Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Battle of the Bulge

Every couple of years it seems, I decide to do something about my weight. I've been heavy for a good chunk of my life and weight has always been a struggle for me. What can I say, I like food. Actually that's not right, I love food. And I tend to overeat if given the chance. For most of high school and college I didn't worry about it. My weight was still at an acceptable level. But the freshman 15 quickly became the college 30 and by the time I was married I was well over 60 over what is considered normal. I had bypassed overweight and headed for obese.

About six years ago I started on one of the easiest and most effective weight loss programs I've ever done. I managed to lose 60 pounds without really even breaking much of a sweat. It was incredible. No I didn't do any of those questionable pill programs or lose weight while you sleep gimmicks. I did something far simpler. I counted calories. I bought a 90 day food journal from Half Price Books on a whim and managed to lose 20 pounds in those first 90 days. I bought three more journals and lost a total of 60 pounds over the course of a year. I felt amazing. I was working out more but the big thing is that I was paying attention to the calories I was eating. When I reached something of a goal weight I figured that I didn't need the food journals anymore. I focused on exercise, often doing two workouts a day, and stopped writing things down.

Since then I have managed to gain back 50 of those pounds. Apparently just working out wasn't enough when I was eating way more calories than I needed. Then after a while I lost my motivation on working out. I sank back into my old habits and started racking up the pounds. Over the last couple years I've tried to restart different diet programs. I've focused on volumetrics, I've tried to eat mostly fruits and vegetables and so far I haven't been able to stick with the programs enough to lose any significant weight.

If this break has taught me nothing, it is that I am not as strong as I would like to be. I remember the struggle of trying to build arm muscles to lift myself. That could have been helped if I was weight training and didn't weigh as much. Now that I'm back to walking, my poor knees are not happy and keep reminding me that I'm carrying a bit too much weight for their tastes. So this week I've decided that the yo-yo has hit bottom again. I'm starting back on my weight loss program. I've bought another food journal and will start it today. It will be worth the cost of buying four of them a year if I'm able to lose weight and keep it off.

I'm writing this for you to read as a motivation to myself to stay with it. I always do a bit better at sticking with something when there is outside pressure on me. This probably wasn't the best week to start since I'll be out of town this weekend. But even if I go over my calorie limit (1800 calories a day) as long as I write everything down I'll consider it a win. And I have to simply accept the fact that I'll continue to write things down for the rest of my life. Weight has always been a struggle for me. But a food journal evens the odds considerably in my favor. Here's hoping.


Josh said...

The battle sucks! There's just so much yummy food out there... I hope the food journal works for you--I haven't been able to bring myself to do that yet. Just know that you have friends to support you if you need it!

Corrine said...

I'm right there with you, Cat! Maybe we can provide support for each other (AGAIN!!) It is such a battle, but it is one that can be won!
You ARE strong and can do whatever you set your mind to accomplish.

Cat B said...

Josh, I would agree, the battle does suck. It sounds like you have started to get yours under control. And thank you for the support. I appreciate it immensely.

Cat B said...

Yep, we've battled together and I would be proud to stand at your side again in this fight. Perhaps we'll have to get together for coffee to discuss how we can help each other. Thanks for the words of encouragement. I'm pretty hopeful this time.

Salt said...

Uh, just so you know, the punch that Lisa traditionally makes at our After Mondo party is completely calorie-free (hah).

No, not the brandy slush, that's not traditional (yet?). I mean the Orange-Lemon-Apple-Ginger Ale thing. We've never called it anything but "The Punch."

Cat B said...

Nice try Salt. That's WAY too tasty to be calorie free. And sadly I can drink gallons of the stuff. So good. We're excited to see you guys. Not long now.