I was always very thin growing up. When I was in college, I had to go to the “pre-teen” section, something that has not existed since we made the leap to VCR’s. Clothes did not come in size zero, or two. What exactly is a size zero – that’s just wrong. Who wants to proudly say “I’m a zero!” When I was young, it was not so fashionable to be thin, rather, more of an annoyance because it was hard to find “cool clothes.” Now, there is such a pressure to be stick figure thin, I feel bad for all the people in the public eye who have to live up to such ridiculous scrutiny. Having said that, as we get older, it is easier to put on weight, especially for women. I did. Between, trauma, menopause, and turning fifty, I felt like I started aging in dog years, as well as blowing up like a balloon. I also had untreaeted thyroid disease.
So the idea of this piece is for you to think about what you want. Something that you want MORE than food. I wanted to feel healthier, I wanted to fit in my clothes without pain, and still, I was not ready. Then last year, several “kids” in my life got engaged. This meant that I would be seeing all sorts of people whom I haven’t seen in years, including an ex, and his whole family. I know people from High School look on Facebook and think “OMG she was so thin in her teens!” Somehow those weddings motivated me and last December – before the New Year, I gave up Gluten and started cleaning up my diet. but before doing so I did a lot of mental preparation.
I really thought about wanting to feel better about how I looked. Feeling good buying clothes, and not feeling old before my time were important to me. I found some meditation videos for weight loss. I like this one Hypnosis for Weight Loss (Guided Relaxation, Healthy Diet, Sleep & Motivation) You can also download an MP3 of it. Then I went out and bought all sorts of recepticles for water as well as bottled water. I bought a good scale and joined a free online diet and fitness site Spark People. There are all sorts of great things on there including weight and exercise trackers, as well as recipes, tips, and fitness videos. For me though, I just wanted to keep it simple. I wanted to record my start weight and set a goal weight. For my personality, that keeps me motiviated and the scale, although many experts say to only weigh yourself once a week, for me it keeps me on track if I catch the scale inching up every day.
Another tool I found useful was a free water drinking app. You can find them on Google Play. You input your weight and it calculates how much water you need to drink every day in order to lose weight. For me, drinking enough water is the key to weight loss, and for some unknown reason, a very tough habit to get into. This app really helped with that. Especially if you have ADD, you need to do things in a way that inspire and interest you. So for once, I easily got myself drinking at least 60 oz of water a day. I lost tweny pound in about ten months. That’s a measly 1/2 a pound a week, but, I’ll take it!!! Preivously I was gaining every week – so this was awesome. Then summer hit, and I got into a funk. Was a little down for about a month, and guess wha? Activity level went down as well as my water consumption. Now my first wedding is a month away and I would really love to get off this plateau I hit.
Previously, I was walking 15 minutes a day. Nothing crazy, regular paced waking in the sunshine. Having autoimmune thyroid issues, it’s not recommended to go crazy with cardio or long intense exercise. I found that slow and steady really did work wor me. I also added some yoga poses and basic stretching. This is a nice little chart with Stretches Before Bed.
So now that I am out of my funk, hopefully, I am trying to get back into the water habit. Once you are in it, it’s a piece of cake, but somehow so hard to get there. I also upped my activity and am trying to spend more time outside in nature. If you look at this whole process as a key to getting healthier and feeling better, rather than a diet, then you will be ready to succeed. Determination, humor, and joy make the process easier. Do things you like; walk on the beach, swim, take your dogs for more walks. But no matter what you do, look at it as self care, and not depirvation. You will definitely benefit from framing it that way.
A few last tips, again, espeically for us ADDers is to plan ahead. Make sure you always have quick easy snacks around. Buying cut up fruits and vegetable that are a little pricier is far better than buying things that you just end up throwing out. Apples, grapes, blueberries and carrots are great choices for low prep snacks. Before you start, make sure you go shopping with a list so that you have everything you need. Do NOT let yourself get hungry or feel depirved. Buy healthy things that you like. For me it’s avocados, melon, and gala apples. My treat is dark chocolate with almonds, but I’ve even been cutting back on that. I drink flavored amarretto non GMO loose tea, sweetened with agave. It’s quenches my thirst and my sweet tooth.
So take all this, and customize it for you! Meditation might not work for you, find other ways to inspire yourself to WANT this! Once you feel better, it will become a way of life for you. I never thought, as an italian, that I could give up real pizzeris pizza, but after losing weight, and watching my asthma virutally disappear, I didn’t care about it any more. I want to feel and look better more than I want the chewy deliciousness that has sustained me most of my life 😉 You can do it!!
*I am not a doctor, a weight loss couch or any other such thing – just sharing my experiences with you – as with all things, check with a professional before embarking on anything new – espeicially if you have your own health issues *