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Old 02-08-2011, 09:41 PM   #91  
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I did lose weight and maintain it once before in my life a long time ago. I used to weigh around 175 or so in those days, and over the course of 3 years, living overseas, I lost about 30 and maintained around 145, my lowest ever adult weight. It was "easy" but that was because 1) I had to get over bingeing because I lived in a village where the only way to get food was to walk a mile or so to the village center, and walk bag lugging stuff up a hill and then cook it from scratch (I mean kneading the bread and plucking the chicken...) candy, cookies, sweets, cheese, butter, chips-- basically every single thing that had made me fat was not available there. 2) I had no car and so walked every where. 3) people ate communal style meals, so it REALLY taught you portion control.

I felt super self-confident. I no longer binged and it seemed effortless to keep the weight off. Then, I moved back to the US where I had a car, and had easy access to American style food and I think I gained all 30 lbs back in about 15 minutes. (I swear, it felt like a matter of weeks to erase 3 years....)
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Old 02-08-2011, 09:46 PM   #92  
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ubergirl -- Talk about a different lifestyle! Where were you living if you don't mind me asking? And I guess not surprising that it came back when the lifestyle changed again. There's a real lesson there!
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Old 02-09-2011, 12:02 AM   #93  
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I got back from my trip to Washington and am happy to report that I held my weight at 137. I did over eat on a couple of days, but then cut back for a couple of days. That and the exercise of walks and snowshoeing kept my weight in check. Now I want to work on getting these 12 pounds off. I was holding pretty steady between 128 and 132 before Christmas (mostly 132) but since then I haven't gotten below about 135 for five minutes. I am journaling on Spark People and trying to exercise 4 days a week with one of them being a fairly long/strenuous hike. I've been reading the thread and would have to say I am one that needs to be busy enough not to get bored, but with enough time to plan meals, shop and mostly cook at home. I like to eat a bit lower calorie during the work week with a treat or drinks on the weekend.
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Old 02-09-2011, 07:58 AM   #94  
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What happened? I keep asking myself the same question!!

I think it was a gradual slipping back into old habits. I was extremely strict for quite a while, and got to the lowest weight I had been in my adult life. I felt it may be a little *too* low, so felt justified in indulging in those long-denied treats. But then, the "off plan" days went from occasional, to more frequent, until I was off plan more days than on. I knew full well that I was eating more than I was burning. I regained back to my "maintenance window", and didn't stop. Days turned to weeks turned to months, and the slow creep up continued. I'd get back on plan for a few days or weeks, and then slip back off. Always an excuse -- it's the holidays, I'm travelling, I'm on vacation, I'm training for a race and need the fuel -- I'll get back on plan after. But I didn't.

I even had days when I didn't want to get on the scale and face the music. That is a HUGE red flag for me. I really really wanted to go back into denial land. What finally turned me around was the degradation in my running performance -- that, and the fact that I am now in my larger maintenance clothes and I WILL NOT accept having to buy larger sizes again.

I want maintenance to be mindless, to be easy. But it's not. You know that definition of insanity -- doing the same thing over and over but expecting different results? You'd think I'd learn by now.
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Old 02-09-2011, 08:35 AM   #95  
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Well, seeing as mine was pregnancy, my story is probably different than most but, truthfully, maybe not. I was really sick in the beginning of my pregnancy through the 5th month. The only thing that would settle my stomach was to eat and especially to eat simple carbs. I got pregnant while living in Brazil and I remember when we got to the Miami airport my boyfriend found me a blueberry muffin. I devoured it and sent him back for another. Blueberry muffins, pop tarts, lucky charms, french fries, chicken mcnuggets, doritos, peanut m&m's - those were all my best friends. Yet even when I eventually felt better and didn't "need" these things, I didn't stop. It was like I knew I had to stop and get it together again but I didn't want to. I kept saying - tomorrow or next week or whatever. And I do the same thing now - I'll start next week, just let me enjoy these foods for for one last day. And these are all lessons I should have learned before - not to put it off and eat poorly now, that one slip up is just that and not an excuse to have 5 more. So I know these lessons but I just don't implement them. I am sort of brainstorming here but I feel like I know what it is like when I am eating right and exercising and I know I can get to the place where my eating is healthy and under control and so because I know I can do it (and I firmly believe I will do it) then I just want to enjoy not doing it for a bit longer. Does any of this make sense???
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Old 02-09-2011, 10:20 AM   #96  
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I cannot pinpoint a single "what happened" either. It surely was a mix of all sorts of things. I can say that comfort foods when the weather turned cold is one (even if I was modifying some of them by using lower fat or calorie items), drinking more than I should, snacking on healthy items but in excess. That and feeling like I'm in control when I really wasn't.

Anyway, I'm down 7 (was 8 but gained 2 back). I need 4 more for my first goal (in less than 2 weeks). Time to hunker down!
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Old 02-09-2011, 10:29 AM   #97  
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Quote:
I feel like I know what it is like when I am eating right and exercising and I know I can get to the place where my eating is healthy and under control and so because I know I can do it (and I firmly believe I will do it) then I just want to enjoy not doing it for a bit longer. Does any of this make sense???
I do this, and I believe it is a very dangerous way of thinking. Sort of true, yes, but delusional and excuse making. It's the kind of thinking I had before I lost the weight in the first place and it took me decades to get going with that.

For me to be successful I have to stop procrastinating. My future is now. I have to do this now.

Now, don't know if that makes any sense!
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Old 02-10-2011, 09:37 AM   #98  
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This morning I realized how late in February it is getting and that there is no way I'm going to make my first goal. I'm disappointed in myself. I think I'm carrying this "I don't care" thing too far. Sure I've lost 7, but nothing at all this month. I've been carelessly going back to my old routines.
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Old 02-10-2011, 10:27 AM   #99  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JayEll
What changed was that it felt like I was fighting uphill.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Heather
Part of "what happened" for me was when I realized that I COULD eat a cookie on a whim and the world wouldn't end.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ubergirl
Then, I moved back to the US where I had a car, and had easy access to American style food and I think I gained all 30 lbs back in about 15 minutes. (I swear, it felt like a matter of weeks to erase 3 years....)
Quote:
Originally Posted by MBN
I think it was a gradual slipping back into old habits.... Days turned to weeks turned to months, and the slow creep up continued.... I want maintenance to be mindless, to be easy. But it's not.
Quote:
Originally Posted by asparagus4sale
And I do the same thing now - I'll start next week, just let me enjoy these foods for for one last day.... because I know I can do it (and I firmly believe I will do it) then I just want to enjoy not doing it for a bit longer.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Heather
I do this, and I believe it is a very dangerous way of thinking. Sort of true, yes, but delusional and excuse making.
Quote:
Originally Posted by alinnell
I can say that comfort foods when the weather turned cold is one (even if I was modifying some of them by using lower fat or calorie items), drinking more than I should, snacking on healthy items but in excess. That and feeling like I'm in control when I really wasn't.
Quote:
Originally Posted by alinnell
This morning I realized how late in February it is getting and that there is no way I'm going to make my first goal. I'm disappointed in myself.
So there's the summary we've come up with so far. And there are so many gray areas! Yes, the world doesn't end if you eat "a" cookie... Yes, if foods aren't available, you can't eat them... No, maintenance does not seem to be automatic or mindless or easy. No, it doesn't work to give yourself permission to continue eating fattening foods or overeating, and then think you'll stop at some future point because you know how.

I have been around that last part for a couple years now, and I have had to admit that I don't know how anymore--or more precisely, what I know to do no longer seems to be the answer. Is this the "law of diminishing returns"? Or is it that you "can't step into the same diet twice"?

I am tired of setting goals and being unable to reach them. I need something more immediate than a date in the future at which I propose I will weigh X pounds. That has stopped working for me, even if I set modest goals, goals anyone "should" be able to reach.

Maybe it's one meal at a time, one trip to the gym or walk around the neighborhood at a time, with some set guidelines that I can follow.

Does anyone else have stories of when they began to regain?

Jay

Last edited by JayEll; 02-10-2011 at 10:29 AM.
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Old 02-11-2011, 01:52 AM   #100  
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I too think the only time "being a certain weight by a certain time" is a somewhat amateur goal that doesn't help anymore. The weight ALWAYS returns after that goal is reached! Or you didn't lose as you'd have liked to and then you feel a bit like a failure.

It has been helpful to discuss our problems - but, I think it'd also be helpful to talk about the positives: what we know about nutrition, caloric amounts, exercise, vitamins.... what really works to become healthy and shrink the fat storage! Things we know for sure....

1. I have a home office but left it the last two days in a row to do my work at the library (inspired by the posting in this thread on staying busy!). I didn't have to battle with my mind and false hunger pains the entire day. I didn't even have false hunger pains! I think I know one thing for sure: Staying home = weight gain (unfortunately!).

Jay - just curious, rationally, do you know what path you would have to take to lose the last 15lbs? (I know that you are psych. burnt out, understandably) You wrote that what you know how to do no longer seems to be the answer - does that mean, even if you had all the will power and motivation in the world, you still wouldn't be able to lose? Or your lack of energy keeps you from following your rational weight loss plan as closely as you should?
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Old 02-11-2011, 07:45 AM   #101  
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This may not have been what Bonnie was thinking, but one of my positives is that I have never abandoned exercise since I started 5 years ago. I don't always work out the same frequency and intensity, but I still get in exercise every week. First time in my life I've exercised regularly.
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Old 02-11-2011, 08:27 AM   #102  
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karenrn, I wanted to acknowledge you for not gaining during your vacation! That's something I managed for a few trips myself. It sounds as though you are still working on getting to goal--correct?

bonnnie, I agree it's a good idea to list the positives. Like Heather, I now exercise regularly. I had been pretty haphazard about it prior to 2006--although I have to admit there were some gym memberships in there. But once I really developed the habit, it has stayed with me. I think it's the exercise as much as the pounds lost that got my blood sugar out of the pre-diabetic range.

Another positive is that I do eat differently now. We used to go out to eat almost every day for awhile there, and I'm sure it helped me reach my high weight. We don't eat out nearly as often, and when I do go out, I am much more mindful of what I order. In some restaurants, I have set dishes that I get because I know the calorie counts--and by now, I also know what kinds of meals are dangerous. I no longer eat on the basis of "what sounds really tasty"--I consider how much of a load is involved. Also, I almost always take food home or just leave it.

And I never eat McDs, Wendy's, Burger King, etc. (I will eat at Subway because I know what to get.) You could not pay me to eat a take-out pizza or fast food french fries. They are a calorie, fat, carb, and food-trigger nightmare! And just not worth it.

My main challenge is that after only a couple months of being back at the gym, my back is complaining again. It was good a couple days ago, but it's sore again. So, more modification of my plan.

bonnnie, I don't know where you got the 15 pounds number--I'm up more than that at this point. I know that if I went back to the old way of calorie tracking and setting a calorie target, it would take months to get this weight back down to what was my original goal. And I can't sustain the effort that long.

It's not a simple matter of lack of will power, because I have plenty of that as well as stamina and discipline in other areas of my life. I think this is hard for people to understand. I imagine that they think, "Well, you could if you REALLY wanted to," and may conclude that I'm a slacker. Fortunately I'm pretty immune to the judgments of others.

All I can say is, walk a few miles in my shoes. I fought the battle for months and years, and slowly lost ground. I can't tell you how many times I restarted a plan in 2009 and 2010, only to run out of steam a few weeks into it.

There is an article posted in another thread in Maintainers--let's see if I can find the link...

Here it is:
http://www.bodyrecomposition.com/fat...-fat-loss.html

This article was mostly about people who overdo, but the part about cortisol was interesting to me, and the fact that increasing exercise and restricting food is stressful and therefore produces more cortisol.

Anyway, I am still being careful with what I eat and trying to exercise. And just for now, that is going to have to be enough, even though my weight is higher than I like it to be.

Jay
ETA: The link should work now.

Last edited by JayEll; 02-11-2011 at 09:33 AM.
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Old 02-11-2011, 12:42 PM   #103  
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Heather: exactly what I was looking for!

Jay - thanks for posting the great read; I feel like I understand your position SO much better now. And I don't know where I got the 15 - probably because you named the regainers thread 15 +.

First, I hope I didn't sound 'teachy' in my question - I just wasn't sure if it was the emotional/motivational component of weight loss or the physical part of weight loss (meaning: your body simply will not lose weight, even though you are doing things correctly.) Now I see that it is many factors combined.

The article was great reading - more calories and less exercise was recommended (in a nutshell). Do you see their recommendation as a good solution? I mean, do you think it'd work? Have you ever tried?

The thing that I personally find stressful with your situation is that you are so diligent but still don't get the rewards you deserve. And this is what seems to have led to your 'turning point'. In my life, I am sometimes diligent, sometimes not - so the fact that I'm not 140lbs is not too much of a surprise.

On the bright side - your efforts are still rewarded. Can you imagine where you'd be if you were yucky fast food regularly.... so, the rewards are definitely still there, just implicit instead of explicit.

Keeping with the "staying busy" theme - I packed up all my things for another trip to the library (instead of working from my home). No hunger pains even compared to the monsters I normally have if I stay home. It is sort of a relief to identify false hunger from real.

I'm sort of like one of those dogs that can't stop yelping if I know my master has a treat in his pocket. But, like the dog, I also don't go hysterical if the treat (fridge) is not there.
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Old 02-12-2011, 09:31 PM   #104  
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Hey!

bonnnie, no, I didn't take what you said the wrong way. But as you can see I'm pretty tired of trying to figure out the components!

I'm not sure that I can figure them all out, or even if I could, that it would be of any use!

For instance, metabolism, basal metabolic rate, calorie burn--one can look up websites until one is blue in the eyeballs, and still it's only estimates and averages. And they may not apply to me as an individual.

We go by these numbers as though they have precise meanings and are "true," but the fact is, they don't, and they aren't. Did I really eat, say, 1540 calories? Probably not! If I eat different foods that still add up to 1540 calories two days in a row, did I really eat the same amount each day? Probably not! It will perhaps all even out in the long run, however.

Well, I can deal with knowing that. I know they are averages, ballparks, etc. but it's all we've got in terms of estimating intake and burn if we want to go that route.

However, it does become a mental game for me--and the next thing one knows, one is driving oneself crazy because the "numbers" say something should be happening, and it's not.

But enough of this rant...

I went to my chiropractor on Friday, and it helped a great deal by loosening up things in my back that were stuck. I'm almost back to normal now. Of course, now I'm afraid of the gym! But I really need that exercise...

I did try for awhile to raise my calories without increasing my exercise awhile ago. It did seem to work! But there came a point where my weight did start to go up again. I think I hadn't found the "magic level"--or maybe I just lost the plan, didn't exercise as much, ate more than I should have....

I hope everyone is having a good weekend and staying out of trouble!

Jay

Last edited by JayEll; 02-12-2011 at 09:32 PM.
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Old 02-13-2011, 04:27 AM   #105  
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We go by these numbers as though they have precise meanings and are "true," but the fact is, they don't, and they aren't. Did I really eat, say, 1540 calories? Probably not! If I eat different foods that still add up to 1540 calories two days in a row, did I really eat the same amount each day? Probably not! It will perhaps all even out in the long run, however.

Lately, I've been really interested in this idea - how different foods are broken down in the body. Unfortunately, I'm not a biologist... so my 'real-working' knowledge is slim to none. I think what got me interested in this topic in the beginning is Atkins, or low carb - everyone is eating so much protein. I tried it too - and yeah, I was full technically, but also felt heavy and had low energy.

Yesterday I found this great cookbook for runners (or anyone that engages regularly in more intensive sport activity) - It lays out a general meal plan, with the calorie counts, and recipes, etc. First, the recipes look great, with only whole foods, mostly vegetarian (not on purpose, it is not a vegetarian cookbook), and are designed to be cooked for two people, which is perfect for me and my boyfriend. Every recipe has its calorie count at the bottom of the page - but most importantly, the breakdown of carbohydrates, protien, and fat.

Interestingly, the breakdown is almost always at least 50% complex carb, 30% fat, and 15 - 19 % protien. This means that every meal that is offered contains tons of complex carbs, veggies, and then often times a 'bit' of fish or a bit of cheese or chicken or tofu - but certainly not much, it is nowhere near being at the center of the meal.

Most of us think we immediately need a huge honkin' piece of protein for dinner if we've worked out hard.

The cookbook also lays about a 600 cal. intense fruit smoothie in the morning, a 450 cal. lunch, and a 5-600 cal. dinner. Eating 3 square meals and no snacks is recommended. They also do some crazy things with ginger and other spices.... not sure how I feel about that - but I also, again, have no real biological knowledge of how food is broken down beyond what I do get a chance to read (which is not nearly so in-depth as scholarly journals on the topic).


And this marks my first REAL attempt to mesh jogging and losing the last 10/15 lbs! As MBN pointed out, at this point, I'm really interested in being lighter to help my joints for jogging. Also, I'm interested in finding the appropriate food regimen that will tackle my crazy hormonal food cravings set off by the intense exercise.

So, I'm trying it - it is a plan, so to say. Since finding this website, I've been a firm calorie counter. While I still find that to work - I feel like I need something else. Even if that something else is only psychological! So, I'm starting today! I'm really excited actually! It has made me really excited about my health and losing again.

I can honestly say, I totally lost that enthusiasm. I remember reading the another maintainer's post about how she continually likes to try out new diet books, to keep it interesting.....
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