Girl, come close. I can tell you about this season. The one where you throw EVERYTHING (at least from your perspective) at weight loss and you get NOTHING in return. You get on the scale – only to see it go up. You put on your clothes – only to see they STILL don’t fit. (sigh). Nothing.
When this season is upon you, there are several things I have learned that may encourage you.
Focus on the behavior, not the outcome
Make a list of all the things that lead to a healthy weight.
Did you make your list? Good.
Now focus on just doing those things. Every day. With no stipulations (e.g., I will only do this if I am losing weight).
I have learned that I need to do the following: Not overeat, work out regularly, restrict dessert, bread, and pizza, eat lots of fruit and vegetables.
What have you learned?
Ok. Now that you’ve done that, your next job is to commit to those behaviors. No matter what. No matter if the scale says your ideal number, or if it does not. This is the trap that you must avoid. Bowing to the god of the scale. The scale, while helpful, can cause us to become too wrapped up in “keeping it happy” then being healthy. The scale may be higher than ever, and you may be closer to true health. The opposite may also be true – your low number do not necessarily indicate you are healthy. You will start to feel a little better.
Don’t make excuses for poor eating behaviors
Make a list of behaviors that do not add to weight loss. Things you know you should not do. Example? Eat the more than 3 slices of pizza, have dessert every day, overeat. No “what the heck” moments! Don’t just eat whatever you want. Even though I am not losing weight, it is STILL not ok to overeat, to eat pizza every week (my own rule), etc.
The lessons I have learned on my journey about myself, my eating behaviors, and the things that make me feel like a “slave to food” are still true. Just because it is not leading to weight loss in this this season, does not make the lessons you have learned any less true. I am learning, like the journey of faith, achieving optimal health is the result of a “long obedience in the same direction”.
Avoid the temptation to jump on the fad diet/quick weight loss train
One of most dangerous ways we can be tempted are with programs or eating plans that promise quick weight loss. The faster you lose the weight, often, the faster you will put the weight back on. If the weight loss is not coming quickly, we assume (often incorrectly) that we must change our approach. Not always true. Through my many weight loss attempts (;)), I have learned that true health is complicated. There are several factors that will help you lose weight. And you have a lot of behaviors that you need to work on in your journey toward health. A LOT.
Spend Time with God
Have you ever taken the time to pray about the difficulties you are having losing weight? Not a quick 30 second, “Help me Now”, but a heartfelt prayer about how this thing feels. Ask for wisdom about your approach to weight loss. You may or may not be a person who is spiritual, but there is no time like the present. Find music that encourages your heart. Find a Bible verse that makes you feel better. Ask a friend to say a prayer for you. You say a prayer for you. Just open the lines of communication. This has been the most important thing that has helped me find lasting success in my previous weight loss success. Even now, when things are not going how I would like, praying has helped me find peace and keep my heart from feeling overwhelmed with despair.
I will be praying for you all friends. Journey well.