Weight Loss

Weigh-In Week: 190: Up a little again

Ooph! So this post got seriously waylaid by the holidays. I started writing it on Tuesday and then it got put aside…then I traveled for the holidays to my mom’s house – which is in Southern Ontario and since then we’ve been hit with an ice storm! Ack. Seriously I was in Montreal when the big one hit in 1998 and now this one. I’ve had enough ice storms to last me a lifetime thank you very much.


So now I get back to it…

Okay. Today I was up 0.6lbs for a new weight of 162.7lbs and total loss of 88.9lbs. ¬†Gotta say this up a couple pounds down a couple pounds is really getting tiresome. I’d be lying if I didn’t say that I wasn’t nervous that this dancing around the same spot for the last couple years could cause me to go overboard. I don’t want to gain back all the weight. I really don’t. And I’d like to lose this last 20ish pounds and get down to my goal weight and actually focus on maintenance, not just by default. ūüėź

I had a conversation with my WW leader and she asked me why I was struggling. Good question. ¬†Very good question. And I don’t know the answer.

A little over a year ago I wrote down seven reasons why I wanted to lose weight. However, something I’ve noticed is that the reasons I had outlined ¬†before to lose weight no longer really apply. And to be honest, although it was ¬†a topic at our WW meetings about a month ago – I’ve realized that I’m struggling to find new reasons.

Reason 1: To be Considered – I no longer feel out of the norm, when I meet a guy for a date or show up at an interview I no longer worry that someone is going to be surprised by my physical appearance (i.e. my weight)

Reason 2: To be Comfortable in my Body: I no longer feel uncomfortable. Sure, sometimes I feel swollen and bloated and some clothes feel tighter every now and then, but in general I don’t give my body the same thought I used to. I don’t get out of breathe easily – in fact I always choose stairs over an escalator or elevator when given the chance. I can bend over, I carry heavy items, I fit easily in chairs and booths etc. I no longer worry my body won’t be able to do something I want it to do.

Reason 3: To Wear Pretty Clothes: Ok, so it’s not like I can wear anything I want – I still have these huge calves and my body isn’t tiny – I’m about a size 8-12 depending on the type of store (e.g. I’m an 8/small at Old Navy but a 12/large at higher end stores!) — but over all I’m able to find cute and pretty clothes. In fact I discovered I really like wearing cute dresses and have a whole collection!

Reason 4: For my body to be a machine: Fine, it’s not a machine…yet…but you know what it can do a heck of a lot! I can run a 5K without a second thought and in fact run a 10k. I weight train often and have actual muscle definition. The notion of joining a sports team or going for a hike or bike ride are actually exciting me nowadays rather than terrifying. I look forward to new ways of moving and testing my body.

Reason 5: So my weight doesn’t stop me from living my life: You know what? It doesn’t…not anymore. I actually can’t remember the last time I considered my weight when I thought about doing something. I’m actually a little bit in shock as I write this because I really haven’t considered my weight in a long time and I’m a bit surprised by that. Wow. I’ve come a long way.

Reason 6: To not be out of breath: Wow. It’s been a long time since I’ve been out of breath doing everyday things. Now even when I exercise and I get out of breath I get excited because I know it means I’ve pushed myself further. I look forward to being out of breath – again I can’t believe by how far I’ve come.

Reason 7: To be happy with my life:¬†“Happiness is a journey, not a destination.” -Alfred D. Souza. Ain’t that the truth. I can definitely say I am happier now then I was then. But it’s all a journey and it’s nice to

Here is where I find myself – I have to find my new reasons. The reasons to take me past this blip and onto goal…

Weight Loss

REASON FOR LOSING WEIGHT 7: To be happy with my life

Now, before we jump to the conclusion that I think thinness = happiness, that’s not it. This is the one reason that really is an amalgamation¬†of all the rest. What I mean by being happy with my life is living my life to the fullest – and that means not letting my weight hold me back in any way. That means I get to make the choices I make – whether it’s about who I date, what jobs I go after, what adventures I partake in etc. I mean that I don’t want to be sitting at home making excuses. I want to be living my life.

I’ll be honest – I sometimes feel like I wasted my 20s. It’s a very hard thing to say and to admit to oneself. Sure I had a good time, but you know what? I know myself and I know I held myself back. I did it for various reasons – some were external (what will people think of me), and some were internal (I shouldn’t do that, what if I can’t do that, etc.) I remember when I was up north with a job once and there were zip lines through the forest. We had a 3-4 hour break between shows and, if I’d had the courage, if I thought I had the physical strength, then I would have totally done it. Booked the lesson and zipped through the trees. But I didn’t.

Sure there are people out there who are overweight who claim they are 100% happy and that their weight doesn’t stop them from enjoying life to the fullest. Maybe. Maybe not. All I can say is that I wasn’t one of them.

What if, what if, what if. I don’t want to look back and wonder what if. What’s that saying? Well according to old reliable Google this is the quote I’m thinking of:

I’d rather regret the things I’ve done than regret the things I haven’t done. ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† – Lucille Ball

And that’s exactly it. I want experiences not excuses. My weight was stopping me. I know that now, no matter how much I tried to convince myself otherwise. Am I happier now? I sure am! Am I happy because I’m thinner? In part – but really I’m happier because now I’m the one who gets to make the choice – to do something, to try something. I don’t wonder will I fit? Will it hold me? Will I have the energy? I just do it – if I fail, I fail, if I succeed, I succeed – but at least I tried.

So this is it. The last one in my series of why I re-embarked on my weight loss journey. It’s been a good thing to go back over them. To realize that in one way or another I’ve reached all my old goals. Perhaps a fresh start is indeed what I need. I need to readjust and re-evaluate and think about what exactly I have to gain my losing the rest.

I’ll be back later tonight with my weight-in post. Til then – thanks for reading.

Weight Loss

REASON FOR LOSING WEIGHT 6: To not be out of breath

So you might think this one could be rolled into other ones I’ve already mentioned. Perhaps. But this one needs its own post because I have to admit something to you all and I have to ask you¬†a question if you have ever been overweight, and I mean seriously overweight like I was:

Have you ever faked a yawn to cover up being out of breath?

I’m dead serious. I have done this. I have done this more than once, in fact I kinda thought myself an expert at this. I would do this after walking up a hill with some friends. Or after walking up a staircase or two. Or after bending over the tie a shoelace or pick something up.

I have no idea if I was ever fooling anybody.  I convinced myself I was and that was the most important part. It was embarrassing to me to be out of breath. How had I let my body get to that point?!

I decided I had to get over my fear of being out of breath and actually start to move my body. I decided that if I was¬†embarrassed¬†with other people that I would start along and so I ¬†started walking home from work. It was a 5K walk up over the mountain. In the summer. I would be panting all the way up, but I didn’t care. I was alone and on a route not often traveled. I sweated and I huffed-and-puffed. Eventually it became easier and my breathing got easier.

I no longer worry about having to run for the bus or race down the stairs to catch the subway because I’ll be completely winded. It’s much nicer when you know you can rely on your lungs to keep going.

Weight Loss

REASON FOR LOSING WEIGHT 5: So my weight doesn’t stop me from living my life

Okay, this one is late and coming in right before the deadline of midnight. Today was a day filled with family obligations and travel so I’ve left it a bit late. That’s okay. Here is reason number 5!

There are many things I’d like to do in life. I suppose it’s my bucket list, except that I¬†haven’t¬†made an official list anywhere and I’m pretty sure I forget as many things as I “remember” suddenly! Ha! Some of the things on my list are things like: go skydiving, travel to the Mayan temples in Mexico and the Inca sites in Peru. There are others, but I’m going to focus on these later on. I am, in general, the person who is up for anything. You might not know it if you don’t know me well enough as I come across as someone who likes to plan things in advance – which is true, but flip side is that I’ll also take off and do random things on the spur of the moment.

So what do the 3 above things have in common? Well you have to be in pretty good shape to be able to do them, or at least to be able to do them the way I would want to. I realized as I was getting bigger and bigger that my weight was stopping me from living my life. And by that I mean that I wouldn’t be “up for anything” as much anymore and to be honest, people didn’t ask me as often (now that’s a chicken and the egg question there, so who knows, but it’s still relevant). I realized that even if I”m not talking about “adventures” I just didn’t want to do as much. Would I get tired easily? Was it just too much effort? Could my night be better spent at home…eating? (Seriously I thought this!) And I realized I just didn’t want to live that way. I wanted to be that person that was “up for anything”.

Then it happened – last year, when I was about 175lbs, a friend emailed a group of us to say there was a Groupon coupon for a night of trapeze lessons. Yes, you read that right. Trapeze. We have a place in Montreal called Trapezium¬†¬†which will teach you how to do FLYING TRAPEZE!! What!? Well what can I say – I said yes! And I did it. Now I had a bit of a panic attack my first time at the bar and I had to climb back down because I wasn’t sure my arms could hold my body. But after I calmed myself down I put my big girl panties on and conquered my fear and did it. Ok. Let’s be honest, I don’t need to do it again, but I can now say I’ve done it. That’s what I mean by my weight not stopping me. Instead of looking for excuses anymore I now look for adventure. Because sometimes the experience is worth it, and sometimes it’s the story at the end of the night.

Exercise · Weight Loss

REASON FOR LOSING WEIGHT 4: For my body to be a machine

So I’ve mentioned that I work in theatre, and so I work with actors. The type of work I do and that I enjoy seeing falls under the moniker “physical theatre”. It is not dance, but rather theatre where the body takes precedence over the words and text. As I was working on shows I realized¬†that I felt hypocritical to ask my actors to do things with their body that I couldn’t even begin to attempt.

Now, yes, they are trained differently than I am and use their bodies as their primary mode of communication on stage, but still. It just didn’t sit right with me. When I was overweight I tried to take a 2-day workshop and after the first day that I just couldn’t do it. I wasn’t comfortable playing with my body and using it. Now I don’t have to do this on stage in front of an audience, but I thought I should be able to do it in the comfortable setting of a workshop. It felt horrible. I felt like a hypocrite. By no means should a director necessarily be able to do what an actor does, I felt like I couldn’t even come close. Like I didn’t know what was possible for the human body to do or what its limits were because my own limits were so much more due to my size.

And I have changed that – I feel like I can take a workshop now and move and not be afraid to move. I don’t get out of breath as easily and I can actually do the movements – perhaps not as well as an actor can, but I no longer feel like a hypocrite.

That is what I mean by my body being a machine – human bodies are remarkable things and when our muscles and bones etc all work together it can create beautiful pictures. I wanted my body to be able to move and to respond. I wanted a body that I could work and with work it could do new and exciting things. I want a body that is not encumbered by fat, but rather can be used to its full potential. I think that’s why I like training for my races so much. After each training session or race I can do new and wonderful things with my body. My body changes, gets better, faster, more limber. My body does what I believe it was meant to do – it moves.

Clothes · Weight Loss

REASON FOR LOSING WEIGHT 3: To wear pretty clothes

Okay. So as shallow as this may sound, it’s the truth. When I was overweight I couldn’t wear the clothes I wanted too. Usually because it was a style that just didn’t look good on a round body. Most clothes just are not designed for over-weight bodies. They don’t sit right or they ride up either at the front or the back.

Most of the time I had to wear what fit rather than what I wanted. So I lived in jeans, hoodies, and non-button up shirts. I’ll be honest, I kinda looked the same each time. In the summer, no shorts – no sireee, I wore cargo capris or jeans. Yes, I suffered through horrible summers constantly over-heating. I never wore a tank-top or anything without sleeves because I hated this weird fat line on my upper arm (which is still there I might add…but smaller, I’m working on it). My clothes said nothing about my personality, they were simply the¬†covering¬†I could find.¬†And because I sweated so much I opted for black or white tops to hid the wet stains. I don’t think I did a very good job hiding it. Dress and skirts? Never. Now there are some very nice plus size clothing out there, but they’re expensive and I couldn’t afford them. And they look like old people clothing. I grew up over weight at a time where there was no Old Navy in Canada or online shopping. ¬†So when I found hoodies – hahaha! something to cover the rolls! – I was hooked.

I used to always say I hated shopping – but the truth was that I hated shopping with other people. I couldn’t shop in the same stores my friends did because they just didn’t have the sizes. And I wasn’t going to bring them with me to the plus-sized stores. Which I have to say as a youth, or even in my 20s was terribly¬†embarrassing¬†to go to. It was like if anyone saw me enter those stores I would be admitting I was fat. WHAT!? Why are we always honest with ourselves last? I wanted my humiliation when clothes didn’t fit or I had to go up a size again or they didn’t have my size to be mine and mine alone.

And now I’ll fill you in no a not-so-secret secret. I like shopping. Turns out, I love dresses. Especially the sweater dresses that are in style. You don’t need to know how many I own…seriously you don’t. I can now buy most clothes in a store (still depending on the store) and I have CHOICE. Glorious choice. ¬†And an extra perk I found out only after losing weight: uhmmm…non-plus size clothing is A LOT cheaper! I won’t go into why I think that is or what the reasoning is for that right now…but clearly from this post I should do some more about clothing. I can’t deny how much the shape of my body has changed and how that has completely changed my relationship with clothing and how I choose to present myself to the world.

Now, I still can’t wear everything I want, but I did find out what cuts and styles actually look good me, which I didn’t before. A-line skirts just don’t work no matter how cute I find them, I’m short and I have thick legs, it ain’t gonna happen. However, pencil skirts and dresses? I totally rock those! And I love them!

Weight Loss

REASON FOR LOSING WEIGHT 2: To be comfortable in my body

It had gotten to a point where I was no longer comfortable in my own body. Walking up and down stairs was trying, bending over was trying, everything was slowly becoming trying and making me out of breath. My rings were getting tight, I felt bloated most days and my knees were making noise when I walked up and down stairs.

I found myself coming up with excuses not to expend energy – like carry too much stuff in one shot so I wouldn’t have to make a second trip, or take another street where the walk wouldn’t be as steep. What I considered everyday activities were getting difficult and uncomfortable.¬†I was also becoming uncomfortable in my clothing, even if I bought bigger clothing it never fit right, I never felt at ease in my body unless I was in jeans and and a hoodie. A dress or skirt? Forget it. The tights were uncomfortable, the dress wouldn’t fit right.

Everything just felt wrong. I wanted to change that. I wanted to feel comfortable in my body. In how I felt in it, in what it could do, in how I felt in clothing. As I started to lose weight this started to come. But I’ll be honest, after such a large loss of 90lbs I’ve needed time to get used to and thus comfortable in this new body before me. I thought it would come quickly, the comfort. You know, smaller body means it fits into the world more readily. And that is very true – I no longer get out of breath (unless I am running really really fast!) or worry about sitting between two people on a bus or sitting comfortably in movie theatre seating and a plethora of other things – but I wasn’t comfortable. That is something that has come over this last year, this last year where I have lost only 6lbs and yet continue on. I have¬†achieved¬†this comfort. I can honestly say I feel comfortable in my body – is this why I’m stuck? Do I need to to re-evaluate this reason? Perhaps there’s something to this. Have I reached my initial goals? Do I need to create new ones to get me through this hump? Have I, in effect, gotten too comfortable? Hmmm…something to ponder.