I’ve officially lost 20 pounds, but I’ve been so busy I haven’t had time to really celebrate, and it took me 15 weeks to lose it, so I keep telling myself that I’m not making enough progress. This attitude is ridiculous of course because HELLO, I lost 20 pounds! The fact that I’m making progress at all, given my tendency to start projects and goals with lots of energy and then flake out after a week, is extraordinary for me. And some of my pants are getting to be somewhat absurd in their largeness; others are just starting to fit more like they should instead of being too tight. No more undoing the first button after a meal for me! Because I need to encourage myself to keep doing this, I’m going to list all of the things I’m doing right. I’ll worry about the wrong things later. 🙂
1. I count my calories faithfully every day. Some days I may not get everything entered because I don’t have nutrition information for it, but most days I get everything entered.
2. I stay within my calorie range at least 5 days a week, if not 6. (I give myself one “splurge” day, so I never have a perfect week, but I’m okay with that because perfection is an impossible standard.)
3. I exercise every day but Sunday, if my general health allows it.
4. I opt for healthier snacks. I love eating grapes and oranges, and I just don’t buy things that I know I’ll only feel guilty about eating.
5. If I know I’m going to eat out, I plan what I’m going to eat ahead of time to see that I stay within my range. This practice is a bit more challenging when restaurants do not make their nutrition info readily available; I really think there should be legislation that requires restaurants to release this information to the public.
6. I watch my portions. If a serving size is 12 chips, I count out 12 chips. If it’s 1/2 cup, I’ll measure out half a cup. I do this especially with snacks because otherwise I would eat the whole bag of cheddar Chex Mix (130 calories for 1/3 cup!).
7. I try not to let the scale dictate how I feel about myself. I succeed at this probably 50 percent of the time, but that’s an improvement, so I’m counting it!
If these aren’t the marks of a healthier lifestyle, I don’t know what is. One of my reasons for doing this, if not the primary reason, is to be healthier, and I’m already achieving that. So if it takes me 20 years to lose those 80 pounds, at least I know that I’m healthier for having done this, and I’m taking care of the Lord’s temple in a way I’ve never done before. That makes it all worth it.