Once you reach goal, it is easy to maintain - NOT!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

I think there is a misconception that once we reach our goal weight, the work is over. Everything will be simple from that date on. After all, we are into an exercise routine and we have developed healthy eating habits.

It would be so nice if this were true! A magic number on the bathroom scale, and the battle is over. Sorry - life doesn't work that way. I am 66 years old. For 62 years I ate about what I wanted and if I gained a few pounds, went on a Low Carb diet, took the pounds off and went merrily on my way. My DH had a heart attack and we took early retirement at age 62. I am in great health, my weight was fine. I had always teased the family that I would make someone a really great wife and mother.

I went on a campaign to prove this. Cooking great meals, searching out new recipes, and really enjoying myself. Somehow, 20 pounds appeared on my scale! What a shock that was! I was a person who could eat anything, anytime and not gain. I was suddenly heavier than I was when pregnant with my three kids.

I discovered SP and a healthy lifestyle. It was basically the lifestyle I had lived most of my life, but retirement meant cooking, eating, reading, watching TV! Things I never had time for. SP got me back on the healthy lifestyle track. I started in exercising - something I had never done in my life intentionally. When you are on the go all day, every day you don't realize that is exercise. Checking in large boxes of freight, lifting, bending, walking all day - exercise! If I needed something from a store, I never took my truck - I'd walk so no one would get my parking place. Those things add up to exercise I didn't realize I was doing.

I was very happy today to read an article on SP that suggested weighing every day to maintain. I have weighed daily for over a year - then one day, I didn't! I quit tracking my food, quit tracking my exercise, posted on a few boards, weighed in on Friday for a Challenge team I'm on and basically let the rest of SP programs go for over two weeks. What was I thinking? Two pound jumped right back on my scale, I was starting to feel the acid reflux that I hadn't had for over a year, felt sluggish - BUT - I was at goal, I didn't need SP to tell me what to do, I'd done it! LOL! I quit smoking in October, gained four pounds, lost four pounds - I know it all! NOT!

Yes - I spent over a year learning good habits and following them. Yes - I reached my goal weight last August and held it within a five pound range. BUT - the habits of 62 years tend to creep back into our lifestyles if we are not aware every single day what we are or are not doing to our bodies!

Let me tell you that two pounds that suddenly appeared was a rude wake up call. It reminded me that I am no longer an active, naturally skinny kid! Once again, I am tracking my food, tracking my exercise, reading the articles, using the Healthy Lifestyle Scale. . . . SP works but we have to work with it! It isn't an instant fix where we hit a number on a scale then fall back to our bad old habits.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Thanks for this cos even though I knew it, I haven't been using spark as well lately. I get very frustrated putting my food in, not cos I dont want to but because I make something and dont know what to put it as, or I have something that is for instance 1/3 can as a serv. and I used 2 T. anyway I suppose that some estimation is better than not putting it at all....
    thanks cos even though I had just re started putting in the food, I was ready to throw in the towel in that area.
    So today i will go back and try to log in that casserole and start again today.
    4639 days ago
  • PAMELA984
    Amazing that we think that we can change our habits in a few weeks or months that were developed over a period of years or decades. That is why it is so important to talk about this in terms of a lifestyle and not a diet - diet is short-term - lifestyle is forever!
    4640 days ago
    I'm with you on this one - the journey isn't over - a new chapter is just starting - oh what joy huh? And here we thought we had it licked - I agree - NOT! We are works in progress and I hope it never ends (progress that is LOL). Hugs - Jenna
    4640 days ago
    Donna, I really enjoy you and how you share with us. I did lose 15 pounds and have put them back on so quickly. It is amazing how fast that can happen. I guess I thought i lost it so it would be pretty easy to keep it off. Wrong. It has been difficult. Old habits do surface when we let our guard down. I stopped doing the things that made me thin and cooked and ate more. Not a good thing and am now trying to change that and go back to what worked. I am a size 12 and plan to be an 8 and 10 once again. Nothing tastes as good as being thin feels... I must try and remember that for it is true.

    4640 days ago
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