The Battle of the Scale

Over the last year, people have been asking me how I lost weight.  I can’t tell you any deep dark secret, some great miracle pill, or some wild “eat a grapefruit before every meal” diet plan.  What is really has been is the basic elements of good life-style change:  good eating, and exercise.  I know, very lame answer, but it’s the truth.

I will tell you, it hasn’t been easy.  In 2007 I was diagnosed with an eating disorder.  I was so sick, I never thought I would make it to this point in my life.  After going through treatment, dieting became harder.  When you ate smaller meals, family and friends would ask why, pushing me to eat more.  Then I got pregnant, which while a good thing, made it harder to control how I ate.  Being pregnant was the first time in my life I felt like I didn’t have to suck in my stomach, or care if people saw me eat.  It was very liberating!

After Keegan was born, I did my best to lose the baby weight, but it didn’t all come off.  They I got pregnant again, starting the pregnancy process again, only 15 pounds heavier this time around.  With Seeley, I lost a little more weight early on, but then stalled.  I was too busy to care.

Finally, Joe and I decided to make some changes.  We began working out in our home, between having Keegan and getting pregnant again.  We used a home-based workout called P90.  It is an eased down version of P90X, for people who are just trying to get back in shape.  While Tony Horton can be a little cheesy, it worked.

The big thing we did was change the way we eat.  We had cut down on going out to eat long ago, but now we were even more aware of what we ate when we did eat out.  When we ate at home, we made sure half of our plate was salad and fruit or veggies.  We also made sure if there were leftovers that we put them away BEFORE we ate.  It prevented us from going back for more.  One other thing that seemed to help, was making sure we ate before 6PM.  It was hard to start with, and come 9PM all we could think about was something to eat, but over time, you get used to it.

Now that time has passed, we have both made some changes that are permanent.  We both eat a LOT more fruit and veggies than we did before, even going vegetarians for 3-4 months at a time(usually summer when produce is at its finest).  We have both given up pop(harder for Joe than me!), and try not to drink much caffeinated beverages.  I don’t drink any alcohol, more because of medical reasons than dietary, but now that it has been almost 5 years since I have had a drink, I don’t miss it at all.  We have also become more focused on getting active.  We aren’t FABULOUS at it all the time, but we try and that is all that matters!  We joined the Rec this summer to spare us from having to walk outside in the heat, and we just started the Fall Hiking Spree through the Metro Parks.  We like to be outside, and I find that walking helps to clear my head when I have a lot on my mind.

One last thing.  When I was dealing with anorexia, I was getting on the scale 8-10 times A DAY.  When my life gets more stressful now, I find myself falling back to that.  Last month, I decided I had enough.  I got to the point I was SO focused on the number on the scale, that no matter what I ate, I wasn’t enjoying it.  It was miserable.  So I did something I never thought I would be able to do.  I gave up the scale.  Yep, told my hubby to hide it, throw it away, whatever, as long as I didn’t know where it was.  So he did.  And what happened??

Well, I am happy to say, a month later, I weigh the same thing as when I put the scale away.  Now I can honestly say, I have been enjoying food, and not worrying about any of it.  And it has been nice.  With it being the end of summer, I was enjoying eating ice cream on the last warm nights of summer, I had birthday cake for my birthday, and then again for breakfast the next day.  It was nice.  It also proved something to me.  My body has acquired new habits, life-long habits to keep myself healthy.  While I know I need to continue to eat good foods, and not too much junk, I also now know I can enjoy treats every once in a while, and not have to feel guilty about it.

And after many years of fighting the scale, it’s a good feeling.

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