Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Signs that it might actually be working

For those of us who are traveling the long road of weight loss, the journey can often remind us of a long road trip in a compact car with three children under the age of five. There are funny, inspiring, frustrating, sad, happy, and tear your hair out moments. Inevitably we swing from being all gung-ho about it to wanting to just crawl in a hole and vow that we don't care how fat we are.

The fact is, we DO care. If we didn't care, we wouldn't have started in the first place. The reasons why we care, and why we started, vary but they all have meaning to us:

sick of feeling unhealthy / our health is in jeopardy
tired of feeling unattractive
the comments from other people have finally hurt us to the core for the last time
we don't want our kids to have "the fat mom"
we don't want our husbands to have "the fat wife"
we want to go clothes shopping and enjoy it

....and so many more!

So we start on our journey, we work our asses off and we lose weight. We step on those scales with some regularity and it makes us happy to see the losses. But what happens when we don't lose ANY weight one week? Or worse yet, when we gain?

We get discouraged. And that can derail the entire thing. That discouragement can lead to weeks and weeks of more gains and more discouragement. What many of us fail to take into account is that as we exercise and lose weight, we're actually gaining muscle...which weighs more. And we're losing inches. While standing on that scale is great, we also need to keep any eye on the inches lost, as well as other signs.

I've been lucky that in the last 9 weeks, I haven't had any gains. I've had a couple weeks where my losses were small losses, but I've not had any gains...knock on wood. But I've still experienced the discouragement and have had to look for other signs that it's working, signs that something is happening.

Some of these might seem silly or odd, but trust me, they gave that "YES!" feeling when I realised them:

- My wedding ring is now lose on my finger

- My pants are all too big

- I used to have to sit on my bed, turn, put my leg up, and then put my sock on. Turn and repeat on other side. All because I couldn't bend and do it, because my tummy got in the way. Now I can just bend and do it.

- When out in the car, if I wanted to pop the trunk on the car, I had to take off my seatbelt, open the door a little bit, then lean over and down to pull the lever. The other day, hubby asked me to pop the trunk and I just reached down and did it. Then I just started grinning. I hadn't had to undo my seatbelt or open the door. I just did it. AWESOME!

- Walking across the road towards a shop window, I could see a reflection of a woman. It wasn't until I got closer that I realised "Hey! That's ME!". I was so used to seeing so much more of me that it threw me to see that reflection.

- My knees and ankles don't hurt as much when I walk.

- I don't lumber/waddle as badly when I walk now. I'm actually walking almost normally!

- I can't eat as much as I used to. I'm fuller much sooner. That means my stomach is shrinking to a more normal size.

Much of that might seem trivial to those of you who were smaller to begin with, or those who've never struggled with their weight but to me, it's huge.

I weighed in at Weight Watchers last night. I lost 1.5 kgs this week. That's 3.3 lbs.

That means in 10 weeks (I said 9 weeks on Facebook, I miscounted. Oops!), my total loss is now at:

13.6 kgs / 29.92 lbs

That is so cool. What is AMAZING to me is that I am lighter now than I have been in almost FOUR years!!! Amazing.

What are YOUR signs that your efforts in your weight loss journey have been working?


  1. Wow, what a great list of achievements that have absolutely nothing to do with the scale. That's what this journey is all about, in my opinion. It's about the positive change it can have in a million ordinary ways.

    Way to go!

  2. NOT TRIVIAL AT ALL! I think all of those are incredible and I am excited right along with you!!

  3. I am so proud. I have to learn to believe what you wrote. I have been soooo discouraged lately and I gained this last week..... I know I have to keep going, I don't wanna be the "fat wife"

  4. Oh honey, wait until you have to buy a new bra! :-)
    Right now my pants are too tight, so I need to get back on track. but I love, love, lvoe the feeling when you realize you can't eat as much as you used to.
    I am proud of' s along haul and you are keeping at it.

  5. Those are wonderful achievements, Maggie! Way to go! I'm so proud of you!!

  6. Congrats!! Haven't lost as much as you~~~ Yet so I don't have the signs