Saturday, February 4, 2012

Thoughts on Losing Weight

Like many, many others, one of my New Year's resolutions was to lose weight. It's a popular one, no? And 2 of the things that I've found helpful are 1) a public announcement of my plan and 2) support of others. This year, I'm following along with Shannon of Hungry Zombie fame as she tries to "tame her arse". Her series has "inspired" me to share just a few things that I learned in my 2 years as a Weight Watchers leader. [These "learnings" are strictly anecdotal and observational. There may be science to back them up, but I'm not looking up the research, therefore, they are my opinion only, and I am no longer associated with Weight Watchers.]

Another disclaimer: there are exceptions to everything I learned (except that 1 pound = 1 pound... that's always true).

So. What did I learn and observe?
  • losing weight is hard. Oh, yeah, you probably knew that.
  • losing weight is easier when you are younger. If you are younger than 40 and want to lose weight, don't wait!
  • a pound of muscle does NOT weigh more than a pound of fat. 1 pound = 1 pound. However, muscle is more dense and takes up less space. That means...
  • use your measurements as well as the scale to register progress!
  • people have patterns of weight loss. For example, you may lose for 3 weeks and then hold steady the next. Maybe you lose for 4, gain the next week, then lose for 4 weeks again.
  • That means that 3 to 4 weeks into a weight loss plan is too soon to decide if you are on a plateau.
  • Hormones can be evil.
  • Losing weight is harder for women.
  • A big exercise day is sometimes followed by a weight gain.
  • It's definitely better NOT to weigh every day. Really once a week is a good idea, but I usually can't hold out that long.
  • I don't always practice what I preach.
  • What works for one person, might not work for the next.
  • Writing down everything you eat, even if you are not calculating calories or points or whatever, can be useful.
  • Being honest about what you write down is also useful.
  • Being honest about how much you exercise is also useful... there are lots of great apps out there to help you record your exercise.
  • Exercise is important for everyone, even if you aren't trying to lose weight.
  • Losing weight slower seems to be better for long term maintenance.
That's it for now. And I just want to add that while my reasons for losing weight are for health concerns, I'm not gonna lie and say those are the only reasons. No matter what your views on weight loss are, I do believe that a person's weight is a personal matter.



8 comments:

  1. Wishing good luck and much resolve. I know it's not always easy. I've been on the journey since last April.

    Here's another one for your list. One backstep does not a disaster make and everything you put in your mouth is a new opportunity to do the right thing.

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    1. Yes, Debbie, thanks! That is a great one!

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  2. Declarations are often very helpful. Your tips are familiar to me, but often forgotten. Thanks for the refresher.

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  3. All so very true IMHO, too! Best of luck with your weight lose goals. I'll be rooting for you. How about sharing some of your best healthy meal ideas?

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  4. I can say from experience that when ladies hit 60 and the hormones are non-existent, it is soooooo difficult to lose weight. I struggle.

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  5. I wish you the best of luck! I've never had to do it, but I've watched others struggle, and I know that it's not easy.

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  6. Another one: If you are the victim of a serious back injury and chronic pain it takes twice as long even if you are serious cause you aren't aloud to do things like run and jump or heavy weight lifting.

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  7. Losing weight sucks. Being slim doesn't (I hope...I can't remember!) But I've been talking about this with my mum and we realise that sometimes you've got to suck it up and do the work. Especially if you're over 40 and up against health challenges. You are not alone! Good luck.

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