As far as diets go I’ve been rather proud of myself; I’ve obviously been eating less and exercising more. I’ve even started getting restless and exercising at home when it is raining outside.
As a result I was quite excited to step on the scales at Katie’s allergist the other day. I was wearing jeans and thick sandals (compared to the light skirt and flip flops I normally wear) but I was confident that the numbers would show progress.
I was wrong.
The scale said I weighed 170, six pounds more than my last weigh-in. Surely a pair of jeans and heavy shoes would not increase my weight that much!
I was heartbroken. My Dark Passenger slipped up beside me, whispering in my ear that I was a failure, that I would never be able to lose weight and that I was doomed to be fat forever.
The words whispered were cutting and cruel by that heartless creature as I struggled to keep from crying. By the end of the evening I was pigging out on every piece of junk food I could find trying to soothe the hurt within me.
Finally a light slipped through the fog. Even as I pigged out I realized that I was eating less. I found I literally could NOT gorge myself as I have in the past – in fact, at that point I wanted nothing more than to vomit and relieve the strain.
It occurred to me then that perhaps I’m not off track. Perhaps the combination of muscle gain and the heavier clothing were the reason the scales showed me to be heavy.
Perhaps I’m just taking this all too seriously.
When I lost the weight the last time I didn’t even realize I was losing weight; I made the changes in how I ate and what I drank then went on with my life. Perhaps my focus on weight loss books and calorie counting and weigh-ins are detrimental to my progress.
I asked myself what I was doing differently this time and discovered four things:
- Reading weight loss books. I have been reading a number of books on weight loss this time around. The thought didn’t even occur to me the last time. I just made my simple changes and moved on.
- Frequent weigh-ins. I didn’t weigh myself very often back then. In fact, it didn’t even occur to me to weigh myself – I was having too much fun just walking and enjoying life.
- Calorie counting. I didn’t count calories at all back then. I ate what I wanted, even if it was an ice cream or junk food. In fact, we frequently took walks to the store specifically to purchase a piece of junk food or another as a treat.
- Obsessing on weight loss. I wanted to lose weight but I didn’t obsess over it. I kinda just made the decision and forgot about it, you could say. This time I seem to think about it constantly and worry about overeating.
My challenge is this: I’m going to go back to what I know. No more weight loss books, no more special diets, no more calorie counting and no more regular weigh ins. I’m going to eat what I want when I’m hungry and stop when I’m full.
I’m going to ignore all of the recommendations about the best time to eat, the best foods to eat and the number of calories to eat. I am going to trust my body to know what it needs.
I am going to enjoy myself by taking walks when I want to, not because “I need to exercise.” I will weigh myself when an opportunity arises and I think of it – even if that is once a month or never.
I will lose this weight because I know I am on the right path and I refuse to quit. I know that the only true failure is when you stop trying so as long as I keep on I cannot fail.
And I know that everything will be all right.
I may have fell off the horse but I’m back in the saddle now. I may have to nurse a bruise or two but that’s okay – they tell me I’m still alive.
P.S. Katie will not need allergy shots. She is doing very well with her medications. Her Vitamin D is still low so she has to continue taking large doses of it and calcium but to our delight she is off the hook with the shots. Yay!
How do you face setbacks? Please share your stories in the comments below.
Thank you for your support!