It happened—a weight loss epiphany!
The answer to a lifetime of struggling with weight-loss came to me today. It has nothing to do with dieting—the real answer is learning not to gain weight. Not gaining weight is more important than losing it.
This is a difficult concept to wrap your arms around. It conflicts with all the popular reasons for wanting to lose weight: class reunions, weddings, seeking relationships, New Year’s resolutions. The emphasis is always on FAST. Do it NOW! Lose 10 pounds in 4 days! Every pitch focuses on time. I fall for it, try it, lose some weight, and when life goes back to pre-diet normal, the weight creeps back on. Sometimes just as quickly as it came off. It’s no wonder taking off weight seems like an impossible dream!
I have two occupations keeping me busy, my arbitration work and my writing. Both are done sitting on my derriere. My favorite hobbies, reading and playing bridge—same position. My lifestyle is not conducive to being lean. I’ve learned I can make time work for me, use it to move toward a healthy weight. This is a Big Picture method, not a kitschy, lose fifteen pounds in a week, fad diet. It requires long-term life style changes. Done slowly, using my head, it will be relatively painless.
I’ve merged my epiphany into ten, manageable points.
- It’s OKAY to maintain my current weight! The important part of this acceptance, whether it’s for a week or a year is this: I will NOT gain.
- I will still eat my favorite foods, but not quite as often or in as large quantities as I might like.
- If I have a day or an occasion of overindulgence, I’ll follow it with a few sensible days.
- During the holiday season, which for me starts with Halloween and ends with the Superbowl game, I won’t gain weight. I accept that in order to enjoy holiday eating, I will eat lean on non-occasion days.
- I intend to lose weight SLOWLY. I’m a calorie counter, I know how much I have to cut to lose. My goal is to lose 1 – 2 pounds a month, or even a few a year, until I reach a healthy weight for ME.
- I’m going to eat when I’m physically hungry, pay more attention to when my body has had enough.
- I no longer eat at my computer.
- I’ll keep wearing my pedometer, doing 10k steps a day.
- I’ll continue to use a notebook to keep track of the calories I take in every day, recalculating my intake when necessary.
- I’ll keep reminding myself it is the SMALL changes that matter!
If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you know I have been practicing much of this for some time now. What’s new is the acceptance that it is okay if I lose weight slowly. For me, staying the same is an effort in itself. The realization that achieving a goal doesn’t HAVE to have a date connected to it, came as a big relief.
I hope this will benefit some others who’ve lived by the scale for all too long!