Last week, I suffered a significant set-back in my weight loss journey. I had the largest single gain at my weekly weigh in since I began Weight Watchers in January of this year. In the past, something like that would have completely derailed my efforts. I used to have a lot of negative self-talk, and a 3.6 lb gain would have caused my thought process to go something like “well, I obviously can’t lose weight. I must be failure at this, so why even bother trying?”
This time around, things are different. Instead of giving up, I took the setback as a challenge. I looked at the habits I was falling back into and made a conscience decision to get back “on the wagon”. First, I bought a digital scale (to replace the analog one I had been using).
I figured it would be more precise and I wouldn’t be able to fudge what I was seeing. Second, and probably most important, I went back to charting what I was eating, even on the days that I ate too much, and deliberately chose fruit as snack food rather than chips. And third, I went to exercise class twice this past week. Each time I go, I seem to be getting more out of it, since I am getting better at following the moves of the instructor. I even added hand weights for added toning!
All of these changes – to my food intake, my activity level, and my attitude – paid off! Today, I recorded a weekly loss of… wait for it… 7.6 pounds! As of right now, I have lost 20% (yes, 1/5) of my starting weight. Almost 48 pounds total. When I got to thinking about how much trouble I have carrying a 40 lb bag of dog food from the car into the house, and that I used to carry more than that around with me EVERYWHERE I went, I really can understand why I am feeling so good these days.
I know my body has changed – I have had to give away most of my clothing because it just hangs on me (skirts and pants have literally fallen off me) – but I haven’t really been able to see it in the mirror. The condition of having a distorted body image – perceiving oneself as fatter or thinner than one really is – is known as Body Dysmorphic Disorder. To some extent, I think I have some issues with this. Even after losing 30, 35, 40 pounds, I would still look in the mirror and see the same (fat) person I had always seen. I had a hard time believing that I looked any better, even though I was wearing smaller sizes and people were telling me how good I looked.
Today, though, something clicked. I looked at my self and realized my stomach is flatter, my arms are more toned, and I have a neck! When did all that happen? Now I am even more excited to stick with the program.
Imagine how good I’ll feel – physically AND emotionally – when I hit 50 lbs! I plan to make it happen by this time next week. And then, who knows?! I’ll have to set a new goal. But my confidence has returned – I know I can get back on track any time I feel myself slipping. I am NOT a failure. I am taking the lemon I was given last week and making (sugar-free) lemonade out of it. I finally believe I will succeed at this. I already weigh less than I have for most of my adult life. And I am determined to reach each and every goal I set for myself – I can do it! As my Weight Watchers leader gets us to say each week:
I’m smart! I’m funny! I’m pretty! I’m Chrystal! And darn proud of myself, too!