I lost the same 25 pounds about 10 times over 10 years. I would diet for a time, experienced some success and then assume I had it all under control. Instead of continuing to follow whatever program I was trying at the time, I would quit and think to myself. “I can just do this on my own.” Unfortunately at that time, I couldn’t do it on my own, and would inevitably end up quickly finding the pounds I had lost. Often, I would end up gaining even more than I had lost in the first place. You would think that after a few times of this happening, I would have clued into the fact that I didn’t have it under control, but I didn’t.
Each time this happened, I would go through the same psychological cycle.
1) I would get mad at myself and think things like: Why couldn’t I control my weight like other people seemed to be able to do? I’m just destined to be fat.
2) Then I would get depressed. I would dwell on the fact that I had to shop in big girl stores, wear unflattering clothes, and feel tired all the time.
3) And finally, I sometimes experienced fear. I became afraid to try again because I didn’t want to fail again.
This happened to me over and over throughout the years. I wish I could tell you exactly how many times I cycled around the same 25 pounds. At least 10 times if not more. It was a never ending cycle of weight loss, weight gain, weight loss, and weight gain. (You notice that it never ended with a loss, but rather a gain!)
Every time my weight yo-yoed around I felt like more and more of a failure. But fortunately, the one thing I didn’t do was completely give up. No matter how frustrated or fearful I was, I would eventually try again. Then the cycle would start again. I realize now, looking back, that I was caught up in weight cycling, or yo-yo dieting, and didn’t even realize it. Fortunately, studies have shown that although weight cycling isn’t ideal, it doesn’t mean you should just give up trying.
Weight loss is often not a straight line, but rather is like a meandering creek that takes us into unexpected places. My journey was in the shape of a circle for a long time. I went around and around and got nowhere.
What shape would you use to describe your journey into health and fitness? Was it a circle that broke a bit? How about a line on a graph showing great progress but then many peaks and valleys? Or perhaps you are one of the fortunate ones whose journey has been straight forward and sharp.
Whatever shape you use to describe your journey please know this. A circle can be broken. A line can straighten out, and mountains can be moved. What shape are you? Diane
By the way, tomorrow I have a small giveaway!