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“Great Job”

Remember that rough draft for our team marketing project that was so poorly written, improperly cited, and completely missing basic concepts that I was mortified to have us submit it? We got a 100%. The teacher said he enjoyed reading it very much and gave us a “Great Job” comment afterwards. I guess maybe my standards are too high. Lighten up Ali? All I can do is shrug my shoulders. I have no idea how that could have happened.

I was reading an article on Yahoo yesterday which has been circling around some of the blogs I read and I thought I’d share some of my thoughts on it since they are things I’ve thought of myself through my weight loss attempts over the years. The article talks about a girl named Jen who weighed 300 pounds and underwent bariatric surgery – losing 180 pounds but realizing that losing the weight didn’t fix all the emotional aspects she thought would just disappear along with the weight. She still was left with all the psychological issues that plagued her when she was heavy.

It’s funny this came out because I’ve often thought about this. I think when we fixate on weight loss – especially when we have a lot to lose – it’s easy to build up a list of things we’ll do or things that ‘will happen’ once we lose weight. The reality is that we’re overweight for a reason. We don’t succeed in losing the weight for a reason. Part of a successful long-term weight loss journey is understanding the relationship between yourself and food. Maybe you attribute weight gain to a bad event – like losing your job or ending a relationship or a death in the family – but as the years tick by and the weight doesn’t move downward, maybe something else is in the way and needs to be addressed?

My weight hasn’t dropped much at all lately. In fact, I’m still holding onto the huge gain I had from the steroids I took a while back. But, that’s OK. I know it’s something I have to deal with. I need to lose weight to be healthier, but when I am able to mentally and physically do it. I don’t want pills, Drs, or extreme diets. In the meantime I’m learning so much about how my body feels after I eat certain foods. I know when my carbs get high I’m in trouble and I know drinking a large glass of milk if I haven’t had any in a while is going to result in a stomach ache. These are all important elements because they are helping me understand how food affects me. It also is a journey for me to understand how food mentally makes me feel. I love to eat. LOVE to eat. So for me part of this is understanding the power food has and how to replace that with things I equally love so I don’t feel like I’m giving something up. Process.

I’m not a perfect person. My food choices and lifestyle are not for anyone to emulate or aspire to. I’m just one girl out of millions working slowly towards a goal and I appreciate those of you who have reached yours (you give me hope and advice!) and those who are working along with me (you push me to stick with it!).

So I’m interested in hearing you all weigh in (pun intended) on this. For those of you who have reached your weight loss goals, did you find the “work” helped you come to a better grasp of yourself as a person? Do you still have trouble identifying with yourself now that the weight is off? For those of you still on your way, what keeps you going? Do you feel more empowered as you learn about yourself through the process?


Green Bay, First Day of Spring 2013



4 Responses

  1. That is a beautiful photo!
    I think each day is a struggle and each day is all about individual choices. I lost about 30-40 lbs through a lot of hard work and I still have to work to keep it off. And admittedly, I’m still really tough on myself. I think it’s great that you’re figuring out what works and what doesn’t for your body.

  2. That is such a healthy post in that it expresses acceptance of yourself, your goals and commitments. You’re so right! Losing weight or rather maintaining a healthy body isn’t found in a pill, a doctor, or fad diet. It’s a life change and it has to be something you CAN commit to for a lifetime.
    When I was in high school, I’d try all sorts of crazy things like only grapefruit juice for a week. Crazy! It wasn’t until I started paying attention, as you said, to the foods I ate and how I felt that I changed. I became a vegetarian because I didn’t like how meat didn’t seem to digest. I made certain tweaks to my way of eating after working with a personal trainer and have felt great since.
    You’ll get where you want to be but remember, we are not all built the same so your healthiest body weight might not be the same as a skinny friends. 🙂 You’re doing great!

  3. YAY for getting 100%! and I definitely like this post. Losing weight should not be about dropping the pounds and that’s it. Losing weight should be a life change. A change to the way you live, not just the way you look. I lost weight in college but didn’t have the drive to stick to it. Yes, I was happy about winning over my goals, but I quickly realized that when I was stressed, I was still binge eating everything in the pantry.

  4. Well – that article was pretty scary to read in a lot of ways. She was horribly unprepared and under serviced with her medical care, which should have included psychiatric care before bariatric surgery. I think that is pretty standard nowadays.

    I wasn’t able to keep off the weight until I accepted that there was no on diet/off diet approach to life. And it wasn’t all or nothing. It’s a squiggly line that gets you to your goal (weight or other). It really is about changing your life and you can’t do that overnight. It also doesn’t mean you won’t fall back on old habits at times.

    I also realized that, like you, I completely love food! Love to eat! So, that means I may never be a size 4, but then I am not a grouchy size 4 that isn’t eating a cupcake now and again 😀

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