A few readers asked awhile back why “this” time losing weight was different. It took me awhile to figure out why, but now that I’ve got it, I’m happy to share. The first time I was super-serious about losing weight, as many readers already know, was a few months before I got married back in 1998. I purposely bought a wedding dress a few sizes too small and bartered with a personal trainer client to shed the pounds (side note and quite apropos: the newest show from the folks behind The Biggest Loser, Shedding for the Wedding, starts 2/23). In under two months, I managed to lose 30 pounds and felt amazing.
Flash forward to our honeymoon, buying a house, having a baby, general life and, I’ll say it, allowing distractions and excuses creep in, and I gained the weight back. And then a bit more for good measure. Although I thought about the extra weight I was carrying all the time (and even now at a 60 lb weight loss, I still think about weight all the time, just in different terms), I wasn’t motivated enough to do anything about it.
Flash forward to early 2004 and my sister’s upcoming wedding. Another goal. Another new fresh mindset to lose the weight. To be completely honest, I didn’t want to ruin her wedding pictures by being in them at an unhealthy weight. I lost around 25 pounds then, and again, felt amazing.
Do you see a pattern emerging? Every time I have lost a significant amount of weight, it has been tied to an upcoming event. This time? When I started Cate Version 2010 last January? No specific event.
I did it for me.
I did it for my kids.
And I did it forever. With that type of mindset.
Not for some celebration coming up.
Not for a date circled in red on the calendar.
And I think that had made all the difference in the world. Especially this time.
This is the absolute longest I have ever stuck with a weight loss/exercise/healthy eating routine. Going on 14 months now, and still feeling nothing short of amazing.
When I had my defining moment last January, I resolved to make a lot of changes. Some related to health. Some fitness. Some life in general. And slowly as I started turning the wheel, most of it fell into place.
For me, and my own perspective, as the primary caregiver for the kids, with even more responsibility falling on me than ever, I had to step up to the plate big time. The Ex sees the kids four days a month. So for the other 26, give or take, I need to be at 100%. To have 100% to give them at all times. I just can’t count on him the way I used to.
As I plead silently to myself when I feel sniffles coming on, single moms can’t get sick! We don’t get downtime. I don’t have a go-to person to take them to the beach if I don’t want to put on a bathing suit. Or do something active with them if I’m not feeling it. I also worry, constantly, about what would happen to them if something happened to me. So when I put my changes in place last year, it was with the motivation that I need to be the very best “me” I can be, at all times, and good health is just a small piece of it.
So, in short, “this” time was different because there is no end goal. No set destination. It’s all about the journey, baby.
PS – Need more inspiration and a few fitness and health-inspired tips and tricks? You might want to check out this recent iVillage piece about 11 moms who lost weight and kept it off. It’s possible you might recognize one of them. ;)
February 17, 2011, Photo #48
I keep finding valentines from Nick. I found this puzzle card he made in the kitchen when I was cleaning up tonight. So far, I’ve counted six valentines from him. I love that he was inspired enough to make more than one. And don’t think I’m not going to remind him of that the next time he tells me how mean I am.