My bathroom scale and I had a fight this morning. I put up a good defense, even insulted its mother, but in the end I knew it was right. Especially in the end, judging by my shadow. I’ve gained weight. Thanks to a few seasons of unbearable weather, the blessing of steady work and the occasional absence of automotive transportation, my original 100-lb weight loss is now more like a 60-lb loss.
But hey, that’s ok. I took it off once, I can do it again. I’ll also do it more sensibly, and not make really stupid decisions like last time. On my second go-round, I’ve learned a few things:
Good Lord, ignore the commercials. “Follow my simple plan of cookies/bars/shakes and you’ll lose weight!” Yeah, and how does that re-enforce healthy eating habits? Or help me deal with stress eating?
“I’m not this person anymore!” *tears up photo* Honey, lean over here so I can slap the taste out of your mouth. You’re the same person, you just weigh less. If you hate yourself when you’re fat, there’s a good chance you won’t love yourself when you’re skinny.
Don’t diet. This was a major breakthrough for me. Dieting forces you to obsess about food. If you only eat certain things five times a day, you’re always thinking about food. After a couple of weeks, I would dream about food. Just sidle up sideways to better eating by making healthier choices. Occasionally try carrot sticks instead of carrot cake. A few baked chips instead of a bag of regular Ruffles. Don’t think about it, just say “Hey, it’s no big deal. I’ll have a salad just for today.” Keep making changes until your eating plan would make Michelle Obama cry like Miss America.
Realize this is a long-term commitment. Say this out loud to yourself: “There are no easy fixes.” Because there are none. You can get lap band surgery, but if you don’t follow the eating plan, you’ll be right back where you started. You can cut calories, but if you cut too much, your body will kick into survival mode.
Sure, you may fall off the horse, or horse may just buck your big butt off occasionally. Don’t get discouraged. It takes time to slim down, learn better habits and love exercise. In this instant, gotta-have-it-now world, people are so obsessed with losing weight fast. It’s not good for your body, and you don’t get the unbelievable pleasure from every accomplishment along the way. Don’t cheat yourself and miss out on the journey.
See you there.
Photo credit: Flickr.com/puamelia