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Patience, grasshopper.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Patience is what I need. I've been thinking about my pattern of dieting and fitness over the past year and it occurred to me that I've been an absolute idiot.

Well, not really an idiot. I've just been really impatient.

In January of 2014 I decided to lose weight. (As I do every year). I decided that I would have WILLPOWER and restrict my calories and exercise a lot. So I did. I even replaced my evening meal with a protein shake. I ate a big breakfast, normal lunch and a shake for dinner. It felt insane. And it was. But I lost a lot of weight. Skipping eating a normal dinner is not a habit I can keep up for a long period of time. It's the only time of day I get to eat with my family. And how does that set a good example for my kid? "Here, honey, eat this well-balanced meal while Mommy pounds down this protein shake." Ridiculous.

AND I did Jillian Michaels' 30 Day Shred. That junk hurts. emoticon My thighs felt like rubber. It was very strenuous. I'd feel exhausted every day when I was doing that, because my job is pretty active, and at work I sometimes get 10,000 steps while just at work. Plus, when I get home I'm cooking, doing laundry, playing with my kid, and so I'd get 11,000 steps and then do the workout. All the while not eating enough to support my calorie needs and feeling like crap.

But I lost weight. Of course. But who can keep that up?

Nobody, that's who. And so I gained all the weight back. Then I restricted again around May and lost it again. And then over the summer I gained it back. Then lost it around September/October. Then gained it back again in November/ December.

All in all, I started out 2015 only two pounds less than I was in January of 2014. All because I want a quick fix. A hard workout, a shake, a pill, a way to make this fat melt away so I can "finally" look and feel the way that I think I should.

But I know what to do because I've lost 70 pounds and kept it off.

What works:
Small, consistent changes made over time. emoticon

**********That means***************
Choosing healthy choices over unhealthy choices 75% of the time. emoticon
Being active throughout the day in joyful ways. (Emphasis on the "joyful") emoticon

Choosing to appreciate your body how it is right now, for what it can DO, not what it looks like, and basing your food and fitness choices on that fact! emoticon

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Wow, Tracy, what a great blog, and very timely for me because just this morning, I was thinking to myself, "I need to work more on being patent." I was actually thinking of being patient in areas of my life other than weight loss, but your blog reminded me of the perils I experienced in my youth as an impatient dieter. Just as you discovered by experimenting with the quick fixes you describe here, I did the very same thing, even becoming anorexic a couple of times. I have absolutely no doubt that that impatience for quick results is the reason I am now facing this obesity problem (because of the body's very natural reaction to being starved unnaturally), and you are SO EXACTLY RIGHT when you sum it up with the "magic" formula: small, consistent changes made over time! Thanks for this great blog!
    2345 days ago
    very true and very insightful blog. I'm all about the very small gradual changes and living an 80% kinda life (although in practice it's about 60% which is just enough to keep me from going too far backwards)

    I admire your stance and your progress, great work!
    2346 days ago
    I really liked this blog - it is a simple statement of a huge struggle that I (many of us, probably) have. When we decide we're ready to lose, we're really ready for it to BE LOST already. So we're tempted to take those quick fix steps. Or go hog wild (this is my tendency at first) and burn out. Thanks for the reminder that it can be done sensibly, and even be sustainable! And that when you're thinking, you'd choose the sensible way, after experiencing both. Thanks for that.
    2347 days ago
    This made me feel good. Thank you for sharing it.
    2347 days ago
    you nailed it so now start adjusting! quick fixes are temporary. You can do this!!
    2347 days ago
    Actually, you've made the first, most important step towards the right way to lose weight. You're being honest with yourself! You know what you did wrong, you recognize your mistakes and you want to change them. That's a great start.
    We have all wanted a quick fix at least once in our lives. And we have all made these mistakes again and again. You'll be surprised to know that even the most successful maintainers still have to fight this kind of extreme behavior. I encourage you to read TINAJANE's blog on the subject:

    Oh, and what you said about your kid and family dinners? Totally true! We are parents and we have to set the right example for our kids.
    I'm sure you'll do it the right way this time. One right choice at a time.
    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    2347 days ago

    Comment edited on: 1/15/2015 2:22:10 AM
    You are so right. I totally get that whole feeling crazy but not caring as long as the weight comes off. I too have been on that unsustainable cycle and so gained it all back. I felt like a tweaker!
    I is a much more joyful, peaceful and dare I say fun place to be to reshape the whole life slowly. It's enjoyable to "do it" for real. I no longer kill myself with exercise because I know as I get older I can't keep it up either so I walk, walk, walk and zumba and pretty much refuse to do things that I hate.
    I think when we do the crazy thing it feel like we are also trying to outpace the fear of knowing we can't keep it up forever and that leads to all our collapsing.
    Good for you!!! 2015 is yours wise one!
    2347 days ago
    Spot-on sister!!! What a great blog!!

    And I hear ya on the steps! I got a pedometer earlier this year, and when I checked at the end of the day I was all "Ohh, maybe that's why I'm so tired" lol.

    Seriously, great blog! Everyone should be 'liking' this one! emoticon
    2347 days ago
    I have also always been very impatient when it comes to losing weight, as I'm sure most of us are. But as you said you've lost and kept off 70 lbs, so you can certainly continue to kick butt! Good job and keep it up!
    2347 days ago
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