain even if I sort of try? Does this happen to anyone else? Anyone have any idea what's happening?

Help, please.
~M


rockinrobin
12-02-2010, 05:35 AM
I believe those 8 lbs were most likely the Thanksgiving weight not showing up immediately. Sometimes what we do one day doesn't directly show up the very next day.

Those added calories always catch up with us. Always. You can't expect any different. Know that when you eat like that, there are consequences to pay. You can't get away with it.

If you're so hesitant to weigh, I think that shows you something. Maybe make weighing a daily thing so that you can more closely monitor your patterns, since your patterns are of a concern to you. And to keep you more accountable.

Our body keeps an accurate journal, even if we don't.

I wouldn't be so concerned with the why and hows of how the weight is coming on you, these things are hard to decipher and you may never know the answers.

I'd be much more concerned with getting back to your plan. I'd also in the future have a more solid plan in place for when you go away and for holidays and the such. Quite frankly, if you want to get anywhere in this healthy lifestyle, you're going to have to practice that healthy lifestyle during all the times of your life. And by all means make yourself a recovery plan and don't let holi-days, spiral into holi-2-days or holi-weeks.

I hope you from here on in you will post more. Don't sit on the sidelines.. Jump right in and be more a part of this group.

I look forward to hearing of you returning to your plan and shedding those excess pounds, because every excess pound on you, is one that can come off of you. :)

Shmead
12-02-2010, 06:18 AM
Weight fluctuations are all about water. You may well have gained fat over Thanksgiving, but were also somewhat dehydrated, so your weight looked stable. Then, a couple days later, you're not dehydrated any more, maybe even retaining some water, and so you get a very different result.


JayEll
12-02-2010, 07:01 AM
I would say, give up the idea that you can get away with overeating and not see any impact on the scale. It's bound to catch up with you, especially if you don't return to your weight loss plan. Sometimes it means a stall, sometimes a gain.

Weight isn't linear, and as rockinrobin said, what you eat one day may not show up on the scale the very next day. I think Shmead has some good points also about dehydration. Water is usually involved in those 4 pound swings. As for 8 pounds, some of that is probably not water.

Good luck getting back with your eating plan!

Jay

krampus
12-02-2010, 08:05 AM
Ah yes, I'm familiar with everything you've mentioned. Sounds like it's mostly water weight but with a couple pounds of true gain. If you really were overindulging, no-holds-barred, and wearing stretch pants like you said, I imagine you're not lucky to get off without penalty.

Back on plan!

rockinrobin
12-02-2010, 08:07 AM
Now I'm confused. I can't think of anything that would cause such a swing.

I think here in lies the answer:

It was a typical Thanksgiving dinner - full blown overindulgence. As for the rest of my stay, we ate out at least once a day and had lots of leftovers. I didn't restrict anything and lived in stretchy waist pants.

and then there's this:

Since I've been back, I haven't returned to my eating plan.

Water is usually involved in those 4 pound swings. As for 8 pounds, some of that is probably not water.

Yes, I'd venture to say that a good portion of it isn't water. But again, regardless of what it is, it can come off, eventually, provided you consistently eat well. Get back to that plan. Pronto. You CAN do this.

MablesGirl
12-02-2010, 09:20 AM
My body has this pattern also. Once I am at a consistent weight, I can go off my plan for a couple weeks without seeing a difference. Then boom, I'm up 5 or 6 pounds. I sometimes wonder if this is why I've never been able to experience those miraculous 5 or 6 pound losses in a week either. My body doesn't swing that much that fast.
Let's both get back on plan!

runningfromfat
12-02-2010, 09:30 AM
I have to agree with what PP's said. It sounds like you might have been dehydrated or that the pounds took awhile to show up (it can definitely happen).

Like Robin suggested, it really, really helps to weigh daily. I know there are sometimes that I have a lot of water retention (during my period or immediately after flying for a few days) but I still force myself to weigh in because I've done it enough that I know somewhat what to expect in terms of water weight (so a 3-4lb weight gain during my period is OK but if it's more than that it's NOT a good sign on the flip side if I'm only weighing in 1-2 lbs above my normal weight than most likely I'm going to see a drop afterwards :D).

When it comes to travel (we're actually traveling right now) I have some rules I try to hold fast to no matter what (the one exception is if I'm going to throw up and that's all that is available, which has happened twice actually... once last week!:dizzy:). But my rules are:
-NO sugar (I do eat natural sweeteners). I avoid artificial sweeteners but did have a piece of sugar-free apple pie on thanksgiving (it did have artificial sweetener in it) but otherwise I'm pretty strict about this.
-NEVER drink calories (besides milk in coffee/smothies) but never, never empty calories like pop/juice (I sometimes have a diet coke on very, very rare occasions but I don't like the taste much anymore)
-Eat some sort of veggies during the meal, preferably multiple veggies
-Avoid fried foods (This I'm not alway perfect at but still pretty good)

Now since we're traveling I'm forced at times to make exceptions. For instance, we were running really, really late for our flight (not actually our fault AT ALL, there was a problem with the stupid person who checked us in who messed up some stuff!:devil:) and DH ran to Burger King since we hadn't eaten since breakfast (we had planned to eat there but we couldn't both go to get food since we were so late) and when I asked for chicken he came back with fried chicken and fries for me... I didn't want it but that was my only choice and I was starving. :( So I get that sometimes you're stuck but if you do have a choice try to always choose the healthy one.

Rana
12-02-2010, 10:06 AM
Learning how to travel and eat well during those times is so important! It's something I'm still learning to do and I've been more successful in my last two trips. I have another one coming up in a couple of weeks and I'm going to try something new to maintain or lose while I'm gone.

I agree with the reasoning too. I don't gain weight from one day to the next, it starts to climb slowly after a bad eating trip.

norjdont
12-04-2010, 06:41 AM
I hate writing long messages because people seem to skim. But it's my nature to be wordy, so I apologize in advance.

First thing, I just want to be clear that I was never deluded enough to think I wouldn't gain any weight. It wasn't even really about the 8 pounds. More about how the weight didn't come on until after - almost a week after - I'd returned home. And why my weight follows an odd but consistent pattern every time I travel.

This time I really think I may have read my scale wrong. I spent the holiday in stretchy pants not because my button close pants didn't fit or they'd become tight. Sure, I didn't want to feel them becoming tight because I knew I wasn't eating as I should have been. But really my sweatpants and yoga pants were warmer than the capris I usually wear. Since I've been home I've been wearing a my older bigger pants not because I grew back into them, but because I didn't feel like unpacking. So I really didn't know according to my pants if I'd actually gained.

I did manage to unpack this morning. And when I dressed in the pants I usually wear tonight to go to a hockey game, they were still loose. I couldn't find my belt but figured, eh, I'm hanging onto 8 pounds, should be fine. On the walk to the arena I realized my pants were a bit looser than I first thought. But after sitting for two hours I forgot about my pants. When the game was over my kid and I were racing down the stairs and I almost lost my pants!!!

Totally baffled, I came home and weighed myself. The 8 pounds vanished! I must have misread a 0 for an 8(it's a digital scale). I don't want to blame the scale - like it gave an inaccurate weight. It's only a few months old, and it gives me the same reading as my doctors scale within a few tenths. I've checked it out 4 times, the last time was on Monday before last and mine was dead on.

There is no reason I should be missing those 8 pounds. Not that I'm complaining, but it just adds to the odd factor. Especially since today I found out I grossly miscalculated the due date of my next monthly. I was so off and I started two days earlier than when I should have. So I 'should' have some bloat or something in there, but I've got nothing.

Maybe I overestimated the amount of food I ate. Sure, I ate high calorie foods, but I've been thinking about it, and maybe I didn't eat them in the quantity I thought I. My sister-in-law is one that has never had a problem with her weight. Since we were staying with her and my brother, she was with me at almost every meal. I ate when she ate, and I stopped eating when she stopped. So now I'm thinking, yea, I ate crap, but I didn't eat a metric ton of crap.

We were also pretty active. More active than I am at home. We had random Nerf dart gun battles a few times a day and we played a lot of Wii sports. Maybe that helped.

If there really was any substantial weight flux I doubt dehydration played a roll. I'm pretty good with my water intake day to day, and in the week leading up to Thanksgiving I'd been actively hydrating. I was scheduled for a cholesterol re-test and the last time I WAS quite a bit dehydrated and it was a very tough draw. I wanted to avoid that trauma so I made sure I drank up (TONS of water) the week before Thanksgiving.

The draw was one of the easiest I've ever had (same nurse as last time) and the results are in. My cholesterol is now only borderline high. But the big news is I dropped 60 points in 6 months:carrot:

So I guess, I don't know what the heck really happened. I'll just get back on plan and keep chugging away.

Thanks all for your responses!
~M

norjdont
12-04-2010, 07:01 AM
When it comes to travel (we're actually traveling right now) I have some rules I try to hold fast to no matter what (the one exception is if I'm going to throw up and that's all that is available, which has happened twice actually... once last week!:dizzy:). But my rules are:
-NO sugar (I do eat natural sweeteners). I avoid artificial sweeteners but did have a piece of sugar-free apple pie on thanksgiving (it did have artificial sweetener in it) but otherwise I'm pretty strict about this.
-NEVER drink calories (besides milk in coffee/smothies) but never, never empty calories like pop/juice (I sometimes have a diet coke on very, very rare occasions but I don't like the taste much anymore)
-Eat some sort of veggies during the meal, preferably multiple veggies
-Avoid fried foods (This I'm not alway perfect at but still pretty good)


Just had to comment here. These are pretty darn close to my rules.

Sugar was easiest to avoid this trip. I didn't even get any pie for Thanksgiving :( My family likes to forget I'm allergic to cinnamon and all they had was apple and pumpkin.
I've been off soda for three years, four on the 1st of Jan. Gave it up as a new year's resolution and never went back. I do occasionally drink juice, but not often and when I do it's usually cranberry and I cut it with water (1/4 juice to 3/4 water) because it's just to sweet to me.
I love my veggies - always have. I used to love them swimming in butter, but now I love them sprinkled with garlic salt(I carry it with me).
I too avoid fried foods. They were never a favorite of mine, except french fries - those were had to give up. Then my son called them, well I can't remember what he called them. Something about thin strip of something...can't recall, but he learned it in biology and it made the fries sound gross :D