When did this REALLY become a life style for you?

So, I lost the weight, have been maintaining for about 3 years now, but if I'm really, really honest, I'm still struggling.

I know how to eat healthily, I do the exercise, I keep an eye on the scales and the people around me probably assume that I'm at this weight pretty effortless.

In truth, I still would rather lie on the sofa with my feet up and munch my way through a whole packet of biscuits.

I really would have thought that at this stage, my regime of healthy eating and exercise would be second nature to me, now I don't think that will ever happen. I'm just afraid that one day my eye will be off the ball and I will become the real (lazy and fat) Siannah again.


  • JaneyB311
    JaneyB311 Posts: 80 Member
    I'm not sure that little bit of fear will ever go away & it will always be something to work at. I'm halfway through my weight loss journey and for the first few months I was terrified that going 'off the wagon' for one occasion or weekend away would de-rail me completely and I'd go back to my old ways.

    However, thankfully, what I've found is that if I do have a few days off for whatever reason, I feel so yucky from all the food and lack of exercise that I am actually looking forward to eating well and working out again.

    I feel so much happier now already, and think I have already made the lifestyle change. I can't imagine ever wanting to go back to being that huge, miserable person who was so lacking in energy and drive, and that's enough to keep me motivated.

    However I have to say that I am really quite worried about getting to the maintenance stage as that must be hard, without the goal & drive to be losing each week. You're doing so well by maintaining for 3 years, well done and keep it up!
  • seltzermint555
    seltzermint555 Posts: 10,742 Member
    Eh. I don't know. I made the biggest "lifestyle change" around 5 years ago when I was at my heaviest and started to be much more mindful of what I ate, and exercise more (but I'm not talking about serious workouts or lifting or running...just tons more walking and general activity). That stuff is permanent for me. I'm never going to be the person eating 2 burritos covered in a cup of cheese and then grabbing a venti mocha & cake pop on my afternoon break.

    But the changes that I've made on MFP in the past 15 months are more attributed to logging every bite I eat and knowing exactly how many calories (approx.) I need to eat to lose or maintain. That feels more fleeting to me and I plan to work to make it permanent. I am excited and proud about my additional 82 lb loss and being at my lowest weight since puberty. But I have little confidence that I could maintain that without MFP and regular daily logging. So I plan to continue that forever if possible, either on this site or something similar.

    As for exercise, I work to make activity a bigger part of my life and my husband is a huge positive influence in that area. But I'm pretty sure I'll always be the same person who likes to avoid sweating and would rather draw or read than go on a hike/bike ride. I could prove myself wrong one day, I suppose ;-) I've made huge strides (no pun intended) in this area and exercise still does not "come naturally".

    BTW you have the most gorgeous hair ever!
  • SezxyStef
    SezxyStef Posts: 15,268 Member
    I am offically at maitenance (haven't been for very long) but for me there are days when I am thinking "screw this...I don't want to"...but I do it anyway and I am very glad I did...

    With that I mean my exercise...the weights are heavy and it sometimes is very taxing on me...or it's sprinkling and I just don't want to go outside and get wet on my bike or walking...or it's too hot to do HIIT inside...etc...

    For the food...getting my scale out is 2nd nature now...I don't even think about it.

    Now the amount of food I eat...I physcially cannot eat like I used to...I could eat 4-5 pieces of pizza easy before and feel fine, now 1-2 depending on the toppings...

    So as far as the food goes I think that is there...not out of anything other than it's just there.

    As for the exercise...it's almost there...as my lifestyle because what I do I enjoy and it's me time and if I do want to take a day off I can and it won't really affect me that much...

    Do I want to lay on the sofa...eh...I still do...do I want to eat cookies sure...and I do just not as many...

    For you it sounds like it's all mental...esp based on
    I'm just afraid that one day my eye will be off the ball and I will become the real (lazy and fat) Siannah again.
  • tquill
    tquill Posts: 300 Member
    I've been doing this for 415 days rather consistently. I have no problems tracking food, but working out will always be a pain. I'd usually rather not work out... but if I skip a workout here or there, I mentally (and somewhat physically) feel bad. It's not guilt or anything... I suppose it makes me feel unproductive and lazy when I skip a workout. Not only that, the extra hour or so at home I get when I do skip... isn't really all I had hoped for, so it's usually pointless to skip my workouts.

    With that said, something I keep in mind is that I've never regretted working out afterwards... but I almost always regret not working out if I skip.
  • ahoy_m8
    ahoy_m8 Posts: 3,052 Member
    Congrats on maintaining your goal for 3 years! If I had to guess, I would say it has become a lifestyle for you, but it isn't an effortless lifestyle. Is how you feel worth the effort? How much do you enjoy what you longed for when working on losing the weight? Only you can say.

    I have maintained a 5 pound range most of my adult life after being overweight as a teen. I, too, sometimes feel like lying on the sofa and eating biscuits, and sometimes I actually do, but not most of the time. Most of the time I go ahead and put on the running shoes and go for that run even when I'm not in the mood because experience taught me I will feel really good once I'm out there and I'll be glad I did it. I tend to put on a few pounds in the summer (ghastly Texas heat slows my running and what can a girl do but have a margarita?), and lose it again in the fall. Sometimes maintaining feels like more effort than it should be, but to me, it is still worth the effort. My guideline for myself is once I'm 5 pounds up, it's time to lose it back. It gets mentally easier, if physically harder, with age if that is any consolation.

    I had a terrible relationship with food to overcome, and honestly, it probably took me 15 years to genuinely enjoy food more while eating less of it. I'm in my 40's and I'm just now learning to do the same with alcohol--drink less but enjoy every sip more. Buying more expensive wine helps!
  • ahoy_m8
    ahoy_m8 Posts: 3,052 Member

    With that said, something I keep in mind is that I've never regretted working out afterwards... but I almost always regret not working out if I skip.

  • Iwishyouwell
    Iwishyouwell Posts: 1,888 Member
    I have come to hate the phrase "lifestyle change". I think it's dieting industry term that lulls people into a false sense of comfort. It feels like useless semantics at this point, snake oil that helps sell a fantasy that doesn't really exist for most people; "Oh it's not a diet, it's a lifestyle change!!!!". Call it what you will, the battle is the same.

    I'm not sure this will ever become second nature to some people. Those who truly love food, who think diving headlong into a bowl, plate, or carryout container of their favorite keep-me-fat food(s) too often might always struggle with this. Calling it a "lifestyle change" isn't going to magically erase that struggle.

    I've learned that moralizing food choices was a bad idea for me.
    I've learned that counting calories was a bad idea for me.
    I've learned that being too regimented was a bad idea for me.

    I've learned that being honest with myself, my strengths, my weaknesses, has helped tremendously. I don't do it the "right way", I do it my way. And it's been working.

    To me, what people widely consider the "right" way around here is totally unenjoyable, and unsustainable, for me. I think if you're struggling you might want to broaden your horizons and see if there are other ways that work for you better.

    And know that no matter what road you take, there will always be the challenge of not getting fat again. It's the price we all paid for getting fat in the first place.
  • Siannah
    Siannah Posts: 456 Member
    Thank you for your kind posts.

    Yes, I suppose you're right, it HAS become a lifestyle for me (and yes, it is an annoying phrase!).
    I don't buy the family-size M&Ms any more, I don't impulse buy at the checkouts, I go for a walk when I'm annoyed rather than eating chocolate, I just would have thought it would easier by now (god I sound a bit feeling-sorry for-myself don't I :laugh: ).
    SezxyStef I think you hit the nail on the head, it is all mental for me, just wish I could snap out of that!

    I do the same as you, Ahoy, give myself a margin (2kg/5lbs) and when I get near that, it's time to log again - I don't log when the weight/habits are okay. I also threw out all my big clothes, so there literally is no going back for me.

    In theory I'm there, in practice, I'm finding it harder than I thought it should be at this stage.

    Setzermint, thank you :flowerforyou:
  • ShibaEars
    ShibaEars Posts: 3,928 Member
    I have been consistently working out for 2.5 years. But I still have the occasional week where I just don't want to do anything. I'll be on top of my food for a while, and then I'll hit a point where I just don't care and I don't want to do it. I want the cake, cookies, booze, etc. Like you, i want to lay on the couch and do nothing lol. It's easier, and fun (at the time... for a bit)

    And I will admit that I do give in to these urges, more than I should. I suppose that's part of my lifestyle. I will always struggle with food, I've accepted that and don't beat myself up if I "slip". Like someone above mentioned, I too start to feel like crap after a few days of bad eating. I currently feel like crap because of this past weekend. That's enough motivation for me to get back on track.

    I find it is hard. I envy the people that can do it effortlessly
  • missiontofitness
    missiontofitness Posts: 4,074 Member
    I'm around 85 days in, and I have no intention of stopping anytime soon. I've started trying to eat breakfast more, watch my water intake, and exercise more. It's becoming less of a struggle, and more like muscle memory. I can control my splurge days, I'm more mindful of reading labels, and I try to balance my intake for the day. I've learned awesome habits, and I've learned about how awesome my body feels when following my new plan.

    I definitely don't want to ever fall of this wagon! The results have been awesome and consistent, and I know that I will be able to transition into maintenance with ease once I reach my goals.
  • Siannah
    Siannah Posts: 456 Member
    Thanks again. Feeling a lot more positive today actually, not sure what was wrong with me yesterday.

    ShibaEars you're right, falling of the wagon is part of the lifestyle, well, my lifestyle. And consistently getting back on is an even more important part of this lifestyle And thankfully I'm fully confident that I do always get back up.