Thursday, August 5, 2010

My Weight Loss Struggle and 5 Ways to Stay Motivated

I have this problem...

The first step is admitting the problem right???

Okay...I can do this...

My problem...

I've gained 10 pounds in the last 3 months of living at our new duty station.

There. I said it.

I'm super upset with myself. I don't know why I do this.

I've talked a bit about my weight loss struggles in My Exercise Page. However, I think I need to write about it a bit more so as to make it more relevant to me right now. Because something has to happen!

I'm one of those people who never knew what it was to struggle with weight when I was younger. I was a string bean. When I hit my 20's I had to start paying more attention. My weight has fluctuated A LOT over the years.

I tend to do better with my weight whenever The Hubble is not around. Maybe it's the schedule. Maybe I have more motivation to look "hot" whenever he comes home. I don't know.

When The Hubble went to OBC (Officer Basic Course), I lost 25 pounds. We moved to NY, I gained it back.

He deployed to Afghanistan, I lost 25 pounds. He came home, I got pregnant.

When I was pregnant, I gained 80 pounds. I had Little Butt, lost about 50 pounds. Awesome right?

Yeah...not really. We ended up moving closer to base, to the middle of nowhere basically, I got super depressed and I gained 30 (or more back).

Here is me in December of 2007 (Little Butt was born in April that year):

And in April 2008 (1 year after Little Butt was born):

So okay. It was time to get my butt in gear right? When The Hubble deployed last year to Afghanistan I decided it was time. I had a whole year to get myself in shape, start and continue working out. I figured after an entire year I wouldn't lose the momentum right??

This is how I looked in February 2010 a couple months after The Hubble returned from Afghanistan:

So here are some ways I stayed motivated to workout and get fit:

1) Prominently Display a Goal Outfit ~ Before I had Little Butt, I had my favorite pair of size 10 jeans that I was desperate to get back into. When I started trying to lose weight I was about a size 18. I had my ultimate goal jeans and I bought a special dress that I wanted to wear for my anniversary dinner when The Hubble came home for R&R (mid-deployment leave). I hung these two items of clothing in my room so I could look at them every day. Having that visual helped keep me motivated.

2) Keep a Calendar ~ I guess I'm a visual person. I love crossing things off of lists to show my accomplishments. I will hang a calendar in a very visual place and every time I finish a workout I will write it in the little calendar box. I like seeing my days, weeks and months fill up with writing. I very obviously see when I've been slacking (blank boxes) and can also look back and see how much I've improved.

3) Be Held Accountable ~ For some people this means to have a buddy that you have to meet. I was walking pretty much daily with my MIL but I was the main motivator. I am also a solo exerciser so I would post on Facebook whenever I would work out. I would talk about challenges and what I was doing and how much weight I was losing. People would comment and know when I was slacking and call me out on it.

4) Become the Motivator ~ When I was posting on Facebook it also helped when I would have different people message me to tell me how much I had motivated them to start working out. I was the one who would come up with challenges for other people. How can I hold them to a standard if I don't hold myself to the same?? If I was helping someone else through a challenge, it helped me through as well.

5) Remember What It's All For ~ I need to look back through pictures. I need to talk or write about it. I need to own up to my failures (as I am now) and call myself out on my nonsense. It's too easy to be anonymous in a new area. Other people don't know about my struggles. They don't know how hard I've worked and how far I've come. No one is going to look at me with disappointment in their eyes because they haven't been there. But I do. I remember not being able to play with Little Butt because I would get too tired. I remember walking into a store and crying my eyes out because I had no clothes to wear and hated the way I looked. I remember walking into a plus size store and wondering how I got there. I also remember how it felt when The Hubble told me how awesome I looked when he came home. I remember how good it felt to not only fit into my goal jeans but end up not being able to wear them because they were too big. I remember going back to NY after the year and my friends not recognizing me because I had changed so much. I remember how good it feels to be healthy and happy. To not be disappointed and depressed.

I'm feeling pretty motivated right now. Going back to the way I was is not an option. I've worked out 4 of 4 days so far this week. I'm being more conscious of my food intake. I'm feeling better. This is a constant struggle but it's one that matters to me.

How do you stay motivated? Do you have any tips or tricks?
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