One of the reasons I joined Weight Watchers is that their program is rooted in scientific research. It is built to sustain life-long behavior changes when it comes to eating right and getting active. A benefit of the program is that we receive a Freestyle publication that shares research and insights into weekly topics. Our topic this week is self-esteem.
Having a healthy self-esteem helps with weight loss. The sad part of this equation is that we tend to have lower self-esteem just when we need it most! There is certainly a lot of judgment and prejudices embedded in our society when it comes to weight. I have been on both ends, and have experienced it first hand. People treated me differently when I was 85.8 pounds heavier. It is heartbreaking and it is true. I am thinking that is why Weight Watchers Science Team coined the phrase “weight independent self-esteem.” It is essential that we all value ourselves for who we are not what we weigh.
Years ago I read Geneen Roth’s book, Women, Food, and God An Unexpected Path to Almost Anything. Her book had a profound impact on me. I’m annoyed too because I lent it to someone who never gave it back The thing is I am struck by how many lessons I learned about myself reading that book Things have stuck with me even though I wasn’t fully ready to understand her message until now. Read the book My top three lessons I learned:
Stop taking what I already have for granted.
Food is not a time machine to bring me back to happier days.
Get out my head and into my body; be appreciative for what it does for me every day.
It’s no wonder that Geneen’s work has had an influence on Oprah too:
If you want to improve your self-esteem here is an exercise I learned this week:
Focus on someone who cares about you.
Examine that person for a minute – how they look, what they sound like, eye color, height, imagine this person smiling at you, personality…
Ask, What makes this person special to me? Then observe how you feel.
Ask, How does that person see me? List all the things that you do that makes your special person appreciate you. You are so worthy of love and self-caring!
These are suggestions from Weight Watchers. Why not try them? There is nothing to lose and maybe a lot to gain. My wish for you is that you have a successful day on the journey!
My featured image was from Friday night. We went into Northport Village, some friends of ours were playing music in the park. I saw people who I haven’t seen in a while, and they were blown away by my physical transformation. I’ve looked this way for a while, and although I am so happy with what I’ve been able to accomplish, it’s easy to forget how much I’ve changed. It’s funny how quickly the human body adapts.
I’m trying to channel some good feelings because I had to stay home today from work, I pulled the muscles in my neck and have been in (a lot of) pain all day. Being down physically is demoralizing the very next day after my 50th birthday! It’s just a reminder that I am a mere mortal and I am grateful this is not an everyday occurrence. I’m trying to look at the bright side and at least I’m at a point where it’s possible to write this post.
I may be daydreaming about the scrumptious lemon pound cake (that I threw away after the party) but I’m not eating it and that’s a big deal. In the past, it was easy to spread out my party celebration eating into the next day, week, or it had the potential trigger a total weight loss setback. That is months and months of care and attention to making behavior changes in how I approach food. This did not happen overnight and it’s not like it’s something I don’t have to work at. That might sound too hard, but I do feel so much better about myself this way. For me, it always comes home to one question, “What do I really want? I really want to get to goal.”
So, I wonder, what do you really want? This is a good question to think on. When you know the answer everything else becomes clear.
It’s my birthday and I’m celebrating with gratitude. I have written notes of appreciation to give to family, friends, really anyone who is helping me to grow. I wrote notes to my husband and children. I wrote notes to my siblings and their spouses, I wrote notes to friends who are always there for me. My heart is so full and I have nothing but love today, and that is a pretty wonderful birthday gift. If you want to feel a sense of wellbeing and happiness write a note of gratitude to someone who has made a difference in your life.
I want to thank those of you who read this blog, and to the 41 others who have decided to join me on this journey. We can do this together because we all deserve to live our lives in the bodies we want.
This is a lemon bundt cake it was so yummy! I had a slice yesterday during my birthday celebration yesterday. I went into my weekly points but this was so worth it.
I am in the midst of a hardworking summer; truly, this is one for the books! I have to write another 65 lessons to meet my benchmark goal and then I am halfway there. This is a challenge. I don’t know if you can relate, but (in the old days) when faced with such a big challenge, I would be literally be eating my way through these lessons. I regarded food was an expression of self-caring.
That is so sad, for so many reasons. Sad, because I would sabotage my efforts. Sad because I didn’t realize what I was doing. Sad, because in an effort to feel better I was making myself so unhappy. Now that I see that behavior for what it can’t be unseen. I am grateful for gaining this important insight into who I am and how I really think about things. This journey is about more than unwanted pounds and smaller sizes. It’s really about knowing who I am.
I have to take a trip into Connecticut tomorrow so I went to a different Weight Watchers meeting this morning. Thank you, Fran, and all the brilliant Friday morning members for making me and my sister feel so welcome! Fran has this beautiful knack for being both funny and inspiring.
During the meeting, we talked about boosting self-esteem. Many people shared and I learned a lot from the group. One member said something that really lifted us all up, when asked how she was feeling 5 pounds down (in one week mind you) she said, “Satisfied and happy.” That is a great way to feel, and the best part is she did it for herself! That’s real self-caring. Members talked about going for walks to see a nesting spot for eagles and I had a real sense of appreciation for our connectedness to the natural world.
When I attend my meetings I am always struck by the generosity of the group. We generated a list of words that would help us all to amplify self-esteem:
I will carry these words with me throughout the week. When I’m stressed and overworked I will think about the successes of my fellow members, I will imagine the eagles, and I will repeat the words other members gave me to think about. I hold all of these small encounters in my heart. These are the moments that sustain my “why” and this is how I’m getting to goal. Thank you for reading.
Today started very early and is ending late. I began the day at 5:15 am spin, worked until 12:20 pm came home and began writing lessons. I took a little break to bicycle up to my local IGA Grocery Store to pick up a couple items for dinner. I came home to cook, eat, clean up and then went right back to writing.
At one point I was toying with the idea of having a second Enlighted Bar. Then I did something new. I spoke back to interior voice, and I soon learned that I didn’t really want another, I just wanted a little comfort. That’s a big victory for me.
It turns out I will have to go to WeightWatchers a day earlier. So as I reflect on my week, I can say, I’m happy with my effort. I am doing my best and my best is good enough. More tomorrow.
Sometimes you have to be your own inspiration. Think about everything you’ve done to build healthier habits so you can live your life more fully. Whenever you buy healthier foods, get active, or reflect on internal or external hunger cues you are taking action to change your life for the better. These are all things I am doing to help myself get to goal and eventually achieve “Lifetime“ status…
I think the most powerful thing about this is that I believe that I can do this. In essence, I am saying, I believe in myself. What do you believe? Do you believe you can do this? Why do you want to change your lifestyle? You’ve got to know why you want to do this. My “why” for doing this is bigger than a size on a label. Don’t misunderstand, I do really enjoy wearing a smaller size and I am grateful that I feel more confident about my appearance, but that wouldn’t be enough of a reason to make a long-lasting change. As I look back at some of my posts I see that the most striking thing is the desire to regain my energy. Fortunately, I didn’t have to wait long for it to return, it really came back right away. With every positive step I took, I felt more and more like myself.
I hope you had a good day on the journey. I believe you can do it and it’s really important you believe it too!
I don’t know if you enjoy Marvel movies but Ant-Man & Wasp is fantastic! I took the kids, got a small movie popcorn with a diet Snapple and just enjoyed the show, it was a perfect summer movie.
It was a good day. I went to spin this morning and I really feel as though I’m getting stronger! I’m able to work through the discomfort and recover faster as I push myself to work harder. Then, I came home and got ready for the work, I am teaching a summer program at school. I did a very engaging read aloud with students. They practiced asking and answering questions – it’s harder than you might think. Later, we added onto our All About books. They are writing up a storm – it is quite remarkable. When you watch a child compose their thoughts on paper it is really special.
I’m grateful that I am figuring out how to live my life and still lose weight. I wish I could just tell you how to do it. I just decided one day that it was going to be different this time around. Writing has helped me because each day I take stock of what happened, how I’m feeling, what I did well… If it hasn’t clicked for you yet, don’t give up. Never underestimate how powerful you really are. More tomorrow…
I am reflecting on my day and I feel good about all my choices. I was hungry driving home from school even though I had packed cucumbers and 1/3 cup of pistachios (3sp) to snack on. You see the summer program at my school gets out at lunchtime. I’d rather not pack an entire lunch if I’m going to be driving so I thought ahead and prepared a light snack including some water to sip on as I make my way home.
Later, I rode my bicycle up to the grocery store. That was fun. Mostly, I worked. I am grateful to have these small moments. Just taking time to write this post is valuable because it helps me to think about what I did well during the day. Then I think about what I need to do to help myself tomorrow. Not fancy but important. I am signed up for 5:15 spin class so I’m bringing this post to a close.
Just in case no one told you this today, “You are doing amazing and you are worth all of the effort. I’m proud of you and hope you are proud of yourself. You can do this because changing your lifestyle is important and you are worth it!” More tomorrow…
At my last Weight Watchers meeting, we had a conversation about sugar. It makes sense because who doesn’t like sugar? I for one do enjoy a good ice cream cone, a candy bar, and I’m a huge cookie fan. The thing is it’s not so simple when it comes to sugar because it’s in all kinds of foods. There are natural sugars and added sugars.
I read this article in The New York Times, Is Sugar Really Bad for You? It Depends Dr. Malhotra, a famous cardiologist, who also serves as an adviser to the United Kingdom’s national obesity forum said, about half of the sugar Americans consume is “hidden” in foods such as salad dressings, bread, low-fat yogurt, and ketchup. So off I went into my kitchen to see for myself:
He was right, this salad dressing does have added sugar. I guess that’s why it’s 2sp per serving. This is an important piece of information I learned after reading the article as well when reading labels: one teaspoon of sugar is 4.2 grams. The food industry is only required to list sugar in grams, not teaspoons. It’s tricky because measuring sugar in this way (grams) makes it easier to underestimate just how much sugar is in a serving. According to the American Heart Association (AHA) healthy diet recommendations for women, are 6 teaspoons per day and men are 9 teaspoons per day. If you want to lose weight, The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends 25 grams (or less) sugar per day.
So, I like to eat a lot of fruit how much sugar is in that? There are 16 grams of sugar in a cup of pineapple; 7 grams of sugar in a cup of strawberries; 15 grams of sugar in 1 cup of blueberries: 14 grams of sugar in a medium banana! Avocados at 1 gram per cup and raspberries 5 grams per cup are lower sugar option. The important thing about fruit is the fiber, the fiber makes the difference! Fiber works to slow down the release of sugar into the bloodstream giving us time to process it. So if you want to lose weight eat some fruit, I guess that’s why we count fruit as 0sp.
That’s what I’m thinking about I hope you had a good day on the journey and that you are taking care of yourself. More tomorrow…