I do not usually write my cookie posts together, but eight days before Christmas, with New Year’s around the corner it is “crunch time” in more ways than one. This is my first Christmas in maintenance for my weight loss, and I want to make the most of it. On December 9th I shared about my frustration at my weight gain, slight though it is, since a medication change and Thanksgiving. Although I do not believe I misbehaved very badly, there were careless handfuls of caramel popcorn that were unaccounted for, as well as occasional scoops of peanuts, pecans, and other such things.
My weight loss goal, which I met on May 9th was 145 pounds. For most of the months since then, except for Thanksgiving, my weight has fluctuated up and down a few ounces in the 143 range, occasionally dipping to 142. Today my weight was 147.2 and while that is not awful, it is not great. My chief strategy since writing my last “cookie” post, has been to continue weighing and measuring my food, getting on the scale every day and dropping my calorie intake from 1500 calories a day to 1250 to 1300.
So far, so good. But my current situation has reminded me of something I had forgotten, that my weight loss was very slow. The last two months before finally getting to my goal, it slowed to a crawl, a two-pound loss in the last month. While enjoying my 1500 calorie plan and my 143 pound weigh-ins, I had forgotten how hard it had been.
I went shopping yesterday to stock up on some pre-Holiday items, including some grapefruit, navel oranges and apples, congratulating myself all the way to the check out. And there I saw it, the thing that made me decide to write this post. There, in shiny, glossy color, were several magazines featuring cookies, cakes, pies and more. Let me restate that. There were sugar-laden, gorgeous, tempting, inviting, sparkling, satiny, alluring cookies and cakes and pies, oh my!
They seemed to speak, almost jump off the page words of invitation. “You still have time, it’s not Christmas yet. You could go home and make me, give me away, well, maybe just a taste, you have already gained five pounds, what is a few more cookies?”
That is when I thought, maybe someone else needs to hear the words that I have to say to myself, some healthy ” “back talk.” I realize there are lots of experts in health magazines, websites and podcasts who may be more scientifically based, and you have your own program that you are following. But perhaps some encouraging words from someone who is in the trenches of weight loss maintenance in this season of sweets would be helpful. “Protect your investment. It is not just those size 10 dress slacks you don’t want to outgrow, it is those healthy cholesterol and blood sugar numbers you want to maintain. You do not have to be deprived, but make wise choices.”
For some people two cookies would not be an issue, but I am the woman who self-medicated with double stuffed sandwich cookies for a mid-morning snack during those first stressful months of the pandemic. Every. Day. I know I can have an occasional scone, or muffin, but I know what two cookies would do to me (I cannot eat just one, one cookie is an appetizer).
I realize that there are people who have the opposite problem, women and men who want to gain a healthy weight but not matter what they try, they do not seem to be able to do that. Those folks deserve a lot of respect and empathy from those of us on the other side of , er, the scale. There are certainly people who have grown up knowing what healthy eating is and how to maintain a healthy outlook, where food is concerned. People for whom food is simply fuel. I cannot imagine what that is like.
Here are a few thoughts and strategies that might be helpful.
Put on a “just for you” fashion show. Dress up in all your favorite new clothes and model them for the mirror. Be thankful.
Stick to your resolve! I do not know who to credit for the quote, “Nothing tastes as good as thin feels.” I have mixed feelings about that, but I love how I feel in my dress clothes.
Say no kindly, but firmly to anyone who offers you any food that is going to throw you off track. “You do you!” I do not know who to credit for that either, but I like it.
Choose! Plan to not be deprived, but chose that special food or treat that you want to enjoy and plan to savor it. Plan too for the healthy options that will accompany it.
Look in the mirror again and smile.
You’ve got this! And you can be #stronger than the CHRISTMAS cookie! We both can.
Hoping this helps. Not holding back the tide,
Copyright 2020-2024 Michele Somerville, The Beach Girl Chronicles and https://msomervillesite.WordPress.com
Postscript: This weekend is the second anniversary of my blog (a blogaversary?) which is mostly memoir. I plan to keep writing, although life lately has made regular posts challenging. I am grateful for every follower, friend and family member who take the time to read and comment on my writing. I am grateful for the people I have come to know around the world. Some of my friends are taking a break from writing and I miss them, but that is how this thing works. I am grateful for the opportunity to write and publish these stories, especially stories about my parents, Jack and Maggie and my beloved hometown, Onset, Massachusetts.