Long haul healthy weight and fitness efforts – creation of a Friday post series

diet

Like many people, I have embarked on serious weight loss/healthy living missions a number of times in the past. Some I saw through until I reached my desired goals. Others started only to peter out prematurely. Right now I know I would greatly benefit from losing some weight again and want to create some plan.My cholesterol is high, and some of my clothes just don’t fit well anymore. I have sometimes started to fool myself into thinking my current weight is “fine”, but the fact is that I’m almost 20 lbs overweight, and I don’t think my cholesterol will drop until I lose some of it.

I remember the first time I lost significant weight was not so much from watching what I ate, but living somewhere where food and alcohol were not as easily available, and walking or riding a bicycle for one hour per day was necessary. I guess I don’t call that a real diet effort, though. I recall losing almost 20 lbs in six months without counting any calories, or anything else for that matter. I was about 24 years old at the time.

The first time I actually set out to seriously watch my eating (diet), was when I was about 30 years old. I had reached a weight that I guess seemed “over the line”, to my perspective. I joined Weight Watcher’s online and followed their “Core Program”, later called “Simply Filling”. I was extremely determined! As is the case sometimes in my life, I get these bouts of determination where I can’t be stopped. I won’t cheat. I count everything. All I’ll talk about almost every day is the diet quest, and healthful recipes. I remember going from 168 lbs to 135 lbs (a 33 lb loss). At the time, I had also been walking long distances (5 to even 10 miles) about four to five times per week with my pal. I remember people at work (mostly men) telling me how great I looked. I felt great and sort of strutted around in glory.

When I reached 34 (four years later), I had maybe gained back about 12-14 lbs. But that year was very significant in my life. For a few years I had been drinking way too much alcohol on a daily basis. It’s a wonder I hadn’t gained back more. I was also hospitalized for the first time for my bipolar disorder. Multiple hospitalizations and Intensive Outpatient Programs followed. Between severe mood episodes and weight gain notorious medications, I packed on more and more weight. By the time I reached 38 years old, I had reached the highest weight of my entire life, even with zero alcohol drinking. Though during that time my weight fluctuated, the weight skyrocketed quickly at times. Depression exacerbated the issue because of hypersomnia, food cravings, and general inactivity.

At the end of the above-mentioned period I had just completed a string of ECT (electroconvulsive therapy) treatments. My medications were just then overhauled to ones that were comparatively weight neutral. My cholesterol, triglycerides, and glucose levels were all extremely high. My general practitioner told me that I had to cut down on carbohydrates. I wasn’t sure how to do that, so he referred me to a dietitian who prescribed a low carbohydrate and fairly low fat diet. With the dietitian, my motivation to lose weight skyrocketed. It was within only six months that I lost almost 40 lbs and my blood test results normalized. I maintained most of that weight loss for about three years.

Well, it’s been about eight years since I lost that 40 lbs. I have since regained 20 lbs of it. As mentioned, my cholesterol is high again, but luckily my triglycerides and glucose levels are OK. During this 8-year period I attempted to watch my eating on maybe three occasions, but stopped the efforts after only a week or two.

Nowadays, I’m on a medium dose of a somewhat weight unfriendly medication. I can use that as an excuse for gaining weight and making it hard to diet. I’ve also had some depression, and continuing low energy and motivation. How do I get that “spark” to get back into healthy low calorie eating again? Do I have to just wait for it to come out of nowhere? I know some people just say “Do it!” But come on, if it was that easy we’d all DO IT!

My brother recently lost 60 plus pounds. He’s a maniac about tracking every little thing he eats in an app on his phone, and wears a Fitbit. Maybe he’s kind of inspiring me. Hmm?

Exercise1I have an idea. It is related to holding myself accountable for my eating and exercise choices. I know that accountability is an important element in many efforts, and can be very motivating. What I’m going to do is to create a “Friday Fitness and Weight Loss Update” regular post series. I will MAKE myself post this, even if the week’s results are far from positive. The following will be included:

  • Description of diet method used – I’ll decide on this this weekend. Will be a reasonable one. For example, NOT a cabbage diet.
  • Weight gain or loss amount with summary of the healthfulness of my eating
  • Exercise summary for the week
  • Thoughts on why I was successful or not, and what my goals/strategies for the next week will be
  • Statement of interim goals

When I finally meet interim goals, I will set new ones. When I meet final goals, I will then strategize a maintenance plan. I’ll decide then how to proceed with this weekly post series. I want to be with this over the long haul.

33 thoughts on “Long haul healthy weight and fitness efforts – creation of a Friday post series

  1. celtics345 April 6, 2018 / 8:07 pm

    Great post I relate. From 2009 when I got Diabetes I was 2009 I weighed 280 and got myself down to 242. Over the years my weight kept coming up and down. It’s hard because your clothes change size so much. I was proud last year I got to 238 my lowest weight. Now I go up and down from 250 to 260. Usually my weight drops in Spring and Summer playing tons of basketball and walks. With Celiacs Disease I have to eat more carbs because I am limited in the money budget and most gluten free food have a lot of sugar. I am doing a food journal so my 2 Diabetes dr can decide on whether to go on another insulin for the time being or do another treatment. Diabetes is stressful but I work hard and do the best I can. I am turning 34 I got 6 years to get my weight down before it gets harder to lose the weight.

    Liked by 1 person

    • updownflight April 6, 2018 / 8:57 pm

      Food journals are so important! I’ll be very happy if you share your journey with me, as I take mine. In my Friday Fitness and Weight Loss Updates I also plan to sort of reflect on the week before in many ways. I want my reflections on this to always have some positive, even if I’ve had some difficulties.

      Liked by 1 person

      • celtics345 April 6, 2018 / 9:07 pm

        I am taking a break from writing books so I will focus writing on my health and Diabetes. I’ll post the journey so we can go on it together. We can help each other.

        Liked by 1 person

      • updownflight April 6, 2018 / 9:38 pm

        That’s so great you will write about hour health and diabetes. I’ll be happy for you to join me on a health journey. If you are taking a break from your normal writing, I hope it is a restorative one so that you will soon return to it feeling fresh and re-energized.

        Liked by 1 person

      • celtics345 April 6, 2018 / 11:38 pm

        Yea health comes first. I still write short stories but a break from books. I want to come back fresh and rested. Books give me the most fun because you really take yourself into a world that you can do anything with. I had a sundee tonight bad job but hey its friday and better than gf pizza

        Liked by 1 person

    • updownflight April 6, 2018 / 9:00 pm

      Thanks so much, isaiah46ministries! All the best to you, too. Are you currently on a weight loss and fitness journey? Or hope to be on one soon? Or if you don’t need one, I’d love to hear peoples’ tips. I also fully understand those out there that struggle to even consider this kind of challenge. I’ve been there many times.

      Like

      • isaiah46ministries April 6, 2018 / 9:07 pm

        I am on another type of journey. My husband wants to live in Portugal, so we are here for 2 months to see if I can live with the move. I am struggling, but he is happy. I am determined to at least try, for his sake, and to not have any regrets. It is a challenge I was into expecting in my senior years, but I am a diabetic, not on medication, but trying to stay off meds by losing weight. It is hard here because I am some depressed, and only want to eat sweets. I refuse to buy cookies or ice cream, so I am not tempted.

        Liked by 1 person

      • updownflight April 6, 2018 / 9:51 pm

        It’s an amazing coincidence you writing about living in Portugal. My husband (a Czech) wants to retire in Europe, as well. At first he was talking about France, then I was encouraging him to consider his home country of Czech Republic. Now he is considering Portugal of all places. I’m really serious!

        My husband and I will visit Portugal for the second time next month to celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary. He says he wants to look at towns we might consider living in. I told my therapist that I almost dread the idea of talking about moving there during our anniversary vacation. I think Portugal is lovely, but I am very afraid of making such a huge move. Even if it would be to Czech Republic instead of France or Portugal, though at least Czech Republic has family and friends (my sister-in-law and her sons, and many of my husband’s friends).

        I have bipolar disorder (a mental illness). It is scary the thought of being abroad long-term or permanently and being prone to depression or mania. Plus, having to find a new psychiatrist and therapist is scary. Neither my husband, nor I, know Portuguese. We do speak a little French. My husband is obviously fluent in Czech and I know quite a bit. At least what a Czech husband teaches a wife (lots of nouns, verbs, adjectives, sweet expressions, but not really proper grammar).

        Though I didn’t mention Portugal at the time, I did mention my husband’s desire to retire about in a post I wrote at https://birdflight.blog/2017/08/25/being-a-foreigner/

        Do you feel like a foreigner in Portugal? Or are the Portuguese very accepting and welcoming? I do know that they were very friendly to my husband and I when we first went there, but we were just tourists.

        Like

      • isaiah46ministries April 6, 2018 / 10:37 pm

        Yes, I feel like a foreigner, and the people do not smile or make you feel welcome, except in restaurants. I am black and my husband is white, and maybe interracial couples are weird here. I saw some Africans, and people seem put off by them, and may think I am African. We have been here only 6 days, so it may get better and maybe we might find friends Sunday at the English-speaking church.

        Liked by 1 person

      • updownflight April 6, 2018 / 11:02 pm

        I can imagine that the early days living in a new country are very stressful. I’m glad you will surely meet some nice people at the church. I’m also sure that with time you’ll learn enough about the ways of the place that daily life will be easier. Some changes will surely be inevitable/necessary. I suppose it’s a little harder when you’re no longer a youngster. Even when I was in my 20s and living abroad I felt out of my comfort zone sometimes.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. JumbledRambles April 11, 2018 / 5:01 pm

    Good luck with your healthy living journey! Looking forward to seeing your updates 😊 Am not on a diet as such though I do try to be balanced with what I eat. I am a vegan which makes it a little easier (though there are plenty of opportunities to eat junk food if you want!). I have started going to the gym though in addition to my walks as I want to start looking after my body more…hopefully the mind will follow x

    Liked by 1 person

    • updownflight April 11, 2018 / 7:40 pm

      Thanks! I’m looking forward to my Friday update, too. I have a number of things to write about my first full week.

      Good job with the gym! I remember my body being much improved when I went, but I used to go with a good friend. We pushed each other. Sadly, I rarely see her anymore.

      Liked by 1 person

      • JumbledRambles April 15, 2018 / 1:28 pm

        I go on my own to the gym which is terrifying but I am quite stubborn so push myself. Am working with a really supportive personal trainer once a week too which helps.
        You can do this lovely! x

        Liked by 1 person

      • updownflight April 16, 2018 / 6:33 am

        I’m glad you are so dedicated and have the personal trainer. I know how much a gym is beneficial.

        Liked by 1 person

      • JumbledRambles April 18, 2018 / 4:46 pm

        You talking about your health and fitness journey/me talking about going to the gym inspired me to write my own blog post ☺
        jumbledrambles.com/life-bits/how-have-i-ended-up-with-a-gym-membership

        Liked by 1 person

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