Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Day 11 (428.5) Preparing For Tough Days To Come

Having started a lifestyle change two years ago and not succeeding I'm very conscious this time of bumps in the road that may trip me up.  It's these hurdles that make or break your progress and it's important to understand how to get over them.

When you start a program of changing eating habits for the better your mind is right and your ready to rock n roll.  You start out tracking metrics about the foods your eating and planning your next meals.    This is the "honeymoon" phase if you will.  After about a week you start planning the night before for the entire day to follow.   Then if you just stick with the next day's plan everything will be all right.  Using software for this make it very easy.  You can use MyNetDiary on the iPhone or on the PC or iPad. There are other software solutions too.  My iPhone is always with me (my family calls it my fifth limb) so food analysis with MyNetDiary is always right there with a few key strokes.

Keeping this same eagerness and interest in managing food intake is really important over the first few weeks.   You start to see results and you don't want to go backwards.   All of the sudden good eating becomes a habit.  It starts to seem natural to be concerned about eating too many carbs or not getting enough good fats, etc..  It starts to become sort of like a sports... I've written about this before.  The challenge of setting a goal for the day, managing your way to that goal and then seeing that you've lost a half of a pound the next morning... like a sport.   I know this might be a stretch but there's a certain thrill in that for me.  I guess that means my mind is in a good place with respect to food.

The "danger zone" though is when you get to the point where your cruising day to day and you feel like you can "just eat one bag of M&Ms" or "just have one soft pretzel and grape soda".   You have to tell yourself that "it's not the time to do this.   You can have a protein snack like a PowerBar or even Beef Jerky but you must stay away from high carb, high sugar foods".    When it's time for a Re-Feed you can go outside of the norm. 

You have to put the reasons why your changing your eating habits in your mind when those tough times come.. and they will come.    You have to tell yourself... "I want to see my kids graduate from high school and college.  I want be able to go on college tours with my kids and be able to walk around the campus without having to stop and rest.  I want to be healthy well into my 70s and 80s so I can enjoy what I've worked for my entire life."   These reasons keep you going.  These things are more important to you than eating two large coffee rolls or crumb cakes.

You can't fall into the trap of self-pity, empathy or nonsense rationalizations.  "Oh I've done so well these past two weeks, I deserve to eat that huge piece of cheesecake."  You can't eat that cheesecake now.  You can during a holiday or other special time but not now. 

You have to turn it around...  The reality is that you deserve to not eat those foods that are outside of your program.  Your body deserves to be healthy. Your metabolism deserves to function normally.  Your legs and joints deserve to carry a person who is 220 lbs, not 440 pounds.  You family deserves not to have to worry about your health.   These are the thoughts that should comfort you during the tough times.

And yes.. I'm writing this post to myself because I know these difficult days are coming and I want to be prepared.



  1. Thanks for visiting my blog :)

    I have learned that the mental "game" part of any weight loss journey is the MOST IMPORTANT PART. It'll make ya or break ya.

    #2 most important part: What will be your accountability? Daily/weekly weigh-ins? I wanna know. :)

    Good luck to you with your weight loss! I'll check back often.

  2. Thanks for checking in. I weigh myself daily and report it on the blog. My wife, sisters and brother-in-law all read my blog so I am accountable to them (and myself). Thanks, ETL.

  3. HEYYYYYYY! Nice to see that you are back at it!

  4. Thanks MissH. I am and I'm more motivated than ever.

  5. Hey ETL - can definitely tell you are moving into "the zone" mentally. Proud of you! Looking forward to our 75th and 85th birthdays