Almost two years ago I reached my goal weight, dropping over 30 pounds in about four months. I am happy to say that I have been able to keep those pounds off. What have I done to make this a life style? For me, it has involved several things.
First, it’s about the way I look at myself and the value I put on my health. I AM worth it! I deserve an active life full of the opportunities that come with good health. I deserve to be happy when I look in a mirror. This is MY triumph!
Second, it’s about being honest with myself. I am the one responsible for my weight. Blaming others or my circumstances for what I do or don’t do is a cop out. I am the one who makes the decision as to what and how much I eat and exercise. Nobody else can or should do it for me. I am in control of my weight.
Third, it’s about how I look at calories. Weight loss and maintaining it really is like balancing a check book; it all about addition and subtraction. Deduct calories from your diet, add exercise to your day and that results in weight loss. The opposite is also true. In the end I wanted to have less calories “in the bank” in order to lose weight, and once I got to the weight I wanted to be at, it was all about “budgeting” the calories. At the end of the day, if I’ve used more calories than I ate, then I’m in the black. This helped me make better choices when it came to the food I chose to eat and how much I chose to exercise. It wasn’t so much about willpower, it was more about balancing my calorie count.
Fourth, I changed my “reward” system. Instead of rewarding myself with food, like I had done before, I reward myself with little things. For instance, every time I try on something and it’s a size 6 or less (I used to wear a 12/14), I give myself an “atta girl”. Every time someone says I look great, I put that in the reward category. Every time I sit in a seat at a public event and have room left over, that’s a reward. When on vacation, by continuing in my exercise program and eating sensibly, I can enjoy a few “extras” that come when one goes on vacation and reward myself by not feeling defeated. I reward myself with positivity! That motivates me to keep making good choices both in the food I chose to eat and the amount of exercise I do.
Lastly, I live by the “five pound” rule. I weigh myself two to three times a week now, instead of once a week when I was working to reach my goal weight. If my weight climbs up to five pounds more than my goal weight, I put myself back into my weight loss program. I keep in mind that losing two to five pounds is a lot easier and quicker to do than losing 10. I worked too hard to get to my goal weight to let go, and not keeping the weight off that I lost would be like blowing my savings account on incidental and unnecessary items. What a waste of all my hard work!
Of course, keeping my training up at Studio Fitness is a huge part of all of this. The atmosphere there feeds my determination to keep at it and not give in to the “take it easy on yourself” mentality that got me to the weight I was when I started this process almost two years ago. My trainer, Darcy, has always been supportive and honest when it has come to not only my workouts, but also the way I view myself. She has helped me to keep my balance.
In the end, it hasn’t been so much a life style change. It’s really been a change in my thinking and the way I look at life. I want to be able to stay in the zone of my goal weight so I can accomplish whatsoever I set my mind and heart on to do and not have my health be the deciding factor as to whether I do it or not. I am definitely going to reward myself by trying!