Soooooo your doc tells you that you’re overweight, and you really need to work on that. So you stop eating ice cream, you keep a food diary and dutifully record every calorie that passes your lips. You start walking your dog more, take a hike on the weekend, maybe bust out some situps while watching your favorite tv show. You choose to eat yogurt for breakfast, over bacon and eggs or a bagel with cream cheese. You choose salads for lunches, and dinners too! All the while looking at your husband’s double bacon cheeseburger with envy, secretly mad that he can eat that, and not be fat. You count calories, weigh and measure food. You spend hours at the gym, sweating it out at Zumba classes, weight machines, and the lap pool. You’re told to eat clean! No processed foods! Lots of fruits and veggies, small portions of protein….that’s the way! Calories in, calories out…that’s it! That’s all you have to do!
Um……how about weight loss isn’t a one size fits all formula?
This is hard to swallow for some people, for most people actually. It was hard for ME to accept this…but of course it had to be true…otherwise I’d be a few pants sizes smaller by now. And what makes it worse, is it’s not just me that I have to convince, it’s everyone around me. All of my fellow ladies on the path to fitness, gawk at my new diet. “You eat eggs, ham, and cheese for breakfast? Everyday?” Why yes, yes I do. Salads with meat, hard boiled egg, cheese and (gasp) ranch dressing? Yup. Ohhhhhh I even get to eat cheeseburgers. Just minus the bun. See, what I’ve learned, is that for me, carbs are what’s making me fat. I am insulin resistant.
“Are you sure? Were you counting your calories correctly? Where you varying your workouts? What did your portions look like?” I’ve heard all of these questions over and over again. Oh, I am sure. I’m very sure that I tried very hard to figure out this “simple” thing called weight loss. I never lost any weight. Until now that is…..
Two weeks ago I started making a conscious effort to reduce the amount of carbs I consume, and to make sure the carbs I do still consume, are at least whole grain carbs. I’ve stopped buying white bread, much to my husband’s dismay, and replaced it with whole grain bread. I’ve swapped regular pasta for whole wheat pasta, I’ve switched to brown rice instead of white rice. I’ve served twice baked spaghetti squash, in place of mashed potatoes. I made zoodles, “noodles” from zucchini, and meat sauce, instead of spaghetti. I have not counted a single calorie. I have not been hungry, or “stuffed”. I haven’t felt like I should give birth to a food baby after eating a meal.
In two weeks, I have lost seven pounds. This is more weight than I lost in the last year of busting my ass. This was all on my own, without workouts. I’ve tried me best to not eat carbs for breakfast or lunch. To only eat small amounts of whole grains with dinner. This is hard, when you live with two men, who really want their mashed potatoes and gravy, pizza, and sandwiches. My husband joked last night that he didn’t think he could get much skinnier…and that he needed his sandwiches. My 5’8″, 140 pound brother, also jokingly expressed concern about wasting away to nothing. So yes, I’ve had to get creative with my meal planning. Trying to find that happy balance, between good food, and good for you food.
So hubby gets a blue suede chicken sandwich, and I get blue suede chicken. We get to try philly cheese steak stuffed peppers, and I put his favorite smashed red potatoes on the menu. I’ll just have to restrain myself….to maybe just one potato.
This post has kind of gone all over the place, but I guess my point is, that weight loss, that health, is not a one size fits all deal. What works for someone else, may not work for you…even if it appears to work for the rest of the world. So be patient, be kind to yourself, and to your body. If one thing doesn’t work, try something else. You will get there.