On Plateaus, Both Physical And Emotional
And to specify, both kinds I'm talking about are weight loss plateaus. I've noticed that this year I hit a physical weight loss plateau and a couple emotional ones. I think I will share my weight-loss chart with you:
(You can just ignore the huge leap in July… We went on a cruise with my family, and I decided I would eat whatever I wanted. Cheesecake and melting chocolate cake and huge plates of pasta, oh my! BUT, no regrets, I would recommend it to anyone!)
The physical one was in August, when I stayed right around 170 for 5 weeks. Coincided with when I added exercise… Hmmm… My theory is that even though I was usually eating my Activity Points, they weren't enough for the extra effort from my body, so it hung on to what it could. Right around when I gave up on Power 90 is when I broke the plateau, also worthy of a "Hmmm…"
My biggest emotional plateau was the past 6 weeks. I had dropped my baby weight plus 25 pounds, was within 15 pounds of college/marriage weight. I hit my "realistic" goal and anything after that was headed towards my "fantasy" goal (Isn't it most women's fantasy to get back into their wedding dress?) I needed to send my nice phone in for repairs, which left me with my cracked-screen G1. My laptop was unreliable at best and eventually just quit turning on, which meant that at home I was really just left with Husband's Macbook if I wanted to log my food. Plus, I was just tired of dieting—in comes the Great Weight Experiment. I did OK, I suppose… Lost a little, gained a little. I decided that even if I don't head downward, I still want to prevent an upward trend. Once I got my nice phone back last week, I started tracking and (mostly) counting again. It's worked out pretty well for me. I have a couple cute dresses that I can't quite fit into yet, and so those will be my ultimate goal.
I'm not 100% certain I'll reach that goal before deciding to go for Baby2, but that's OK. And since my pre-pregnancy weight will be 30+ pounds less than Monkey's pre-pregnancy weight, I'm hoping to stay below 190 this next time. I think that's a realistic goal… With Monkey, I went from 187 (about two weeks before I got pregnant) to 222 (the morning he was born), so a 35 pound gain. Of course, the stupid stinking postpartum water retention/blood pressure issues meant that when I went in at one week to get my c-section stitches out, I weighed 220!
Sigh… Breathe… Letting go. At some point I'll list out all the details of how I went from pregnant to not-pregnant. It was an adventure-and-a-half!
I think my emotional plateau has been conquered. I'm back to logging everything, and even though I'm not as stringently keeping to my points limit, I still lost weight last week. I feel like pictures of me actually look like me. Right now, I'm at peace with how I look and I'm at peace with how I feel. I'll probably have to buy new maternity pants the next time I get pregnant, but that's OK too. Maybe when I'm not so focused on the scale, I can feel better about exercising more. (Weird, right?)
I also came out of the emotional plateau and Great Weight Experiment with a better understanding of my habits. I didn't completely change my habits in the past year, but I'm better equipped to deal with ice cream and sweets cravings. I decided to go back on the diet to stay under 160, and to get in the best place possible before Baby2. BUT, I'm not angry/resentful/burned out anymore. Foregoing four weeks of progress is a small price to pay for that. (And so far I've got the just-started-dieting jump start again, so, added bonus!)
Plateaus? Not terribly bad. Unless you've got a time crunch such as a wedding or other event, go ahead and take a few weeks off. Take a few weeks to not think about food. Don't take those few weeks to sabotage yourself by drinking a whole carton of eggnog or something… Just make healthy (enough) choices without the math. And when you feel like losing more weight, you'll be ready.