Originally uploaded by Peter-snottycat
I have the tendency, I’ve noticed, to behave like a pendulum. My arc used to be very very long – ie, I’d go a YEAR without exercising at all, and I’d eat with abandon and gain weight like crazy. Then I’d do something like sign up for a marathon, and join Weight Watchers (temporarily) and lose weight. For a little while. Then, I’d swing back again.
I think I’m just not one for super consistency. How then, have I managed to literally stay within a 4-pound range since July of 2009? (I know, I can’t believe it either!)
I still act like a pendulum. But I am realizing now, the arc of my swing is really small, compared to what it used to be years ago.
I’ll have a really monster workout day. Then I’ll have a zero-exercise day. Then I’ll work out again. I’m realizing that it’s been easier, psychically, for me to recognize and accept this pendulum. And for me, a do-able arc for going in either direction is about 3 or 4 days. There are days when I eat barely more than tomatoes and plums. And I’ll burn lots and lots of calories. But these periods don’t last even a full week. Some “special occasion” or eating out or whatEVER will come along, and, well, it will even out.
Same thing in the other way. This week I had one big restaurant meal, and then I did a ton of baking in preparation for my Weight Watchers chocolate event, (including lots of BLTs – bites, licks and tastes!) and then I decided to follow my cravings around for a few days. These cravings included Mexican food, a pumpkin cupcake from the cupcake truck, and a big honkin’ bowl of hummus.
This morning I woke up and said, “I don’t feel like doing that anymore.” (um, for right now) I got up and did a beastly workout. It was fantastic. I felt like a furnace. Then I came home and I really, really wanted vegetables. I roasted a beautiful pan of vegetables and ate them for lunch.
I don’t have a regular workout program that I follow every day. Or a meal plan (other than trying to stay in my WW points). I follow my cravings, and my body around and ask it what it wants to do.
I think if I were to swing too far for a whole week, it would be worrisome. But so far, in 15 months of maintenance, that has not happened. I weigh myself every day (I know, I KNOW, you don’t all go for that) and I am fascinated by the graph on LoseIt. It’s a jagged up and down mountain range, and it goes up and down, up and down. I don’t think I’ve gained more than 3 days in a row, nor have I lost. But it never stays the same. It’s always fluctuating: one up, one more up, four-tenths down. Two up. Half up. Like that. And there is a 5-pound spread that I have not broken in a year.
I don’t really have a brilliant conclusion to all this musing. It’s just something I noticed, big time, this week. I think it works for me. But it’s also interesting to see it’s the same exact pattern I followed in my heavier days, just scrunched down.
One of the key “Helpful Habits” in Weight Watchers is “Learn from experience.” I think this is so true. I learned something about myself this week.
What patterns have you noticed in your own journey?
October 29, 2010 at 9:23 pm
I am also a pendulum..or maybe a pinball? First I’m here and then I’m there…and sometimes all over the place. Yeah…pinball for sure.
The awareness is KEY though. And I have to say, upon reading this post, that you’re sounding rather “intuitive” 😉
October 30, 2010 at 12:31 am
Welllll… I’d call it Intuitive Lite. Or Intuitive Plus Numbers. Because I think that “intuitive eating” purists do not like to deal in things like numbers. And I sure do like my numbers. 😉
October 29, 2010 at 10:18 pm
sounds like it is working beautifully! Sorry I missed Wed. Overstimulated after Santa Fe!
October 30, 2010 at 12:25 am
Follow your body,and cravings… when your body craves exercise and your appetite healthy foods, then that sounds like when we have swung over to being heathy.
October 30, 2010 at 12:32 am
Yes, I never would’ve believed I’d get to this point, where I actually CRAVE exercise and healthy food. It definitely took some “fake it til ya make it” to get here.
October 30, 2010 at 4:39 pm
4 lb range for over a whole yr thats great thats about nothing, since a big meal or a certain time of the month can trigger changes that way. congrats!
October 30, 2010 at 8:24 pm
I like that description. The pendulum.
October 31, 2010 at 11:27 am
Oh i have referenced the pendulum more times than not in my life but I never actually thought about the arc….GREAT idea
October 31, 2010 at 2:56 pm
That’s so great — you’ve made your pendulum swings so small that they have become balance. I like how instead of fighting your pattern, you learned how to make it work for you.