Operation Healthy: One Month In

Since July is long gone (well, four days gone..) that means that I've officially been on my healthy living plan now for four weeks; more than enough time to write in and share how things are going with it so far.

Let's start with the positives: in four weeks, I'm down  fourteen pounds. I'm pleased with that; despite only losing a measly 1-pound in the last week itself. It's a pretty consistent loss when you work out the average of around 3-pounds per week. I've become a lot more aware of my portion sizes; particularly with innocent meals like cereals and dinners - I was going completely overboard and not even realising, since that was "normal" for me. Now, I'm starting to find myself fuller for longer & I'm never really going without, which is important to me.

Another positive is that I'm being a lot more conscious of eating enough food. While I was busy spending May and June working out rigorously, I wasn't losing any weight. Looking back, I think it was because I was eating my meals all wrong, with big portions at set times each day and not many snacks in between. I'm now eating more - but smaller sizes and at random times throughout the day. I'm eating a lot more fruit, and finding good things to snack on that will keep me within my calorie "goal" (I hate the word "limit") each day. I downloaded an iPhone app called Lose It, and while it took a bit of time initially plugging in most of my regular meals, it's super easy to use now.

But of course, there are always downsides to a weight loss journey - if it was a quick and easy fix, I'd already be at my ideal weight and size. The most common gripe I have is about ME and how I carry my weight: because that fourteen pounds lost has not made the slightest bit of difference to my figure. Please don't think I'm complaining about how much I've lost because I know that fourteen pounds is great and I'm mighty pleased with myself, but honestly - where has it gone from? It's so hard not to be disheartened when you look in the mirror and see no progress, despite the numbers finally starting to budge on the scale. Progress is everything to me. I like to see results. I like to know that the effort I'm putting in is noticeable to others, but more importantly, to myself.

I'm a pretty critical judge.

Part of this intense need to really see results stems from my impatience; yet another thing I struggle with. I have a long way to go on this journey; let's face it, with the amount of weight I need to lose, fourteen pounds is a very small percentage of the whole picture. Mentally, I need to make sure I'm 100% focused on this as a long-term thing - I've learned from failed past attempts that it's all too easy for me to go from being a little wobbly with my commitment, to eventually toppling off the bandwagon in a spectacular fashion.

I had a moment this morning where I felt utterly dejected after reading that 1-pound loss; where I felt like this was ridiculous and that I was once again wasting my time and energy into something that just isn't going to happen for me. I just felt awful, like a big, fat lump. I sat down on the floor in my underwear and thought about raiding the cupboards to make the worst possible food I could come up with. I thought about the fact that I had eaten out twice this week for my birthday - naughty Thai food, apple pie with ice cream and wood fire pizza, and figured hey, that explains it you silly girl, get off the floor and start over.

But then I got angry. Really, really angry. So angry that I would have punched something, except that there was nothing here to punch. Why? Because I'm bitter. I'm jealous and I'm bitter. I ate two small meals this week that were what I would consider a splurge, and my weight loss stalled because of it: yet why are there people out there who can eat terribly every day, drink cans of coke every day, not work out at all - and can not gain a pound.

Why is this such a hard journey for me? What did I do to deserve always being large? WHY? It's not fair.

I'm over that now. I got up and I moved on, and I indulged in a small portion of cocoa & granola with milk for breakfast. But you know, deep down, I am still all of those things. I am sad. I am angry. I am bitter. I am jealous. And to be perfectly honest, I don't think that anyone can empathise unless they have been fat themselves. And I'm not talking a few pounds over their 'skinny' weight. I'm talking about people who are well over a healthy weight range, who have a lot of weight to lose, and who have probably (like me) been heavy their entire life. I don't know if these feelings will change as this journey progresses; I hope they do.

But to end on a positive and to summarise: four weeks down, fourteen pounds lost.

I have this horrible fear that being vocal about my weight loss journey and having support from Jase is fantastic - but that I'm going to let everyone down if things stop working, or if my size doesn't change after all this. If there's one thing I can't bear the thought of, it's disappointing people.

So here's to the next four weeks, I hope you'll stick through this with me - no matter what the final outcome is.

27 Comments • Labels: ,  


Non Sequitur Chica said...

Congrats on those 14 pounds! Are you clothes fitting better or are you losing inches off your measurements? That may be a better way to track your weight loss instead of looking in the mirror.

Keep it up!

Stephanie said...

14 lbs. Oh girl, I was there. Mine was 13.6 though. I had 50lbs to lose and it felt impossible. But I am living to tell you that it is possible and the only way to look at that damn one pound is to think of it this way - It could have been one pound in the other direction. And it shows you that you will be able to enjoy a little bit of fun foods once you get to your happy weight.

I think we are so hard on ourselves for our lack of perfection but that in others, we would only look at the bright side.

Have faith in yourself and think of the positive, you are 14 lbs lighter than last month. 14 lbs! What could that mean in 6 months?!

You are doing great!

Jade said...

You should give yourself a huge pat on the back for how well you've done so far.

I've been there and done that and lost 25kgs - it took me a long time and there were weeks when I'd step on the scale and just burst into tears.

Just take it as it comes, you'll find things like fitting better into clothes make you feel much better than looking at a number of a scale.

I also believe that there's no harm in treating yourself. Don't beat yourself up about eating Thai and Apple pie and Wood Fired Pizza. Food is meant to be enjoyed and in the long run, if it takes you a few extra months to loose the weight, is it really that bad?

*hugs* All my love and support to you, babe x

Angela Noelle said...

For what it's worth, 14 pounds is an amazing accomplishment in a month! I'm glad that you recognize that. To echo KT, have you taken measurements? Sometimes I think it's difficult to judge our own bodies based on appearance. If you can look at the number on the scale and see the inches decreasing over time, maybe that will help you stay positive?

Anonymous said...

When we look in the mirror we don't see what's actually there. I know I always see myself as 10lbs heavier no matter what weight I'm at. The best thing you can do? Take a monthly photo! If you had done that at the start of July then again after your 14 lbs loss, believe me, you would see a difference! So start now and see how different you look by the end of next month!

You're doing awesome - keep it up :)

MASHley said...

ash - it's easy to feel disheartened. girls go up and down in weight like crazy. just work one week at a time and realize that it's going to be hard. you are trying to make a lifestyle change. after all it took me about 8 months to lose 40 pounds. if you want, feel free to check out the post i wrote about getting in shape. i think i added it under the "favorites" tab.

Abby - Bright Yellow World said...

First of all, GO YOU! 14 pounds is amazing!

I so completely identify with this. I've been struggling to lose SEVEN POUNDS. Seven pounds. This does not seem insurmountable, right? IT IS KICKING MY BUTT. After a month of hard dieting, I had lost 2.5 pounds... all of which came back within the past five days, while we had houseguests. There were crocodile tears this morning, when I attempted to put on a skirt that doesn't, apparently, fit.

Hang in there, sister. We'll both get through this, and I'm so impressed by your stick-to-it attitude!

Operation Pink Herring said...

Dude, FOURTEEN POUNDS in one month? That's amazing. AMAZING. Way to go.

Amanda said...

Ok, I know completely how you feel. I've been in pretty much every situation you could imagine- like after I started at the gym, worked out like crazy, was living on a strict 1600 calories/day diet, in the first month, I lost 2 kilos, in the 2nd I put one of those back on.

I think only weighing yourself monthly is a fabulous approach, since it reduces the obsession. Having a life outside of weightloss helps too- I was pretty obsessed with exercise, eating, and weightloss blogging for a good 2 year- mid 2005-2007, when it started to ease somewhat, and I honestly don't think the obsession helped.

Measurements help, we don't see the reality in the mirror. In that same 2 month period? I lost 10cm off my waist, and couldn't see it (others could though).

You've stuck with it for a month, which is some of the hardest part over. I don't have the answers, but I definitely empathise.

Emily Jane said...

I hear you on this. I'm very much a "need to see results" type person and I've gone through periods of huge discouragement after doing weeks and weeks of rehab exercises for my back and still being in the same amount of pain. It's hard to keep going when you don't see results right away, but you've lost FOUR.TEEN.POUNDS. Do you realise how amazing that is?? If the answer is no, tweet me every time you feel discouraged and I will tell you how great you're doing!

You'll get there - determination is a very powerful thing :)

See you in 3 days! :D

Shauna said...

i hear ya buddy, i really do! it's funny with the body though... it can seem like nothing is happening then one day POW things will just look different. keep going with your new habits, it's gonna happen! you're inspiring me to get my arse back into gear :) xx

Lara said...

You are doing great! I'm excited for the progress you've made, and I'm looking forward to the progress I know you're going to make in the coming weeks too. Go you!

Fiona said...

Congrats! I put on weight this week which is killing me. But it's all my own fault :\

Erin said...

14 pounds is amazing! Seriously. Congrats! It's really, really hard to change your food habits, and I think it sounds like you are doing a great job. Keep it up! :)

Denise said...


Please do me a favor and stop. Then do a little happy dance. You are awesome!

I have been at this for a month, too, and as of this morning, I am down just under four pounds. I, too, splurged last week, and I am trying so hard not to beat myself up over it. Each time I regret eating That Plate of White Pasta or That Piece of Cake, I am reminding myself that every little step I take in the right direction is good thing. So long as my little treats don't become all day, everyday treats, I -- and my health -- will be okay. I am back on track this week, trying to make good and healthy choices, and, really, isn't that the best we can all do?

Congratulations to you! I can't wait to hear how you progress as you go further with this challenge!

Katie said...

Wow, congratulations, that's a great weight loss! I think sometimes because you look at yourself so much, it's hard to see changes. Wait until someone who hasn't seen you in a while, sees you, and they will notice the difference. I agree with KT - think about the way your clothes are fitting - there IS a difference, but even if you can't see it, don't get too obsessed because you KNOW it's happening! :)

You're quite inspirational, you know! I should be eating healthy but nope, I just can't seem to do it. I don't eat particularly UNhealthily, but I'm not being as good as I should!

Britt said...

Even though I was never significantly overweight, I still had many of the same feelings. I still do. I struggle with food and choices and don't get why eating an icecream cone makes me gain and T eats 3 icecream cones and loses 5 pounds. No matter how much weight I lose, I don't think I'll ever like my stomach, nor will it be flat. I'm blaming my mom for the bad genetics on that part!

I think 14 pounds in 4 weeks is fantastic. Seriously. Have you checked your boobs? cause thats where I lost a good ten pounds ;)

You can do it my dear. You already are!

Emilie said...

I just want you to know that you cannot let anyone down - you are a gorgeous person inside and out. That said, congratulations on all of your success! Don't let yourself believe that you failed this week - one pound lost is still one pound lost! It's one pound you don't have to worry about next week! I have nothing but the utmost respect and admiration for your endless motivation and determination. I hope that I can emulate that in the next few weeks as I try to come up with my own plan to put my health first. You are amazing Miss Aly, no matter what the scale says. xoxo

Karen said...

First off, congrats on the 14 pounds! Even if you don't see it right now, I bet you will. Plus it'll be a graduate change so it may take some time till you really see it in the mirror. I bet you'll notice it from how your clothes fit first.
Then, as I just said, on your post from a week ago, I am so in the same place right now. I am not that bitter and bothered by my weight but honestly, I have come to think that's part of the problem. I am just not bothered enough to make a change, to actually try. I am weighing more than ever, and it hasn't really clicked yet. I don't feel the need to make a change as urgently as I have in the past. I have moments when I do, but they never last long.
And while I love my friends dearly and they are understanding about losing weight, most don't have a clue what it's like to be overweight. My closest friends are all skinny and I don't think they have ever been anything but skinny. Right now I am 28kg from my goal weight and having to lose such a huge amount of weight is such a daunting task. Maybe that's why I keep putting off starting WW again and going to the gym.
Good lord, now instead of cheering you up I have joined you in ranting about the crap that is being overweight.
You know, I think no matter how often we fail, it is so important never to give up. It may be a life long battle but at least we'll know we never just gave up. And when I have kids I really want to be a role model for them. I want to teach and show them what it is so live and eat healthily. I think being overweight is one thing, but when you have kids you do want to make sure they learn how to eat right at home (like so often isn't the case any more nowadays, every time I see an overweight child it makes me so sad because they will likely have weight issues all their lives).

Fuzzy Cert said...

I think the idea of a happy dance is fantastic. Please do one. Shimmy and shake all over the place. With Oscar. I'm pretty sure that's how he'd roll...

Becky said...

Okay first off, congratulations - 14 pounds is great! And I completely understand where you're coming from. I've been doing WW since November of 2008 and I'm still not at my goal weight. I have a lot of weight left to lose and I've stalled out a lot with this.

Just take it one day at a time and know that a 1 lb. loss is a 1 lb. loss. Also, next time you're at the grocery store pick up 3 bags of 5 lb. each sugar. That'll be 15 pounds - you've lost 14. You may not see the difference on your body yet but holding those in your hands - that's extra weight you're no longer carrying around. It's pretty awesome.

I'd also suggest you take your measurements now (bust, stomach, waist, arms), because in another month you'll see a change in that as well.

Keep up the good work! And email me if you ever need motivation! :)

Jess said...

Oh, I know the feeling. I just got back from a 12-day trip where I ate only at restaurants, and while I knew to expect a gain because of it, it was still not thrilling to see the number on the scale. And yes, I know, it's water weight and most of it will drop off and I'm pregnant so some gain was to be expected, it's still frustrating. And I felt that I made pretty healthy choices at most of these restaurants and limited my portion sizes and I still gained. And there are other people who could have done similar things and not gained. And that is very frustrating.

But you're doing great! And, my guess is that now that you've trimmed off these initial 14 pounds, the next few pounds will make a much more visible difference. Good luck!

~Mum~ said...

baby girl you've done FANTASTIC ....
14lbs is amazing - that's over 6 kilos (i know you've gone all imperial on me !!!)
as you know ... I'm there with you. No one noticed or actually said anything to me until I was just over 7 kilos that is when the first person said "are you losing weight" - now at 20 kilos - i'm being told "you look amazing"
the only thing is - I"m still OBESE and still have another 15 kilos (at least) to go .... and I"m stalled and I'm like you. I feel bitter and angry that others can put food away like there is no tomorrow and I have one little 'treat' and go out the window. I've been up and down for the last few months.
My only thing to say to you is just to STICK WITH IT - and the big mindset change for me (which I'm sure you'll remember) was that if I fell off the wagon I'd say "Oh &^%$ stuffed it - I'll start again monday" - and then eat badly for the rest of the week and start again on monday and the cycle would start again
NOW - if i have a 'bad day' or a 'bad moment' I say - OK - it's done .... start again RIGHT NOW and move forward. I truly believe this mindset HAS made a difference for me.
Let's keep at this together - we know it's a long and slow journey ... but lets keep plugging away (and I"m sorry you got my fat genes and that i prob didn't teach you good eating habits or good body image stuff)

terra said...

Congratulations on the weight loss! I think that's pretty significant! And like other people said, I think it's hard to see weight loss and body changes in ourselves since it happens so gradually. You are doing an absolutely amazing job so far and I'm so happy for you!

Julz* said...

First off, thanks to your mum for converting that for me...I suck at converting pounds into kilos. Stupid imperial system... :P

Second CONGRATS on the weight loss! I said it on my blog and I'll say it again, you are inspirational! :) You've inspired me to be active and think about the foods I eat. I like to think about food :) Just stay positive m'dear, you'll get to where you want to be and it'll be all the more rewarding.

And I feel like I may be one of those people you hate who eat lots of junk but doesn't stack on the weight...if i in any way make you feel bad about yourself, I'm sorry. It's never my intention. And if I ever say anything that makes you feel this way, PLEASE tell me i'm doing it. Sometimes I need to be confronted about these things before I realise I'm doing it.

Lastly, I agree with KT, you should keep a log of your measurements as you go so you can see where you're losing it and where you need work. SOmetimes that helps more than just looking at how much weight you've lost. :)

Keep it up! You're doing great!

Alex said...

There is always something to punch.


Teacher Anonymous said...

You're going to notice weight loss the most when you look at photos of yourself. I lost a similar amount of weight over the course of a year, so of course I couldn't tell while looking in the mirror, but seeing pictures of myself really made it apparent.

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