WW’s focus this week was about sleep, and now I’m thinking about how important getting quality sleep is to my weight loss journey. I think the reason I gained weight in the first place was because I would stay up late to work and wouldn’t get enough sleep. I would eat when I should have been sleeping. Here are some reasons to consider:
Studies suggest that poor sleep leads to obesity.
Sleep depravation increases appetite.
Well rested people can stave off cravings and make healthier choices.
Late night snacking can becomes a very unhealthy habit
Muscle loss results in poor sleep.
Sleep improves physical performance.
Poor sleep over a few days may result in insulin resistance
If you want to read more about sleep, click here it’s a good read, and very informative.
A couple of things…
I couple of things I did today that in the moment was hard to do but afterward made me feel great. I bought good options when I went to the food store including: cotton candy grapes, cauliflower, snap peas, lean pork tenderloin, and chicken. Later, I wanted a snack, and I put it into my tracker first, when I saw that it would take me out of my “Blue Dot” zone, I decided to pass on it. Then I selected a lower point snack that was satisfying and I am still on track.
It was my turn to submit a journal challenge to the group. I named it, “On Fire! Tools Spark Weight Loss & Wellness” I found reflecting on my tools to be very useful and I thought other people might too. If you would like to do the challenge… here it is::
In my past, when I was not so self-aware I’d let superstition keep me from celebrating weight loss success. Like if I allowed myself to be present and experience the joy of my accomplishment I would be inviting trouble. I would hear that little voice say, “Don’t be too enthusiastic,” it would say “because maybe next week won’t be so kind and the weight will just boomerang back.” That voice was me abdicating my own sense of power I can’t really describe it but it was like I let something else take over and I was left feeling out of control.
The truth is, I am not powerless (neither are you) I am very powerful (so are you). Figuring out how to be honest and claim that power is a big part of what helped to made the difference this week.
I am going to use my WW Recovery Checklist again this week because it was so helpful. It’s a light tool that is a place to remind me of what habits are most helpful and a place to capture my reflections for how it’s going.
We are celebrating my husband’s birthday today and it could have been a recipe for disaster as far as my weight loss journey goes. He asked for his favorite lasagna, garlic bread, and sautéed spinach. That, plus birthday cake would send me over my SmartPoints balance and into my Weeklies. It is true that is why they are there to be used for such occasions – but I wanted to try to do it another way. This is what I did instead:
I tracked a slice of cake for 14 SmartPoints first thing in the morning after my WW workshop.
I kept my points low for the whole day. Yogurt & berries 0 sp. for breakfast, Homemade chicken burger made with 98% lean chicken 0 sp. on a low carb tortilla 2 sp. and a slice of Velvetta cheese 1 sp. and tomato. I also had some vegetable sticks, Mini Baby Bell Light 1 sp. and grapes 0 sp.
When I prepared lasagna for the family, I also made a zucchini lasagna for me 5 SmartPoints Per slice.
I will forgo the bread in favor of the cake.
It comes down to an important question, what do you really want? I really want to take care of my husband and make sure he has a happy birthday, and I want to lose weight this week. My actions today are making that possible.
I went to my favorite bakery, Copenhagen, and ordered my husband’s birthday cake today. Well, anyone who knows me, knows I love cookies (Hello, I’m Jenn and I’m a WW member). Copenhagen happens to sell my favorite bakery cookies, and so the cookies won today. My decision to eat cookies had the potential to blow to my SmartPoints daily budget. Now I need to make the necessary adjustments so I remain in my Blue Dot status:
Foregoing cookies would have made today easier; however, I find that sometimes when I say “No” to the thing I really want it becomes my downfall. I realize I have some issues here, like why not just have one cookie, not three. The only thing I can say is at that moment looking through the glass the cookies got the better of me. My internal dialogue went like this:
I am ordering a cookie, I like the oatmeal, chocolate chip, and a candy chip. I want all three. How many points will that be? I went to Spin this morning, I can have three cookies.
My inner dialogue about food
I tracked the cookies as 14 sp. One choice leads to another, and now I only have 4 sp. left for dinner, but on WW that is doable. As I sit here snacking on vegetable sticks, I have decided what my dinner will be:
2 cups Progresso Soup: Light Chicken Noodle 2 sp.
2 oz Boars Head Ever Roast Chicken: 0 sp
1 Josephs Flax Pita: 1 sp.
Green Salad with 30 ml Wishbone Light Italian Dressing: 1 sp.
I am trying to learn the give and take for control. That is something i’m going to be thinking about more in the future. Just think, if I lose weight this week, I will have done so with cookies in my life. That’s worth it to me. I am learning to co-exist with cookies.
I am down 2.2 pounds! This is pretty exciting since I weighed in three days early. I am taking a trip this week, and so I made it a point to get to a WW studio this morning. Finally, some traction! Fresh starts, can be especially challenging when it comes to long lasting routines, and sometimes you’ve just got to shake it up.
Preparing food and thinking ahead feels like control. I have decided I’m going just embrace that good feeling and make the most of it. Who knows why it took so long to get my rhythm back, the thing that matters is that I didn’t give up. As I read that last sentence back, I realize that sounds trite, but it’s the truth. It really would have been easy to keep sliding backwards. The horrible truth about that is each slide back makes it a little bit harder to get back on track.
So think about what you can do to help yourself. Here are some options:
Clean out your kitchen, and get rid of unhelpful foods.
Decorate your dining area with something you enjoy. Fresh flowers, new placemats, or glassware can make it so pleasant.
Burn some fragrant candles like apple, peppermint, or citrus that make you feel good.
Get some fun containers, use your fancy bowls and put healthy food choices where you will see them first.
Leave some “love notes” to yourself reminding you how everything you are doing is to reach your goals.
Try something new: fruit, vegetables, recipe, and eat mindfully really experiencing it. What did you like? What didn’t you like?
Write out the SmartPoints values on single servings.
Mix and match your snacks. Like have a cup of cherries with 1/3 cup of pistachios a nice sweet and salty snack for 3 sp.
Get a variety of seltzer water flavors squeeze some lemon, lime, pineapple or orange slices to make a colorful and refreshing drink to sip on during these warm summer months.
Wind down at the end of the day with a nice cup of soothing hot tea. It will take some time to drink and you can use that time to do something relaxing that you enjoy
Keep working on you. Don’t give up even if you’re having a rough time. If you’re on an upswing, help someone out by lending them some of your strength. Be good to yourself, and be good to others. You got this.
Today is my birthday. This time last year, I was closing the gap to goal. It took me until November 2018 to get there. Now, I find myself working to get back to Lifetime status. This weight loss journey is not something to be taken for granted. It’s a mixed bag really, I’m both not ok, and I am ok.
Not ok: I’m disappointed in myself. Some clothes are either too tight or don’t fit, and this freaks me out. It’s as though they are saying, “I told you so.” It’s easy to let a Negative Nellie voice take over in the face of my past success. I let old habits creep back in, and so I let myself slip backwards.
I am ok: I’m resilient. I have short-term goals that are working for me. I am making sure to be active each day. I am measuring and weighing my portions. I am making good choices when I go out. I am tracking everything I eat. This forces me to acknowledge when I go over my daily SmartPoint allotments. I am saying “No” to mindless noshing. I am going to meetings, even when I can’t go on my regular day. I’m talking about my goals with my family and friends. The thing that makes all these goals possible is that I believe I can do this. Believing in me the best present I can give myself today.
I think it is so essential that I am honest with myself and how I’m feeling. It’s not possible to be present during this process without honesty. Feelings are complex, and it’s better to explore them so they don’t grow and become more than they ought to be. It would be easy to suppress those negative feelings but they’d eventually rise up and sabotage me. It would be easy to let those negative feelings take over and to allow myself to give up. None of those are good options. Keep some perspective, and keep going. I think that’s what this year is going to be all about.
It’s so easy to get lost in weakness and to focus on my mistakes. If I’m not careful, I can narrow my focus to see all my negative choices while taking for granted all the work that has gone into this journey. I can fool myself to think that my weight loss success just happened and was not the product of deliberate work, that was crafted through great care and dedication. But I know the truth, this healthy lifestyle is the result of years of ongoing effort.
I was revisiting some words of wisdom to look for encouragement. These words resonated with me today, I think it’s just what I needed to read:
Life is miraculous and it’s so important to remember that we are all sacred beings whose very existence is an extension of grace and love. How can I improve my health and wellbeing if I believe I am am worthy of positive change? I begin the road to change by honoring and loving myself. I hope you will do the same.
Drink water! That’s my goal today, I think part of my problem has been that I’m not getting enough water. I notice I feel better when I’m attentive to that need. Maybe it’s just bundled up with all those other good habits like, track my food, eat mindfully, be strategic, don’t get too hungry, be active, drink water… It’s no wonder people give up as I think about this list of things that help make weight loss a reality.
The thing is I didn’t take this all on all at once. I worked at it like a practice. Weight loss is a practice that requires some care and attention and it can feel overwhelming if you just jump into it without making smaller goals. Like today, I’m concentrating on drinking water and tracking. For me, tracking is an everyday deal. Like tomorrow it will be to be active and tracking. The next day might be eat mindfully and tracking.
Tracking is so critical to weight loss success for me because it is a simple habit that keeps me honest. Tracking makes it impossible to fool myself, it keeps me engaged with internal versus external hunger cues. Tracking is equivalent to truth. I’m not going to lie on my tracker that would be crazy so if I’m tracking I’m recording the real deal. Do you track? How does it make you feel? When I track, I feel like I’m getting some control back especially when I’m very tempted to eat when I’m not hungry. I bet most the people who are successful track their food. I don’t know it for sure, but I believe it just the same.
That’s it another day towards the plus column and I think I may be gaining a little momentum. Thank you for reading and supporting me along the way. I hope I am helping you as you proceed on your own journey to better health and wellbeing.
Good news to report that today is slotted for the plus column. I sorted out the issue with my WW app and I am rolling over 4 (really 10) SmartPoints for the day. I’m not hungry and that’s a relief. My intention is to just have to keep it going.
Some days are easier than others to find a sense of gratitude. There are days that present a challenge – if I’m not feeling well, it’s hard to feel grateful. If things don’t go the way I had hoped, it’s hard to find something to be grateful about. When I wish things were different – wishing for gratitude seems like a big reach.
It may sound hokey but this is when I need to find gratitude the most. As I think about today, I am grateful for:
I decided I’m going to keep counting days until I get back to goal. I did lose a pound this week, and that is very welcome news. I worked to recapture a beginner’s mind this week. Giving up dessert was a good way to get in touch with those feelings. Insofar as my mindset, gratitude is the word of the day. It’s easy to feel grateful when things are going good isn’t it? However, while it’s always good to be grateful, it’s even more important when times are tough. It is also easy to be grateful for the big things, like my children, my husband, my family, and my friends. I am deeply grateful – they are all the most important people in the world to me, I am so blessed to have these remarkable people in my life. Sometimes, it is important to recognize the less obvious sources that make me feel grateful. These are three small things I’m grateful for:
the way the sun comes through my dining room windows.
living in a small town close to the water.
being able to have this time to reflect and write.
So, yes I am grateful for the biggest blessings but I also don’t want forget the small ones too. I realize that to someone reading this post, it may sound strange to write about gratitude here (since this is a blog about weight loss and maintaining weight loss) but I guess the thing is anything that is difficult to do requires a lot of energy. Energy that comes from gratitude is better than energy that comes from struggle. I aspire to keep a grateful heart no matter what comes my way.