Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Cheating the Plan = Cheating Yourself.

In the last few months, I've had to "unfollow" a handful of weight-loss related blogs. In a sense, I depend on all you blogger gals to help inspire and motivate, to teach me a different way, to show me it can be done, and I surely hope I'm providing the same.

I had to unfollow these blogs because there is an apparent "free pass" community somewhere in weightlossville where you don't do what you're supposed to and still get angry at the scale. These secret members also come to my Weight Watchers meeting to toss out excuse after excuse after excuse about why the scale isn't moving, or going up, when it "should be" going down.

This kind of sprung from reading Jack Sh*t's post this morning. Jack Sh*t is a blog I've been reading for quite some time, but since I've decided to be more engaging with this blog via comments and linking, I'm giving him a shout. Though his post about doing the work is far more gentle than mine could ever be.

There must be a plan. You must stick to that plan. You must not have unreasonable expectations of that plan, but you must have faith in yourself that you can accomplish it. You must realize that it's not easy, because if it were there would not have been a struggle to maintain a healthy weight in the first place. You must have a goal, and you must keep your mind securely fixed on that goal.

Additionally, we must also realize that as a diet or weight loss blogger, our accountability might very well affect the people who read it, and so we must be very careful with our excuses.

Let's say you're a Weight Watcher, like me. If you are not tracking your points intake (caloric intake) and meeting the good health guidelines, you're not really following the program. You're following *your* version of the program, and that's fine, but if you're not following the program, there is no guarantee it will work, and you simply can't blame the program itself because you haven't tried it.

I used to often have a conversation similar to this with my good friend Jessica. Jessica lost nearly 40lbs and when people began to really notice they'd always ask, "How'd you do it?" At the same time, I had lost about 35lbs and people noticed. We'd converse about how it never felt congratulatory, but more accusatory. More.... searching for the secret. When the answer was "diet and exercise" the reply was always "oh," shrugged off with disappointment. I'm not saying I don't understand that mindset. Until I made the ultimate commitment to be here for life, I used to go to bed each night just praying/wishing/bartering with whatever was out there that I could wake up thinner. I just didn't want to do what I knew I needed to do because it was scary and sounded hard.

I guess what I'm saying is, "Buck up. Do the work. See the results."

I think I've finally reached the point here, with weight loss, and in my life, where I need to be surrounded by positive thinkers. People who have goals, who work hard, and keep their chin up about it. Not "perfect people," mind you, just ambitious and reasonable.

Are you there with me (or at least willing to be)?


Glam said...

It's not always easy. Hell, it's very rarely easy to do the work, but the payoff is so worth it! Why anyone would pay pay money for a program just to cheat is beyond me. Trust me, I think twice before putting anything in to my gob these days after a hard PT session.

But it also goes without saying that not everyone has the mental capacity to do this. Not that they're challenged or anything, but some people do fail a couple times before it sinks in that they HAVE to count points or be mindful of calories and portion sizes. And they also HAVE to move their bodies in order to be successful.

Obviously, if it were a simple matter of counting points and exercising we'd all be thin and healthy, but so much of losing weight starts with choices, decisions, and internal struggles that sometimes prevent us from making the right decisions.

The newbie WL bloggers might need time to fail in order to learn from their own mistakes. Seeing someone else fail isn't always a deterrent enough for them to stop self-sabotaging themselves.

But I've come to the point in my WL endeavor where I can't really be the constant cheerleader for those who aren't quite getting it. Sometimes it's a good idea for them to just read other blogs, become informed, get help, & put in the work!

nic said...

That depends on your definition of "fail."

Everyone makes mistakes, the important part is LEARNING from them, not blaming the program or the scale, but really looking at what happened, taking the lesson and moving on with positive thoughts.

A bad day can't stop your whole week/month/year. Everyone has binges, eats off plan, has too many beers, etc. that's life, but to be successful you have to admit that this was not part of your plan, and scarifice later in the week or workout harder.

My problem is with people who lack accountability. Does that make more sense?

Linz M said...

I am totally with you on this one, I've had a bad few weeks on the WW plan lately, but completely my own doing and had a totally justified minor gain last week.

Am back at it now though with a loss this week. I won't make excuses for myself though - at the end of the day, the only person I end up fooling is myself.

I know what I need to do and I know it works - it's just sticking with it I have a problem with at times!

I've also come to realise that I need to be a bit more postive about what I have achieved so far so thanks for your comment regarding that - it totally hit home!

So yeah, I am with you!


Rebecca said...

i dont feel too bad now. I've been unfollowing people too like crazy lately.

Funny how just a few months ago that was me...making one excuse after the other.

I agree with Glam we each have to go through our trial and tribulations to finally get there.

It can be frustrating when it really is that simple. eat less and exercise more!

Heidi said...