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!?

@IWantToBelieve

@rosemarya – I’m learning, for me, that a little taste is better than no taste and keeps me from craving because mentally I feel less deprived. For example, while doing Jenny Craig I have finished my daughter’s rootbeer (maybe 4 oz), eaten one forkful of her cheesecake, had 10 candy corns etc. with no negative impact on my weight loss. I find that if I don’t have a taste then I have negative self-talk (I can’t keep this healthy eating up, this stinks that I can’t have anything sweet, this is too hard etc.) so a little treat actually keeps me on track. In the past I would have said, “I mind as well enjoy it” and drink an entire can of pop. Of course I can’t do this with everything I see that I want so I have learned to decide what is really worth stealing a taste of. Obviously it would be best to have none of these things in the house but she had a birthday and I still need to cook for her.

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You are lucky to be able to do that. I never could, pre-cancer. Part of the pleasure of eating was eating too much. Not having the stuff in the house was hugely important. It’s amazing the lies we tell ourselves. Often I told myself that I needed to have the foods for my kids. I knew I was lying to myself as I was thinking it.

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@techi

I understand l had fusion surgery in 2015 and foot surgery in 2016. Sometimes l try to walk but my left foot hurts after the surgery and it’s so hard to get up and move. So now l try to take my dog out to walk. My legs are swollen and l believe it’s the diuretics because sometimes if you take medicine for along time or your given another it’s not effective. I also gained a lot of weight. I was down to a size 14 and brought a lot of new clothes because l was so happy l lost weight. Then l went to size 16. I said ok maybe it’s okay to gain a little weight so l went and brought some more new clothes. And now l am wearing a size 18. Well that’s terrible so now l have decided to eat vegan foods. I definitely want to get back in shape so don’t get depressed you are definitely not the only one. It’s hard but and discouraging at first but it can be done. You can definitely succeed and even if it’s one pound l learned to reward myself because l know it encourages me that l can do it.

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@techy – Lisa, Thank you for sharing your experience and your words of encouragement.
You said that you have learned to reward yourself because it encourages you. I think this is a terrific idea as we all try to stay motivated, and to work past oursetbacks. Would you be willing to share how you reward yourself?
Rosemary

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@contentandwell

@fessmom We all have those struggles. I lost a lot of weight, my incentive being to lower my BMI before the liver transplant which I hoped to have, and now have had (transplantiversary coming up on 09.23). I kept it up afterwards for a while but I’ve really been struggling recently. I think just today I may be back on track. It’s so difficult though. You have to find some motivation. For me now it’s my daughter’s wedding and an upcoming vacation.
My dear son is my biggest cheerleader. When he was home during the summer he reminded me that the pleasure of eating something tempting was over very quickly but the results were there and harder to reverse. Of course he himself is very disciplined and an exercise addict. I have a fitness tracker and when I go occasionally go way over the goal I have set I will take a screen shot and message it to him. His boss has the same fitness tracker and my son tells me that I would “crush” his boss. 😉 He gives me incentive too. I do wish I had someone I could really sort of go back and forth with, encouraging each other. Maybe we should start a conversation for that, for people who are struggling to lose weight… or is this just that?
The last time before my recent loss when I managed to lose a lot of weight was when I was working at the Inn and I had all of these tiny young woman working for me. I was determined to get out of plus sizes and I DID. That was such an achievement for me because I had been a “plus” for quite a while.
OK, here I go… my weight had at some point, probably about 15 years ago, been up to 235. I was at 145, have now put on about 8 pounds that I HAVE TO LOSE because I have a whole new wardrobe and I will not buy another wardrobe in the next size up, that would be admitting defeat.
Good luck, private message if you want and we can encourage each other.
Oh, and regarding exercise. I belong to a health club and do pool exercises a lot. When I do not make the class I go later in the day and job/march/ up and down a lane as vigorously as I can, swinging my arms to make it a cardio workout too. It helps my knees and everything. I sometimes go to the gym but I HATE the gym, it makes me feel totally inadequate. I find that going to the class or on my own gives me more energy afterwards. If I do nothing then I end up feeling sluggish, but some days admittedly I do nothing. I love the class I go to, there is a great group of women (and a couple of men) in there. The W and F instructor is fabulous and she will be 70 next month. She never lets you stop all through the class which generally goes 50 – 55 minutes. Then I do a bit on my own to burn up some additional calories.
Now it’s late, I will not make the 9:00 class tomorrow morning so I will probably head to the dreaded gym. UGH. I know it’s good for me, so I do try to do it a couple of times a week.
JK

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Just an update, I have managed to lose about 5 pounds of the 8 – 10 I put on. I hope I can manage to not gain on vacation but that will be tough, more eating out than usual and less exercise.
JK

Liked by IWantToBelieve

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@IWantToBelieve

@rosemarya – I’m learning, for me, that a little taste is better than no taste and keeps me from craving because mentally I feel less deprived. For example, while doing Jenny Craig I have finished my daughter’s rootbeer (maybe 4 oz), eaten one forkful of her cheesecake, had 10 candy corns etc. with no negative impact on my weight loss. I find that if I don’t have a taste then I have negative self-talk (I can’t keep this healthy eating up, this stinks that I can’t have anything sweet, this is too hard etc.) so a little treat actually keeps me on track. In the past I would have said, “I mind as well enjoy it” and drink an entire can of pop. Of course I can’t do this with everything I see that I want so I have learned to decide what is really worth stealing a taste of. Obviously it would be best to have none of these things in the house but she had a birthday and I still need to cook for her.

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@lcamino Lynn, I am just the opposite, a little is rarely enough, so I end up eating too much. I am much better abstaining entirely.
JK

Liked by IWantToBelieve

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@contentandwell

@fessmom We all have those struggles. I lost a lot of weight, my incentive being to lower my BMI before the liver transplant which I hoped to have, and now have had (transplantiversary coming up on 09.23). I kept it up afterwards for a while but I’ve really been struggling recently. I think just today I may be back on track. It’s so difficult though. You have to find some motivation. For me now it’s my daughter’s wedding and an upcoming vacation.
My dear son is my biggest cheerleader. When he was home during the summer he reminded me that the pleasure of eating something tempting was over very quickly but the results were there and harder to reverse. Of course he himself is very disciplined and an exercise addict. I have a fitness tracker and when I go occasionally go way over the goal I have set I will take a screen shot and message it to him. His boss has the same fitness tracker and my son tells me that I would “crush” his boss. 😉 He gives me incentive too. I do wish I had someone I could really sort of go back and forth with, encouraging each other. Maybe we should start a conversation for that, for people who are struggling to lose weight… or is this just that?
The last time before my recent loss when I managed to lose a lot of weight was when I was working at the Inn and I had all of these tiny young woman working for me. I was determined to get out of plus sizes and I DID. That was such an achievement for me because I had been a “plus” for quite a while.
OK, here I go… my weight had at some point, probably about 15 years ago, been up to 235. I was at 145, have now put on about 8 pounds that I HAVE TO LOSE because I have a whole new wardrobe and I will not buy another wardrobe in the next size up, that would be admitting defeat.
Good luck, private message if you want and we can encourage each other.
Oh, and regarding exercise. I belong to a health club and do pool exercises a lot. When I do not make the class I go later in the day and job/march/ up and down a lane as vigorously as I can, swinging my arms to make it a cardio workout too. It helps my knees and everything. I sometimes go to the gym but I HATE the gym, it makes me feel totally inadequate. I find that going to the class or on my own gives me more energy afterwards. If I do nothing then I end up feeling sluggish, but some days admittedly I do nothing. I love the class I go to, there is a great group of women (and a couple of men) in there. The W and F instructor is fabulous and she will be 70 next month. She never lets you stop all through the class which generally goes 50 – 55 minutes. Then I do a bit on my own to burn up some additional calories.
Now it’s late, I will not make the 9:00 class tomorrow morning so I will probably head to the dreaded gym. UGH. I know it’s good for me, so I do try to do it a couple of times a week.
JK

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@contentandwell – Congrats!!! Just enjoy swimming and walking in Hawaii. Lots of great fish to eat there also when in restaurants.

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@IWantToBelieve

@rosemarya – I’m learning, for me, that a little taste is better than no taste and keeps me from craving because mentally I feel less deprived. For example, while doing Jenny Craig I have finished my daughter’s rootbeer (maybe 4 oz), eaten one forkful of her cheesecake, had 10 candy corns etc. with no negative impact on my weight loss. I find that if I don’t have a taste then I have negative self-talk (I can’t keep this healthy eating up, this stinks that I can’t have anything sweet, this is too hard etc.) so a little treat actually keeps me on track. In the past I would have said, “I mind as well enjoy it” and drink an entire can of pop. Of course I can’t do this with everything I see that I want so I have learned to decide what is really worth stealing a taste of. Obviously it would be best to have none of these things in the house but she had a birthday and I still need to cook for her.

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@contentandwell – As I have stated in past posts – you need to do what works for YOU and you know you CAN do it based on your past successes at getting healthy.

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@lcamino the lack of vacation with adult children is why we are heading to Hawaii now, on plane awaiting take-off as I write! It will be so much fun to share this with our son. I miss family vacations, and we NEVER had a vacation without children until our daughter was in college.
JK

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Hello everyone! My name is Gizem, and I have hashimoto’s disease and insulin resistance. It makes me gain weight easily, but loose it in a very hard way. I can’t really do much of a workout on a regular basis because of my university studies. so ı try to eat as healthy as possible. still, it is really hard for me to keep it that way and feel like it is impossibe to eat healthy with all the intense school life, and feel like giving up on all the healthy diet! Anyone like me, facing obstacles to eat healthy or had that times of giving up, how did you keep going, what is your motivation? How you ever failed to go on? And, maybe, start all over?

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@gizem16

Hello everyone! My name is Gizem, and I have hashimoto’s disease and insulin resistance. It makes me gain weight easily, but loose it in a very hard way. I can’t really do much of a workout on a regular basis because of my university studies. so ı try to eat as healthy as possible. still, it is really hard for me to keep it that way and feel like it is impossibe to eat healthy with all the intense school life, and feel like giving up on all the healthy diet! Anyone like me, facing obstacles to eat healthy or had that times of giving up, how did you keep going, what is your motivation? How you ever failed to go on? And, maybe, start all over?

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Hello @gizem16,

I moved your conversation in to a conversation taking place called, “Staying Motivated for the Long Haul.” I did this because your topic hits on many of the points members are talking about in this discussion. If you are replying via email, I suggest clicking on VIEW & REPLY to be brought to the full discussion and reading through some of the posts by the members discussing weight management and staying motivated to be fit.

@gizem16, I also tend to eat more unhealthy as I get more busy because it is more convenient. Have you ever thought about or tried meal prepping for multiple days? I recently started doing this every Sunday while I watch football. It is tedious, but if you put on a good show or music you can spend a few hours preparing food. Again, this may be difficult with an intense school routine.

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The switch has recently gone off in my mind and for the last four months, I no longer eat anything white except cauliflower. No sugar, flour, pasta. No more Coke, ice cream, sweets and all the other unhealthy foods. Only water and lemon are consumed, along with fresh fruits and veggies. Protein with dinner, no red meat. The key to better health is exercise. I now walk 30 minutes every day and enjoy salsa music to keep me moving. I feel better than ever in my 71 years. Healthy eating and exercise are addictive and I have also dropped 35 pounds and have a goal of losing 15 more. You can do it! Weight loss and healthy living is definitely starts with a mind set.

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@maisie89

The switch has recently gone off in my mind and for the last four months, I no longer eat anything white except cauliflower. No sugar, flour, pasta. No more Coke, ice cream, sweets and all the other unhealthy foods. Only water and lemon are consumed, along with fresh fruits and veggies. Protein with dinner, no red meat. The key to better health is exercise. I now walk 30 minutes every day and enjoy salsa music to keep me moving. I feel better than ever in my 71 years. Healthy eating and exercise are addictive and I have also dropped 35 pounds and have a goal of losing 15 more. You can do it! Weight loss and healthy living is definitely starts with a mind set.

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@maisie89, I am Rosemary, a volunteer mentor on Mayo Clinic Connect. I want to welcome you to Connect. And I especially welcome you to this particular discussion on Staying Motivated! In my opinion, you have made a perfectly timed entry:-) I, and probably others, are already experiencing the holiday splurges, and the ‘winter blahs’ .

Would you share with us, what caused the ‘switch’ to go off in your mind? And how did you develop your current eating plan?
I am looking forward to hearing from you.
Rosemary

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@gizem16

Hello everyone! My name is Gizem, and I have hashimoto’s disease and insulin resistance. It makes me gain weight easily, but loose it in a very hard way. I can’t really do much of a workout on a regular basis because of my university studies. so ı try to eat as healthy as possible. still, it is really hard for me to keep it that way and feel like it is impossibe to eat healthy with all the intense school life, and feel like giving up on all the healthy diet! Anyone like me, facing obstacles to eat healthy or had that times of giving up, how did you keep going, what is your motivation? How you ever failed to go on? And, maybe, start all over?

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@gizem16, I just now saw your post about staying motivated. I am in a constant struggle with obstacles that seem to jump in front of me. I do try to keep healthy foods in my kitchen, but that only makes it easy for me at home!
I understand the difficulties of trying to eat healthy while on a busy schedule with classwork and crazy hours. I can feel your frustrations at feeling overwhelmed, but might I suggest that you don’t be so hard on your self? When I do the ‘guilt thing’ I only end up eating more. Have you considered taking it one day at a time, and try to focus on one day of healthy eating at a time? If you mess up, there’s is tomorrow.
Another thing is to try to eat smaller portions. This is a hard one for me! But it really does help.
And water. Drink lots of water. I try to sip all day long.

What are some of the methods that you have tried so far?
Rosemary

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@gizem16

Hello everyone! My name is Gizem, and I have hashimoto’s disease and insulin resistance. It makes me gain weight easily, but loose it in a very hard way. I can’t really do much of a workout on a regular basis because of my university studies. so ı try to eat as healthy as possible. still, it is really hard for me to keep it that way and feel like it is impossibe to eat healthy with all the intense school life, and feel like giving up on all the healthy diet! Anyone like me, facing obstacles to eat healthy or had that times of giving up, how did you keep going, what is your motivation? How you ever failed to go on? And, maybe, start all over?

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I started by drinking green smoothies, see 10-Day Green Smoothie Cleanse by JJ Smith. I drank two smoothies a day and a small dinner with protein and salads for two weeks. Snacks were carrots, celery, radishes, lots of water. Then back to a regular diet including whole grains, fresh veggies and fresh fruits. I didn’t miss sweets because of the fresh fruits. Herbal tea helped when I thought I was hungry. Mind set!! Get moving, you can do it!

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@maisie89

The switch has recently gone off in my mind and for the last four months, I no longer eat anything white except cauliflower. No sugar, flour, pasta. No more Coke, ice cream, sweets and all the other unhealthy foods. Only water and lemon are consumed, along with fresh fruits and veggies. Protein with dinner, no red meat. The key to better health is exercise. I now walk 30 minutes every day and enjoy salsa music to keep me moving. I feel better than ever in my 71 years. Healthy eating and exercise are addictive and I have also dropped 35 pounds and have a goal of losing 15 more. You can do it! Weight loss and healthy living is definitely starts with a mind set.

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Yes, my annual physical was coming up and for the last five years my doctor told me I needed to lose weight because of heart issues in my family and also a history of colon cancer. I decided I would lose weight before he saw me. I used JJ Smith’s 10-day Green Smoothie Cleanse. That got me started and my doctor was delighted I had dropped 12 pounds. After the physical, my liver enzymes were slightly elevated. Of course, I read everything I could on liver problems. The key to a healthy liver is fresh fruits, veggies and no sugar, lots of water. I made up my mind this would be my way of life. It’s not hard and after many tests, turns out I have a genetic problem that is nothing to worry about. I will continue following The Liver Cleansing Diet by Dr. Sandra Cabot.

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@maisie89

The switch has recently gone off in my mind and for the last four months, I no longer eat anything white except cauliflower. No sugar, flour, pasta. No more Coke, ice cream, sweets and all the other unhealthy foods. Only water and lemon are consumed, along with fresh fruits and veggies. Protein with dinner, no red meat. The key to better health is exercise. I now walk 30 minutes every day and enjoy salsa music to keep me moving. I feel better than ever in my 71 years. Healthy eating and exercise are addictive and I have also dropped 35 pounds and have a goal of losing 15 more. You can do it! Weight loss and healthy living is definitely starts with a mind set.

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With all of this talk about losing weight does anyone know what can cause unintentional weight loss? I have lost about 10 pounds in the last two months without trying to. I feel great (except for this darned knee which is still giving me problems). It just seems odd.
JK

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