Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Losing 100 Pounds: Why, how, and other ponderings...

When you have a big life goal, it's really easy to think in terms of the big picture and in all-or-nothing thoughts, and to get extremely overwhelmed and to either obsess or give up.

Long road ahead... [source]

I've had many big life goals, none quite so reoccurring as the desire to lose weight.  And unlike many other life goals, losing weight is a goal that doesn't stop once you achieve it.  It's a life long commitment.

There is no true finish line to this, which means that not only is it not a race, it's not a destination either.

There is no timetable either, because like I said, it won't be done once I lose 100 pounds.

So in order for me to lose this weight and keep it off, I need to stop thinking of the weight loss as a timed race to a destination, and to start thinking of it as a life long thing.  

It's also not something that I am obligated to do.  No one is forcing me to lose 100 pounds.

I don't believe that only thin people are healthy, or that only thin people are beautiful.  In fact, I think those are completely false statements which I am in no way going to use to motivate this weight loss.  I believe  in health at every size.

A very important part of setting any goal is to have a good reason that you really believe in.

My biggest motivators are health,  happiness, and the desire to get back to the same size I was when Mom was alive.

Let's break those motivators down and really analyze them.

1) Health.

As I just said, I believe in health at every size.  So I believe that it's  possible to be my current size (5'6'', 250-ish pounds, size 22 jeans) and healthy.  HOWEVER, I did not get this size using healthy habits.  Personally, this is not a healthy size.  I got this big by eating lots of pizza, snack cakes, potato and chips, with no respect to my body's hunger signals.  During most of my weight gain, I still exercised regularly, but not enough to stop the massive weight gain (100 pounds in 2 years, most of it happening in the first year).

I want to be healthy, inside and out.  Healthy habits will lead to weight loss for me.

2) Happiness.

Okay, I call a little bit of bullshit on myself for this one.  Will I be happy because I weigh 100 pounds less than I do now?  Of course not.  Happiness is not found in a number on a scale  or a pants tag.  Happiness is found from within.

However, if I can finally learn to love my body by treating it with respect and total care, and if I can finally rid myself of the emotional eating and the obsessive thoughts, and if I can finally truly recover from EDNOS, then I will be pretty happy with that.

Losing weight won't cure me from my EDNOS, but I think that the lessons that I will  learn along the way could help.

3) Wanting to be the size that I was before Mom died.

I don't know if this is a rational desire, but it's one that is extremely personal to me.  I hate that I look so different than I looked when Mom knew me.  I know that it's impossible to go back in time, but it's not impossible to get back to a more comfortable size, and to possibly feel closer to the person I was back then.

I may end up expanding this list of reasons, but for now I am satisfied with them as good motivators.

Now it's time to tell you how I'm losing the weight.

I'm not going to do anything extreme.  Instead, I'm going to modify my eating in healthy and reasonable ways.

Here are a few things that I'm doing:

1) Cook every day.  I've been using the crock pot to make the meat/bean course, and then I bake or saute some vegetables and cook some rice.  I eat leftovers for lunch the next day.

2) Keep binge foods out of the house 100% of the time, no exceptions.  Binge food list for me: bread, snack cakes, pizza (except home made), chips (except pita chips), candy (except dark chocolates and licorice), and pop tarts.

3) Anything processed, stick to the serving size recommended on the package.  Ex: 1/2 cup of cereal, 1 granola bar, 5 slices of turkey, etc.

4) Weigh in weekly or so.

5) Track food and exercise on MFP at least two days a week, just to make sure that my portions haven't gotten out of control.

6) Exercise every other day (for now.  I let myself get VERY out of shape the last couple of months, so any loftier goal than that is doomed.).

Easier said than done! [source]

I'm not going to say that this is how I'm going to lose 100 pounds.  I'm just saying that this is what I'm doing for now, and it's working and all very reasonable.

I hope that all of my lovely readers and friends are doing well!  Please let me know what you think of my motivations and new guidelines.

P.S. Stacey and I are engaged!


SewTypical said...

you GO, Girl !!!

PS Congrats on your engagement! you look happy in that picture :-)

MW said...

I truly appreciate all you've shared on your blog the past few years. I hope we can all learn to live a healthy and happy life. Also, Congrats on your engagement!

Katie said...

Yay!!! That's aweome!!! Congrats, Leah!!!

Shannon Tatlock said...

Congratulations on the engagement! I look forward to having you back around the blogs and hearing all about your successes, whatever they may be. :)

Mystère said...

Oh congratulations!!!! <3 <3 <3 So very happy for you. :0)