Whenever I talk about my weight; my weight struggles/successes/setbacks, the views on my blog soar, and I’m overwhelmed by comments from friends and strangers alike that are reaching out, saying they understand, they struggle too, and that it’s a life long battle for many of us.
And while I do agree that for me I will never had a super model’s body, and be able to eat whatever I want, whenever I want, I don’t necessarily agree that it has to be a full cycle. Every time I lose weight substantially, I chip away a little bit more, and get a little bit closer to my goal weight, or goal size for those of you who don’t like to just have body image discussed in lbs. I’ve never gone all the way back to where I started, and I take pride in that. Yes, I’ve fluctuated up and down, but it’s still closer to the down than to the up.
I still have faith that one day I’ll reach my goals, and I still have faith that even though I have fluctuated, that I’m still at a much more comfortable place than I was at 10 yrs ago, 5 yrs ago, and 3 yrs ago. 1 year ago, I was the lightest I’ve ever been, so I’m not as comfortable as I was then, but I’m back on the track to being back there.
This is a really long post, about my weight struggles, and how I’ve had some success in the past, and how I think I can help you if you’re struggling right now. Nothing is worse than feeling like you’re treading water in the weight loss game, and you’re tired, and you feel like you’re close to letting go and sinking. Hopefully some of these thoughts and tips can help throw you a life raft for right now.
Full disclosure : I’m hosting a Diet Bet game with Nikki, and that was the motivation behind this post, I think everyone should jump on the game with us, not only to help build the support system (and the money in the game that I want to win…), but also because together we can achieve so much more than we can alone. However, in writing out a post to encourage you to come play with us, I found my fingers just wanting to type, and this post ended up really long, personal, and barely at all about the Diet Bet game. All the deets for the game can be found here. And I’ll just keep blabbing about my journey.
Weight is uncomfortable to talk about. We are always our own worst critics, and we don’t often see the changes we’ve made to ourselves, unless there are drastic. The other part that makes it hard to talk about, is that most people look at me, and assume I weigh a lot less than I do. And I KNOW it’s not just about the # on the scale, but I do find it to be a fairly accurate way to look back and know exactly how I felt.
Anyways, while weight and body image is hard to talk about, and hard to be honest about where we actually are, it’s something I actually like to talk about. For me, I enjoy blogging most when I can sit down ay my computer, my fingers just fly across the keyboard, and I don’t have to fiddle with pictures, links, making my post pretty, or making sure that a comment or joke or thought is going to offend someone. This post was written in 1 sit down opportunity and it just flowed. This paragraph is being added at the end, so that my thoughts aren’t super jumbled and confusing. The main reason I like to blog about my weight struggles is not to get the feedback that others struggle as well, I already know that, and hear that from my friends and family on a daily basis. The reason I like it is because after I sit down, open up my heart, share my journey, I feel a weight off my chest. I feel like no matter how many people are reading this, skimming this, or not interested in reading it in the first place, my truth is still out there. My truth means so much to me, because it’s my honest, stripped down, broken, beat up, and sometimes brutal view of myself. The biggest compliment you can ever pay me, is to tell me that I’m real, that you get me, and that I’m the same in person as on paper (errr screen). I strive to open myself up, to push walls away, and be the real me for you to see.
I’ve struggled with my weight for the past……..15 yrs I’d say. I’ve been in a place of not knowing how “bad” it was; completely delusional as to how I actually looked and felt, and I’ve been in a place where I’ve been almost totally comfortable. So, while I haven’t reached my goals, or my true potential, I have been close, and for me I’ve stepped away from the young delusional girl, and realized that I’m just a woman on an ongoing mission, and that I’ll never ever go back to that unhappy place.
So, what’s up right now?
Right now I’m hovering around 170. Down 5 lbs since I realized at the end of February that I was up and feeling “off”. But let’s take a step back and make some milestone comparisons. At my heaviest (before Jay and before running) I was over 200 lbs, around 210-215, not entirely sure since the scale was not my friend. After I found running, I got down to 185/190. I stalled there for a while, but never went back into the 200′s.
I tried to lose some weight before engagement pictures, but I was around 185 when they were taken. I didn’t have a clue of how chunky I was, just saw the fatness in certain pictures, and passed them off as bad pictures. And then my wedding my coming up, and I decided to run my first marathon. I was down to 168 for my stagette, and 170 on my wedding day. My dress was taken in more than 2 dress sizes, and I felt SO much better. I felt more like myself, more like the person inside was showing through to the outside.
Post wedding, I went up to 178, and went on a 6 week Paleo discovery, and got down to 165 before leaving on our honeymoon to Africa. I was still 165 on our friend’s wedding day the week after we got back.
Christmas holidays happened, and I fell off the wagon and was back up to 178 when I started my first Dietbet last January. I loved the idea so much that I did 3 in a row, and last spring I weighed in at 158, the first time under 160 as an adult! Amazing! But, ultra running isn’t really a diet, and I fluctuated between 160-65 until San Fran. My 50 Miler being right before the Christmas holidays was the worst idea ever. I spent December barely running, and doing lots of eating. I was hovering at 165-170.
As I mentioned end of February, I was back up to 175, and needed a change. I’ve made that change in the past month, even with some really crappy days and weeks, and being busier than I’ve ever been before. I’m back down to 170, and back on the train to get under 158 this spring, and chip away a little bit more at that dream goal.
It appears to me that 160 is my almost comfortable, my 165 is ehhh, my 170 is getting uncomfortable, and my 175 is uncomfortable and need to make a change. Which I think is a positive, to be able to distinguish patterns and know where I’m at. And also, most importantly, to be uncomfortable at 170, is a huge difference than being uncomfortable at 200 lbs, where I have been before. So, I know that I’m on a healthier living journey, I know that I’m closer to the down numbers than the up numbers. And most of all, I recognize that I need to put me first, and need to make some changes.
So, here’s where my advice comes in…
I have found that 5 things really help me to lose weight and be consistent in healthy living.
- A deadline. Whether it’s fitting into a certain dress for a wedding, an upcoming tropical vacation, or just a goal of 5 lbs in 30 days, always having a drop dead date helps me.
- Support system. It’s no secret that my husband is super slim, and can eat whatever he wants. When I’m being good, he doesn’t need to be, and it’s way easier for us to order delivery Indian food than cook on a Sunday evening when we’re beat from the weekend. So, I find that when I have friends on the same journey as me, I can pick up the phone to text or call them to either talk me out of a Starbucks treat, or give me a virtual high 5 for a perfect day of food!
- Planning and preparation. This is always the hardest one for me, since when I get busier, this is the first ball that seems to drop. Given the choice, when I have free time, I’ll always choose the couch over prepping food and meals. I have to keep reminding myself that all it takes is a bit of planning to make a big difference.
- Accountability. Secondly to keeping a record of my training, this is why the blog exists. Whether I have 5 readers or 500, I’m still making my thoughts and goals known to the world, and I’m still making commitments. And I strongly believe that when commitments are written down “out there” it’s a heck of a lot harder to break them.
- Bribery. I’m also a strong believer in rewarding ourselves after doing something hard. Yes, there’s the reward of completing something hard, but I still like the excuse to spoil myself. Usually after running, it’s a yummy latte, or a baked treat, or Booster Juice. It doesn’t even have to be an indulgent reward, as long as you have something to look forward to.
This is why Diet Bet works for me. It encompasses 4/5 of the keys for me and my weight loss. And this is why Nikki and I decided to host a game starting next Tuesday, April 1st. I’ve always found the spring to be an excellent time to lose weight, and so, here I go! I’ve got 4 weeks to lose my 4% which is usually around 6 lbs for me, so it looks like I’ll be back in the low 160′s at the end of April! And then my friends, it’s time to challenge my lowest ever, and go for that oh so elusive 155!
So, join us! It’s so much better to do these things with friends and family for support!