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Not Giving Up

Sunday, May 19, 2019

The last 5 months have not gone as well as my intentions at the beginning of the year. No real excuses – just super busy with a lot to juggle and the reality is when I’m crunching to meet a deadline, I will miss out on the exercise. Yet I know I have to make my health and fitness a priority because poor health will prevent me from working effectively and doing the things I want to do.

I usually know WHAT I should be doing but I don’t always choose to do it. As a result, I lost and regained (and lost and regained) the same 5 lbs for several months, and most recently I’ve been maintaining at the same weight.

Regardless of how I think I’m doing, I always keep a weight loss journal, and I can see that my “program” is not the problem. In fact, having tried many things through the years, I’ve decided nearly any program will work for you if you follow it. My preference is an old WW exchange-based program that makes sense to me and which I really believe in. I lost a ton of weight on it before, I got very healthy on it, and it helped me maintain myself for over 10 years at one time, until a battle with illness threw me off track.

Looking back through my journal pages in recent months, I can see days and weeks where I did really well, and then I can see times where I didn’t just slip off track; I drove clear through barriers and warning signs.

But I’m not giving up. I will continue to work at this journey until I reach my goal – and I am determined to reach it. Everything is part of the learning process, even the setbacks and stalls.

Re-reading my weight loss journal always gives me insights and points me to things I can work on. I’ve learned some things:

For the most part I eat pretty healthy. But managing my portions is sometimes a problem, particularly when it comes to pasta, rice and bread. Yep, the struggle is real. But I’ll keep working at it.

Keeping my motivation going is sometimes the problem. So I have to keep reminders (reasons) handy for myself as to why I want to lose the weight and rebuild my health. If I have to post post-it notes on the fridge and the pantry, then maybe I’ll do that.

Sometimes emotions are a problem as I tend to stress-eat. So I have to apply a different way of channeling my energy when I feel stressed – like going for a walk, even a quick one, or putting on some music and dancing, or a workout DVD when I’m feeling an urge to eat something before it’s actually time to eat.

Keeping other people’s negative voices out of my head can be a problem. There are people (also overweight) who constantly tell me I should stop trying to lose weight for a range of reasons, like:

- you look good at your size, you don’t even look your weight
- you’ve lost enough weight, don’t lose anymore
- a lot of people in the family are overweight, you’re fighting genetics
- you’re getting “up in years” so you’ll never be able to lose it

It’s not even that I believe those voices because when I hear it, I usually think “rubbish.” But it’s frustrating and stressful even to hear those words. I am learning to stand my ground nicely. No arguments, no anger, no sharp retorts. Just calmly saying, “No thank you. I don’t want that.” I accept that it may mean cutting a conversation short at times. I cannot afford the luxury of slipping into a negative or defeatist mindset.

So I am reviewing my goals and my strategies for getting there. I will focus on the positive achievements so far.

- I WAS 200 lbs. I’ve lost 25. That’s still a victory.

- I have eliminated most junk and processed foods from my diet. I do allow myself some treats occasionally because I want that flexibility but I am eating healthier than I had in years.

- I am successfully drinking 2-3 liters of water a day. It took a while to get to that point - because I never used to drink enough water - but I'm doing it easily now.

- I have significantly increased my cardio and exercise and I don’t get nearly as out of breath as I once did. That’s a victory.

- Even though the scale has not moved much, I have been able to fit into some Large sizes (vs. XL or XXL).

- I have gained some muscle and strength.

- After years of struggling with insomnia (after losing my Mom, other family and my dog), averaging only about 4 hours of sleep a night for years, I have now been sleeping for a good 7-8 hours most nights in the past year and a half. That is a huge victory.

emoticon emoticon Recently I had a HUGE improvement – my BP had been around 157/94 for quite a while. When doctor checked it this past week, I was down to 142/78! emoticon emoticon

So I'm continuing to focus on the goals I set for myself at the beginning of the year. I will just keep trying until I achieve them.

IMPORTANT: I want to keep my diet flexible, livable. One of the first things I learned on WW years ago was that you could still enjoy favorite foods as long as you ate healthy most of the time and planned your day to balance everything. If you wanted to eat out with friends at lunch, or have dessert at a special family occasion, then you needed to plan around it so that it wouldn’t impact your results. We used to call it planning “a light day” before an event, meaning you really stuck to healthy low calories options, or planning a light breakfast or dinner and allocating more food choices (and calories) to the other meal. Plus you would build in some extra activity like walking to help burn calories. Ultimately everything is a balance between calories in vs calories burned.

Most important take-away from all this?

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • OLA165
    I know the struggle. I a glad you are not giving up. Tweaking is the key.
    79 days ago
    emoticon So proud of you!! To God be the glory.
    135 days ago
  • LORI-K
    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    144 days ago
    I read your blog, I know I am looking in thei mirror. So many things you have improved, the one that really stood out was your blood pressure numbers! So awesome. All the knowledge you have, your toolbox filled with what you need. Water required, WW plan, exercise, reviewing your goals, knowing what you have accomplished -25 lbs., I know you will continue the journey an be proud everyday that your are continuing there journey!
    147 days ago
  • DSJB9999
    Love your blog, strangely I haven't come across you online for ages and glad to see you ate hanging in there 😉. Great that you are sleeping better and super blood pressure result. Hugs and best wishes Donna X
    148 days ago
    I love it! Keep doing what you do, and being a blessings to others in this journey of getting healthy.♥ emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    152 days ago
    I love your blog. Your honesty with yourself and recognizing successes and things not so successful! I can so relate to your journey. I am walking along side you, wishing you support and success.
    153 days ago
    emoticon blog! emoticon emoticon emoticon Stay focused on your fitness and weight management goals. I think we all struggle with the portion size on some food items, but plan the meal with the recommended portion size then add a fresh fruit for dessert. Keep writing in your journal and remember, YOU are worth the effort! emoticon
    154 days ago
    I really appreciated reading your blog. It has encouraged me to keep going. I hope you are going well and you continue to feel better.
    154 days ago
    Reading your blog has encouraged me to keep going. Thank you. I hope your doing well and feeling better.
    154 days ago
    Thanks for sharing Karen.Why do people
    want to say things like that?Motivation and
    Balance go hand in hand.I just can not find
    the motivation i had when i had the Heart
    Attack in 2016.Just wish i could figure that
    out.Suppose Life and Health really gets in
    the way.Glad you are"never"giving up
    neither am i. emoticon emoticon
    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    154 days ago
    Good for you, noting your achievements . . . highly motivating.

    And not listening to the negative voices . . . yeah.
    154 days ago
    You are going to do it. You know what to do and what works for you. emoticon on getting your blood pressure down. emoticon
    154 days ago
    Great list of accomplishments... and good reality check. IMHO a 5lb swing and maintaining is a good place to be after a loss... in time, you'll be ready to tackle your next goal emoticon
    154 days ago
  • LINDA!
    emoticon You are going to reach your goal. You are working hard.
    154 days ago
    Great blog . thanks for sharing I have to agree that keeping a journal helps the time i tell my self it okay to skip a day is when i mess up and gain weight i have had the problem of losssing the same pounds off and over . Had a bad week and looking back you gave me the answer journal go for a walk dance with Racey in the living and get my water bottle out. love you attitude and you helped me tonight by sharing . love your tips you have helped tonight thanks and by puttig it in writting you can now go back and re motivatge your self.

    Believe in yourself and all that you are.
    Know that there is something inside
    you that is greater than any obstacle."
    ~Christian D Larson~

    154 days ago
  • PHOENIX1949
    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    154 days ago
  • GABY1948
    I LOVE it!! SO good to be "human" again and SO good to be back in touch!!!

    Love You!!!!
    154 days ago
    That's the key indeed -- never giving it up. I journal as well, and to me it really gives me insight ito what's going on in my head -- at leasat it helps clarify a little bit so I can work on what needs attention.

    My relationship with food eventually changed. I got to understand that food = food/medicine. Nothing more, nothing less. It is powerful in those modes.

    good luck to you moving forward and know you have LOTS of support here!
    154 days ago
    I'm happy to hear you say you are not giving up. That's the only way we can every achieve our goals. I really don't like it when people say those things to me either - yes, I'm down about 35 pounds from when I started a couple years ago. Yes, I know I have had 5 children and some of this body simply will never snap back into what I want it to be (that's my DH's justification). But I won't give up either.

    DH has been ill for about a month now - and he's barely eating. So while I have been trying to continue eating healthy foods (getting things out of the freezer that I can eat for 2 - 3 days) I find myself just CRAVING junk food. I want so bad to stop at McDonald's every time I get out of the house - and I'm not even hungry. Getting in my exercise has been a challenge but he is starting to feel just the tiniest bit better and I'm going back to the gym tomorrow!

    We are on this road together and we will reach our destinations!
    154 days ago
    emoticon emoticon

    Keep those positive messages and motivations in front of you, and as long as you never give up, you've got this! emoticon
    154 days ago
    154 days ago
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