(My obsessive goal for 2014 is to get to my goal weight of 120 lbs, essentially losing 56.6 lbs this year. So I’m sorry if it feels like I’m being repetitve with my blog posts at times but weight loss, and the bumpy ride of it, is a major focus of my year so it will most likely be a major focus of blog posts throughout the next 10 and a half months.)
In January, I did pretty well with losing weight. I ended up losing 5.7 lbs, which put me on pace to be at my goal weight by the end of December. I did it by cleaning up the way I ate and exercising. I gave myself a meal plan to follow (eating every two to three hours), I started working out harder and longer, and I limited soda and sweets. I wasn’t perfect and I could have done so much better (especially on weekends – weekends are my downfall), but it was a good start for me.
I wanted to continue my momentum in February, but things have come to a stuttering stop in the past few weeks. It just suddenly feels so hard. I’m coming up against so much resistance and everything feels like a challenge. Every hour feels like I’m fighting against myself and more often than not, I’m losing. And this is usually where I give up. I tell myself that I’m not strong enough, that being healthy is just too hard and I’m “not that girl,” and I allow the excuses to build up.
I’m still trying to lose weight, but the month of February has seen me gain 1.2 lbs the first week and then lose .2 lbs the second week, so things aren’t going well.
Why aren’t things going well? I’m not trying hard enough. That’s the simplest way to say it. I’m giving in to temptation way too easily and I’m saying yes when I need to say no. I’m following my meal plan probably 60% of the time, but letting myself off the hook the other 40%. And there’s probably the tiredness aspect of it. Chicken and rice and veggies only sound good for so long, until the thought of eating another serving of rice makes you want to throw up. I’m a big fan of variety and I could never be someone who eats the same thing every day, but I’m also a big fan of convenience and making this healthy eating thing as easy as possible for me, and chicken and rice and veggies is easy.
I’ve been in a very negative mindset about my eating habits for most of February and finding motivation to eat healthy and wake up early to exercise has been intensely difficult. And that’s why Nicole’s post last week came at the most perfect time.
In this post, she talks about the perfectionist trap and this all-or-nothing mentality of setting a huge, scary, mildly unrealistic goal and what happens in our heads when we realize we’re not going to achieve it. The negative self-talk, the defeatist attitude, the giving up. I do it. I’m not a perfectionist in any way, except when it comes to my goals. Then, I want to be perfect at everything and when I’m not, when I know I’m going to fail, I just give up completely. (The 12 Cookie Syndrome? It should really be called The Stephany Syndrome, because that. is. me.)
She also laid out a three-tiered goal-setting strategy. You have your A Goal, that’s your deliciously scary goal that you want really, really, really, really, really badly but it’s going to take everything in you to achieve. From there, you set two smaller goals, called B and C Goals, that will require putting in the hard work and effort to achieve, but they are a little bit easier to attain. This approach really woke me up and helped me to see that even if I don’t make this crazy goal I set for myself this year, I can still strive to achieve my B or C Goal, which will put me on the right path to attaining that A Goal in the future.
So my goals? Well, I thought you would never ask!
I want to get to my goal weight of 120 lbs.
What this means is that I have to lose 56.6 lbs this year, an average of a little over one pound per week. That’s a tall order for me and while I want to achieve this goal more than anything, it also scares me to death because it’s something I’ve been trying to achieve for years without much success.
I want to be at a healthy BMI.
Say what you want about BMI’s, but I appreciate the way they give you an accurate gauge for what a healthy weight is. Maybe not for everyone, but for me it does. To be at a healthy BMI, I would need to weigh 136 lbs, which equals to losing 40.6 lbs this year. That’s an average of .8 pounds a week, which isn’t terribly different from my A Goal, but something about it seems more attainable. Thinking about my BMI now makes me feel sick to my stomach and I don’t want to feel that way anymore.
I want to spend the year eating healthy 80% of the time and seeing consistent weight loss each month, even if it’s just a pound. This is a goal I can achieve, mainly because it’s not so much focused on a certain weight loss, but more on my effort.
I haven’t given up on my A Goal and I know it’s still achievable, even if February winds up being a bad month for me, weight loss wise. But having these other two goals to strive for helps to keep things in perspective for me. It helps me to see that, at the end of the day, my main goal is being healthier. Eating more wholesome foods, putting less junk in my body, and seeing myself become stronger and more fit through exercise. It’s going to be hard. It’s supposed to be hard. Nothing worth doing ever comes easily. And commitment means that I stay true to my goals, even when pushing through seems like sludging through a river of molasses. Even when every day is a challenge. Pushing through… that’s when the change happens. That’s when you find out just how much you’re willing to work for what you want.
Do you have a goal – big or small! – you’re trying to achieve right now?