What Goes Up…
Must come down. This old adage is so true. Kind of like getting hit in the head with the ball you threw up in the air as a kid just to watch it fall and smack you in the face. Ever since I hit GOAL for Weight Watchers I’ve been playing this interesting game. I’m not yo-yo-ing like I did in the past when I would lose a good bit of weight and gain it all back. Oh no I’m not going there. Those days are in the past….way past. But I’ve been up and down about 3 pounds depending on the week. Three pounds of something that keeps showing up on my scale. Some weeks up, some weeks down. But I keep hovering around my happy weight which is why I chose it to be my goal.
When I was losing weight I had this mindset that I needed to see a loss on the scale every week. That was a sign I had a good week and did everything right. I was always so sad when the scale stayed the same or even God forbid went up. I would pitch a fit in my bathroom, tears and all, standing on the scale butt naked if the number was not what I was expecting. I was seeking the number on the scale for validation that I had done well during that week. I would get so angry at myself when I would see a number that didn’t mess with my mind’s idea of what it should say. Sometimes that anger even happened when I saw a loss that wasn’t as big as I was hoping for. Once I’d cried it out I would go to my WW meeting for my official WI. Thank God I got all the tears our already because I’d look like a 2-year-old throwing a tantrum in Target. Each week at the beginning I would bust my but at the gym for 40 AP’s (about 4000 calories) and not eat them or my Weekly Points Allowance. I thought that I was doing well sticking to just my daily points and I would lose the weight faster.
DO NOT DO THIS!!!! I repeat….DO NOT DO THIS! I hit a plateau and felt stuck. It was like quicksand and I was sinking fast. I couldn’t eat less and still be healthy so I started eating more. And what a difference that made. I was still working our rehabing my back but I was feeding it the way it needed to shed those last 5 or so vanity pounds. The weight started coming off again and I started enjoying food more when I wasn’t worried about going over my daily points by just a bit. I enjoyed extra food the healthy way and wasn’t binging on cookies to eat away my points. I was learning to savor real whole foods not just the junky low-calorie snacks that are 100 calories…They are only 100 calories if you only eat one. Instead I was enjoying things like pineapple and Nut Butter and cheese. Things I thought I couldn’t have before in order to stay within my points allowance. I delighted in food then and those last few pounds came off slowly but come off they came. And I felt great.
But now that I’m at goal I can’t rely on that scale for validation that I had a good week. And I really shouldn’t. It can’t distinguish between fat or muscle. Lactic acid from a workout or salt from too much soy sauce at PF Changs. They just showed up as weight on the scale. And they weren’t bad….they were water or fluid. I had to retrain my brain that Good or Bad weeks are not measured by weight on the scale but what I do with my body for the week. If I sit around all week and don’t get to the gym (sickness aside) I have not had a good week. I’ve been lazy and need to get back on track. If I eat my emotions and stress instead of taking a bubble bath or going for a run, I’ve not had a good week. I need to find other stress relievers for the next week instead of the snacks in the cabinet. There is no sanity there. A good week is measure by what I do and not what the scale does. It’s a dumb little machine that just offers feedback of what I’ve done for the week.
This thing they call maintenance is about maintaining the healthy lifestyle I’ve grown to love. It’s not about maintaining some perfect weight that I hit on one special day. Heck even Weight Watchers knows this and gives all LifeTime members a 2 pound buffer. And 90% of the time I’m within that buffer if I follow my healthy lifestyle skills. Maintenance can include pizza and pasta just as much as whole grains and salad. And even a dessert when my stomach is up to it. It includes hard-core running and days of yoga or just sitting on the couch. And it’s not all going to hell if I skip a few days of the gym or eat some ice cream (you hear that Cynthia…It’s not going to fall apart because you are sick). Maintenance is a new journey that I’m enjoying because it keeps changing and it’s my life. Notice the title of the Blog 😀
How do you feel about maintaining your weight?