No No’s and Plateaus

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I mentioned in my last post that I would speak more on the plateau that I experienced recently that went on for 4 months and in some ways still exists. After falling in love with my now ex boyfriend, the vigor and passion that I had for reaching my weight loss goals subsided. Mentally, I figured if someone could love me and take me as I was, then anything else was icing on the cake. This new view on life was substantiated by the fact that my overall goal was to be healthier and with continued exercise and eating right, what was the harm?

During this time period, I was diligent in what I ate, I worked out and I still practiced judgement when making decisions for my meals, the scale didn’t budge. Actually it teetered up and down and I found myself in a cycle of losing and gaining the same 5 pounds.

A major discernible change was that I was no longer obsessed with weight loss. I became obsessed with making him happy and through doing so, I became innately happy in the process. My personal trainer also noticed that I was stressing out substantially more due to being a full time student and a full time employee. Some weeks I slept an average of 3 hours a night while working 60 hour weeks and taking 4 classes. Looking back, I’m not sure how I did this myself, while maintaining a 4.0 GPA.

So aside from my decreased passion towards losing weight, my first “No No” was not sleeping enough each night. Our bodies need to rest to replenish and recover from all of the things we do to ourselves. Without that recovery period, it becomes increasingly difficult for us to shed the pounds. The extra “me” time that I would usually find some way to carve out for myself, was now being occupied by trying to find time with my boyfriend.

The second “No No” was the enormous amounts of stress that I was putting on my body through demanding it to work over capacity for such a long period of time. During this time, I suffered from panic attacks, dizzy spells, loss of vision and flat out fatigue. My body was simply exhausted. Again, not an environment conducive of weight loss.

Finally, “No No” number three was simply my shift from whole, clean foods to a higher mix of processed foods, simply for convenience. Although I was tracking calories dutifully using my trusty dusty app, the source of my calories shifted from raw fresh foods and yummy recipes to some frozen meals and packaged foods simply because I lacked time to cook.

Yes, the new boyfriend played a bit of a role in my outlook towards weight loss, however other factors contributed to my plateau, some things that I really could not do much in regards to fixing it. However, the most important part of fixing a plateau, in my opinion, is to go back to the original plan and compare it to actual behaviors. After doing this, it was easy for me to discover that my school and work circumstances created an environment that made it difficult for me to continue to lose weight.

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Things I’ve learned… and um… Re-learned, Part 2


The last few months have been really trying on my fitness and weight loss goals.  I’ve maintained when I should be in serious losing phase.  I’m not making excuses, simply observations to make me get better in the long run.  Some things that I’ve learned about myself:

I push myself way too hard.  I tend to go at full capacity, then when there’s nothing left of me I blame myself for failing.  I don’t even give myself a break for all of the hard work and effort that I put forth every day.  I need to lighten up, this journey is a lifestyle change, not a sprint.  I have to be ready to not only roll with the punches but also to slow down and give myself kudos for my accomplishments.

I tend to lose motivation.  I work a lot… and by a lot… I mean a lot.  My work weeks have been 60+ hours now for a few months.  It’s not only tiresome but draining and it leaves me too tired to do much of anything.  In addition to working so much, I’m also taking 9 credits in school and I have a 4.0.  The compromise has been exercise and sleep.  An extremely deadly mix for a healthy body.  What happens when my weight loss fails due to this deadly combo?  I lose all hope and I go off of the deep end.  I go back to the rich foods that comforted me and next thing I know I’ve gained 10 pounds.

I need a buddy.  I need to find someone that will hold me accountable when things in my life gets hectic.  I’m finding that everything is fine and dandy on the fitness level when I’m not working myself to death and during breaks from school.  I am like a drill Sargent during those times.  But when my work load gets out of hand and I have term papers due at midnight, I start to slip back into my ways.  I stop tracking my food, the gym sessions become further in between and I start snacking as a means of feeling better.

I can be inspirational.  A quote that’s kept me up at nights recently is “Don’t let life discourage you; everyone who got where he is had to begin where he was.”  Richard Evans said that and I want to kiss him for it.  It’s so true.  We always see that thin and fit person and we start to feel badly for ourselves, well at least I know I do sometimes.  But the truth of the matter is that they started somewhere as well.  They have a journey, whether it was losing weight and getting fit after pregnancy or finally meeting their goal weight after a year long struggle.  That’s just it, everyone started somewhere. So shall I.

Knowing these things about myself will only get me even closer to my fitness goals.  Now that school has ended for the semester, I’m going to treat myself to some awesome workouts and some home cooked healthy foods.  My body can’t wait for it.  I deserve it.

I’m still here… just going one step at a time, learning one day at a time!

Ode to Fat Girls:

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CLICKY!!

Ode to Fat Girls:.

I had to share this ^^ for one, it made me teary eyed and nothing makes me teary eyed. Every day, when I’m dragging all 330 pounds of me to the track to run, I feel every part of this post. It’s another perspective, one that I needed to hear. Even if no one really feels this way, these are the words I will now hear when I’m running and I see other, seasoned, runners.

Instead of feeling like crap because they passed me on the track or because their paces are 5 million times faster than mine [rough estimation] — I’m going to feel awesome that I’m out there. I’m going to give myself kudos because I’m actually out there busting my butt every day.

This is yet another reason why blogging [and reading blogs] has been an instrumental part of my weight loss journey.

I am my own worst enemy…

A lot has changed in the last week.  I haven’t decided if it’s for the better or not… not yet.

I’ve stuck with my restrictive diet completely.  I’m learning and researching as I go.  But I’m stuck at the same weight I was 2 weeks ago.

I’ve had some really bad thoughts lately and they all stem from feeling like I’m failing at this already.  I feel my will power slipping away and I’m drastically grabbing at it trying to hold on as much as I can.  Now, I don’t mean that I want to revert back to how I was — because honestly, I’ve come to despise the foods and eating habits that got me to where I am currently.  Truly despise them… BUT that drive that I felt starting this outrageous journey is slipping away from me.  Doubt is starting to creep in and I’m simply feeling god awful about it.

For so long, I’ve had a poor self image and I’ve always equated that with just me being overweight.  I’ve simply thought that my self esteem was non existent because I hated myself for being fat.  I’m starting to realize that even if I would hit my goal weight tomorrow (I could only wish) — that there are still unresolved issues that I have about me in general.  I thought that I could focus solely on the things I can easily control [what I put in my mouth and what I did with my body], but I’m slowly finding that to not be the case.

I think that I have to learn to love who I am now as well.  The negative thoughts that I have now must stop now.  I can’t be as naive to believe that my negative thoughts will vanish with the weight, because frankly, I’m starting to believe that no matter how much weight I lose, I will never be good enough — to me.

This revelation, however painful, is necessary for me to be successful.  It’s almost as if my body is holding on to my excess weight despite the fact that I’ve stuck to my plan.  My body is holding on to the security blanket that I’ve allowed myself to hide behind the majority of my life.  The overwhelming stress of just existing in life as me, is keeping me fat.

I have a lot of work ahead of me… emotionally, physically, mentally…

It’s so odd how the easy part of this has been the eating properly and exercising… how backwards is that.  I know that I’m facing a plateau at the moment… but this part has been easy.  My biggest struggles so far have been my thoughts and my negativity towards myself.  If someone would have told me 2 months ago when I started this journey that my mind would be my biggest challenge in this, I would have laughed…

Nothing tastes as good as thin…ner feels.

335.6, 58.5 body fat.

We’ve heard it a million times… “Nothing tastes as good as THIN feels”… yet… I’ve never really experienced what that’s like — in my life.  However, I’m not there yet.  I’ve just begun on this journey of mine.  I have a lot to experience, but so far — being thinner is living up to this adage.

I’m finding it easier to make better choices because I’m so determined to be thin.  In the past, when attempting to lose weight, I always just thought, “I’ll lose a few pounds so that I can be average.”  I always thought that THIN was a myth for me.  This is especially true since my family spent my entire life telling me that I had ‘big bones’, so I always assumed that I would just have to deal with being on the heavier side.

Not this time… I am going ALL IN.  I can’t wait to feel what this feels like.  I’m already feeling some of this.  Things as small as my clothing fitting a lot better and my jeans not cutting into my stomach — nothing I can eat will match feeling better as me.

So… even though I’m not “thin”, I am “thin-ner”[although any sane person would say “less fat” as opposed to thinner, but hey, it sounds better] and I’m on my way towards being a better me.

Side note… I have been stagnant on my weight loss recently.  Although it appears that I dropped a pound, it’s a lot slower than my 3 lb a week trend that I’ve been on.  However, I did start tracking my body fat (and it’s a good thing I did).  I’m currently down about 3% body fat, which would probably account for my “plateau”.  I still see it as  a victory as I plug along on this weight loss journey.

 

Food… BAH!

336.6 – 24 Pounds lost.

So, I have this fear that the “plan” that I am on is all wrong and that maybe I’m fad dieting but just unaware of it.  Yeah, I feel as though I can do this for the rest of my life, but that’s so easy to say only 6 true weeks into it.  I am not following any program, but simply doing what I think is right and what feels right to me.  Only, I suddenly got this fear early this morning that maybe I’ll see success now, because I have SO much weight to lose, and any reduction in my daily caloric intake will shed some pounds.  But what about as I get closer and closer to my goal weight?

The “What if” monster is really showing off today… I guess a lot of these questions need not be answered today, so I need not stress over it?

One thing that I have noticed, however, is that I don’t like eating anything heavy.  I’m okay when I eat a light salad, or munch on some grapes, or eat a piece of fruit or cheese.  But when I eat a full grown meal, I feel heavy and gross and fat.  So maybe it’s my portion sizes when I cook actual meals?

For instance… I created a stuffed pepper recipe that is stuffed with ground turkey and topped with sharp white cheddar.  Let me tell you, it’s amazing — and if this is what I have to look forward to for the rest of my lifestyle change, then bring it on.  However, I ate two of them [well technically one since it was cut in half before I “stuffed” them]  and I felt like death walking.  I felt heavy, I didn’t want to exercise, and I just felt, BLAH.

So, maybe it could be that my portion sizes are off?

Granted, I would have probably ate all six of them 2 months ago when I started on this weight loss journey.  But now — maybe eating just 1 would have sufficed.  It’s hard to believe that my stomach shrunk so much in so little time that such a small amount of food would be satisfying.

I have been getting extremely good at listening to my body.  and I think I need to start eating slower in general and stopping when I’m satisfied.  I know this makes sense in theory, but in practice, I put two peppers on my plate, so I ate two peppers.  I didn’t stop between eating them to see if  my appetite had changed.

I’m thinking this is even more important with me not eating a set amount of times a day and simply eating when I’m hungry.  I’ve found out that on some days I am content with eating only once and others I can eat up to four times.  Small portions and just listening to what my body is telling me.

So, Lesson learned — Stomach smaller = less food (even the healthy stuff)!

I’m one of you… I swear…

338.2 – 22.4 pounds lost.

Lately I’ve been more ashamed of my weight than I’ve probably ever have been in my entire life.  I guess now that I’ve gotten my eating habits under control.  I realized how much I ate unnecessarily.   I would start my day off with Chick Fil A and end it with Chipotle.  Shoveling unneeded calories down my trap every day.  How was I so disillusioned that I thought that was ok?  Why didn’t anyone who loved me, stop me and say WTF are you doing to yourself.  It’s like they are afraid to hurt my feelings.  Would they rather me end up dead?

I’ve picked up on subtle looks from people when I order something like a salad and hold the croutons and ask for light or fat free dressing.  Or when I’m out with friends at a bar and I order a turkey burger with no bun and hold the fries.  I get looks like, “Really, why even bother?”.  I want to scream out to them and let them know that I’m reconstructing my life.  That really, I’m one of them — I’m a part of the fit club, I just haven’t reaped all of the benefits of it yet.  I feel judged and I feel like I have a big sign on my back that says “Laugh at me, I think I can lose 200 pounds”.

What if I fail at this?  What if I gain everything back like I did last time?  I don’t think I could handle it to be honest.  Maybe that’s how I know that I will be successful this time?  Because I know that failure, this time only, is NOT an option.  If I go back to that place, where I had given up hope, or back to that place where I just figured I was meant to be fat for ever — I don’t think I could live like that anymore.

And so I go on… secretly wishing to be a part of the slim kids club.  Silently pleading to them to admit me early — before my outsides matches my insides.