Carrying On. Sorta?

The following is more a muse and maybe even a rationalization than a real, useful post. I’m kinda talking myself through this. Sometimes if I see it in writing, it relieves the gnawing and the worry, ya know?

After about ten weeks of travel in the past four months- and many more coming up - I’m up about 12 pounds over where I’d like to be, and slightly on the high side of “normal” BMI.

Part of me is flipping out, a little bit. TBH, a lot. I spent a couple of years on the far low side of “normal”, and worked hard to stay there.

The other part of me is like, “whoa there, missy! Step back from the scale!”

All my clothes still fit. My face is slightly fuller, but that’s not a bad thing, because it was really gaunt before.

The only other noticeable difference is a small muffin ring around the waistline which only shows in leggings and tight tops.

I was scared I’d lost muscle, since I couldn’t do any weights during that period. But the muscle is still there, at least in the mirror, even if I probably can’t bench or squat my paltry best anymore.

I started with a new trainer a couple of weeks ago. I told her my goal was to retain the muscle I’d gained over the past three years and not to put weight back on. I also told her “Challenge me. Don’t baby me like the other trainer here I tried briefly. “ Per my request, she has literally kicked my *kitten*, including slipping extra weight on stuff when I wasn’t looking, and then announcing “see that? I knew you could do it”.

But she doesn’t care to do free weights, which I like but am hesitant to do with all the home and away. It doesn’t seem worth the DOMs or potential injuries for a week or two on followed several off.

The pool is closed for massive repairs, so I’ve had to alter my schedule, because my husband likes me to do classes with him, and aquafit is temporarily not available. His health and continued motivation are very important to me, so we’re doing the “FitGen” classes
together, which means I can’t get in my regular cardio classes. My trainer is the one teaching the FitGen and she’s been awesome about making the classes dual purpose, so I’m still challenged and the others can still handle it. Absolute kudos to her for that.

The weather has been rain rain rain all last week and looks like next few days, too, so steps are wayl, way down. I miss the walking. I could go to the indoor track, but yaaaaawn.

I’m still turning my “move” ring three or four times a day, but just “feel” less active, I guess because fewer steps, slower classes, no weight training. I’ve cut calories from 3200 or so down to an average of about 2200.

I know I’ve only been home a couple
of weeks, but am ridiculously frustrated, even though I can easily parrot the advice I’d give to others. “Patience. Allow at least six weeks. Travel weight. DOMs from the new trainer and routine. You’re going to holiday parties, and eating different, dummy! ”.

I’m not going to fall of the cliff and start eating sacks of candy again - although I do perilously have some Dutch and German chocolate in the freezer, along with a big box of See’s mixed chocolates. What did I even get those for?

I’ve not got any cookies or snacks in the house, other than Nugo bars, the usual sugar free pudding mixes, and blueberries/cottage cheese. I’ve lost my desire for snack foods but am weak enough that if they’re in the house, I’d eat them all in one sitting.

For some reason, after the longest trip, with no sugar free coffee syrup, I absolutely lost my taste for sweetened coffee, and literally have gallons of sweetener in the garage. I would scoop it up when I saw it on clearance because I went through so much.

Anyway, thanks for listening.

We are fixing to leave again, but since hubs is doing much better than me lately, I’m going to switch it up and lean on him for a while to keep me on track during this trip. (He’s been stuck at home with the High Anxiety Dog during the other trips, which were a family necessity,, but HAD did well with his sitter and didn’t bite or attempt to eat her while we were gone for a short trip so……yay! Now we can do couples trips again! )
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Replies

  • JBanx256
    JBanx256 Posts: 1,471 Member
    You know you can always DM me if you need to vent or rant or anything. Heck if you want I'll send ya my "real" contact info too, just lemme know. You got this <3
  • Lietchi
    Lietchi Posts: 6,106 Member
    I have no miracle solution, but I sympathize.
    It's not as much as you but I can see a clear upwards trend in my weight. Since returning from my trip abroad mid November I've done strength training precisely once! No trainer here to kick my butt 😆
    Tons of stress at work with a big deadline approaching, so I'm working late and not getting much time to work out. And the stress is making me snack more, so my calorie intake is up.

    I'm clinging onto my running, trying to get a minimum mileage in (30km per week), mostly on weekends.
    I'm just riding out the storm, drifting off course a bit but just focusing on not sinking 🙂

    I'm glad you still fit in your clothes, at least that's a good thing, those 12lbs can't be all fat then!
  • mtaratoot
    mtaratoot Posts: 13,146 Member
    edited December 2022
    This is maintenance, right?

    I've been dealing with the same thing, but over a longer time frame and for different reasons. Is it frustrating? Oh yeah. Would it be easy to just quit? Probably; I don't intend to find out.

    It's good to step back and make an assessment from time to time. Maybe even add perspective. When I got sick recently, I lost a fair bit of weight over a fairly short time. It's partially come back, but it's still doing the up and down thing like it's supposed to. Had I been at the low end of my maintenance range, like I was for about three years, the extra loss would have been a lot harder for my body. Having that extra "cushion" meant that my body still had energy reserves to fight off the viral invader even though I wasn't eating much.

    It has brought me, and probably many other folks, great joy reading about your success. There might even be times of jealousy for the apparent ease with which you maintained. I guess that ease was a bit of an illusion.

    I am quite sure you'll get through this and be back on track. It's good to realize that the clothes still fit, and things aren't so bad. I've accepted that if I never get back down to the number on the scale where I was stable for three years, I'm still healthy by pretty much any measure. That is reassuring.

    There's only one downside to drinking black coffee. It has to be GOOD coffee. I stopped using sweetener a long time ago. I always used raw sugar or honey when I would sweeten, but I just didn't need it. I switched from half-and-half to a coconut-based creamer for a few years and then gave that up too... unless it's really BAD coffee. That needs a little something. Fortunately, it's easier to find good coffee these days. Even the dive boat I used to go on made good coffee. Even the catered multi-day canoe trips I did this summer had good coffee. I thought that was awesome; making coffee for 120 people usually means it's not so good. The executive director of the organization said, "Yeah; good coffee and lots of it." I had to agree.

    Not trying to eat the dog sitter is a good thing for a dog.


    Editing to add:

    Rain? Don't let it get in your way. Treat yourself to some good rain gear. I used to be a year-round bike commuter unless there was ice/snow on the street or a week or two in fall when there were wet leaves. I even just used cheap rain pants and replaced them every couple years. Cheap as in non-breathable PVC. I found that sitting in the saddle would wear out the waterproof no matter what kind of pants, so I just got the cheap ones. Having some breathable pants is great for just walking. Add a Filson tin hat or an Outdoor Research Seattle Sombrero and a good waterproof breathable coat, and you're ready to go. Muck boots keep the feet dry. I can walk down the sidewalk and a semi can go by and hit that big puddle and send a wall of water on me and it makes no difference. I'm dry underneath. It's actually nice to walk in the rain. The birds are often out in the park. There's sometimes fewer people. It just takes the right clothes.
  • mtaratoot
    mtaratoot Posts: 13,146 Member
    @AnnPT77

    You need to try more rubber boots; you might be able to find a brand that fits. Maybe not Muck brand. Boggs are pretty good too. The Xtra Tuff are what others are measured against. Even within one manufacturer, some of the models fit differently. They have some that are more insulated than others - that's probably a bigger issue for you than it is for me.

    The second pair of Muck brand boots I bought don't fit. Too big. They changed their sizing. Big and klunky. If I wear thicker socks, they work OK. I have another pair that fits much better. They have different soles. The "hoser" style soles don't pick up as much mud. I used to use them for bike commuting; they fit in my toe clips just fine. I called them my "slippers." I have a pair of chore boots with big grippy soles for when I need that.

    The reason I like them over waterproof hiking boots is that I can fully get my rain pants over the top of the boots. With hiking boots, sometimes the drips from the rain pants go inside the boot. I hate that.

    Last time I took off one pair of my boots, I left the rain pants on them. Kind of like turnouts. Next time I want to go walk in the nastiness, I just have to slip my feet in the boots and tuck in my cuffs then pull up the rain pants. Super easy.

    My biggest issue lately is my hands get really stupid cold. I hate that.
  • SummerSkier
    SummerSkier Posts: 4,783 Member
    I’ve cut calories from 3200 or so down to an average of about 2200.

    I just have to ask what your stats are for maintenance, height/weight range, age, sex because those are a lot of cals. :o

    Also if you are older the thing around the middle is REALLY hard to get off once it gets goin.... :|
  • SummerSkier
    SummerSkier Posts: 4,783 Member
    @SummerSkier i am 5’7”, 60 years old. My current goal is 1970/day. I was killing my self with too much exercise, and was maintaining about 135 averaging 3200-3500 a day. I’m making myself step back and do less exercise. I literally had no time for anything except classes, walks and food planning:prep/devouring. That’s as dumb as overeating in the first place, and is simply trading my “sack’o’candy on the sofa every couple hours” vice for a new vice.

    wiser words were never spoken. I think that MFP contributes to this approach with the exercise calorie add and I cringe whenever I see folks saying = I wanted a cookie so I went and did a 20 minute walk - approach because it is another rabbit hole.

    Have a great trip!
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 32,000 Member
    edited December 2022

    (snipsies of encouraging update)

    I know this is all a mind game. I know what to do. If I gave the illusion it was easy, sorry. I’m super determined not to put weight on again and I have to keep my mind in the game. One way I do it is by cheering on others with the “if I can do it, you can do it” mantra (because it’s true!!!). It easy in one regard, no so easy on the other. Food is such a temptation, even bad food.

    And then stupid stuff throws you off, too, like last night, when MFP didn’t update Apple Watch adjustment, and I ate an RX bar to round out my calories, only to check again before bed and realize I was barely under.
    And even if you had been over goal one day by a whole RX Bar . . . ? Droplet. Ocean. NBD. You know that.

    This is not magic spells and talismans (talismen?) against regain. It's averages over time because . . . math!

    @SummerSkier i am 5’7”, 60 years old. My current goal is 1970/day. I was killing my self with too much exercise, and was maintaining about 135 averaging 3200-3500 a day. I’m making myself step back and do less exercise. I literally had no time for anything except classes, walks and food planning:prep/devouring. That’s as dumb as overeating in the first place, and is simply trading my “sack’o’candy on the sofa every couple hours” vice for a new vice.
    Good insight. I always suggest people do exercise they find fun (or a least reasonably tolerable), and set a time budget for doing it, because . . .
    I like to do needlework, read, and to bury myself in Pinterest, Etsy, and Apple News, which I have a love/hate relationship with. It’s nice to rediscover simply sitting on my *kitten*. I just can’t make it a full time gig again.
    . . . good overall life balance for the win!

    Only you know what balance of exercise, eating, and other stuff is right for you. Sounds like you're dialing that in. That takes time and patience, too, unfortunately. But you've shown that you have those skills; this is just a tiny shift of problem-analyzing domain.
    It’s been a weird two or three weeks since returning and here we go again…….now if only I can find the willpower to decline those stupid calorie bomb cookies Delta hands out. I don’t even like the things.

    You know that those cookies are sneakily adulterated with a chemical carefully formulated in a food lab, one that subconsciously influences you to book more Delta flights to increasingly costly, dangerous, and maybe calorie-intense places, right? Poison! Poison!

    (Yeah, I totally made that up, but pretend it's real, OK? Or let yourself eat one doggone cookie. Drop, ocean - again.) Yes, I know moderating temptations is hard. I personally s*ck at it, frankly.
    I’ll be very very happy to get back to my routine in a month or two.

    Wishing you all the best: You have the knowledge, you have the skills. Have the confidence: You've earned it. All those motivational speaker people seem to think that believing we can do a thing or few is a key block in the foundation for accomplishing it. I mostly think they're bozos, but they're right about this. You can revise your path ahead, and still be on track. Persist.
    @SummerSkier i am 5’7”, 60 years old. My current goal is 1970/day. I was killing my self with too much exercise, and was maintaining about 135 averaging 3200-3500 a day. I’m making myself step back and do less exercise. I literally had no time for anything except classes, walks and food planning:prep/devouring. That’s as dumb as overeating in the first place, and is simply trading my “sack’o’candy on the sofa every couple hours” vice for a new vice.

    wiser words were never spoken. I think that MFP contributes to this approach with the exercise calorie add and I cringe whenever I see folks saying = I wanted a cookie so I went and did a 20 minute walk - approach because it is another rabbit hole.

    Have a great trip!

    Y'know, I think there are pitfalls all around any individual's best path.

    Accounting exercise calories separately, some people do make it transactional (exercise = cookies, cookies demand exercise, etc.), in ways that aren't psychologically very healthy.

    But when not adding exercise calories, some people throw themselves into maximum punitively intense/frequent exercise to lose weight faster, and burn themselves out physically/psychologically, screw up their life balance.

    Some other people decide to use TDEE method at the honeymoon outset, plan optimistic regular exercise, factor that plan into TDEE, don't do the exercise, then find that "calorie counting doesn't work for them" because they erased their planned, estimated deficit by not sticking with the implicit exercise plan.

    One way or another, not fueling any meaningful amount of exercise is a bad plan, both for weight management long term as well as for fitness performance. (Small amounts may be NBD.) That's true, whether fueling with a reasonable TDEE method, or the MFP method of separate add-back.

    I don't know what your (SummerSkier's) preferred tactics are, and it kind of doesn't matter: Lots of things can work.

    There are people in this population like me, for whom the MFP approach is pretty perfect: I've done about) the same amount of exercise for 20ish years now, since 2002-3 (well, maybe a bit more since I retired in 2006, but not much more, really). I've only calorie counted since 2015, been at a healthy weight for nearing 7. My main exercise is seasonally variable, and in season it's weather dependent. TDEE method would be a much bumpier route for me than adding exercise (carefully estimated) when I do it.

    Sure, calorie goal is part of my motivational big picture for me sometimes . . . I'll use many little tweaks to stay on track with my less-fun Winter exercise so I don't need to start from ground zero in fitness come Spring. It's not a trick to get calories, it's a trick to stay with the exercise in the way I want, basically. That (various motivational tricks) has been true for me in Winter for a couple of decades. I don't think adding calories into that tool basket is any kind of mental-health or obsession risk, in my case. Some other people's cases? Sure, can be.

    I admire the way that @springlering62 is continuing to evolve and adjust to accomplish her personalized best life balance. Good stuff, and a good example/model once again!

  • Sinisterbarbie1
    Sinisterbarbie1 Posts: 712 Member
    Ok so while people are in the mode of confessing what worries them … I lost too much weight -actually hit underweight BMI - and have been trying to gain back. I was not able to for a while and was even getting worried that I might have a recurrence of cancer since I was eating over maintenance calories and not gaining. It seems to have been a plateau in the other direction than what people usually complain about here because all of the sudden I gained 4 lbs. that seem to be sticking. This is good, but it also freaks me out a bit - I am hungrier than I used to be and worry that I may have set myself up for difficulty maintaining by bouncing around. FWIW I am still just at the borderline of healthy weight so can afford to gain more back. I mention this just to say that even when weight gain is purposeful after a loss it can be mentally destabilizing if you have worked hard to lose weight. And no, I don’t have an eating disorder. I lost wieght with the supervision of a dr and continue to consult with him. The greater than intended loss was because I just kept losing for a while even when I was eating more and didn’t intend to. I think i must be less sedentary than I claim to be.
  • mtaratoot
    mtaratoot Posts: 13,146 Member
    @springlering62

    See how you just keep sharing amazing and inspiring stories that many of us can truly relate to?

    I hope you don't get sick from the flight. We were covered in over a quarter inch of glare ice for a day and a half. There were many, many automobile crashes. Just walking on the sidewalk was nuts. I couldn't do anything as I was laid up in the place where they wake up sick people every hour or so to check on them and make sure they're OK. No fun, but not a bad place to be for such a storm. Plenty warm, and they have generators in case the ice and/or winds took down power lines.
  • mtaratoot
    mtaratoot Posts: 13,146 Member
    @springlering62

    Thank you for the kind words.

    I am not a doctor, and I don't play one on TV. I was in that place as a "guest." A paying guest. It wasn't my ideal vacation at all.

    My weight went up even though I wasn't eating much. Some of the swelling is going down, so that weight will come off. I am not focusing on getting back to maintenance just now; I'm focusing on eating enough to fuel my body so I can get back after it sooner.

    It's great to read that you've already started getting back to that happy place. We all know you can do it, and you will if you decide to. Just how it works.

    I've got people in the Atlanta area. Sounds like it was so, so SO cold down there. They aren't ready for that. I wonder how many broken water lines there were; I don't think they are buried as deep as where they get temperatures nearly that cold. Were people skating on Lanier or Altoona?
  • springlering62
    springlering62 Posts: 7,414 Member
    mtaratoot wrote: »
    @springlering62

    Thank you for the kind words.

    I am not a doctor, and I don't play one on TV. I was in that place as a "guest." A paying guest. It wasn't my ideal vacation at all.

    My weight went up even though I wasn't eating much. Some of the swelling is going down, so that weight will come off. I am not focusing on getting back to maintenance just now; I'm focusing on eating enough to fuel my body so I can get back after it sooner.

    It's great to read that you've already started getting back to that happy place. We all know you can do it, and you will if you decide to. Just how it works.

    I've got people in the Atlanta area. Sounds like it was so, so SO cold down there. They aren't ready for that. I wonder how many broken water lines there were; I don't think they are buried as deep as where they get temperatures nearly that cold. Were people skating on Lanier or Altoona?

    I didn’t pick up that you’d been ill. Sincerest wishes for a speedy recovery and return to health, my friend. You’re one of the best folks on these boards, so long distance hugs!

    It’s ATL. Yeah, we’re beliyachin’ about the cold, but it’s back in the 60’s later this week.
  • mtaratoot
    mtaratoot Posts: 13,146 Member
    @springlering62

    Thanks for the happy thoughts. It will be at least six weeks, maybe more. Definitely more to be back to full speed, but at least six weeks until I can do any heavy exertion.

    Sigh.