Staying motivated when dieting or keeping weight off no 2 – Don’t give up even if you put on weight!
In a previous blog I talked about how to stay motivated when you keep weight off or when you are trying to lose weight. Thanks for the comments you sent about this being helpful. In that blog I talked about how you have to concentrate on any positives, even if your weight loss isn’t going to plan. But what do you do if worse than not losing weight, you end up putting it on? Well, that’s what’s happened to me in the last few weeks – I’ve put on weight despite being on a diet – so time for another blog post!
It is hard to stay motivated …..
There’s no doubt its hard if you are denying yourself and keeping to a diet and then you don’t lose weight or worse put some on. A couple of weeks ago I got on the scales and, horror of horrors, I’d put on about a pound. And I have to be honest and say it’s sent me off-course. Seeing a higher number on the scales bought back the crooked thinking I have about me and weight and I started to catastrophize. I decided that as the diet I was doing ‘obviously wasn’t working’ I may as well give up. Of course, it wasn’t the truth that it wasn’t working as I was losing size, just not weight. But I didn’t see that. I wasn’t concentrating on the positives as I should have been. Old habits returned quickly – I’d been missing porridge for breakfast (not allowed on my diet) so I went straight back to that. Other food came back into my diet pretty quickly. I also went for an impromptu curry one evening, had a couple of cakes at an event one afternoon, and then had puddings every night whilst staying with my in-laws.
We all know it’s just too easy to go back to our normal habits. And what do you think has happened? Well I’ve put on a fair bit of weight in the last couple of weeks; my clothes are telling me this. But I haven’t weighed myself as there is no point in just adding to my misery.
But all is not lost; I’ve not given up…….
So, and I think this is the main point, that sometimes we all fall off the wagon. The point is how do we respond when we do?
I think a lot of the time we think if we have given in once or twice, or even for a couple of weeks, that that is that. It’s all over so we may as well give up on the diet and just go back to old ways. Well ….. WRONG!! Research shows that successful dieters and people who keep weight off don’t do this. When we go off track we accept it, don’t give ourselves a hard time about it. We pick ourselves up quite quickly, dust ourselves down and we just start searching for ways to get back on track.
That’s what I’m doing, and today I am going to try something new to help me eat less! (More of that to come in the future.)
Part of my getting on track involved one last blow out…..
One thing I did decide to do though whilst off the wagon was to allow myself a bit of a blow out and the chance to have some flavours, tastes and foods I don’t normally have. As a calculated decision I decided that having some of these foods on one occasion would help me get my motivation back for the longer term. So last Sunday me and my husband went to the ‘all you can eat international buffet’! Of course I eat loads and came back far too full if the truth be told. But I enjoyed every mouthful and it has helped me prepare for the new method I’ll be trying later today.
I didn’t totally let go though. Here’s some tips I used to still control even at the all you can eat buffet…
1. Quite a lot of the buffet was fried food. Try and avoid food like fried rice, deep fried starters etc. I did have a few prawn crackers and poppadums but kept them to a minimum.
2. Only put a small amount on your plate at a time. You can always go back for more. Use the smallest plate you can find. The puddings section may have smaller ones.
3. Have a break between plates. You may find you don’t want to have as many visits as you first thought you would!
4. Fill up with salads and fruit; most buffets have them. But watch the dressings as they can be really calorific and if you have fruit salad watch for sugar syrup.
5. If you know that puddings will be your weakness plan for this. Don’t have too much first course. Do some extra exercise and think about what else you eat that day. Top up puddings with fruit.
6. Beware of any sauces as they can be very fatty and full of sugar.
7. Drink plenty of water. I also ordered a green tea.
8. Prepare for the sugar rush and carb effect the next day. Have lots of fruit to hand so you can manage it.
9. If you know you are the kind of person who will keep going back for more even if you aren’t hungry, do some deals with yourself about how many times you will do this and stopping before you end up feeling sick!
So if you’ve fallen off the wagon don’t panic. Just get back on, no self re-criminations. And good luck!