Losing Weight in the New Year
New years are always cause for re-evaluation. I think it's the nature of the beast. Unavoidably, people are going to talk about New Year's Resolutions, or things they want to accomplish in the new year. I stopped doing that years ago, but one thing always remains.
I'm going to talk to you about my weight today. Not a pleasant topic in the best of circumstances, and one no one wants to discuss most of the time. Here's the thing. I'm what you call a yo-yo dieter. Many years ago, I joined weight watchers because I'd reached an OMG weight--that threshhold which we shall not cross without buying a new wardrobe in unacceptable sizes. I lost a bunch of weight. Then a funny thing happened. They changed their plan. It no longer worked for me. I became a statistic, one of those "I kept it off for three years!" people before I gained it back. That was sheer laziness on my part. I tried going back to WW after that, but the program was different. Not as effective. I resorted to the MyFitnessPal app that counts calories, which I recommend - but you have to stick with it (which I didn't).
When my son got married, I was determined to drop the extra weight once more and I let a friend talk me into a (I'm going to call it questionable) program. The program worked, but even as I was working it, I knew it wasn't sustainable. Again, I dropped the weight. It taught me some valuable nutrition lessons, so it wasn't a total waste of time and money, but as an emotional eater, I was triggered when "my person" passed away. I resorted to the "life is short, eat the cookie" mentality and yes, I gained the weight back.
So here I am. I've accepted that my body likes being a certain size. I'm of a certain age. I'm at peace with that, and my health is good, so there really isn't an issue. Except there are notable differences when I'm more in control of my food. The way my clothes fit is a no brainer, but there are other benefits that motivated me to try once more this past November. Well, I lost the weight with weight watchers once before, so I tried it again. Funny thing. While I'd seen the changes in the weight watchers program over the years, I didn't really understand how much they'd changed the program. It was impossible to follow this time around, and now they're promoting it in conjunction with weight loss drugs. I'm sorry, Oprah, but unless you have severe health risks, there's a better way. We’re older now. Our bodies have changed due to a multitude of factors. I’m never going to be that skinny 20 year old again.
I went back to calorie counting with MyFitnessPal, which is much more reasonable than manufactured points that don't work, and I've lost some weight. I've applied the nutrition lessons I've learned through the years. At the end of the day, it's all about mind set. Food really is an addiction - and as Betty Ford used to say, just say no. I've been counting my calories with MyFitnessPal since around Thanksgiving time (which means this is NOT a "New Year's Resolution"). As I told my buddy when I started, I'm committed. It isn't a sprint, it's a marathon - the only marathon I'm likely to run. Despite being in calorie deficit every day, the scale isn't moving very quickly. I originally lost 8 lbs, then regained 4 after a Christmas cookie binge. (amazing how quickly you can put it on and how slowly it comes off.) I re-lost 2 or the original 4 and am trying to do better. No more Christmas cookies.
It isn't always about the victory on the scale. It's accepting that we are all made differently - different sizes and shapes - and age weighs into the equation. I'm not making excuses or rationalizing bad decisions, but I'm also not going to jeopardize my health going the pharmaceutical route.
I can get on my soapbox and preach about all the poor options that are available to us as Americans, how we got into this obesity mess in the first place, but at the end of the day, it's about choices.
I'm trying to make better ones.