It’s been ten weeks since I started on this journey, but it feels like a lifetime. Ten weeks that I’ve been working out points values of foods, paying attention to my stomach and what it’s telling me, planning what I eat, and basically enjoying what I’m eating more than ever before.
It should be wrong to feel as good as I do right now 🙂
I’ve just stepped off of the scales following the weigh in for week 10, and I am pleased to announce the arrival of Mr Sixteen and a Half Stone man. It’s a very, very long time since he was with us, and I’m rather pleased to say hi to him, albeit hopefully fleetingly. I’ve had a second consecutive week of significant weight loss, having lost a further 5lb, which adds up to 10lb in just two weeks.
Now seasoned weight loss attempters (or as I like to call them fat blokes) will have alarm bells ringing right now, because by all accounts, outside of the first couple of weeks of any change in eating habits, that’s just too fast, and probably not healthy. There are a number of medical reasons why losing weight quicker than a pound or two each week can be bad for you – it can lead to anemia, heart problems and other such nasty things, but I also think there are a number of psychological reasons why it’s something to be very cautious of.
I think that the psychological challenge raised by losing weight too quickly is how you deal with it when it slows or stops. At some point you either have to slow the loss down yourself, or your body’s defences will kick in and slow it for you. Either way, weight loss can’t continue at that sort of pace for long – IT WILL SLOW DOWN OR STOP. When it does, you have to be able to accept that staying the same weight, or even gaining a pound or two every now and again is just part of the process. When you’re used to losing a pound or two a week, then it’s easier to accept a slow down than if you’re used to losing five pounds a week.
I think perhaps the easiest trap to fall into is to begin to believe that losing a pound in a week isn’t a great result, when in reality it’s brilliant. I won’t deny that losing big chunks of weight in one go feels great (although doing it two weeks in a row feels less satisfactory, for the reasons we’re discussing here) but losing a pound a week means that you’d shift half a stone every couple of months. It means that you’d shift three stone in a year. That is undoubtedly a good thing and that perspective has to be kept. It’s important.
It’s been a strange week as far as my eating has been concerned. I’ve really, really struggled to eat all of my points each day. I’ve worked hard at it though, and have on a number of occasions been eating a pile of snacks late in the evening just to make up the points. Let’s face it, that’s weird. I think what’s happened is that I’ve started to get used to eating more healthily, and that at times I’m overdoing it. I’m also still trying to save a few points each day so that I can afford to have a bit of a blow-out at some point, but I’m not having the blow-outs.
There is one key point that it’s worth making here that might help to really highlight the progress that I’m making. First of all, when I talk about eating a pile of snacks in the evening, what I mean by that has probably changed a little over the past ten weeks. Before I started this, a pile of snacks in the evening might have meant a large packet of hand-cooked crisps, perhaps a few biscuits, a packet of cheddar biscuits and maybe some ice cream. Now when I talk about a pile of snacks, I’m referring to perhaps a small pack of baked crisps, a low-fat breakfast bar and a couple of weight watchers biscuits. Lol. I’m broken.
Anyway, I need to make a few changes, and need to accept that it might take me a while to get this right, which means that I have to be prepared to put on a pound or two while I get it sorted.
I think the first thing that I’ll do is stop trying to save points each day in case of a blow-out. I’m earning exercise points three or four times a week, and they’re more than enough to cover any blow out that I might put myself through. That means that I’m going to end up with my (albeit feeble) pile of snacks in the evening on most days, unless I can make a few changes to spread some more points around during the day.
I’ve noticed that I’m often really, really hungry come lunchtime, so I’m going to increase what I eat for breakfast a little bit. Usually I tend to have a couple of bits of fruit and a yoghurt, which feels fine at the time, but doesn’t seem to do the job for long enough. I suppose I could factor in a snack or something mid-morning, but that sounds like a bit too much to remember. Anyway, I might grab a couple of bits of toast with marmite in the mornings as well.
I’m also sometimes really hungry at dinner time, so might increase what I eat at lunchtime too, but will play that by ear a little bit.
Let me tell you about a very strange pizza related experience that I had this week. It was my good lady wife’s birthday this week, and at her request we got a Domino’s pizza delivered. Pizza has always been a favourite of mine, and Domino’s are a particular favourite, but they’re so full of points that so far I’ve avoided them altogether. I was determined to enjoy it, but to enjoy it within reason and not to end up hating myself in the morning.
Anyway, I spent a while researching through my WW books and the Domino’s website to work out points values for different pizzas (that sounds really geeky and sad – it was only about ten minutes really). The initial conclusion was simple – if I ate what I would normally eat from Domino’s, I would end up eating all of my points for the day, plus all of the exercise points I had earned, plus about another half a days worth of points (and there were times in the past where I really used to wonder why I was so fat – lol). So what should I order?
All the measurements in the WW book were for medium pizzas, which was strange because until I read the book, I hadn’t realised that Domino’s even sold medium pizzas. Apparently they sell even smaller ones too! Who’d have thought it… I decided on a medium Ham and Pineapple pizza at 3.5 points per slice. I figured (wrongly) that it would have six slices, and that would mean that I could eat the whole thing for 21 points. If I was a bit careful with my lunch, I could manage that without dipping in to my saved points at all. All would be well.
I ordered online, and that was a strange experience in itself. They have an “any pizza, any size for £9.99” deal on, which in the past was exactly the sort of thing that would have prompted me to scrub the medium pizza and replace it with a large one. Or probably two. I did think about ordering a large one for a minute or two, but it was only for a minute or two and then I chose the medium one. The website even checked to make sure that I didn’t want a large pizza as it was the price, which was nice, but not what was needed at the time :-).
When it arrived and I opened the box, I was a little disappointed to see that it actually had 8 slices rather than six. That meant that the whole thing would actually be 28 points rather than 21 and would definitely take me over my points for the day. I still had plenty of points saved, so it wasn’t a real problem, but it wasn’t the way I’d planned it, so it felt a bit disappointing. The really strange thing was that I just couldn’t eat it. four and a half slices I managed. Four and a half slices. Of a medium pizza. What is wrong with me? I truly am broken! I grabbed another slice before I went to bed, still ended up saving points for the day, and had the rest for lunch the day after.
There are strange things happening to me 🙂