Peace, love & weight loss

If you’ve spent any length of time around the weight loss blogosphere, I’m sure you’ve heard that it’s important to make peace with your body, and I believe that 100%. For me, it was a huge revelation to understand that my body is not the enemy. My body does some pretty amazing stuff and I try to remember that when I’m having trouble zipping up last year’s pants.

But I’ve also recently come to realize that I have to make peace with something else. Something I used to kick and scream against, something I used to white knuckle my way through until I was left a sobbing mess in the corner.

I realize now that I have to make peace with the weight loss process.

I have started doing that, and I believe this is going to be the thing that eventually gets me to my goal. I am realizing that it doesn’t have to be so soul-crushingly difficult to just eat a little less and move more. In the past, I used to fight so hard to lose weight without really changing anything. Or I felt like I had to change EVERYTHING and I just couldn’t do it, so I would settle comfortably back in my old rut. Counting calories or points was so crazy-making because it’s hard to stay within your allotted range when all you are eating is Oreos and Cheetos. And when you refuse to go any faster than 2.5 miles on the treadmill, it’s pretty hard to burn any fat. Now though, I realize that I can make changes that feel good to me. I’ve discovered that pushing myself to go faster on the treadmill feels good, and cherry tomatoes and Laughing Cow cheese make an excellent snack in the afternoon. I’m sort of just going with the flow and being honest with myself about how I feel.

And really, I have no idea how I started making the shift from I MUST LOSE WEIGHT NOW, to I’m just going to do the best I can at this weight loss thing. Well that’s not exactly true, I do have a couple of ideas of what has helped: Listening to the Untangled sessions has helped with some of the inside stuff, reading MB’s blog has helped me realize that sometimes slow and steady is the only way to get there, and also tracking my calories in a less Nazi-like fashion has been helpful too.  Instead of telling myself I must not eat more than 1200 calories per day, I tell myself to just stay under 1800 calories. Most of the time I come in around or under 1400 calories and that totally works for me.

After 13 years of trying to lose weight, trying diet after diet, pills, shakes, supplements, etc etc etc…I have finally come to understand am  starting to understand that there is no magic solution. There is no trick or secret to losing weight. The solution is so crazily obvious I didn’t want to see it (hello Forest, meet Trees). The solution, I have slowly and painfully come to realize, is ME. I am the solution to my weight loss problems. I have everything I need to do this. Buying cute workout clothes will not guarantee that I will work out. Having a gym membership will not guarantee that I will go. Having lots of workout dvds does not mean that I will actually use them. The only thing I really and truly need is ME. Do the accouterments of weight loss help? Sure, if you use them. I love the Calorie Count website, my treadmill, and my Facebook group (we’re up to 13 members – woo!) and they all help me do what I need to do to get the weight off, but they don’t do it FOR me.

I still have a long way to go, but for right now, today, I’m okay with that. As long as I am going in the right direction, I’ll get there eventually.

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18 thoughts on “Peace, love & weight loss

  1. As always, well written, and thought provoking. I’m kind of wondering–you started out with making peace with your body, and I wonder if that has also affected how you view your ultimate goal–would you be satisfied with a higher weight if that’s where your body seems to settle,as long as you are healthy and fit and unlimited in life? Its that whole ‘vanity as a motivating factor’ that I’ve been mulling over ever since you wrote about it.

  2. “Buying cute workout clothes will not guarantee that I will work out. Having a gym membership will not guarantee that I will go. Having lots of workout dvds does not mean that I will actually use them.” — That had me laughing out loud! I can relate…unfortunately.

    And I hear you about making peace with the weight-loss process, especially if it’s in the frame work of doing it respectfully (so to speak — meaning, not following a fad diet/program). The calorie-tracking has actually been going well. Not too stressful at all this time.

  3. WOOOHOOOO!!!! I’m so proud of you! It’s time to break free from all those diet rules and find what works for you. Only you know what foods you like that will make you feel better. Only you know what type of exercise doesn’t bore you to tears. Only you can create a plan that will work for you.

    Coming to the realization that you have to make peace with the process no matter how long it takes to get to the ultimate goal is a BIG STEP. Some days will be good and some not so good, some weigh ins will be cause for celebration and some will be frustrating but if you keep moving in the right direction you will get to where you want to be.

    Welcome to the exclusive Slow and Steady club! We turtles need to stick together and not let those speedy rascally wrabbits deter us from finishing the race. We’ll get there eventually, slow and steady….

    Jill, I can’t tell you how happy I am for you, I almost jumped out of my chair reading this post. I really believe this is a turning point in your journey similar to what I felt back in Nov. 2009. It’s been almost 2 years and I’m still not at my goal but it doesn’t really matter. I’ll get there when I get there and so will you!

    Keep the faith and rock on!!!!!!

      • I’m so glad you are still in the game and have decided on a new game plan. After fighting the weight loss battle for decades, it feels amazing to realize that I didn’t need some crazy diet plan, I didn’t need pills or shakes, I didn’t need to track points or calories, and I didn’t need to give up my favorite foods (well, I still can’t be trusted with chocolate covered pretzels but still hope to be able to someday). What I needed was to have faith in the process, stop beating myself up over every morsel of “bad” food I ate and get my ass off the couch and start moving more and never, ever, give up.

        I love that idea of turtle t-shirts. We should get together with Cammy at http://tippytoediet.com and come up with a Tippy Toe Turtle mascot for the Slow and Steady Club.

        Peace Out!

        • I love the idea of a Tippy Toe Turtle!! I have an image in my head of a turtle with a sweatband tip toeing through the tulips! heehee!!

          And I hear ya on that chocolate covered pretzel thing – so addictive!!

  4. Oh yay! That’s such great news, Jill. I think it must be a sign of maturity, this making peace with ourselves thing. It’s making me feel like my 40s won’t be so horrible, ya know?

  5. Sometimes I find that it’s my life (good or bad) that I have trouble making peace with, but focusing on the weight is SO much easier, that I get that All or Nothing, or Will it EVER Be Enough?!?! Attitude.

    Through all of it, peace or not, losing weight, or not – remember you’re human, and you have lots of company. (Me included, popping over from MB’s by the way.)

    Oh, and I’ve never found cute workout clothes for me. Although, I suspect that it may come down to me being unable to pop $200 for a single outfit. 🙂

  6. Hi Jill! Count me in with the turtles! It’s funny, and a little sad, I wrote a kicking-and-screaming post back in January and never posted it. And now I’m up another 7 pounds from where I was then + physically uncomfortable in my own skin. Just re-read it and am doing a little self-assessment about what to do about it, and it sounds a lot like your plan, too. Don’t know where “there” is, but we’ll get back to the place where we feel good in our skin and our pants again.

  7. Pingback: The long and winding road to fitness, day 72 « Run4joy59's Blog

  8. What an inspiration you are!! It took me a long time to come to the realization that I can get there, can reach my goals, by treating myself with respect…but no one else can do it for me. It’s up to me.

  9. Sounds like you’re doing the right thing by choosing “healthy foods in moderate amounts” and accepting a slower (but wholesome and working!) weight loss rather than eliminating food groups. Keep it up!

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