Way back in 2007 when I started this Tippy Toe endeavor, the journal American Psychologist published a study declaring that the vast majority of people who lost weight would regain it all (and possibly more) within five years.
My initial thought was one of disappointment. Why bother? But then I got mad. I loathe labels, and my inner five-year old doesn’t like being told she can’t do something. Plus, I reminded myself, I wasn’t “on a diet”; I was changing the way I lived. Take that, you scientists!
Well, guess what? Stubborn trumped science, because as of this week, guess how many years I’ve been at, or close enough to see, my goal range?
Whew! I made it. Not perfectly or gracefully or entirely cheerfully, but I beat that stupid statistic.
Now I’m ready for the next five years. I’m sure there’s some study out there that says the people who didn’t regain their weight during the first five years will surely regain it by the 10-year mark. If not, I’ll pretend there is, just for the motivation.
The past few months of wacky schedules and out-of-the-ordinary events have left me feeling off my game. When I write it all down, I see I’m actually still on track, with perhaps a few too many indulgences while traveling the past few weeks. What better time than the passage into Year 6 and the end of my current work project to refocus and re-energize, to pay special attention to these areas:
Back to the Gym! – Even with the travel and such, I’ve been exercising consistently, mostly walks and short bike rides. That’s a good thing, but I’ve only managed the odd strength training session here and there. I’ll feel better when I get back to working with weights 2 or 3 times each week. (In fact, I started today with a 20-minute gym session and a 45-minute walk outside!)
One thing’s for certain: lifting weights pays off when you’re working on a project that involves unpacking, lifting, and setting up a 70-pound book binding machine! It might be only 4 reps per day, but it kept the muscles working so that I didn’t have to back up on the weights in today’s workout.
Unless something last minute comes up, tomorrow is my last road trip for a while, one that should have me home in time for dinner (flat bread pizza and salad) and baseball (Go Cards!). Much closer to my normal schedule than the past few weeks.
Take back my 15 minutes! – I’ve had odd bits of time to relax over the past few weeks and months, but I haven’t made time to just do nothing for 15 minutes a day. I hadn’t realized until late last week that I’d let that habit slip.
Taking that little bit of time each morning to focus my thoughts, examine my feelings, and explore my dreams helps me sort out the important from the things that can wait and separate the controllable from the things I can’t do anything about. Basically, it helps me breathe.
Get some sleep – My sleep schedule, which has been erratic for a few months now, has really taken a left turn lately. Too many pre-dawn departures, dinners at 8 p.m., late night paperwork, etc. I’m more than ready to get back to a regular sleep pattern. Or to find a new one. When I get overly tired, I do NOT make quality decisions! (See: aforementioned semi-ugly run-in with chocolate.)
Find the fun in it all! - I’ve been so focused on managing (or trying to) the basics that I haven’t had much time for fun and silliness. At least, that’s what it feels like right now. I’m looking forward to finding a fun little Cammy-style challenge or two to spark the pre-holiday months.
And of course, I’ll do any and all of the above imperfectly. For me, the main thing is to focus on each day as it unfolds and not get too caught up in what might happen in the future. Welcome to Year 6!
With that, I should probably go fold the laundry piled on top of my bed so that I can start practicing my sleep skillz!