I was planning on writing a blog today about My Fitness Pal and their approach to weight loss when I noticed that I started my Twelve months twelve different diets! challenge almost a year ago today on the 25th September, 2017 with the Weight Watchers diet.
When I started I was full of hope and optimism about the year to come and how much weight I was going to lose, in fact in my first post I even said:
Today is the first day of my twelve month weight loss challenge, where I will attempt to lose five or maybe even six stone (positive thinking!) whilst testing twelve different weight loss methods.
At the time it seemed like a fool proof plan, I would use the novelty of discovering a new diet each month to motivate me to lose the weight which has ‘got me down’ for most of my adult life. Plus by blogging about it I would create some accountability and would be able to indulge myself a little (as my poor husband no doubt is rather bored about hearing about my latest weight loss scheme!).
However, instead of losing five or six stone (I still can’t believe I said that in hindsight!), or even one bloody stone, I have lost …….. wait for it ……. 7lbs, or half a stone, or an even less impressive sounding 3.17515kgs (all those decimals add up I’m sure!).
Now these results don’t make me feel very good about myself, I feel like I’ve just confirmed what I knew already – that my weight is the only aspect of my life that I just can’t seem to ‘sort out’. It amazes me that I can go vegan overnight and instantly change the way I eat, cook, shop, even what I use to clean my clothes/hair/toilet(!!) without hesitation or deviation and yet when it comes to eating less and moving more for a consistent amount of time I just can’t seem to do it.
There are a few secondary issues why I haven’t lost the weight:
- The nature of the challenge – on the very few occasions that I found a diet I could stick to and that worked for me (5:2 and Self-Help Books are the only 2 where I had great results throughout) I would stop doing them after 4 weeks and move on to a diet that was, deliberately, totally different.
- My one year work hiatus – I’ve wanted to fill this year with as many experiences as possible and that has meant more holidays/mini-breaks/lunches out/impromptu celebrations than ever.
However, trust me, these are only secondary issues, because in reality I’ve had more time and headspace to work on myself this year that I’ve ever had before and am ever likely to have again.
So, what is the real problem?:
- I live for the moment – I actually love this about me but it can be a curse. I am a complete hedonist, I live for pleasure and I live for the moment. I don’t think about anything until I have to, for instance you won’t find me packing for a holiday until the day before the holiday, and I will hide my head in the sand rather than think of something nasty until I absolutely have to. A point in case is going back to work, people keep asking me if I’ve started looking for jobs or what I think I will do when I go back, I’m not interested in these conversations – I will think about that when I have to but until then I want to enjoy my remaining few months off. As I said, I like this quality in me, but focusing on long-term goals is hard when this is your personality and there is a large glass of wine and a vegan cake in front of you!
- I treat every weekend like a mini-break – this is very much linked to the point above, I can stick to the diet in the week but come Friday night (lunchtime) I kiss goodbye to the rules until Monday morning, which is why my typical weight loss week looks like this:
- I drink too much – again, all tied in to the points above, I like to drink and when I do drink I drink a lot and I lose my resolve around food. So, how much do I drink? Well on Friday and Saturday nights I am likely to have a bottle of white wine (700 calories) and 2 spirits (120 calories) along with a bag of crisps, or maybe some nuts, plus some vegan chocolate, so probably an extra 500-600 calories on snacks. This is on top of having more indulgent meals on the weekend anyway (so perhaps garlic bread with supper or a huge homemade pizza). The next day I’m likely to be hungry because of the booze the night before so I am likely to have a cooked breakfast or go out for a delicious vegan lunch! I don’t drink in the week, which is my one saving grace.
- I never say no – oh there’s a theme here, once again linked to living in the moment! I will never say no to a yummy meal out or treats at the cinema (I have an unlimited card so this is an issue) and this has only got worse as a vegan as I feel an obligation to try every new vegan restaurant or junk food that is invented!
- My exercise is sporadic – one day I am training for marathons and the next I don’t move from the sofa for hours at a time. I want to be an athlete, smashing out incredible challenges, but until I can lose a couple of stone I need to be more realistic as I’m setting myself back with this all or nothing approach.
So there it is, my confessional and some idea of what my problem is. At the moment I don’t know what I can do about this, that is something I need to ponder. I could come up with lots of promises to myself or try another plan but I haven’t got a great track record with that so for the moment leave it with me.
Wish me luck!