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Fitocracy also holds me accountable.

One thing I’m realizing about weight loss is that there are no easy answers.  For the first few months I saw my weight loss as a pattern (and being a programmer, I like patterns).  Then last month and this month, the pattern went to hell.

After my last report, I began gaining weight and not only that I gained it quickly.  From the end of last month’s report, I gained 4.8 pounds in 9 days.  I wasn’t eating anything weird, I was exercising and the weight went up. For much of my life, something like that would have frustrated me and I would have thrown up my hands and just given up.  But not this time. And I think I have this blog to thank for that.

My brother told me on the phone that he thought I was doing something extraordinary here. Putting myself out there for the world (or at least the very small subset that reads this blog) to observe, comment and I’m sure, judge.  But for me, it’s a way of holding myself accountable in a very real way.  I’m a 49 year old woman, who eats well, knows quite a bit (but not enough) about nutrition and wants to lose weight to be healthy.  By making myself accountable, I can’t just give up.  What would that say about me and who I am (and who I want to be) if I did that.  So in a real way, knowing that you read this keeps me on this journey.

So I didn’t give up.  I just kept going.  Of course circumstances kept me out of the gym a lot this month.  In the summer food preservation takes a large priority in my life.  Picking peas for 2 hours left me very sore and cramped in my lower back and backs of my thighs. The idea of going to a gym and trying to do my squats, push ups and that horrible Tabata was just not something I could do.  So I slowly lost weight after that peak.  It came off slowly for a few days. .2 pounds a day, then I went up a pound and basically erased the gains of that week.

Then I had another camping vacation.  I cooked for myself and with the exception of some chocolate and mead/alcohol, I kept to my diet.  In fact I brought loads of cheese and crudites and pork rinds to share with my friends to make sure I was never tempted by their foods. But something interesting happened.  After I got back from vacation, I weighed myself and I was down a pound from when I left. And slowly the weight dropped until I reached the 184.6 I am today.

I think I have to just trust the process.  I’ve finally found something that works for me and if I keep doing it, the weight will come off.  Not as fast or in as straight a line as I hope. I also need to not blame myself for something I have no control over. (and not having control of something is not great for me). But if I know I’m doing the things that help me lose weight. (low-carb, fermented raw milk products) and I’m not cheating (no grains, sugar), then I just have to trust the process, no matter how twisty the path.

I think there is a tendency in many of us to micro-manage this process. I know that weighing myself every day is not recommended, but it helps me see the patterns so long as I don’t freak out that I’ve gained weight on any given day. My official weigh-in day is the weight that I use here and in other places when I talk about my weight loss. But in weighing myself daily, I see the larger pattern, I see my body rebelling to the weight loss and putting some of it back on and then gradually accepting it. What I see is a pattern of gain and loss that in some ways helps me through the times when it seems I’m not losing.

I don’t know if what I had this month would be considered a plateau. But its taught me to trust the process, don’t give up and do what I know works, even if it doesn’t seem to at the moment.

 July 2012 Measurements

Measurement Starting Current Difference
Weight 200 lbs  184.6 lbs -15.40 lbs
Chest 39.00″  37.00  -1.25″
Waist 36.50″  32.50  -4.00″
Stomach 43.00″  35.00  -8.00″
Hips 45.00″  41.00  -4.00″
Thighs 25.25″  23.25  -2.00″
Biceps 15.50″  15.00  -0.50″

The measurements this month don’t really accurately reflect what happened.  The day after I wrote the last report, I began gaining weight and in fact gained 4.8 pounds in about a week and a half.  After that, it was a slow weight loss down.  In relative weight lost in May, I actually lost 5.6 pounds instead of the measly .8 pounds I saw from the end of that report to the end of this one.

I think accountability helps keep me in the process.  Fitocracy, while not about weight loss, keeps me going to the gym. Keeps me going through my work-outs.  Not only cause I love earning a lot of points in a workout and getting props, but because everyone there that wants to can see my workouts.  Accountability in many of its forms is what is different for me this time.

Fitness Report Series

2 Responses to “Monthly Fitness Report: Month 7”

  1. Linda says:

    Way to go on your journey! There isn’t anything I can add to what you wrote …you covered it pretty much all …..one thing I don’t like is that you call your weight loss journey ‘a diet’! It has to be a lifestyle change and a new way of eating forever. A diet is something (to me) that you go on and then off of. I had to change my whole way of eating. Forever! But keep on keeping on and best wishes to you! And know that i do read your blog faithfully even if I am quiet ! I look forward to hearing from you. And I love how truthful you are with yourself and us! 🙂

    • Sandra Clark says:

      You are absolutely right Linda. This is not a diet, it is a way of eating that I will keep on for the rest of my life. Thank you for pointing that out. I do know though that after I lose the weight I want, I will be modifying the diet a bit. I will allow myself rice or beans once in a great while. But yes, for the most part the way I am eating now is the way I will be eating for the rest of my life.