Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Long and Winding Road

My Weight Watchers leader sent me a postcard about a month ago saying that weight loss is a “long and winding road.” That is so true. Right now, there’s more wind to my journey than anything else. Four times since November I’ve reached a certain weight and then something happens. Then, I have to work my way back to this certain weight. That happened again last week. I took off the vacation weight and got to X weight. Now I’m most assuredly above that. It could all be a coincidence, but it doesn’t really matter. Somehow I need to break through that barrier. I’m going to try something else.

There are many ways to see your weight loss success than just the number on the scale. This is something that I know, but that scale trumps all other signs. I think that just about every dieter I’ve ever met says the same thing. You can get a good amount of exercise in, stay in complete control of your eating, notice that your clothes are loose – even straight out of the dryer – and feel great. But, the moment you step on that scale and the number does not equate with success you feel horrible. This is part of what can make being a Weight Watcher hard. The first thing you do at your meeting is weigh in.

I have made a commitment to get regular exercise. Not only do I need to do this to enhance weigh loss, I need to do this to improve my mood and to feel strong again. For the month of May, exercise is going to be my focus. In order to give that my complete concentration, I’m not going to use my home scale – not even once. I am going to all of my Weight Watcher meetings, but I’m going to turn my back to the read out screen and keep my member booklet in my membership folder. That way I cannot see what the scale said or be tempted to take a peek later. My rationality is that if I don’t see what the scale says, I won’t know when I’ve reached that magic number that I cannot shake. That should take out the mental component. In place of watching the scale, I’m going to look at my measurements. I took my measurements this morning. I’m planning on taking them again on the 15th and the 29th. I will use those as a measure of how my efforts are paying off. I am hoping that when I see my weigh in on May 31st that it will only serve to back up the changes I’m seeing instead of amplifying or negating them.

Looking at your weekly weigh over a month’s period instead of week by week can also clue you in to patterns that might exist. Perhaps it takes a week or two before results show up on the scale. When you’re not living weigh in to weigh in, you can look at those things more rationally. I no longer want to eat, not eat, exercise or not exercise because of what I’ll see on the scale. I want to do those things to reestablish a healthy lifestyle. In the long run, that attitude will straighten out the path I’m on because my motivation will be in the correct place. If making this change takes off some of the pressure, I’ll continue this every month. I am an impatient person by nature, but even I can hold off on the “instant gratification” when it keeps me healthier and happier.


Kary said...

Great attitude!! Sounds like you are heading in the right direction. It is so important that the TREND line goes down, but we get so focused on the weekly number. Good strategy on your part!

I just bought a pedometer. Let's do a challenge on getting steps in and making each other accountable. I signed up at aom.americaonthemove.org. You can track your steps and lend support to friends. Whatcha think?

T.M. said...

Sounds like a wonderful plan! NO MORE weekly weighing for me -! Thanks for the idea! Now that I am mobile - we will see how my new workout plan does....
Keep up the good work!!!