Saturday, October 15, 2011

The weight loss challenge is ON!

Every year for the past 4 or 5 years, my friend MaryEllen and I embark on a weight-loss program. Always begins at the official end of road season, the glorious "off season". Last year, we started it a bit early, as I had surgery and wanted to start the week of the surgery, due to the sheer volume of snack food that was available to me at work. I needed 2 weeks away from all of that crap before I could really resist it. That worked. It only took 1 week of longing, sideways glances before I was able to steer clear, and continue down the road to a lighter body.

Well, the challenge takes us into the holidays (accck), and into the new year, when racing begins all over again. Both of us reached reasonable losses, but neither achieved the lauded: GOAL WEIGHT.

Here we are in October. Both of us are at the same weight as January. Yeah, generally good not to gain it all back again, but this is the dreaded plateau. Ugh. For nearly 10 months, maintaining has been pretty easy. The first 3 weeks were fine. But I didn't drop a single pound. ME fluctuated a bit, but was generally heading in the right direction. My body is stubborn. Really stubborn. I actually gained a pound one week (sh*t), but quickly got rid of it again... What to do now? I had to employ serious tactics in order to start dropping weight:
  • Restrict ANY and ALL junk (stopped eating any candy,chocolate and/or chips)
  • Learn how to go hungry without getting into that weird "I'm so hungry I could eat my shoe" place... That's a fine line - trust me.
  • Employ drastic measures: my brain
Back when I was bodybuilding, the diet was the worst part for me. The WORST. I could lift weights, run, do whatever for however long, but when it came to dropping the necessary body fat needed to compete? Just shoot me. I remember being at shows, and someone would step out into the harsh lights, and the first thing that came to mind: "Damn. He/she should have dieted for another 8 weeks...". I never wanted anyone to say that about me! You're standing on stage, wearing 4 teensey triangles of fabric, under the harshest lights EVER (makes dressing rooms look weak, in comparison), and the last thing you want is for someone to see that Snickers bar you scarfed down a few weeks ago, planted firmly on your butt cheek. Sounds harsh, but it was a tough sport. Nobody cared what you looked like 6 months ago, how far you'd progressed, it only mattered what you looked like, for those 5 minutes (or so) you were standing on stage in a bikini. Nothing else mattered. You had to have a really thick skin... Totally unhealthy, for sure, and I blame that lifestyle for making it so darned hard for me to drop any weight now that I have a normal, healthy diet, but it was necessary to be that way for the sport. Of course, I had no butt back then, and was utterly unable to sit at the bus stop the last month or so before a contest, because any fat stores were just gone. Pfft. Just like that. But my brain was the most effective tool in my arsenal for dropping weight back then.

I'm using it once again. Much like the fear of being seen naked, the fear of "if I put this in my mouth, where will it end up on my body?" and "do I really NEED that? Or am I just wanting to eat something?"... Hey, it works for me. The weight is coming off now, FINALLY! All it takes for me is that first pound to be lost, then I'm on a roll... I won't eat the roll, but I'm on one. :o) And this time, I'm going for that elusive: super-stretch goal. I'm just 2 pounds from my goal as I write this, and it will be 4 to that weight which I've not weighed in over 10 years. When I get there, the first thing I want to go do is climb some big hill on my bike. Then I'll probably have to buy some new jeans, because even the skinny jeans are starting to be less and less snug...

Even using a scale, jeans are the better indicator of weight loss. They either fit, or they don't. No getting around it! I may have to go buy a new pair or two sooner than the holidays... Now that's an awesome dilemma!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Congratulations! I completely agree that non-stretch clothing is a better way to measure than the scale. When I was on Weight Watchers almost 10 years ago, I measured multiple things to track my progress: weight, body measurements, skinny clothes. It worked because some weeks the tape measure showed what the scale didn't, and vice versa. Multiple ways to show success.