Staying Motivated for the Long Haul

Posted by LindaF @fessmom, Jun 29, 2017

My biggest obstacle to maintaining a healthy weight is a seemingly invisible “switch” that goes on and off in my brain. When it’s “on” I am in the zone and can avoid the most decadent temptations and will exercise faithfully. But, about a year to 15 months into my healthy lifestyle, the switch turns to “off” and I lose focus and revert to my bad habits of poor food choices (both in what I eat and how much I eat) and I become more sedentary. I am at that point now and I feel a slow panic building as the number on the scale inches upward. I know what I should do, but I am at a loss as to how to get my mojo back. Suggestions, anyone!?

@contentandwell my "physical" was more of a brief conversation. I'm not sure how I felt about it after I left. I guess I was thinking more should have been done. This was my first time with a new doctor. I'll maybe go to someone else next year.
We are 5 hours from Rochester, so we stayed there for almost a month. Tim needed to be close for 3 weeks post transplant for appointments. Thank God for Gift if Life house! Staying at a hotel would have been so expensive.
JoDee

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@jodeej

@contentandwell my "physical" was more of a brief conversation. I'm not sure how I felt about it after I left. I guess I was thinking more should have been done. This was my first time with a new doctor. I'll maybe go to someone else next year.
We are 5 hours from Rochester, so we stayed there for almost a month. Tim needed to be close for 3 weeks post transplant for appointments. Thank God for Gift if Life house! Staying at a hotel would have been so expensive.
JoDee

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@jodeej You are right, a hotel would have been very expensive I imagine, these days they all are. The only time we used one for a medical reason was before I was supposed to have my first knee replacement. I had to be there very early in the morning so we stayed at Marriott close by, and I had Marriott points so it was free. Gotta love those points.
Your physical does sound overly brief. I can't believe how thorough my PCP wanted to be. He even wanted to do an EKG but they are only recommended something like every three years and I had one before my knee replacement in October so I told him NO. He did push to do a breast exam despite my telling him I have an appointment with my gynecologist later this month. I think he wanted to do all he could because the hospital he is affiliated with encourages that to pad the bill. I have become extremely negative about that hospital. I hope I never have to be in there again.
JK

Liked by jodeej

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@2011panc

@fessmom, I am glad that you are reaching out for help with your dietary/weight issues. Unfortunately I am also in a slump right now also. I have not gained, for which I am extremely grateful. But I am going through the cravings. What works for me is to make sure to eat a little something 6 times each day. I have compiled a list of better choices and really focus on that when my initiative fails. My main dietary focus is on lean meat protein, above-ground vegetables (except no green leafies or pumpkin/fall squash); fresh fruits (melons and stone fruit), and grains. I do not eat much prepared foods and try to avoid all preservatives and chemical additives to my food. Also, there are very few ‘fast’ foods that I will eat. I use grains for starches in my diet. I have coffee-water (2 oz coffee with 6 oz water) and room temperature water available all day. I keep bananas and at least one other fresh fruit on hand at all times. My primary protein sources are lean meats. I limit my nuts to walnuts, macadamia nuts and sunflower seeds. I rarely reach for a second helping. I have learned my serving sizes (general rule of thumb: palm of your hand or size of your fist). I substitute rice cakes for bread and rarely eat anything made with flour (including pasta and crackers).

Please be aware that I have worked into this dietary stance after 40+ years. My first step all those years ago was to drop sugar (baked goods). Luckily I liked sour and salty foods so that was relatively easy for me when I was given my first diabetic diet. I was surprised by how much sugar is in ordinary things like ketchup, canned soups, cereals, etc. Secondly I started watching for ways to cut fats. After that I added other limitations to my diet as needed. I currently limit: carbs, fats, dairy, fiber and oxalates. Just remember, I worked into this over 40 years, not all at once.

My best tips are: Read the ingredient labels. Make a list of foods you wish to avoid and another of foods you wish to eat. Pair your lists with 1 no/1 yes food. Pick a set and work on that until you feel you have made it a habit, then add another set. Limit yourself to one helping per meal. Learn what foods have hidden sugars, fats and salt. Learn what words manufacturers use that actually mean sugar. Stop using sweeteners, they increase your cravings and add chemicals to your diet. Learn what foods are naturally high in fats. Write your intended diet down for reference and occasionally keep a journal of what you are eating and when to cross check your desire with your actual.

I also have had times when no matter what I did my weight went up. A big part of mine was medications and lack of knowledge. Peanut Butter is good, right? Not necessarily, it is quite high in fat. Yogurt is good, right? Not necessarily, the probiotics may not be active and it may have sugar or sweetener added. My hardest time is after dinner. I like to peck. I have started eating sunflower seeds in the shell because it takes time to get that little seed out of the shell and calms my pecking urge without adding many calories. I sometimes substitute popcorn for a meal.

Good luck and keep asking.

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Dear 2011 panic: I really sympathise with you and wish you well in all your efforts. I am 75 and have followed the Mediterranean diet just about all my life, excluding some items that are really not my favorite, e.g. fruit (not a great fan). All I can say is I have not changed my weight since the age of 18 and still going strong. My refrigerator is full of fish, green leaf veggies, cottage cheese , etc. etc. I do like my Italian bread and the old legend was, eat it toasted and use Italian butter which is avoid real butter, use olive oil mixed with spices and spread it on the toasted bread. This is always ready in a jar on my kitchen counter. Have lots of grains, lots of salads. I try to move a lot but I get more sedentary in the winter and tend to eat more in cold weather but my weight change is no more than 4/5 lbs. if that much.
I know that sometimes temptation is hard to resist, but after a while you forget all the cheap sweet stuff out there. I grew up with excellent European pastry, nevertheless, one is more than enough to satisfy the sweet tooth once in a while, or a small spoon of peanut butter,
or whatever. I guess I do not eat a lot of fruit only because I ate so much of it in my youth that it does not attract me any more.
Try this for just one month, eat of this as much as you want and you will see it becomes routine and your weight and your tastes buds will improve greatly!
Bugsbunny

IMG_E1273 (1)

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Fessmom – to me, it's about what is really important to you in living your life. If you haven't learned to say "no" and stick to it (I've discovered this myself) because you're not going to tolerate the result of "backsliding", then you will forever be in the same position. I had to start this in my relationships with other people first, because when I was younger, I didn't know the meaning of the word "no" as far as society was concerned, and I enslaved myself to others. What follows next I share with some reservation, but… being enslaved to others is I believe is the essence of the problem. It's a matter of learning to love yourself, and balancing the love you share, while being true to yourself. The rest follows naturally.

Liked by lioness

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All of us on this site trying to improve our health and are seeking knowledge and motivation. I have read several books for my specific health issues that explained dietary and lifestyle changes to improve my autoimmune diseases. Some of the most recommended books for my diseases simply didn't motivate me, then I will find a used and tired decades old book for 25 cents at a library book sale that makes sense to me and sparks my motivation and yes when I follow though the results are beneficial. Yet these books are specific about my personal health issues, eczema and yeast and wouldn't be relevant for this group.

Can any of you recall a motivational book about generalized health improvement that made a difference in your life? A book that gave you the motivation to tough out a restricted diet or put in the physical therapy follow though effort to improve?

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gardeningjunkie,
Check out the Mayo Clinic Diet. I use it as my guide for trying to develop healthy habits. I especially like that it stresses a healthy-for-life plan for eating and for getting activity.
https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/weight-loss/in-depth/mayo-clinic-diet/art-20045460
I have purchased the book. There is also an online version of the diet plan.

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Thanks for your recommendation and will check out Mayo Diet Book. I am having such success with my yeast issues using the Dr. Crook diet, no sugars or carbs that I am motivated to stick with this plan. I did blow diet over the holidays, not from craving the foods, but because they were so darn good and I was surrounded by them.
The Crook diet plan did for me exactly what it foretold. A 2 month detox of sugars and carbs which would stop the cravings after 5-6 weeks that did happen. It would kill the residual yeast living in my intestines which the sugars and carbs feed. Yes all symptoms are gone Thanksgiving marked my 8 weeks of detox. Yet the plans says to slowly reintroduce carbs but always stay off the sugars. I overloaded on both for 4 days, but now am back home and with a houseful of good choices will resume the Crook way of eating. It's not difficult with the sugar craving gone.

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@gardeningjunkie

Thanks for your recommendation and will check out Mayo Diet Book. I am having such success with my yeast issues using the Dr. Crook diet, no sugars or carbs that I am motivated to stick with this plan. I did blow diet over the holidays, not from craving the foods, but because they were so darn good and I was surrounded by them.
The Crook diet plan did for me exactly what it foretold. A 2 month detox of sugars and carbs which would stop the cravings after 5-6 weeks that did happen. It would kill the residual yeast living in my intestines which the sugars and carbs feed. Yes all symptoms are gone Thanksgiving marked my 8 weeks of detox. Yet the plans says to slowly reintroduce carbs but always stay off the sugars. I overloaded on both for 4 days, but now am back home and with a houseful of good choices will resume the Crook way of eating. It's not difficult with the sugar craving gone.

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@gardenjunkie thats what I need to do get of sugar and carbs just for weight loss was it hard to do?

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Just as hard initially as quiting alcohol 3 years ago. The difference is after the first month of quiting alcohol I still wanted it andi for about a year, but knew 1 drink would lead to 3. Yet after giving up all carbs and sugar after 5 weeks or so, I noticed a dramatic decrease in the craving. My husband (a recent type 2 diabetic) is in complete denial because his A1c is normal taking 2 Metformin day and still wants my homemade desserts. Plus we always have a candy bowl for a quick bite of candy after a meal.Always ice cream in the freezer. Baking his favorite desserts and looking at these sugar foods all day takes will power, yet now I simply don't care. I believe I have rewired my brain. As mentioned before, there is a Time Magazine cover article about addictions- food, alcohol, drugs and such which came out earlier in 2018; fascinating about how we can rewire our brain so it no longer sends direct messages to these addictive pleasure centers. Thus we loose the addictive urge.
Initially I lost about 3 lbs in 2 weeks eating lots of fish, seafood, all meats except processed meats (an 6 oz filet fills the belly) veggie (no mushrooms as they are a fungus), almond milk (sugar free), kefir,plain probiotic yogurt I added Stevia the only allowed sweetner, good oils on salads, only Apple Cider Vinegar with the mother, eggs, and walnuts. Limited dairy- just the ones I mentioned. I like all these allowed foods so I still get to enjoy a full stomach. After the first 2 weeks the weight loss slowed so that in 2 months (even after Thanksgiving indulgence) I have lost about 7 lbs. I was never hungry, just craving. Yet now the craving is gone and my portion size for my healthy food is smaller, by choice. I am down to 130 and below 125 don't look healthy at my age, but now I am supposed to slowly add back some carbs. Yet no processed sugar ever and just minimal amounts of fruit. I used to eat 3-5 pieces a day, addicted to fruit snacking. As mentioned since I have had good results eliminating my chronic yeast inflammation ( I feel so good) I am very motivated to live like this.
Wake up one morning and give it a try. Having good food available it the key!!!!

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@gardeningjunkie

Just as hard initially as quiting alcohol 3 years ago. The difference is after the first month of quiting alcohol I still wanted it andi for about a year, but knew 1 drink would lead to 3. Yet after giving up all carbs and sugar after 5 weeks or so, I noticed a dramatic decrease in the craving. My husband (a recent type 2 diabetic) is in complete denial because his A1c is normal taking 2 Metformin day and still wants my homemade desserts. Plus we always have a candy bowl for a quick bite of candy after a meal.Always ice cream in the freezer. Baking his favorite desserts and looking at these sugar foods all day takes will power, yet now I simply don't care. I believe I have rewired my brain. As mentioned before, there is a Time Magazine cover article about addictions- food, alcohol, drugs and such which came out earlier in 2018; fascinating about how we can rewire our brain so it no longer sends direct messages to these addictive pleasure centers. Thus we loose the addictive urge.
Initially I lost about 3 lbs in 2 weeks eating lots of fish, seafood, all meats except processed meats (an 6 oz filet fills the belly) veggie (no mushrooms as they are a fungus), almond milk (sugar free), kefir,plain probiotic yogurt I added Stevia the only allowed sweetner, good oils on salads, only Apple Cider Vinegar with the mother, eggs, and walnuts. Limited dairy- just the ones I mentioned. I like all these allowed foods so I still get to enjoy a full stomach. After the first 2 weeks the weight loss slowed so that in 2 months (even after Thanksgiving indulgence) I have lost about 7 lbs. I was never hungry, just craving. Yet now the craving is gone and my portion size for my healthy food is smaller, by choice. I am down to 130 and below 125 don't look healthy at my age, but now I am supposed to slowly add back some carbs. Yet no processed sugar ever and just minimal amounts of fruit. I used to eat 3-5 pieces a day, addicted to fruit snacking. As mentioned since I have had good results eliminating my chronic yeast inflammation ( I feel so good) I am very motivated to live like this.
Wake up one morning and give it a try. Having good food available it the key!!!!

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@gardenjunkie Diet sounds good I don't eat alot of fattening foods like sugar only in store bought so this is what I have to eliminate when shopping I live in a senior apt building where there,s donuts here every day at coffee Its my willpower I need to work on.How bout cheese? Did you have to eliminate it? After my by- pass Dr told me to get of fat in red meat I try to buy lean and cut of fat.My husband was a diabetic but loved apple pie with cinnamon ice cream I would eat half of it I blossomed and haven't wilted yet lol

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I should have mentioned for the anti-yeast diet, no fermented cheeses only fresh, like American or Mozzarella. Aged cheese has mold. Just like peanuts can carry mold, but walnuts are ok.
The Crook diet is very simple, few choices. Yes for me just smelling a glazed donuts would make me crazy. This diet is not easy at first. After a month it gets easier.
Think of folks getting off heroin or nicotine. If they can stay away from these addictions, you can deprive yourself of your sugar and carb addiction.

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@gardeningjunkie

I should have mentioned for the anti-yeast diet, no fermented cheeses only fresh, like American or Mozzarella. Aged cheese has mold. Just like peanuts can carry mold, but walnuts are ok.
The Crook diet is very simple, few choices. Yes for me just smelling a glazed donuts would make me crazy. This diet is not easy at first. After a month it gets easier.
Think of folks getting off heroin or nicotine. If they can stay away from these addictions, you can deprive yourself of your sugar and carb addiction.

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@gardenjunkie thanks I do both cheeses but also gouda so I,ll google the diet.How are you doing?

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Fantastic! Surprisingly after eating all the Thanksgiving foods, returning to my anti-yeast eating diet is no effort.
Does your senior apartment building have a meeting room? You are so good about mentoring have you thought of having a health forum? Residents can share health issues and find out if others have information or suggestions that may help them. You are computer savvy and perhaps you could help them search on line for answers.

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@gardeningjunkie

Fantastic! Surprisingly after eating all the Thanksgiving foods, returning to my anti-yeast eating diet is no effort.
Does your senior apartment building have a meeting room? You are so good about mentoring have you thought of having a health forum? Residents can share health issues and find out if others have information or suggestions that may help them. You are computer savvy and perhaps you could help them search on line for answers.

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@gardenjunkie Yes we do and I do share health information with people on a one to one basis but I started a chair exercise program and never thought about opening it there .I,ll have to think about it Thanks you gave me a great idea .

Liked by gardeningjunkie

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@gardeningjunkie

Thanks for your recommendation and will check out Mayo Diet Book. I am having such success with my yeast issues using the Dr. Crook diet, no sugars or carbs that I am motivated to stick with this plan. I did blow diet over the holidays, not from craving the foods, but because they were so darn good and I was surrounded by them.
The Crook diet plan did for me exactly what it foretold. A 2 month detox of sugars and carbs which would stop the cravings after 5-6 weeks that did happen. It would kill the residual yeast living in my intestines which the sugars and carbs feed. Yes all symptoms are gone Thanksgiving marked my 8 weeks of detox. Yet the plans says to slowly reintroduce carbs but always stay off the sugars. I overloaded on both for 4 days, but now am back home and with a houseful of good choices will resume the Crook way of eating. It's not difficult with the sugar craving gone.

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@gardeningjunkie I never heard of the Dr. Crook diet, sounds interesting. No carbs at all? I think most dieticians or nutritionists say you really do need to have some carbs. I remember when I was young and dieted with NO CARBS, it left me totally drained of any energy at all.
JK

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