The way station was nice, but I’m moving on…

Way Station No. 2. Artist: David Carmack Lewis

“…Mental health is based on a certain degree of tension, the tension between what one has already achieved and what one still ought to accomplish, or the gap between what one is and what one should become… What man actually needs is not a tensionless state but rather the striving and struggling for some goal worthy of him.”
—Victor Frankl, as quoted in Lean for Life Phase Two: Lifetime Solutions

This past summer, my husband and I took a driving trip across the United States to support my nephew as he graduated from Army boot camp. We traveled from southern California to South Carolina and back again. It was an adventure, but sometimes it was grueling; the stops along the way were very brief—only to gas up, eat, and sleep. On the other side of the country, we had about five days of rest. We stayed put, saw some sites, and just hung out with each other. The respite was much needed, but eventually we had to say farewell and get back on the road.

The journey to lose 95 pounds will be long and sometimes grueling.

I’ve been at the same weight for almost two months. I have enjoyed the side trip that was this weight, because the contrast between 225 and 188 pounds is enormous. It has felt fantastic. I have felt light and free.

However, at my current weight, I’m starting to feel as yucky as I did at 225.  I feel big. I feel encumbered. My reality check mirror is telling me the truth. You’ve got a ways to go, chica. Get back on the trail.

So the little side trip I took, hanging out at this weight, this way station? I’m done with this place. It was tempting to stay, but I’ve stayed too long. It’s not home. There are much better destinations ahead.

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Why I chose Lindora to lose weight.

Is this true or what???? : ) I recently discovered Pinterest.com where I found this and many other inspirational images and quotes... check it out.

Now that the Thanksgiving holiday has passed, I’m working on getting my focus back on my weight loss goals and remembering why I chose Lindora to help me succeed.

The most important thing about choosing a weight loss plan is finding what works for you. There are so many options out there—some totally stupid and crazy, some healthy, some much more effective than others. Here’s what attracted me to Lindora.

Lindora works. I chose Lindora because, in my experience, it’s the only program where I’ve been able to lose a significant amount of weight. When you carefully follow the guidelines, it really works. You will drop the pounds. A + B = C.  It’s a no brainer. It’s not easy, but you can have the confidence that you will get results if you follow the rules.

Lindora is simple. Lindora provides a list of authorized foods that reflect a “low fat, moderate protein, low carbohydrate nutritional plan.” The boundaries of a limited food list are extremely helpful to me. I get overwhelmed with too many choices. The list is posted on my fridge. You can’t go wrong with fruits, vegetables and protein.

Lindora recommends exercise that is doable and sustainable. I like that Lindora doesn’t push strenuous exercise. They simply exhort you to “move more.” And that means lots of walking. When I lost 60 pounds back in 2002, I walked almost every morning for 30-45 minutes.  This time around, I’m working on getting stronger and being much more fit with lots of cardio and weight lifting. I also want to have more muscle to increase my metabolism. Muscles are so productive. I love that they are burning fat even when I’m not using them.

Lindora provides accountability. When you purchase the 12-week program, you go into the clinic every single day to report what you’ve eaten the day before, receive a B-12 shot, and weigh in. I recommend this program for any first-timers. It’s pretty costly (I spent about $1,200 in 2002), but if you’re someone who has tried many, many times to lose weight, it’s worth every penny. The daily accountability forces you to change your habits.

I completed the 12-week program back in 2002. I lost 60 pounds. But then I got completely off track after injuring my lower back. I couldn’t exercise, and for some bizarre reason, I started eating like I used to. Soon after that, we became parents to our 11-year-old nephew. Life turned completely upside down for the next 8 years. I’m not blaming my weight gain on a child. His arrival into our lives was, however, a mitigating factor as I slid back into my old habits. I gained all the weight back, plus another 20 pounds.

This time around I purchased the 4-week program. I know how to do Lindora; I just needed a kick-start and a month’s worth of accountability. Isn’t it crazy how we all know exactly how to lose weight? We just have to DO IT.

Lindora preaches lifelong change. Indeed, the guidebook is called “Lean for Life.” It’s not just a diet; it’s a transformation. It’s about rewiring your brain, creating new patterns and adopting new habits.

“With Lean for Life, the focus is on learning to become lean. The process of learning creates new neural connections within your brain. These new connections create actual structural changes in your brain. With reinforcement (practice), the changes (connections) can become permanent, and before long, you’ll find that making healthy choices about what you eat seems like second nature. And it will be! Your process for decision making will have been permanently changed.”

Just because I lost the weight and gained it all back ten years ago is no reflection of the viability of the Lindora program. I didn’t stick with the program. I didn’t follow their Lifetime Maintenance guidelines. If I had, I would have arrived and stayed at my goal weight all these years.

Here are some other weight loss programs I’ve tried in the past:

NutriSystem – I joined this program with my mom way back in 1989, the summer before my junior year of college. That’s when they used to have clinics; now they just sell the food online. I lost weight that summer, but it was extremely expensive. I was spending $70 to $80 per week on freeze dried, cardboard food. It was kinda fun, though, to go back to school about 15 pounds lighter. Gained it all back in a few months though!

Weight Watchers – I’ve joined WW several times over the years and could never stick with it.  It is too lenient. There are too many choices. Too much moderation.  I kept using all my points up before dinner.  The most I ever lost with WW was about 8-10 pounds.

SlimFast – Even though it was convenient and relatively inexpensive, constant hunger made this a short-lived diet. Shakes are not food. The most weight I lost? Probably 2-3 pounds before I gave up.

Herbalife – Who doesn’t like drinking fruit shakes for each meal? I liked them very much. But again, I was hungry all the time. And the supplements were just way too expensive. I lost about 2-3 pounds before giving up.

Why did you choose your particular method for losing weight?

Slow & Steady Wins the Race

This morning, I woke up slowly while my husband and I snuggled. His hand resting on my hip, he said, “What’s this?”

I smiled and said, “I don’t know, what is it?”

He patted my hip. “Is it bone? Or muscle? Flex.”

I flexed.

“It’s both. Wow. Good job, honey!”

It was a good moment. A very good moment.

I weighed in at Lindora today to discover I’m two pounds down from last week. Yey! I was only slightly discouraged when I did the math and thought to myself, “well, only 60 pounds to go.” Sigh.

I’m plugging away, slow and steady. I’m not being legalistic about my food. I’m having off-program meals 3-4 times a week, and combined with working out at the gym 4-5 times a week, I am steadily dropping the weight.

July 25, 2011 weight: 225 lbs | November 10 weight: 190 lbs

These are inspiring numbers when I sit back and look at them objectively.

  • 15 weeks.
  • 35 pounds gone.
  • That’s an average of 2.33 lbs per week.
  • I weigh 190 pounds.
  • I am 37% of the way toward my goal.
  • 130 pounds, here I come.

It’s a war I’m fighting. More about that in my next post.

My Weight Loss Tool Box

Image source: blog.alice.com

Soapy suds gushed from the under the door of my dishwasher, pouring across the kitchen floor. I shut it off immediately and tried to stem the flow with hastily grabbed towels. I almost cried. I love my dishwasher. My dishwasher is my friend. It was late. I went to bed. I’ll deal with it in the morning.

This morning I pulled the dishes out and washed them by hand. My husband is on day two of a nasty cold so I don’t want to bother him about fixing it until he feels better. My hands deep in a sink full of dishes and sudsy water, I thought about how important the dishwasher is as a tool in my weight loss journey.

When you’re eating healthy, you use a lot of dishes. Measuring spoons and cups. The tray on the food scale. Pots and pans. Blender. Plastic containers for weekday lunches. A dishwasher is a huge time-saving device with all this critical clutter.

When you’re eating unhealthy—fast food out of paper bags—there are no dishes. Just a lot of trash. Or when you’re eating out a lot, someone else is doing the dishes.

Losing weight is hard work.  And weight loss work requires certain tools, starting with…

A method. A plan.
My method is Lindora. There are lots of great programs out there: Weight Watchers. Slimgenics. Paleo. Body for Life from EAS. Websites like Spark People. Do some research. Find a plan that works for you. Don’t have surgery. You can do it the right way if you really, really want to. You got yourself into this mess. You can get yourself out. But you need a plan.

A way to measure your food so you won’t lie to yourself.
A lot of those dirty dishes I mentioned have to do with measurement gadgets. A huge key to weight loss success is heightened awareness of what you’re doing. If you guesstimate how much a cup of skim milk is without measuring it, you’ll always err on the side of too much. If you think one ounce of almonds is a handful, you’ll wind up eating two. Measure everything, stay within the boundaries of your program, and you will lose weight.

Food diary.
Another critical weight loss tool is a food diary. Write down everything you eat. Nothing formal. Scraps of paper. A small notebook in your pocket or hand bag. It’s like accountability to yourself. An honest food diary keeps you centered squarely in the world of what is real. I like this little notebook I got at WalMart for 50 cents. I especially like that it doesn’t have spiral binding.

Treats… I mean, protein supplements.
ZonePerfect Cashew Pretzel protein barMy favorites include ZonePerfect nutrition bars (Cashew Pretzel and Chocolate Mint) and Lindora’s protein drinks (Wildberry Passion) and nutrition bars (Peppermint Cocoa Crunch, Chocolate Mint, Chocolate Chocolate). These keep me satisfied and happy on this long, long journey.

Treats… I mean, vitamins.
Vitafusion MultiVites – Gummy multi-vitamins for adults. I hate, hate, hate swallowing vitamins. For years, I refused to take them. My husband found this brand at Costco for me a few years ago. They’re like candy.

B-12 Sublingual – Just bought a bottle at my doctor’s office. Stuck a pill under my tongue this morning. Mm! Grape! I miss the B-12 shots I received while on the Lindora. B-12 helps increase your mood, metabolism and energy.

Sugar-free Metamucil Fiber Supplement. 1 teaspoon per day with 4 oz. of liquid. To help it go down better, I mix it with any flavor of Crystal Light. It’s like fake juice in the morning. Not bad.

Good tennies.
I love my Skechers Shape-Ups. I can just feel the rhythm and flow while I’m on the treadmill. I am in the zone.

Gym membership.
For years we had a room in the house set up with weight lifting and cardio equipment. We never used it. At home there are far too many distractions and reasons not to work out. Going to the gym is both a physical and mental separation. You can focus there. And the energy of people working out around you is contagious. In August we purchased a three-year LA Fitness membership – buy two, get the third year free. It’s called commitment.

Pedometer.
Lindora recommends moderate exercise; at least 10,000 steps per day. This handy dandy Lindora Lean for Life pedometer (from 2002; no longer available through Lindora) helps me gauge how much I’m moving every day. It’s another way to be stay grounded in reality and to document my efforts.

A good laundry detergent.
Huh? What’s detergent got to do with losing weight? Recently we discovered that our usual laundry detergent was not removing the nasty, stinky sweat from our gym clothes. I thought I’d forgotten to add the detergent and re-washed our clothes with so-so results. A week later I was certain I added soap, but still pulled stinky clothes out of the dryer. Our sister-in-law told us she ran into the same issue with her two sons. She discovered Tide plus Febreze Freshness Sport. Perfect. I am happy to report we can now tolerate our own stink. : )

What are your must-have weight loss tools?

Untethered… Good riddance forever, 200’s!

An encouraging weigh-in at Lindora this week! I have blown past the 200-pound milestone! Goodbye and good riddance, you pesky albatross around my neck. (Idiom Definition: An albatross around, or round, your neck is a problem resulting from something you did that stops you from being successful.)

Current weight: 197
Total pounds lost: 28
New goal weight (after doctor visit on Tuesday): 130
Pounds to go: 67
Contagious weight loss: 1 person has been inspired by my progress and joined Weight Watchers. Go YB!

Even with so much weight yet to lose, I feel free and untethered. I feel fantastic.

I can still live life and lose weight!
I haven’t weighed in for nine days, but I still lost about 5 pounds after a five-day break from the program, which included a three-day trip to Vegas for my 42nd birthday. I splurged, but I definitely modified my eating and didn’t go all out crazy like I normally would have. And no gym visits, but I ranged from 10,000-15,000 steps per day.

More reasons why Lindora is so great…
It’s been about a month since I completed my short, 4-week Lindora program. I’m still able to weigh in as part of their lifetime maintenance program. One Lindora consultant told me that once I’m 5 lbs past the last weight I was at on my last official day, the scale would lock me out of the computer. I’ve lost 10 lbs, and they’re still asking when I’ll be back.  I’ll keep going until they tell me I can’t.

Plus, I missed my usual Tuesday weigh-in and I received no less than 4 voicemails—“Care Calls”—from Lindora checking on me and making sure I’d come in to see them that week. That’s accountability right there—a critical component of weight loss success.

Did you know that during your birthday month, Lindora gives you 30% off all products and programs? I stocked up!  A word of warning: the discount only applies to ONE transaction. So make it count.

And I just discovered their Peppermint Cocoa Crunch bars. Amazing. Heavenly.

A few photos to share…

At work, instead of birthday cake, my colleague brought in yogurt, berries and granola to both celebrate and support my diet goals. She is so encouraging. Thanks JS! I am grateful!

This was my birthday dinner at the Harley Davidson Café in Las Vegas. My husband and I shared this platter. It was sooooo good… BBQ ribs, shredded pork, beef brisket, and chicken.

Reality check: This is me enjoying the harvest display in the Conservatory Garden at Bellagio, Las Vegas. I’m 25 pounds lighter here. Yey, me! But still plenty of junk in the trunk—and everywhere else.

This is me at a family party a week ago with my 19-year-old niece. I’m the one on the left, in case you couldn’t tell. : ) Anyway, she weighs 130 pounds. I asked if she’d pose next to me so I could have a vision of what 130 pounds looks like. It’s tiny!!! I know, I know. I’ll never again look like a 19 year old… I’m not that delusional. But it’s fun to envision being that fit again. THAT is within reach.

Lindora’s Six Essentials for Success

Dr. Marshall Stamper’s Six Essentials for Success
(from Lean for Life, by Cynthia Stamper Graff)

  1. Make your goal “to learn to be lean for life.”
  2. Your level of interest and enthusiasm will determine your level of success.
  3. Learn to recognize and eliminate your defensive barriers.
  4. Learn to control cravings.
  5. Learn to use relaxation techniques and “stress less.”
  6. Follow the maintenance program for lasting success.

The “essential” that resonates the most with me is #2.

Interest and enthusiasm toward exercise is growing. I love working out at the gym and especially love that my husband and I are workout partners. We’re also looking for ways to get exercise beyond the gym. I’m looking into local places to hike. We’ll be participating in a local Walk to End Alzheimer’s event next month in memory of my Mom, who passed away four years ago from this despicable disease.

My interest and enthusiasm for food comes and goes. For example, salads were starting to bore the heck out of me. I was starting to skip them. Bad strategic move. Salads take a long time to eat and help to fill me up. So this past week I switched from having romaine lettuce twice a day to mixed greens. The small but important change was much needed. Mixed greens, pine nuts, balsamic vinegar and olive oil = yum.

This blog is playing a huge role in maintaining my level of interest and enthusiasm. When I wonder why I’m spending so much time typing up the food I’ve eaten (when I’ve already kept track of it in a small notebook I carry), I remember how reporting my actions to the blogosphere is providing me with critical accountability.

The blog also has me thinking about things in a way I wouldn’t otherwise. How can I help others with what I am learning? How can I learn from what others are doing?

I am over 20%—one-fifth of the way—toward my goal of losing 100 pounds, but I am constantly thinking about maintenance. I have lost a lot of weight before and gained it all back and then some. I want to focus on a permanent, lifetime change, not just how long it’ll take me to lose 100 pounds.

I am inspired by a blog called Former Fat Chik: 135 lbs lost! by Jess. She learned so much during her weight loss and now she’s sharing it with the rest of us. She has clearly found a huge new passion in life: nutrition and exercise. She is still enthusiastic and interested in food and fitness, and I imagine it’s her enthusiasm that keeps her successful in maintaining all her hard work.

What keeps you interested and enthusiastic about losing weight and staying in shape?

Here is my menu for the past week. Went off track a few times; we’ll see what that does to my weigh in on Tuesday. I’ve noticed that if I go off program, if I stay away from junk food, I still feel great and it doesn’t impact my weight loss too negatively.  I feel fantastic; I know I’m making progress.

Sunday September 11, 2011
Pedometer: 5,541
Exercise: None. Day off today.
Time Serving Size Food Carbs
8:30am 1 slice Whole wheat bread – toast 11
1 Egg 1
10 squirts I can’t believe it’s not butter spray 0
1 mug Coffee 0
2 Tbsp Sugar free Coffee-mate vanilla creamer 2
1 tsp Sugar free Metamucil 0
2 Adult chewable vitamins 0
11am 0.5 oz String cheese 0.5
1.25 oz Deli turkey breast 0.5
2:30pm 1/4 c Dannon Lite & Fit Yogurt 5
0.5 oz String cheese 0.5
2 c Romaine lettuce 3
1/4 c Carrots 4
1/2 c Cucumber 1.5
1 Orange 14
12 oz Diet Squirt
5pm 1 Bar 13
8pm Off Program at Black Angus ?
Bread/buttter, top sirloin steak, fried shrimp, orange slices, salad with carrots and croutons, dipped in dressing ?
Dessert: Chocolate Chip Cowboy Cookie with ice cream on top – shared with my husband ?
Total Carbs ???
Monday, September 12, 2011
Pedometer: 18,734
Exercise: 30 min treadmill, 10 min crossramp, 45 min lower body strength training
Time Serving Size Food Carbs
8:30am 1 slice Whole wheat bread – toast 11
1 Egg 1
10 squirts I can’t believe it’s not butter spray 0
1 mug Coffee 0
2 Tbsp Sugar free Coffee-mate vanilla creamer 2
1 tsp Sugar free Metamucil 0
2 Adult chewable vitamins 0
10:45am 0.5 oz String cheese 0.5
1.25 oz Deli turkey breast 0.5
1pm 1/2 c Dannon Lite & Fit yogurt 10
1 c Strawberries 11
2 c Romaine lettuce 3
1/4 c Carrots 4
1/2 c Celery 1.5
1 T Fat free Italian dressing 1
3:30pm 1 ZonePerfect bar 13
5:30pm 1 oz String cheese 1
7pm 3 oz Carne asada (round steak) 0
4 4″ corn tortillas 16
1 ZonePerfect bar 13
Total Carbs 88.5
Tuesday September 13, 2011
Pedometer: 10,056
Exercise: No gym. Felt ill; went to be early.
Lindora weigh in: Lost 3 lbs since last Tuesday. : ) : ) : )
Time Serving Size Food Carbs
8:30am 1 slice Whole wheat bread – toast 11
1 Egg 1
10 squirts I can’t believe it’s not butter spray 0
1 mug Coffee 0
2 Tbsp Sugar free Coffee-mate vanilla creamer 2
1 tsp Sugar free Metamucil 0
2 Adult chewable vitamins 0
10:45am 0.5 oz String cheese 0.5
1.25 oz Deli turkey breast 0.5
1:30pm 1 Morningstar Veggie Burger 3
1 tsp Mustard 0
2 c Romaine lettuce 3
1/2 c Chinese pea pods 5.5
1/4 c Carrots 4
1 Orange 14
4:30pm 1 ZonePerfect bar 13
7pm 1/2 c Dannon Lite & Fit Yogurt 10
1/2 c Strawberries 5.5
1/3 c Raspberries 5
2 c Mixed greens 3
1 Tbsp Pine nuts 0
1 Tsp Olive oil 0
1 Tsp Balsamic vinegar 0
Total Carbs 81
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Pedometer: 12,731
Exercise: 30 min treadmill, 45 min upper body strength training
Time Serving Size Food Carbs
8:30am 1 slice Whole wheat bread – toast 11
1 Egg 1
10 squirts I can’t believe it’s not butter spray 0
1 mug Coffee 0
2 Tbsp Sugar free Coffee-mate vanilla creamer 2
1 tsp Sugar free Metamucil 0
2 Adult chewable vitamins 0
10:30am 1 ZonePerfect bar 13
1 Coffee with 1 Tbsp cream 3
12:30pm 1/2 c Dannon Lite & Fit Yogurt 10
1/2 c Strawberries 5.5
1/3 c Raspberries 5
2 c Mixed greens 3
1 Tbsp Pine nuts 0
1 Tsp Olive oil 0
1 Tsp Balsamic vinegar 0
12 oz Diet Squirt 0
2:45pm 1 Lindora chocolate protein shake 1
5pm 4 Small hors d’ oeuvres (cheese, meat, cracker) 15
7pm 1 In N Out Burger 39
1 In N Out Fries 54
2 Tbsp Catsup 7
11:15pm 1 Lindora protein drink 3
Total Carbs 172.5
Thursday, September 15, 2011
Pedometer: 15,595
Exercise: 30 min treadmill, 15 min crossramp, 15 min swimming
Time Serving Size Food Carbs
8am 3/4 c Cheerios 12
1 c Skim milk 12
1 mug Coffee 0
2 Tbsp Sugar free Coffee-mate vanilla creamer 2
1 tsp Sugar free Metamucil 0
2 Adult chewable vitamins 0
10:30am 0.5 oz String cheese 0.5
1.25 oz Deli turkey breast 0.5
12:30pm 1/2 c Dannon Lite & Fit Yogurt 10
1/2 c Strawberries 5.5
1/3 c Raspberries 5
2 c Mixed greens 3
1 Tbsp Pine nuts 0
1 Tsp Olive oil 0
1 Tsp Balsamic vinegar 0
12 oz Diet root beer 0
2:30pm 1 bag Lindora onion soy puffs 8
12 oz Diet Pepsi 0
4:15pm 1 ZonePerfect bar 13
7pm Shrimp Salad:
2.5 oz Shrimp 1
1 tsp Olive oil 0
1 clove Garlic 0
1 wedge Lemon 1.5
2 c Mixed greens 3
1/2 c Celery 1.5
1 tsp Balsamic vinegar 0
1/2 c Strawberries 5.5
1/3 c Raspberries 5
9pm Half Lindora protein drink 1.5
11:15pm Half Lindora protein drink 1.5
Total Carbs 92
Friday, September 16, 2011
Pedometer: 12,154
Exercise: 30 min treadmill, 10 min crossramp
Time Serving Size Food Carbs
8am 3/4 c Cheerios 12
1 c Skim milk 12
1 mug Coffee 0
2 Tbsp Sugar free Coffee-mate vanilla creamer 2
1 tsp Sugar free Metamucil 0
2 Adult chewable vitamins 0
11am 0.5 oz String cheese 0.5
1.25 oz Deli turkey breast 0.5
1 mug Coffee with 1 Tbsp creamer 3
1pm 1/2 c Dannon Lite & Fit Yogurt 10
1/2 c Strawberries 5.5
1/3 c Raspberries 5
2 c Mixed greens 3
1 Tbsp Pine nuts 0
1 Tsp Olive oil 0
1 Tsp Balsamic vinegar 0
12 oz Diet Squirt 0
4pm 1 ZonePerfect bar 13
6:30pm Approx 10 cups Air popped popcorn 48
4 Tbsp Butter (44 grams of fat, 400 calories) 0
Approx 2 Tbsp Parmesan cheese (3 grams of fat) 0
10:15pm 1 Lindora protein drink 3
10:45pm 1 Lemon Tea (1 lemon wedge, artificial sweetener) 1.5
Total Carbs 119
Saturday, September 17, 2011
Pedometer: 11,091
Exercise: 30 min treadmill, lower body strength training (alternate routine), 20 min swimming
Time Serving Size Food Carbs
9am 1 slice Whole wheat bread – toast 11
1 Egg 1
10 squirts I can’t believe it’s not butter spray 0
1 mug Coffee 0
2 Tbsp Sugar free Coffee-mate vanilla creamer 2
1 tsp Sugar free Metamucil 0
11am 0.5 oz String cheese 0.5
1.25 oz Deli turkey breast 0.5
2pm 1 Lindora mocha protein shake 1
8pm 1 Lindora wildberry passion protein drink 3
8:30pm 4 oz Chipotle chicken 1
1 c Romaine lettuce 1.5
1/2 c Pico di gallo (tomatoes, onions, cilantro, lemon) 5
1 oz Cheese 0
2 Lemon wedges 3
9:30pm 1/2 c Strawberries 5.5
1/3 c Raspberries 5
10:45pm 1 Lemon Tea (1 lemon wedge, artificial sweetener) 1.5
Total Carbs 41.5

Weighty weight. 22 pounds down. 78 to go.

“When you believe that what you do influences the results you get, you will see yourself as someone who can act effectively to get what you want.”
—Cynthia Stamper Graff, Lean for Life

I weighed in today at Lindora.*  I’ve lost three pounds this week, for a total of 22 pounds since getting serious on July 25. Nice, slow and steady. Only 78 pounds to go…

It was a successful week of both weight loss and intentional moderation. I lost this weight by working out at the gym for five out of seven days, and eating on program for every meal except two:

  1. Thursday – slice of Costco pizza
  2. Sunday – dinner at Black Angus: top sirloin steak, fried shrimp, bread and butter, cheesy bread, salad (light dressing), orange slices. For dessert, a big cookie with ice cream on top (which I shared with my husband).

20 lbs of beans representing 20 lbs of fat. Gone.

Shopping at Costco recently, I looked for something that weighed exactly 20 pounds. I picked up a bag of pinto beans and handed it to my husband. He looked at me quizzically.

“Honey, feel how heavy this is. That’s how much I’ve lost!”

He was suitably impressed.

On The Biggest Loser, there was a great episode where the finalists had to carry all of the weight they had lost as they ran through an obstacle course. Each stage in the course represented a week on the show. They dropped that week’s worth of weight at each stage until they were finally light and free. It was so symbolic… To be reminded of how heavy you were compared to how light you are now.

Every now and then along this weight loss journey, I’m going to lift up something that represents how much weight I’ve lost. I want to remind myself just how heavy that weight was. And how unburdened I am by it now. And how I never want to carry that weight again.

I still have a long way to go, but I want to celebrate my accomplishments so far. I’m already seeing major benefits…

  • My size 20 slacks are too big and baggy to wear to work. I look sloppy in them. Looking sloppy is the complete opposite of why I want to lose weight. I need to find my box of smaller clothes in the garage this weekend.
  • My feet no longer hurt when I stand up after sitting for a long time.
  • My lower back is no longer stiff and sore when I wake up in the morning.
  • I am no longer sucking air while climbing the steep hill from the parking lot to our office each morning.
  • I am no longer out of breath when hustling from the parking lot to the movie theater.
  • I have a lot of flexibility and ease of movement. I can easily touch the floor while keeping my legs straight.
  • My arms and legs are firmer.
  • A day of cleaning house and doing other household chores no longer makes me feel like I’ve been hit by a Mack truck.

If I’m feeling this great after only losing 22 pounds, I’m already imagining how much better it’s going to feel to be another 22 pounds lighter.  Onward and downward!

* Although I’ve completed the 4-week Lindora program I purchased, I’m still able to weigh in if I’m within five pounds of my last weigh in on the program. One more pound lost and I’ll be locked out of their computer. No worries. I think I’ll be fine on my own. I’ve got this down pat!

How do you celebrate your weight loss accomplishments?