Thursday, November 21, 2013

Forget the sugarplums, visions of pizza and 20 mile runs danced in my head

I feel like I am on the world's hugest plateau. For months now, I have been losing and gaining the same pound, always staying between 168-169 lbs. So on the bright side, I'm apparently pretty skilled at maintaining a weight. If that weight were 30 or 40 lbs less, that would be fantastic! It's just driving me crazy. It's so important to me to finish what I started here, mainly because I have never done that before.

When I stepped on the scale yesterday, I expected big things. It had been as close to a perfect week as I have had in a while. I was right at 1200 calories every day. I worked out multiple times a day, never running or walking anything less than 6 miles. I even got all my water in! I was proud of myself. Then I got on the scale and saw a loss of 0.2 pounds. Not even a freaking quarter of a pound. And yes, I know, a loss is a loss, but I would like to see someone who had worked as hard as I did not be upset about  a loss like that. And if I'm being honest, I let what that scale said ruin how I felt about last week. Because even though I know in my brain that the scale doesn't always cooperate no matter how hard you worked, I felt like a failure.

I have such mixed feelings about this plateau. I try so hard to be grateful for where I am at, and most of the time, I really am. I know that the 328 lb me would have been thrilled to be at this weight. But I also know that the heavier me, the one that could lose 40 lbs in 5 weeks, would have wondered how I could look at losing only 40 lbs as such a challenge. It seems small compared to all I have lost. It's crazy how losing these last 40 lbs can seem so close to the final weight loss goal for me, and yet simultaneously seem farther away then the 200 lbs I had to lose when I first started.

There was just a lot of emotions and thoughts going on with me yesterday, a lot of all or nothing feelings that I had to deal with. On the one side, we had crazy, manic Kristen who immediately started thinking things like, "I need to run 15 miles every day! I need to eat 500 calories a day! More, better, faster!" And then we have lazy Kristen who was also thinking about more, but in terms of "More pizza, more ice cream! Less exercise! I mean, what's the point of being disciplined if it doesn't change the amount of weight I lose?" The old me would have been horrified to be having these thoughts and positive that just having thoughts like these, even if not acted on, meant that I was about to fail. That is not the truth. Everybody has crazy thoughts sometimes. I mean sometimes I think about how I want to go live on a desert island somewhere or maybe how I want to go jump in a giant swimming pool of pudding. That doesn't mean I'm actually going to do that. Although if I had the opportunity for the pudding thing, I would definitely take it. It's okay to have those thoughts, and I think is important to acknowledge them and not just try to pretend they're not there.

I am proud of how I reacted last night. With images of crazy runs and pizza warring in my head, I chose to have a normal dinner. I chose to talk on the phone with a friend. I chose to watch a funny movie to cheer myself up. I chose to go to bed early and get a good night's sleep so I would be rested for my morning run. I chose not to run a crazy far distance late at night just because I was feeling insecure about my weight loss. I chose not to starve myself to lose weight. I chose not to binge eat out of despair. And when I get the crazy talk out of my head, I recognize that those behaviors really are more important than the number I see on the scale. Those are all the reasons that I will succeed.

I told you that one of the thoughts running through my head last night was, "What's the point?" I decided that I needed to answer myself. Because there really is so much more to "the point" of living a healthy lifestyle than just losing weight. So here they are:

1) To feel younger than my physical age, instead of feeling 40 years older

2) To be able to physically accomplish things I never thought possible, instead of barely being able to climb a flight of stairs

3) To be able to start looking at food as fuel, instead of an emotional crutch

4) To be able to look in the mirror and start to feel some pride, instead of feeling like crying

5) To be able to run early so I can see the sunrise and really feel alive, instead of sleeping half the day away

6) To be able to feel like I can inspire others, instead of feeling like everyone looks down on me

7) To be able to be truly proud and happy with the person I have become, instead of hoping everyday that I could somehow be different

Quite a point, don't you agree?


  1. Have you tried cutting out breads, pasta, and rice?

    1. I've tried that before, and it made me think about bread all the time! I eventually just went crazy eating it then. I'm really trying to only do things I can the rest of my life because I have had problems being extreme before. I know cutting carbs is effective though, so I think I'm going to go back to carb-cycling. I can handle doing alternate low-carb days.

  2. Have you considered Crossfit?? I know it seems crazy, but I've had friends that have had great luck. You seem to be physically conditioned now to be able to handle it. PLUS they seem to be an encouraging kind of family. It's a lil pricey but maybe worth it?