Monday, November 19, 2012

Long Term Changes

The only problem with losing weight and getting pregnant is that while everything else shrinks back into an acceptable size, my belly is still just kind of pooched there. 

However, a huge benefit is that my face is coming back to me!!! I honestly didn't think I would see a change in my face so soon after losing weight. Over the two+ years that I gained, my face was the last thing I lost. I suppose that makes sense because your face is not somewhere that you are supposed to gain weight. But when you reach that point, where else is it supposed to go? 

My cheeks got huge and my already small, dark eyes got smaller and darker. Over the past year, when people asked me about my weight-loss goals, I would just simply say, "I want my face back." 

I wanted to look in the mirror and see me again. My eyes and my cheek bones. I was literally up to my eyes in fat. Ick. I knew things needed to change if I wanted to be photographed ever again. 

At this point, maybe people would say that they did this diet or that workout plan but I didn't. I cannot stick to diets. I loathe the gym. All I did was choose. 

Do I need that much rice pilaf on my plate? No.
Do I need to eat the entire ice cream? No.
Do I need to have multiple white chocolate mocha's a week? Nope!

I started to see the trend. I was eating waaaay too much. WAY. TOO. MUCH. My plates are large and they would be full. I would do my darnedest to eat as much as possible. It was so wrong. I am a firm believer that you can indulge. But when you indulge every single day? That isn't a treat. Its a way of life. 

So I cut down my portions. I ate a lot less. I tried my hardest to drink water and not soda. Unsweetened Iced Tea if I couldn't stomach any more water. I tried to stop eating late at night as often as possible. 

I started eating at home. If I didn't feel like cooking, I ate cereal. And not always Captain Crunch with Berries. Honey Bunches of Oats. Raisin Bran. With 1% milk. There did come a point where I wondered, even with healthier cereal, if I was over-eating. So, I few times in a week, I would measure one cup of cereal and eat it. If I was still hungry after, I'd eat half a banana. Very soon, just the one cup of cereal was enough. I didn't need any supplemental banana. I cut down the cereal a little more and added banana to the cereal. 

I didn't need the measuring cup for more than a week. My brain relearned what a normal portion was. I could estimate it in the bowl. If I got heavy handed I would use a spoon to scoop it back into the box. 

Losing weight for me didn't equate to a big life change. It was so, so many little decisions. Awareness and caution instead of rules and regulations. I would say NO. One-fourth of a cup of Superior Dairy Chocolate Milkshake with fresh banana was enough to satisfy a sweet craving. (Superior Dairy is a local ice cream shop, if you ever come to California, make your way to the Central Valley and go there. Seriously. It's worth it.)

I believe the best life is a life of moderation. And while there are many diets and work-out plans that can get you there faster (after all, losing 23 pounds since January only means a little over 2 pounds a month) It is worth it for me to go slow. It took me over two years to put all this extra stuff on my body. If it takes two years to take it off, so be it. That is my fault. 

I just know myself. After I lose the weight and the diet ends, I'll think, okay you are done! After the work-out plan achieves the results I want, I'll walk away. Eating this way, choosing to be healthier and conscious of what goes into my body means that my brain is adjusting and adapting into long term ways of thinking. 

I can have rice pilaf, but only a little bit.
I can have ice cream, but not the entire thing.
I can have fancy coffee, but only once in a while. 

Now that I'm pregnant, I'm worried. I'm going to gain weight. But I have made a promise to myself that I won't gain fat. I will continue to shed fat and just gain baby. 

I will eat healthier than I already was. 
I will lose the baby weight as soon as I can. 
I will start walking, now, so I can burn even more calories. 
I will not lose control of my eating habits or use pregnancy as an excuse. 

That said, Thanksgiving is this week, and I am going to tear it up. 

Since I know that, every other day this week I will eat like a saint. I will overcompensate on these non-holidays so that when my grandma's stuffing hits my plate, I know I can indulge and not feel guilty. It will be a magnificent treat to a week of eating well. 

And it will be absolutely worth it. 

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