I made a post here on my 100th day of logging to share my reflections and succuss. It has now been 200 days of logging faithfully, and I’m happy to report that my weight loss journey is still going better than I could have ever imagined. It has not been without challenges (January Plateau, I’m talking to you!), but my weight is still moving in the right direction and I’ve gotten a lot better at putting that self-sabotaging voice to rest when things aren’t moving as quickly as I wish they would.
I’ll give a bit of a timeline for some perspective as I try to remember my state of mind throughout all of this.
Tricks of the Trade:
- January 1, 2020: 321.4 lbs. – This is my highest recorded weight, and I hid the scale immediately after I stepped off of it.
- June 24, 2020: 313.6 lbs. – As the lockdowns were stretching on, I had made a concerted effort not to eat my way through the chaos. I was curious how that was looking on the scale and was pleasantly surprised to see that my mindfulness had been paying off. I decided to start weighing every day and was more conscientious about my eating. Not logging yet, but paying attention to serving sizes and finding alternatives to some of the foods that I knew I had trouble resisting in large quantities.
- July 21, 2020: 299.0 lbs. – I crossed over into the 200s for the first time in a few years. I was eating very low carb, and probably way too few calories at that time, so I decided to start tracking my eating again in MFP. The quick weight loss was a thrill, but I knew that it wasn’t healthy or sustainable. If I tracked, I could keep myself honest about being healthy in my weight loss journey.
- October 28, 2020: 267.1 – That was when I hit my 100-day logging streak and posted about it here. In those first 100 day, I learned so much about how my body reacts to food and exercise. I learned to be patient when I got stuck losing the same 2 pounds for two weeks straight. I learned that low carb wasn’t going to be sustainable for me. I learned that no food is “bad”, and that even a day or two of indulgence doesn’t make a dent in the deficit I have built up in all of the days of staying under goal. I learned that a food scale is always better at measuring serving sizes than I am. Most importantly, I learned that I have the capacity to lose weight as long as I take in fewer calories than I burn every day.
- February 5, 2021: 244.3 – 200 days in the books. The loss has slowed down a little bit, but I’m still trending a healthy 1.5 pounds down per week, and I’m happy with that. I was not happy in January, when I bumped up my exercise, was put on meds for an unexpected illness, and just kept fluctuating between 255 and 250 for over three weeks. Literally the only thing that kept me from giving up was knowing that I was putting the right amount of food in my face every day, and that as long as I kept doing that, I was going to break through that plateau eventually. I got mad. I got frustrated. But at the end of the day, I stuck with it, and now my weight is lower than it has been since before my son was born in 1999. I know I have the willpower to work through the inevitable next plateau, and I’m not in any hurry to get to my end goal. I’m content to be on the journey, headed mostly in the right direction, most of the time.
Words of Encouragement:
- In my last post I talked about how sodium-free broth packets were a lifesaver for me when I started having savory cravings. My new snack replacement is Yoplait Whips yogurt. I keep it in the freezer and eat it frozen like ice cream, for way fewer calories. I’ve tried Halo Top and the other diet ice creams, but to me they taste about as flavorful as sitting next to someone who is eating ice cream. The yogurt has a richer flavor, it's whipped, so it doesn't need to be thawed at all before you eat it, and the serving size is just right to scratch an itch. It’s a 140-calorie snack that keeps me from wanting to eat 1000 calories of Ben and Jerry’s every day.
- Low-cal tortilla pizzas are a new staple in my meal rotation. A couple of 60 calorie tortillas, some pizza sauce (or barbecue sauce), a 70-calorie pack of chicken breast and 1/4 cup of mozzarella cheese split between the two pizzas, and it's just enough to keep me from ordering delivery and eating an entire deep-dish pizza in a couple of settings.
- My other go-to, when I'm ravenously hungry for no reason is riced cauliflower. I can toss a bag of frozen riced cauliflower in the microwave, top it with a little stir-fry or curry, and be absolutely stuffed for under 300 calories. I'm not in love with the flavor, but it's growing on me, and it keeps the bingeing at bay.
Wherever you are in your journey right now, I want you to know that I am proud of you. Whether you’ve been logging faithfully and sticking to your plan for years, or you just started and feel like you may have messed up by eating too many calories for breakfast this morning, the fact that you are here, reading, and looking for inspiration means that some part of you believes that success is possible. Listen to the inner voice that wants you to succeed. I’ll be cheering you on as I work my way to my 300-day update.