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Monday, February 16, 2009

Weight Loss Weekly: This Time It Is Different

Dinner time. I help myself to another serving of… whatever. “What about portion control?” my husband asks. “Well…” I say as I take another scoop, “I SAID that it is still a challenge…”

To this Joie de vivre replied to me with: “Nurit, I have to tell you, if my husband were to ever make judgments about my portion control, I think my self-preservation mechanism would slap him upside the head! ... ”

Well, no, I did not smack him on the head or punch him in the face. He was trying to be helpful and supportive in a… guy’s kinda way. He is a great guy. Really. Bought me a box of chocolate truffles for Valentine’s that I have been fantasizing about since the Fat cookbook event in November.

This week we are tackling the question: Why this time it is going to be different?

Giyen from Bacon is My Enemy
writes: "This time is different because I am different. I spent a good many years thinking that life would be different if I looked different ..." To read more go to Bacon is My Enemy

Sunny at That Extra 20 Pounds answers: "So first, do I think this time is different? Yes! Why? Well, I think I've finally learned what works and what doesn't work for me..." read more at That Extra 20 Pounds

Joie de vivre writes: "To tell the truth, I'm not sure I will ever reach my "goal" weight, but this time IS different." To read more click Joie de Vivre: An amateur gourmet's guide

And I say:
What I think is going to make a difference this time is that I write/talk/blog about it and I have made a few modifications in habits that I can keep for life.

1. I write/talk/blog about it.

A few months ago we ran into a friend at the mall. When the topic of weight came up, he was surprised to hear that I weigh 18 pounds extra and told me: “You wear it well”. He meant it a compliment. Regardless, when we were back at home I started thinking about starting another blog about diets, or salads, or something like that. I thought that blogging about it will be helpful and keep me on track, kind of what Sunny is doing. But then I started thinking about incorporating this topic into this blog (because I already have a second blog).

I never talked about my dissatisfaction with my extra weight before besides the occasional complaint. I thought people are not interested or will get bored. But, hey, you are here, and reading this post. And I’ve found some online friends that blog about weight loss with me. This is the main reason why I think this time it will be different.

The more I write/talk about it, the more I think about it, the more I become aware of what I’m doing and how it makes me gain or lose weight.

So this was the biggest change. And I already see some results.

I told you in a previous post, why I think that my clothes are better judges of weight loss than the scale and I have good news: 1) the extra weight from the holidays’ season came off just by going back to eating what I usually eat, and 2) last night I wore pants that I haven’t worn in quite some time and they felt a bit loose! This makes me very happy.

A reader, Berni from Yo-yo No More blog, sent me this link http://www.dramandaonline.com/ with an approach that explains what probably had happened:

“… let's imagine you gain a kilo or two over the holidays. Your Fat Brake then
revs up your metabolic rate and cuts your appetite. So if you simply follow your
hunger signals you lose that excess weight automatically.”

I want to believe that a few modifications, instead of a revolution, in a few habits, will make it work. I hope I will succeed without “dieting” the way that most people refer to “dieting”. Other things that I have only recently changed and I think have contributed to losing some weight without a lot of effort are:

2. I take baby steps to change and weekly challenges
One at a time, I try to focus each week on one thing: portion control, walking more, listening to my body’s signals (see previous post below).
Even if I don’t immediately have success in changing a habit, it is on my mind, I think about it, I am aware of it, and I’m working on it.

3. Recent changes in eating habits:

If I ate terrible food in the company of horrible people, losing weight would have been much easier. On the other hand, I would probably want to kill my skinny self in that case. Lucky me, most of the time it is great food with wonderful people, so I had to come up with other tactics, and it was very easy to do, like:
* Eating more whole foods, seasonal, and organic when possible.

* Less meat, poultry and fish. For example, instead of eating beef 1-2 times a week, we now eat it 2-3 times a month. 2-3 times a week it's mostly vegetarian dishes (tip: I’ve found that a little bacon can give a dish a meaty flavor).

* More leafy greens. Wow, they are so good! How could I have not eaten them all my life?

You will find some examples like an Onion Tart with Gruyere, Herb Salad, Butternut squash salad, Farro salad, and others here, here, and here.

* Limit dessert to 2-3 days a week (I have mentioned I bake a cake every weekend a dozen times already, haven’t I?).
Warren Brown who wrote Cake Love cookbook suggests waiting a few hours after the meal before having dessert. This makes sense. Our body is working on all that food it just got, and it probably doesn’t need extra food and sugar to digest.

* After following a diabetic diet for a while, I learned to recognize the carbs in food and to monitor the amounts (without measuring and counting, just eyeballing it). For example, if you are eating a breakfast of yogurt, fruit, toast, and drinking a small latte you have carbs in ALL of those. Of course there’s protein and other things as well. So I would cut it to 2 separate smaller breakfasts. I’ll have coffee and toast with cheese first, and a morning snack later of yogurt and fruit.

There were easy steps of change in eating habits that I can follow all my life without a feeling of deprivation.

4. I’m being more physically active.
The weather warmed up so I’m walking more. I now walk to pick up my son from school a few times a week. Today we walked to the park; a 20 minutes of easy walk downhill, and 25-30 minutes walking uphill with your tongue sticking out (you can’t see it ‘cos the photo is too small).

5. And just as important, will power.
I never really cared before. But now I do. I want to lose weight and go back one size down.
Oh, yeah, fear of failure plays a role too.
I hesitated before starting to blog about losing weight because I was afraid I will fail. And I hate to fail (I sound like a Grouchy Smurf: “I hate to fail”). Once I set my mind on a project, I gotta do it and do it well.

Photo from The Smurfs web site


Sunny said...

I like all the pictures of you and your kids! :) Sounds like you're doing great!!

Joie de vivre said...

Your pics are so cute! I'm impressed that your son made it for a 45 minute walk!

stephchows said...

You have a such a positive outlook it's wonderful! Great job!!

On a side note, here is the link to that strawberry pie my fiance made :)