Changes in Habits and Thoughts

Like anyone who tries to lose weight, I get frustrated when I hit a plateau; I seem to be in one right now, bouncing around the same three pounds for the past month. When this happens, I try to remind myself that my body needs to have time to adjust and know I’m not trying to kill it by shedding the layer that keeps me warm in the winter (an important thing inMinnesota!). We all know that weight loss slows as we get closer to our “goal weight.” I’m now less than 30 lbs. from goal, having lost 43 lbs. already, so the weight loss is crawling along. Most days I’m okay with this.

On the days that I get really frustrated, I make it a point to try to reflect back on the progress I’ve made not only on the scale but with my eating and fitness. The changes are vast and I’m proud of them. They’re lasting, important changes that would take no effort to continue the rest of my life.

Yesterday, I went to the outlet mall near my home and I parked in the middle of the outlet mall parking lot and walked to each of the stores I wanted to go to, even though they were at opposite ends of the mall. Even though I was never the type to circle the parking lot to find the closest spot, I now deliberately park in spaces that will make me walk farther instead of the first semi-close spot I can find.

I can walk into any store and try on a size 12 pants and know it will either fit or be too big. I remember when the size 16 would occasionally be too small. Shopping has become enjoyable and a little dangerous for the checking account.

When I’m in a clothing store, I can’t leave without checking out the fitness apparel. In the past, it was only the shoes I had to visit every time. While shopping has become more fun and varied, it’s also now more time-consuming!

I fantasize about the amazing outfits I would put together. I used to think about what I would wear when I was “skinny” or lost weight. Now, I can wear almost anything I want to and have to fantasize solely for financial reasons. Saving the money is less difficult than losing the weight.

It feels amazing to exercise. I still don’t do it enough, but when I do, I feel like I accomplished something great. It takes longer to get winded and daily chores are no longer difficult. I can and have run four miles without stopping! A year ago, I would never have believe that were possible. I can also hike up steep hills, do cartwheels, lift weights…the list goes one and on.

Instead of having “fat” days where I hate the way I look, I know I’m getting so close to my goals and look for the changes that have already occurred.

I used to go a full day with only looking in the mirror long enough to make sure I didn’t have anything in my teeth and that my hair was somewhat in place. Now, I look in the mirror too much. I admire the changes that I’ve made happen in my body, especially in my butt and biceps.

As of today, I’ve run 7 races! They’re addictive and fun!

I’ve cut way back on soda and fast food and am working on cutting them out almost completely. I have also increased my daily water intake from almost none to 6+ glasses, with most days being more than 8 glasses per day.

Foods I used to think were disgusting are delicious because I gave them a try knowing they’re good for me…baked sweet potatoes, asparagus, broccoli being a few.

I’m contemplating things I want to do that I never before considered, such as completing a duathlon, a half marathon and sky diving.

The list above is just a short list of noticeable changes within myself. It still amazes me daily that I’ve made the progress I have and I need to focus on these things when I get frustrated that I haven’t hit my goal weight yet. Now, when I say “yet”, I believe it. It will happen, even if it takes a few more years.

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