Weigh-In: A New Year!

I ended January the same weight I started it, which I’m counting as a win. (Official Weight Watchers® weigh-in weight, that is — I’m currently half a pound above my New-Years-Day Naked-on-the-Bathroom-Scale weight.)

Non-Scale Victories this month:

  • I stayed on-plan the first week of 2015, despite going out to eat for Vietnamese, Indian, Korean, and dim sum (Chinese), plus a take-out deli lunch.
  • I caught my reflection in the classroom mirror at the gym before anyone else came in the room, and I surprised myself by how thin I look from the side. I might have struck a pose or two.

While I was making up my graphs for my (upcoming) 2014 Year In Review, I made a discovery — or, rather, was forced to acknowledge what I already knew — that I hadn’t lost any weight since October. In fact, I started gaining.

Even after I saw the gain, acknowledged it, and mentally let it go (see also: zen meditation), I failed to mend my ways. January saw a substantial weight gain — well, substantial for a single month, anyway. Even after I committed to losing 1.3 pounds per month to reach my Goal Weight before Thanksgiving 2015, I was gaining a pound per week instead. I started feeling sloppy again, flabby, even from just a few pounds. Years ago, I would have scoffed at a five-pound gain making anyone feel sloppy. Now, that’s me.

I start the Weight Watchers week staunch and strict and ready to stick to the plan. By the time the weekend rolls around, sometimes I’ve already gone over my Points target and have veered off the plan in a big way, and it’s hard to even track anymore. Why bother?

It’s this all-or-nothing attitude that’s keeping me from reaching Goal. It’s this attitude that I need to overcome if I’m going to be successful in Maintenance. It’s like Scott Smith used to say (and probably still does): “Just be gooder than you are badder!” If you have an off day, just remember that you can reset yourself at any time. You don’t have to wait for weigh-in day, or Monday, or New Year’s Day. Dinner is a new start. Three o’clock is a new start.

So many of my diet and exercise habits have changed over the past few years. I eat more fruits and veggies. I get exercise at least two days a week, usually three. I rarely eat so much that I’m physically uncomfortable (and I used to do that on a regular basis). But I still have these few hangers-on: evening snacking, big-calorie meals out on weekends, the occasional afternoon vending machine visit. Some of these are still completely OK to incorporate into a “normal” routine; others really need some inspection and replacement.

To illustrate, I offer the return of Why Did I Eat That?

why did i eat that?

I was doing well until Friday night. Then I attempted to self-medicate after a particularly frustrating toddler bedtime by eating a box of Kraft Macaroni and Cheese. Because that always helps, right? If not for that slip-up, Friday would have clocked in just under my Daily Target.

I make no apologies for Saturday. Aaron went out with a friend, so Connor and I enjoyed some Vito’s Pizza for dinner instead of our usual family outing to a restaurant. It was delicious — Chicken Bacon Ranch, stuffed crust, with parmesan crust toppers, and cinnamon bread for dessert — and I had fun showing Connor how to properly hold a slice of pizza.

Sunday’s indiscretions were spread out over the course of the day. The taro dumplings at our weekly dim sum lunch were higher Points than, say, the shrimp dumplings. I also ate a slice of leftover pizza for a snack, and indulged in a few spoonfuls of Biscoff Cookie Spread (which is delicious Kryptonite for me). If we’d gone with something other than taro dumplings, and I’d swapped the Pointy snacks for something less so, I could have come in around 35 PPVs for the day, which is completely reasonable.

I don’t know why I needed to dig into the Cheesyburger Macaroni on Monday. I was a little hungry, I guess, but not enough to stand in the kitchen and eat out of a can while my son watched cartoons in the living room — and there were far better choices I could have made. That was some sort of mental slip that I really can’t pin down. If not for that, and the requisite spoonfuls of yummy Kryptonite, I would have come in well under my Daily Target.

In total, minus my few poor choices (NOT including the pizza dinner, because that was delicious and totally worth it), I could have been on-plan and used only about half of my 49 Weekly Allowance Points. As it was, I was 20 PPVs over my Weekly Allowance. Even so, this week I lost the 2.2 pounds I’d gained over the previous two weeks. Even being a little bad worked out better than not tracking at all and, as a result, being stupid bad.

I don’t need to let a handful of indiscretions totally derail me. The all-or-nothing mentality can do me in if I let it. When I point to the few things that caused me to go over my target for the week, it makes my “failure” seem less epic. It’s a good exercise once in a while, just to remind me that one slip doesn’t mean I have to go off the cliff entirely.

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