Leaning Into Weight Loss

Last night was a total “fail: for the implementation intention I set to work out. I wasn’t home by 8:15 pm and then it felt like permission not to do it by the time I did get home. Maybe that’s a dark side to the technique or maybe I was just too tired by then to do it. I have been thinking about it today, and it is possible that I might sneak in a workout tonight, but I’m not willing to commit to it because I want to keep my options open.

Now is the time when I need to fully dedicate myself to the weight loss goals I have set for myself. I say that because I need to hear the message. My weight is fluctuating and it feels like I’m spinning my wheels. When I look back at my data I see that there is a pattern: I have a loss followed by two days of slight gains. Right now is an important moment in my journey. It’s time to be consistent and maintain my resolve. Here is my mantra:

I am strong! I am smart! I have the skills I need to be successful! I can do this but only if, I don’t give up. I will not give up on me.

March 10, 2023

If you had to write a mantra for yourself, what would it be? Let’s inspire each other to keep going. We don’t even fully realize how amazing we truly are yet. That day is coming.

What drives weight loss?

Today we celebrate women! March 8th is a global holiday called, International Women’s Day. It is a day we set aside to honor women. If you’d like to read more about how this holiday came to be: click here. As for me, I celebrated by taking a 20-minute Peloton ride this morning before going to work. I loved the idea of earning this badge in my Apple Fitness App because it was a nod to empowerment.

So find what motivates you. Find what makes you feel accomplished and good about the journey. There are so many parts to this process that have the potential to not only transform your physical self but also define the core of who you are in the world.

It Worked!

Yesterday I set an implementation intention to work out before work. I wrote it down taking care to note the behavior, the time, and the location. For some reason, when we write down our goals with that degree of specificity we usually meet them.

It felt great to get a workout in before work and that I kept my promise to myself. I battled the candy again today and I was victorious! When I got home from work it was unseasonably warm and took my dog for a walk around the neighborhood. In short, it was a very active day.

Spring is almost here!

Planning Ahead

What if instead of focusing on how challenging weight loss can be, we focused on how the journey can be a testimony of our inner power and strength? How would that other narrative make us feel? Who is telling your story? Is your story being written by others, or are you the author of your own life? I say your life is your story to tell. I am tenacious. I will perservere. I am optimisitic that I will acheive my goals. Who do you choose to be on this weight loss journey? Think on that for a moment.

Weight loss is a complex issue, and unfortunately, there are many people out there who think it’s as simple as not eating so much. This is (in my opinion) a mean spirited and very unwelcome message the world sends out on the daily. It is especially hard for those of us who are giving so much care and attention to weight loss goals. If it were so simple it to lose weight, the weight loss industry wouldn’t have a projected a market share of 3.8 billion for 2023. Incomprehensible!

So here is a tip to keep you working your healthy habits. In the book, Atomic Habits, James Clear writes about “Implementation Intention” this is a percise plan about the behavior, the time, and the location. Does that really work? Could it be that simple? I don’t know but I’m going to give it a go. Here is mine, and I promise to let you know if it worked or not:

Here is a weight loss tip I can share that I know for sure works, it is planning ahead. My husband and I went to the movies to see Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania. Movie popcorn is very, very delicious. Many times, I have gone to the movies and said, “I will tough it out. I just will not have any popcorn because it’s too many points.” I can tell you, that doesn’t work for me. So instead, don’t tell, I made popcorn and home and snuck it into the theatre. I would buy air-popped popcorn at the theatre if they sold it. Maybe they should since we Americans are spending 3.8 trillion on weight loss! My husband and I snacked on the popcorn, and I remained true to my goals for the day. Win-win!

Weight Loss & Miracles

There is no miracle cure for losing weight. Sorry if you opened this post thinking, ” Oh good someone is finally going to tell me the shortcut to losing weight.” Today is definitely an I wish there were a miracle kind of day. Wishing for it doesn’t help, and maybe it makes it a little bit worse. Wishing implies weight loss out of my control like it’s something like winning the lottery. Someone wins, but chances are good that’s not going to be me. That would be a real bummer if it were true. Ready for the truth? What is true, is that I (and anyone reading this post) can lose weight. Here is what it takes:

  • Dedication – having the personal resolve to see it through
  • Skill – knowing what to do to help yourself achieve weight loss
  • Belief – believing in yourself completely, you can do it

Taking Time for Gratitude

Today it was not a struggle to say, “No.” to the candy bowl. I stayed in my points zone. and I was able to enjoy a glass of pinot noir. I am living a healthy lifestyle, and the habits I am working to cultivate are finally beginning to feel, “normal.” It feels especially important to acknowledge my top three on my gratitude list:

  • I am grateful that my children are happy.
  • I am grateful that everything my husband does for our family.
  • I am grateful that I am prioritizing my health.

Doing the Work

I got a text from a friend who is also on a weight loss journey. This is how it went:

“Up 1.2.”

“Only down 14 now. Was at 20. Ugh.”

“Ok. What’s your goal this week?”

“Lose weight.”


“What are you going to do to make that happen, small goals.”


“Think about it commit to one thing.”

“A little self-care.”

I get how my friend feels because today was a struggle for me too. Again, with the candy bowl within reach all day, to say nothing of the bag of candy that was right behind my desk. For some reason, I was also hungry all day. I could keep complaining, but who wants to hear any of that?

Sometimes, when the journey gets hard, you need to recognize when you need some help. Whether that relief comes by texting a friend, or permission to give yourself a self-imposed “time out” for self-care – it’s ok. There is no one right way to do this because weight loss is hard. Tomorrow is another day.

Craving Weight Loss

Featured Image Photo credit: Carolyn Fleming

There are many roads to take when it comes to weight loss. When motivation is tied to an impending event, a wedding, or a special birthday, it may be easier to be strict on a weight loss plan. There is a real deadline and that ticking clock and the choice to follow the plan or not becomes simple. However, if the motivation for weight loss is centered around wanting to learn about oneself – choices can be a lot murkier. I am in that latter group of being curious to learn about myself through my weight loss journey. Today was a little test to see if I could maintain my resolve to stay on plan…

Before I go on, I should say, “I am a Weight Watcher member and I know there is no food that is ‘off limits’ I can eat whatever I like so long as I keep myself accountable by tracking what I eat.” This is something I that do appreciate about the program. Its design is such that I am learning how to live in the real world, making real food choices as I lose weight. My original motivation for weight loss was tied to the clock – I wanted to achieve my goal by the time I turned 50 and I did it! Yay me. However, I gained back 34 pounds of the 94 I lost 4 years later. So this time, my motivation stems from a desire to know myself better. I see this as work to become self-enlightened. I know… this is deep stuff.

This is the picture I would give to the word whimsy.

I was tested today. I hosted collaborative team meetings at school. Anytime I bring teachers together it is customary to have a candy dish out. You might say, “Easy peasy, just don’t offer candy.” Frankly, it gets ugly pretty quick if there isn’t candy at these meetings, and as I said earlier – this is weight loss in the real world.

I am actively working to rewire my brain! I did not eat even a single piece of candy today. I sipped water, and at lunch, I had a sugar-free Black Cherry Jello-O snack, and that did the trick for me. I am doing my best to rewrite my story, and I am very appreciative of anyone who takes some time out and reads my posts. Today was a success, and I am hopeful for tomorrow.

Adjusting Expectations

When the habits start clicking and the weight starts coming off it feels really great. In the beginning, it is very hard to get into the groove of living a healthy lifestyle. There can be many false starts (as I know so well). There is an amazing feeling of confidence, when the inner voice says, “You got this.” and you really believe you do have it. As with so many things in life, there is another side to this story. On the flip side, you may feel impatient with the process. A rift can form from how you feel inside and the progress you make with the rest of the world.

It’s no small feat to get these networks of habits working in your favor, and for that reason, it is completely understandable that you would feel great about being able to get to that place. The productive place where you are able to do the work of weight loss and feel good about it at the same time. But as with all complexities to life, there is another side to this experience. Since weight loss requires quite a bit of work on your part, it’s easy to see how frustrating the speed of weight loss can be. Sometimes we have these expectations that in reality, cannot be achieved as quickly as we’d like. As we know, if something is deemed too hard – the habit can be broken.

Unreasonable expectations are a weight loss journey’s enemy. They thwart all the good work and can set you right back to the beginning if you’re not careful. So here is my advice:

  • Appreciate your amazing qualities that have gotten you this far you’re great
  • Don’t put happiness on hold appreciate exactly where you are on the journey now
  • Have faith that the process is working just as it should and focus more on what you’re learning about yourself rather than what you see in the mirror

The more I learn from having been on this journey, the more I think that weight loss has the power to teach us about ourselves. It can deliver this intrinsic discovery that shows up to the world in our appearance. Losing weight matters, and learning from the experience of weight loss matters even more.

Long Lasting Weight Loss: It’s All in the Way You See it

What does this featured image reveal? If you’re the kind of person who learns more through quiet reflection that works – or if you learner who prefers to engage, feel free to leave your answers in the comments below. There are no right or wrong answers. How you interpret this image has to do with your perception of things. Our perceptions are shaped by knowledge and lived experiences. One person may look at this image, and it sparks a sense of accomplishment; another may see only drudgery; while still others may not have any response to this image at all. How you perceive something will lead your brain to make predictions about what happens next.

I was looking for a fun image of Newton’s Law and found this one which happened to be from of all people James Clear. Channeling him today!

Will this day be one defined by accomplishment? Will this day be one of drudgery? My point for today’s post is that (more often than not) perceptions either get in the way of or help to establish the helpful habits that will contribute towards long-lasting weight loss. It’s not difficult to do – but it does require a bit of reflection work on your part:

Your prediction will guide any additional reflection work that needs to follow. If you (honestly) see this behavior as a positive – your brain will naturally start making predictions to amplify positivity. I am suggesting you engage those thoughts and name the prediction: “I drank a glass of water. It was a small simple thing, I predict this is going to be a positive day for weight loss because I achieved one of the healthy habits I am working to cultivate.” If that captures what you really think – great! If your thoughts are negative, treat it like an inquiry: “I wonder why I am thinking negatively about drinking water. Why is this my reponse?” It’s worth the effort because your negative thoughts are likely to lead you towards a negative prediction which may contribute towards to a negative outcome on your weight loss journey.

Give it a go and see if it helps. If nothing more, it will make you more present in the now which is worthwhile in and of itself.