Weight Loss Support - Does it ever go away?????
01-18-2013, 11:02 AM
I am still trudging along on my journey. I've technically reached my first major goal- I've gove from a 22W-24W to a regular 10-12. I've lost over 110 -130 pounds ( I didn't measure my start and weighed in at 284 after 3 months of dieting...I'm sure I started near 300 pounds).
I don't know what my goal is now. I still would like to slim down more and don't know where the finish line is. I hit a major birthday in a few months and may just quit wherever I am at that time and head to maintenance.
My vent/question is...Does it ever go away? The constant mental awareness of your weight? When I was 280+, I didn't care what i weighed and it was NEVER on my mind. During the middle of my journey, I was/am focused on watching my food choices and exercise. Now that I'm very near goal, it seems I am almost scared of regaining.
Example, I bought a size 10 pair of slacks. When I wear them, I am constantly wondering if they are tighter then they were the last time? Then I start asking am I gaining weight? Literally, in the middle of the day I am wondering if my clothes fit tighter than they did this morning. Or maybe my hands might look bigger today.
One of the things I found during my journey were all the veins in my hand. Now, I start worrying if I don't see as many in the afternoon as I did in the morning. My next thought is that I'm gaining weight.
I realize that I keep worrying that I will gain it all back and I DON'T WANT TO GO BACK!!!! I don't want to worry about fitting in the airline seat or breaking a chair.
I can shop at regular shoe stores now and actually find a shoe that can fit my foot. I don't want to go back to Payless or specialty order stores only because my foot is so wide. There's a little person in the back of my mind constantly worrying about regaining.
Does this ever go away? Anyone else struggle with it?
Maybe I'm just emotional...headed out for a 5 mile run in a little bit with a nice warm bowl of Tomato soup to follow. Maybe that will make me feel better.
01-18-2013, 11:06 AM
I'm definitely not close to goal yet, having lost less than 7 pounds so far. But thinking about this, I would have to say that I will probably be the same way.
On another note, congrats on your amazing weight loss!!!!
01-18-2013, 11:19 AM
I'm kind of a similar place, not quite at goal, but comfortable. I have a very strong feeling that those feelings don't go away. Perhaps they get a little less strong. Some days the thought of that gets be down, some days I'm ok with it. I'd much rather worry about it than be obese like I was. I understand though, it get's exhausting!!!
Hope you do feel better after your run and soup! That sounds lovely!
01-18-2013, 11:41 AM
I'm only one month in and I am obsessec with calories and weighing myself...I know I will be a worry-wart for life.
01-18-2013, 11:56 AM
I still have some more weight to lose before goal weight but I know what you mean that at your heaviest you didn't think about your size but from my experience it's because if I thought about it and my good choices I would be depressed and extremely unhappy. I go through periods of being hyper aware of calories and my clothes but as this way of life becomes more normal I'm finding myself no longer comparing the before and the now.
Creating a new normal and making it who you are now will allow you to get back to more comfortable and less hyper aware state.
Weight will always be an issue though and I won't ever be able to go back to old ways but it gets better. Creating your new life, smaller and healthier at some point isn't your "new" life anymore it's just your life.
Good luck and use this worry to be vigilant and motivate you to maintain and continue your journey! You can do it!
01-18-2013, 01:00 PM
You might want to post on the maintenance forum...There are a lot of people who have maintained for a long time and they could offer some insights/ideas.
01-18-2013, 01:17 PM
I bet that run will make you feel better!
Probably. Although I think it's easier to ignore your weight when you weigh more because it takes a lot more pounds up or down to feel it. When you're a smaller size like you are - just 5lbs makes a big difference in how your clothes fit.
I went on a maintenance pause and during that time I didn't think about my weight a whole lot. A lot of the habits I learned in weight loss had become more permanent and required less thought, but not all of them! I got lazy and didn't work out as often and started making too many exceptions on my eating and gained about 15lbs in 6 months. I hit my "alarm button" weight and then 3lbs more. Having an alarm button weight might help (I am setting mine 5lbs off this time and not 10!). I think maintenance isn't about stopping the focus on weight, but more about making smaller corrections. Instead of constantly trying to lose 20lbs or 40, you're making 3-5lb corrections - kind of like driving where you don't just hold the wheel steady, you're making minor corrections the whole time.
I know what you mean about not wanting to go back to that higher weight. Sometimes I think that's part of what let me gain 15lbs, though. They were mostly vanity lbs. I could still live the life I wanted and not have those awful things that come with being at a much higher weight, so it was easier to rationalize away my weight gain. The brakes came back on when I needed a size 14 petite - and they got tight. Next stop - plus section! No way!! So, once I thought that (and the things that come with it) might be coming back, I immediately got back on track. Then, the fear was a good thing. Once you've experienced losing weight for health and mobility, it's harder to stay motivated to lose for vanity.
But yeah, I think you do have to pay attention to it - maybe not quite as much - but it's part of taking care of yourself to make daily healthy choices.
01-18-2013, 01:20 PM
I too have become obsessed with what I do, what I eat, how I look, and how I cant wait to look, ( still a newbie and not much lost as of yet) but I'm hoping the obsession that I have will keep me motivated and help me not to stray. Keep up the good work and wtg on your success.
01-18-2013, 01:44 PM
Might be good to always be conscience of your weight or how clothes fit, so u don't gain. I am hoping eventually the way I eat now will just be a way of life, just like not exercising and eating unhealthy was before. I didn't think twice about going to bed without riding my bike before. So hopefully one day it will just come naturally and u won't even think about it. I can't tell u not to worry cause I don't know what the future will bring, but one thing that is pretty certain is if u keep up with your routine u won't be over weight.
01-18-2013, 01:57 PM
This is going to sound like I'm being a smarty pants (probably am), but I wish I'd had the nagging worries the last time I lost weight. Maybe I wouldn't now be trying to lose the 100 pounds I gained back plus the 80 more I gained on top of it.
I loved the idea of a danger weight and perusing the maintenance site. In the meantime, good luck with continuing -- you've done a great job and I'm really encouraged by your getting into size 10 slacks! WOW!!!!!
01-18-2013, 02:16 PM
10 years later, I can say no, it doesn't go away. It keeps you in check. It's like being an alcoholic, you can't just walk into a bar casually anymore. You live with it, because the alternative (not thinking about it) often leads you back to gaining. You can exist with it peacefully though.
01-18-2013, 02:30 PM
It's that line between normal and disordered ways of looking and thinking about food.
If you look at the veins in your hands in the morning and worry if midday they seem to be disappearing and you worry you are getting fat somehow during the day, that is disordered thinking.
I think it's hard NOT to get a bit disordered about weight loss when it is the primary focus for such a long time. When we think about all the ways to keep it in check, to make it a little bit better every. single. day. for months and months and even years.
So, when you get such thoughts, send second thoughts of, "I cannot get fat overnight."
But yes, you will forever be thinking about weight. Of this I have no doubt.
01-18-2013, 03:08 PM
I have maintained for well over a year without obsessing nor counting calories due to intermittent fasting.
I think the key to not obsessing is finding an eating plan that is not too restrictive but still keeps calories in check.
For many people this means low carb eating. For me, I love carbs and so I intermittent fast.
01-18-2013, 03:18 PM
While I think it's very personal and no single right answer, I think a lot of maintainers say that the "constant mental awareness of your weight" is what keeps them maintaining, and when they let go of it, that's when they gain. So yes, they track every day, and they work hard to make the right choices every day. That doesn't mean it's the exact same as when you lose, and there is room for a little bit of flexibility here and there, but not all the time.
But I have to admit this is theoretical for me, because I have yet to hit something I would consider a goal weight and then maintain it. So I'm actually working in developing more of that constant awareness and not letting go of it so I don't re-gain what I'm working so hard to lose AGAIN.
01-18-2013, 03:46 PM
For me at least, it's flexibility within reason.
I accept that I am not the kind of person who will ever be able to "eat whatever I want" because what I want is usually too much (whereas naturally slim people want what is suitable for their size). So, flexibility, while being mindful that I do internally have the poor habit of overeating, keeps me in line.
01-18-2013, 03:51 PM
Congrats on your amazing weightloss, so inspiring for me!!
Any time I lost weight in the past, I gained it back and then some.
This time is going to be different, my life literally depends on it.
That being said, I believe and am preparing for always looking over my shoulder for that 5-10lbs that sneaks up on me. I used to ignore it and then it would be 50lbs before I threw in the towel and gave up, stuffing myself into a worse depression. Not this time!! Nipping it in the bud every time, I don't care how exhausting it gets. It's more exhausting trying to lose weight.
01-18-2013, 08:01 PM
THANK YOU EVERYONE....
This is why I love this site. Not only can you vent but you get GREAT advice.
1) Love the idea of a danger zone weight. I'll definitely keep that in mind.
2) I never thought that how not allowing myself to "not care" about my weight could actually benefit me.
3) BERRYBLONDE...You're right, this is disordered thinking. I've done a lot of work on changing the way I think about eating EVERYTHING. And now I realize I need to work on my disordered thinking on staying near goal weight. Thanks alot...
THANKS EVERYONE...By the way, the run was great. I finished just in time and just as the local High School track team hit the path. Getting passed by all of those teeny HS girls would have really ticked me off.....:)
5.05 miles behind me and the soup was great!!!! So was the greek yogurt!
01-18-2013, 08:47 PM
I have been maintaining for a little over two years, and I can tell you that I think about my weight every day. I don't obsess over it... but it's there. If you aren't vigilant, you can backslide, and it's that awareness that helps to prevent that.
The way I managed my weight has been pretty simple. I set a "red line" weight. The second I start nearing that weight, I make a conscious effort to lose a few pounds and get away from it. It's a constant dance... I bounce around the same 5-10 lbs or so. I weigh myself every day... it has become part of my routine. It's how I keep myself in check.
I am not saying it won't be different for some people, but I am just saying that has been how it has been for me.
And CONGRATS!!! What an achievement! You must be so proud of how far you have come... it is truly amazing!
01-18-2013, 11:24 PM
I am maintaining now, but it took me a long time to figure this out. I could lose like no other, but maintaining, pfft, that was hard.
I am happy to say that I am now a maintainer! However, if I do not stay aware, it won't last.
The up side is, I figured out what works for me, and I'm comfortable with what I do.
JohnP is an IF guy, great, works for him. I'm a Weight Watcher person, that works for me. Plus a few other things. I weigh each morning, write it on a calendar above my scale. I track my food and exercise. At the end of the month, I take the calendar and my food journal and look at trends. If it's a bit up, I need to take action, If I'm where I'm comfy, I'm good.
Just for myself, I finally figured out, that this is not about failure, it's about feedback and listening to your body and your mind and learning from it.:D
01-19-2013, 05:53 AM
BTW thinking about your weight is not always bad. There are days where I think about it and I am happy that I made it through the journey :) So it can be positive too.
02-11-2013, 06:54 PM
Do you have a goal story and a before and after pic.? We would all love to read your amazing story and it might help you to read it, too.
With me it goes in waves. Right now I'm super-focused (like I always am when I'm on a mission to lose). The longest I've maintained is a year. Then, I fall off the wagon--usually after a holiday or something. I get so angry with myself. I figure one of these years it's going to take. I know myself and know I will have to watch the scale daily and not allow a gain of say, 3 lbs. For me, it will be a "forever" thing.
02-11-2013, 07:34 PM
I think the issue for many of us is self-trust---or lack thereof. Read your post and you'll see that you're writing as if you do not have control of the process, almost as if some outside force will put the weight on you. But that cannot happen. You are the one who lost it, and you are the one who can keep it off. You do have control over your weight.
I know what you mean, though. The longer I am at this, the more I trust myself not to regain. I used to panic when I overate and I would automatically think, "Oh, there goes my self-control! I'm going to regain all the weight I lost!" But after several times of getting back on track and catching any small gains, I have begun to trust myself more.
It will take some time, and it wouldn't hurt to use some positive self-talk. When you get those feelings of panic, just remind yourself that you are ultimately in control of the food you put into your mouth. No one will force-feed you. You are in control.