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Saturday, February 19, 2011

Focus and Lack Thereof

Keeping up focus and motivation is crucial for weight loss. The problem with weight loss is that it is small movements down the scale. The problem with gaining weight is that we can gain weight very quickly and feel like all is for not with our weight loss attempts. Healthy weight loss is pegged at around 1-2 lbs a week. That's a small payoff for the big amount of weight, isn't it?

With WLS, your pay off is much bigger and the numbers you are seeing are typically double that of a normal person so losing 3, 4 or 5 lbs a week is not uncommon. It is certainly motivating. The first year out of surgery, it was very easy to see the payoff and to get excited about those numbers on the scale because they were quite large.

But over time, that too diminished.

You see, most people get to goal around one year to a year and a half out of surgery. Some may take 2 years. Some never get to goal. But the 2nd year mark really marks something important - people typically get to their lowest weight. At the 2-3 year mark, they tend to have some bounceback up past their lowest weight. Surgeons consider this very normal.

Don't do what I did - I bet myself up for this incessantly. As a result, I became obsessed with numbers on the scale, numbers on the back of clothing...I fell into a blue phase where I was very unhappy, unfocused and unmotivated.

Enter, overeating, emotional eating and boredom eating.

Up, up, up went the scale.

I cringe whenever I see people post "100 lbs gone forever" because guess what? You just don't know. No one INTENDS to have regain weight. I most certainly didn't. I was the poster girl for a long time. I did 1 hour of walking each day to and from work and then 4 miles on my treadmill every night religiously.

And let me tell you, trying to lose weight past the 3 year mark is HARD!!!

I became obsessed with carbs and counting things. I started therapy. It helped somewhat to allow me to see that I'm more than a number on a scale and that the more I starved myself (i.e think low carbs, stupid 5 day pouch test...) the more I got into cyclical, spiraling out of control eating. The more I withheld or restricted myself, the more I binged.

So what changed and why am I getting refocused again?

Because I set a goal.

My goal had nothing to do with weight loss.

My goal WAS a New Year's Resolution. I admit it! Bad me!

I wanted to run. I wanted to become a runner. I've long envied them, their form and have tried many times to turn myself into a runner.

Now I'm succeeding.

As the last week in February plays out, I'm getting there. I've been doing the Couch to 5K program as of January 1st. It requires no dietary restriction - it's not a diet. It's a running plan where you do intervals of running and walking. You slowly increase the running times to the point that you will do 30 minutes of straight running.

I'm currently at Week 8 of the program, Day 3 will be next - I'm at 28 straight minutes.

As a result of this goal, I'm losing regain. I've gone from 167 lbs to 154.5. I am so happy with my progress!! I've joined up for a 5K on April1 6th, 2011.

And most of all, I'm happy, motivated and focused again.


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