Friday, May 17, 2013

Wait management

As we get older, we find we have to take better care of ourselves. Maybe a doctor says something, maybe we don’t recognise the person staring back at us in the mirror, but whatever the motivation, we decide to make changes—real changes, not mere promises to change.

Six months ago today, I started working on losing weight. It wasn’t a “diet” in a conventional sense: I’m eating more sensibly, yes, and definitely less of whatever I eat, but I don’t deny myself anything. I increased exercise, but only just. My goal has been slow, gradual change that’s sustainable, not some quick weight loss that I’d gain right back (plus some).

Since I began this effort, I’ve lost 11.3kg (just under 25 US pounds). That works out to an average of 434 grams per week—just under one US pound (15.33 ounces) per week. I’m very okay with that.

In fact, I’ve lost some 15kg (33 US pounds) since I hit my all-time heaviest weight some months back. I’m proud of that achievement. I think I should be.

The hardest thing for me has been to be patient. I thought I was doing well until the week I realised that the weight I’d just hit was where I’d started in my big weight loss of 2005-06. Truth is, proud as I am of losing those 11.3kg, I’m still some 13kg heavier than I was when I hit my lowest point back then. By that measure, I’m not even half way. Reality check.

Among the 26 weeks I’ve been doing this, there have been seven weeks in which I’ve lost nothing at all. There have also been three weeks in which I (temporarily) gained back some weight. Patience is a virtue.

I don’t yet know what my new target weight will be, but I think I’m finally getting myself to relax and wait for it, whatever it is. The point, as I said before, is sustainable (and maintainable) weight loss.

Still, even now, there have been benefits: I can wear “thin clothes” that I haven’t fit in, um, awhile. I have better stamina, and my knees don’t seem as strained. I haven’t been to my doctor since I started this, but I’d expect all my numbers to be better. How could they not be?

I’m doing all this because I want to be healthier and live longer, yes, but I also simply want to feel better. That part has already started to happen. That means it’s all a success already.

I’m not following any diet, but because some people will want to know, my diet is basically high protein/low carbohydrate, and I have a lot of lettuce salads to fill me up. I also avoid white sugar. Generally, I only eat when I’m hungry. Like I said, no special diet.

This is a journey, not a destination—or diet. I’m trying to make changes for the long term. Making myself wait for the changes has been the hardest part. But it IS worth it.


Roger Green said...

Patience in this topic is NOT my strength. Lots of discouragement.

Arthur (AmeriNZ) said...

Impatience was actually the hardest thing for me when I started, but six months on, I'm a little more relaxed about it.

Arthur (AmeriNZ) said...

I haven't measured myself! I mean, I know my older clothes are too big, and I can fit in my smaller clothes again, so I KNOW that I'm getting smaller, but I haven't bothered measuring. Weight measurement is how I tell I'm losing.

Logan said...

That's great - congrats, Arthur! We're working on being more fit too. I don't weigh myself (I build muscle very easily, and the figure would likely depress me), so I go by measurements instead. :)