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First published 12/11/13
There are exactly two weeks between now and Christmas. Did you set a goal to meet by Christmas? I did: goal weight. Christmas complicates things, but having this steadfast goal is helping me not to binge on holiday treats. It’s hard though…trust me, it’s hard. And I’m dreading traveling for Christmas. I will take the trip many hundred miles north armed with lavash bread, Greek yogurt, pre-cooked waffles to heat in toasters, and on-plan Christmas candy (I’m intending to put up a post soon about tips for holiday traveling on-plan). I refuse to give up over Christmas, and I want so badly to be at goal weight by the end of my Christmas holiday. I really do have a specific reason for that: I’m going to Bible school a week and a half after Christmas, and I don’t have high hopes for success there. Trust me, I’ll stay on plan as best I can, but is it too much to ask that I could have my high point of victory *before* going up against a huge battle?
I have about 7 pounds to lose to reach my goal weight, and 2 of those pounds I have been gaining and losing for two weeks at least. In getting serious about reaching my goal, I’ve pin-pointed some common pitfalls in efforts to lose weight, THM specific as well as just common sense. I’ll share some of my findings with you in hopes that they will help you in your journey, especially if you want to kick some of those stubborn pounds before the holidays (and during the holidays):
Exercise is key for me, especially on these last pounds that seem to be glued to me with industrial-strength adhesive. A good workout can be the added edge you need to shape up and slim down. A warning here: it is my personal findings that exercise usually makes the scales go up the next day. I think it’s something about fluid retention, but I’ve been told that that makes no sense whatsoever. It’s been my experience though, and I tend to believe my own experience. Usually within a few days the scales finally takes into account my exertion and finally gives me something for my trouble.
Snacking at night
This one gets me-bad. It’s hereditary, what can I say? I tend to stay up rather late (I’m working on it)-something that’s also hereditary. If you stay up late, you get hungry, and who wants to go to bed on an empty stomach? I have to really watch my late night snack mode though. In my experience, it’s best to keep things very light at night. Something very small, with a hot drink to go with it. And even if something is Fuel Pull, keep the portion small. Your stomach doesn’t have time to digest a lot before your metabolism settles down for the night. Tonight I had a few pieces of Skinny Chocolate as well as a cup of hot chocolate made with almond milk and water, cocoa powder, protein powder, stevia, a little salt, and….glucomannan. The gluccie thickened it up nicely so it felt filling. Just what I needed to take the edge off my hunger pangs. And ya know…going to bed early would work too.
Are you over-eating?
I know I was. Everyone says, “Watch that you’re eating enough or else you won’t lose weight.” Well, I’ve always been a voracious eater and I have problems the other way. Self-analyze and decide which way you tend to lean-then watch out for your pitfall. You can eat THM all you want and separate your fuels; but in the end, if you’re over-eating, you’re over-eating. Fuel separation will definitely help compensate; but if you want to lose weight, make sure you’re keeping your portions sensible.
Are you over-fueling?
Fats are good! I know that, but I also know that moderation is key in everything. If you’re not losing weight, maybe you should look at what you’re eating and make sure it doesn’t contain an overly huge amount of either fuel-fats or carbs. If you have a really heavy S meal, follow it with a light S. Not only is this good for your metabolism, but it will help you from over-loading the fats. Moderation is a Scriptural principle, and God knows what He’s talking about. 🙂
If you find yourself messing up because you didn’t plan ahead, try making up a rough menu sketch the night before. That way you can make intelligent decisions instead of rushing around in the heat of the moment. Of course, some of you are so organized that you have your weekly, or even monthly, menu planned out! Good for you, but be careful that you listen to what your body needs.
Get Plenty of E Meals
I’ve noticed that a lot of people seem to have trouble incorporating E meals into their menus. Both fuels are important for weight loss! Please don’t overlook those healthy carbs. These days, I have a problem the other way: I’ve become addicted to my E meals and I don’t think I’m getting enough S meals. Figure out which way you tend to err, and watch yourself.
And Most Importantly…Don’t Obsess
I’m preaching at myself first and foremost with this one. I struggle with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, and the obsessing reaches its fingers into my weight loss goals. I get too stuck on numbers, and deadlines, and image. Those things aren’t the point, and obsessing over them is not God-honoring. My ultimate goal, one I too often forget, for my lifestyle change to THM is to take care of my part of the temple of the Holy Ghost as best I can. So with this in mind, my goal is to reach goal weight by Christmas, but if I don’t, that’s OK. I’ll just keep plugging at it, even while at Bible school, and what happens, happens. Hey, I’ve got the rest of my life to catch up, right? All I can do is my best, and sometimes that involves letting go and taking a detour for a little while. Take Christmas for example. My family and I will be guests at someone’s home. Relationships and gratitude are far more important than eating on plan. I will do the best I can to eat on plan, but I will be flexible and not make a big deal about food that doesn’t quite work. If asked, I will choose oatmeal for breakfast (or ask to use the toaster for one of my own waffles); but if I have to, I will eat what is put before me, whatever that consists of. “Where He leads me I will follow; what He feeds me I will swallow.” Don’t let your food lifestyle become an idol. There are more important things in life. But that doesn’t mean you have to fill up on potatoes and bread, either. 😉
I’m keeping a food journal right now. It’s not something I normally do, but it helps keep me accountable and target trouble spots while I’m being really, really serious about meeting my last goal.