It’s been exactly 5 weeks, or 35 days, since I “recommitted” myself to tracking calories, exercising, losing wight – the whole shebang. I thought I would share how I’m feeling at this point, what results I’m seeing, and what has been helping me to stay focused this time around.
First of all, the numbers. I’m not ready to share my weight yet (though that may be coming in the future), but I will say that in 35 days I have lost 12.5 pounds and I could not be more pleased with that number. Here are my weekly weigh-in results for the last 5 weeks:
- 3/10/16: starting day; no loss
- 3/17/16: – 5.0 lbs
- 3/24/16: – 0 lbs (no change)
- 3/31/16: -2.3 lbs
- 4/7/16: -2.3 lbs
- 4/14/16: – 2.5 lbs
Total loss: 12.5 lbs
I wrote about how I was frustrated after seeing no change in my weight during week 2, but I trusted in the process and kept pushing forward. It paid off, and I saw respectable losses the next three weeks. However, I am noticing that my weight still fluctuates every single day and I know this because my efforts to not weigh myself on a daily basis have failed. I never recommend stepping on the scale every day because the fluctuations can play mind tricks on you, but I just haven’t had the willpower to stop doing it yet. It actually has helped reiterate to me that losing weight is 100% about long term results, and what you do in a single day will NOT affect your weight in the long run. It is about all of the little changes and the effort you put in over a period of time that slowly adds up.
I haven’t noticed any changes with how my clothes fit yet, but I have observed changes in a couple of other areas. For one, I have noticed a remarkable difference in how I feel on a day to day basis and my motivation to get tasks done during the day has improved drastically. For example, I’ve been on a “staycation” this past week and rather than lie around and do nothing every day, I have been spring cleaning my entire house, going to the gym every day, eating healthy (for the most part), and I even started reading a book for the first time in ages. This sudden enthusiam to be productive doesn’t totally come as a surprise to me though, because when my eating habits are in check, the rest of my life seems to come together as well. Does anyone else feel this way?
I also have noticed some slight improvements in my workouts. I can go longer and harder on the stair master and I have been increasing the weights during strength training every week. I am starting to get more comfortable with being uncomfortable at the gym, which is important because to move forward you have to get out of your comfort zone and push yourself to do things you don’t normally do.
In terms of keeping myself motivated, there is one thing I’ve been doing differently this time around that I really think has made a big difference. In my post a few weeks ago about how it takes 21 days to make a habit, I wrote about how my goal was to make it 21 days and then go from there. While I was on my 21-day stretch, I marked each day on my calendar to remind myself how far I had already come. Well, I reached 21 days and for whatever reason decided to keep marking the days off on the calendar as each one passed.
This has helped the mental aspect of things tremendously when I have a bad day, or even a bad weekend. Rather than “starting over” the next day, I just carry on like nothing happened. I move on and don’t let the previous day’s “mistakes” affect my streak. It has also helped a lot with the guilt that we often face after overindulging or skipping workouts. I no longer feel like I have royally screwed up; I’ve just enjoyed and treated myself but I know I will do better the next day because I don’t want to have to end the streak. This last weekend was probably the worst weekend I’ve had in a while. Between Friday, Saturday and Sunday, I had Taco Bell, Jet’s pizza, went out for ice cream twice, and skipped my workouts on both Saturday and Sunday. Not surprisingly, my weight was up on Monday, but I just pushed forward and started tracking my food again; reminding myself to focus on the fact that I weighed 9 pounds less than I did 4 weeks ago. I also reminded myself how much I LOVE Jet’s pizza, and ice cream, and that I WILL eat it again. Having a bad day can really screw you up mentally and it SO EASY to just never get back on track. That’s why I’ve really been focusing on my mind set during the last 5 weeks. Every day, I look forward to marking another day on the calendar and starting with a fresh slate on my calorie-counting app (I use Lose It). Getting your mind in the right place is what will truly set you up for success.
I know that I will hit a wall at some point and that my motivation will tank to an all time low. I know that day will come when I will get frustrated and ask myself “why am I putting in all this effort and not seeing the results I want?” I know that time will come when I eat junk for multiple days in a row, see gains on the scale, and keep putting off “getting back on track.” I don’t know how I will handle those difficult times yet, but I am going to try and get ahead of the game by mentally preparing myself and coming up with a plan. I’ve done this before and I know I can do it again, but something went wrong the first time I lost weight and this time I’ve made it my mission to figure out what it was so I can avoid making the same mistake again.
I hope this post was helpful for some of you, and as always, thanks for reading.