Thursday, September 18, 2014

Six months of Weight Maintenance

It's been six months since I hit my goal weight with Weight Watchers.  I'm doing a few things differently, so I thought I would share the changes that I've made.  I had read somewhere that the first six months of weight maintenance are the most critical for making good habits stick to prevent gaining back the weight that had been lost.

That was my weight on Sept. 5th, and this morning it was 152.6. I've noticed that my weight can fluctuate 2-4 pounds in the course of a week, so I'm happy with where I'm at. Well, most of the time I'm happy. There are some days that I'd like to see the scale at 147, because that would be the 100 pounds-lost-milestone for me, but there's no real health reason for me to keep chasing that number. If it happens, it happens. If it doesn't, I've still lost 97 pounds from my highest weight ever.

The biggest hurdle I've was our trip to Hawaii.  Seven days of eating whatever I wanted. Not so good. I was at 158 when we got home, and it took me a couple of months of get back down to 150.  Those eight pounds don't sound like much, but they made a big difference in how easy it was to get my pants zipped. I sold or donated all of my fat clothes, so if I don't keep my weight where it is it means buying more clothes. I'd rather not spend money on replacing a wardrobe that I didn't have the self control to fit into.

I joined a gym in April after my weight jumped up to 154, and I added weight training to my routine. I did almost no weight training while I was loosing weight. My primary form of exercise had been cycling or using an elliptical, so weight training was definitely new for me. I kept tracking my food with Weight Watchers for a while, but I canceled my account in August. I started using My Fitness Pal in July, because I was staying hungry all day trying to stick to Weight Watchers. With the weight training that I was doing, I found that I couldn't get in all the protein that I needed and stay within my daily points allotment. So far, so good with My Fitness Pal. I love that it's free to use, whereas Weight Watchers was costing me about $15 a month. That's not much, but $15 is $15. I'm still weighing or measuring everything that I eat. 

I've learned that I have a problem with self control in buffet situations, so I try to avoid them. Baked goods are a weakness of mine, so I rarely bake. Another thing that I've learned is that I have a problem with sugar. Carb-o-holics meetings, anyone? Once I start eating something sweet, it is hard to walk away. I can keep a bag of chocolate candies in my house for months and not touch it, but once I cave - I'll eat two or three handfuls. Ugh. Some days, I pray for self control.

My nighttime snack looks a lot different now that it did with Weight Watcher's. Now I'm eating Greek yogurt, a serving of some type of nut butter (with no  added sugar of any kind), and almond milk. No more nightly chocolate or Weight Watcher's popsicles. I let myself have an indulgent dessert 2-3 times a month, and I've totally quit buying chips unless James asks for them. I don't like the chips that he eats, so there's no temptation there. I eat sliced cucumber when I want chips. I'm paying a lot more attention to the amount of protein that I eat at each meal, because it helps me stay full.  I've started eating Quest Bars for an afternoon snack, and I'm limiting my fruit intake to 1-3 servings a day. Sugar is sugar, even if it's coming from a fruit, and it won't keep you full like healthy fats and protein will.

When we do go out for unhealthy food, I'm more picky about what I choose to indulge in. Burgers? Smashburger, please on a pretzel bun with goat cheese. Pizza? A Chicago style pizza from Pi or something from Bellacino's. Ice Cream? Blue Bell from the Russell Stover store. Thankfully, none of these places are near my house.  Bellacino's is the closest, but it is still 15 minutes away. I've learned that I cannot eat calorie laden food like that every weekend and expect to maintain my weight. I'm trying to limit those indulgent meals out to twice a month. My go-to fast food places are Chick Fil A, Jimmy John's, and Jason's Deli. There are plenty of meal options at all three of those places for under 500 calories.

Weight maintenance is a battle, but it's worth it. For the first time in my life, I can leg press more than my body weight. I can manage an outing to the zoo with the two kids by myself without being physically exhausted afterwards.  If I don't take care of my body and eat healthy foods, I'm left with a body that won't allow me to serve my family well. My kids deserve a mom that can take them on bike rides, swim, and run around the park with them.

1 comment:

  1. Kudos to you Stephanie! You are doing it right and I so admire you. All the best as you continue on your journey to a new lifestyle. So, so happy for you!!!!