I can’t believe it has been a week since my last post. I guess I haven’t been feeling very inspired lately. Thanks for hanging with me anyway. This week I worked on eating most of my points for breakfast/lunch/snacks and then having a much lighter dinner. I think it went really well. The results of this week’s WW weigh-in:
Weekly Gain/Loss: – 1.6 pounds
Total Gain/Loss: – 5.0 pounds
At WW, they like to recognize lots of milestones on the road to your goal weight — 5% of your weight lost, 10% of your weight lost, 16 weeks of membership, and every 5 pounds you lose. For me these milestones make up mini-goals to aim for along the way. So today, I hit my first baby goal — 5 pounds down!
The topic at the WW meeting this week was people who support/don’t support your weight loss efforts. The leader mentioned something about a lot people being closet WWers — i.e. they don’t tell their friends and/or family that they are on WW or trying to make healthy lifestyle changes. I was in the closet for a really, really long time with my weight loss challenges so this really struck a chord with me.
I’ve been trying to lose weight off and on since I was 16. I have tried almost everything you can try: WW, Body-for-Life, the Grapefruit Diet, simple calorie counting, weight loss pills, etc. (For the record, my greatest success came while on WW in 2008 – I lost 25 pounds.) I used to be really secretive about my attempts to lose weight. I think there are several reasons for this including that when I was young I didn’t want anyone to know that I truly struggled with food. As a 16/17-year-old athlete, you would like to think that worrying about what you were eating wouldn’t be a huge issue, but for me it was. (Ah, what I wouldn’t give to go back to that 145-pound svelte volleyball player/cheerleader…) I felt embarrassed and I felt like if I admitted that I was trying to lose weight then I was also admitting that I was fat.
As I got older, pride started coming into play in a way as well. I thought that if I pretended my size didn’t bother me and that if I didn’t act like I thought I looked bad, then no one else would be bothered or think that I looked overweight. For a while, this seemed to work. In the few times I did tell people how much I weighed they always seemed surprised and I prided myself on carrying my weight well.
But eventually, as I got bigger and bigger, these coping and defense mechanisms stopped working for me. And somehow (although I honestly can’t recall how), I ended up here, putting my weight loss struggle out there for the whole internet to see. The funny thing is, it isn’t really the whole world who is aware of it because of this blog. It’s my friends. It is the people who I hold the closest to my heart that I have hidden my struggle from for so long who now know how hard it is for me sometimes.
The beautiful part is that by telling people how much being overweight sucks and how much I want to feel better physically and emotionally, I gave my friends the opportunity to show me love and support. By sharing some of my most secret feelings, I have deepened my relationships and learned to appreciate how much the people who love me actually love me. My family has always supported my weight loss efforts but now I have an even broader network of people who are willing to openly celebrate my successes and share in my struggles and split a salad with me after spin class. I think that some/most of my friends have probably known for a long time that I was unhappy with my weight on some level, but now we can talk about it. Now, they can help me in ways that I wasn’t open to before because I didn’t want to talk about it. Being closed-off about my weight shut out my potentially biggest support base.
If I could go back maybe I would have shared more sooner, but maybe I wouldn’t have. It took me ten years to get to this place and as difficult as it has been, it was also an important part of my process. So today, I want to thank my friends for their continued love, support and encouragement. You guys rock my world every day.
Is it difficult for you to open up to people about your weight struggles? Who do you turn to for support?