Every week I have clients come into my office who inspire me. Often in our sessions amazing ideas come to me for article topics. Last week one of my clients was claiming that her summer clothes were tighter this year. Even though she had maintained most of her initial weight loss from when we first started working together – she had gained 4 lbs in the last 4 months. It may not seem like a lot, but because she’s tiny to begin with – it was enough to put her into another size – up.
So I ask – are you also on the Heavier Side of Light right now? Almost sounds like a movie title – doesn’t it? Like the Unbearable Lightness of Being, for example? But what I’m asking here is have you lost weight and now some of it has crept back on? You aren’t feeling that far behind the eight ball, but just enough to have your new smaller sized clothes feeling a little snug.
You must admit you are lighter than you were before – maybe by a lot or maybe just a little. But you’d like to get back to the smaller size, but maybe you’ve lost the motivation to do just that. Maybe you don’t want to feel like you have to deprive yourself of sandwiches or desert or that glass of wine at dinner. Maybe you just don’t want to live that way and the extra 2-12 lbs (or whatever the number is for you) is not worth being upset about.
If you are at that cross roads in maintaining your healthy lifestyle – you may want to ask yourself the following questions to determine if you are willing to do what it takes or simply accept where you are right now.
Here are your Questions:
Question #1 Do you Like your Body Today? Perhaps you’ve reached a point where you actually approve and love your body just as it right now. You realize you will never be perfect or look like a movie star and finally you’re actually OK about that. You still like what you see in the mirror. Most of your clothes fit you just fine. It’s not like it was. You did dispense with all your “big clothes” long ago or you had your favorites taken in – that’s always a good thing. So stay proud of how far you have come and the progress you’ve made. Think of all the things you continue to learn and admire about yourself today.
Question #2 Do you plan to yoyo? If you feel like you just may end going up and down & up and down for the rest of your life, ask yourself if you’d like to live with these planned fluctuations? I don’t really advise planning to yoyo – it’s hard on your body, mind and spirit. Normal fluctuations are common due to water retention, menstrual cycles, or exercise levels. Eating larger portions than you’re used to or having foods you don’t normally eat are all part of the “fluctuation dance”. Watch for incrementally continuous rises in weight – stopping this pattern as soon as it starts is essential for helping stay in your healthy weight range.
Question #3 Does your new weight require less effort to maintain? If your new “heavier side of light” weight requires less effort you may want to consider that this is your new normal and stick with it. You may want to enjoy more of this or that and find that the cost benefit is worth it to you. Just make sure you stick with your healthy food choices 80-85% of the time.
Question #4 Are you trying to maintain some fantasy? If you’re trying to maintain an unrealistic weight – a weight you may have been when you were 16, but not at 40 or 50. This unrealistic weight may become impossible to maintain and will only set you up for further frustration. Your hormonal balance is so much different now than when you were a teenager. You most likely got away with a lot when you were younger; but now these indiscretions count – both on the scale and in how you actually feel. Whether you are getting into your Skinny Jeans or not, you must make sure your weight goal is attainable – long term.
Questions #5 Do you just want to have fun? You want to forget about constant control – you just want to be free from the scale, calorie counting and “weighing in” – is that right? You just want to let loose and enjoy your life – don’t you – after all isn’t that what life is all about?
This can be a beneficial strategy for some, however for most people too much letting go and having fun may set you off in the wrong direction completely. You may end up several weeks or months later, after having caused more damage and feeling worse, having to start over from scratch. Now who wants to do that? You don’t want all weight that you’ve worked so hard to lose. Consider all the time, energy, and money you’ve spent to accomplish a healthier and leaner life and now it’s all gone. So go ahead and have a little fun and know that discipline is not such a bad thing when it comes to your overall sense of wellbeing, pride and respect for yourself.