Small changes bring results!

healthy habitsIn January I published a post about 7 totally unsexy but totally doable life changes.

I’ve acted on most of the items on the list for more than two months: I’ve consistently journaled my food, paid attention to regular meal times and front-loading, found new healthy but delicious recipes, added steps to my day and decreased the time spent sitting.

I’m glad to announce I’m also I’m reaping the rewardsmy belly is shrinking and my clothes feel loose. I occasionally enter my eats to a web app so I think I have a negative calorie deficit on most days, which explains the weight loss. (Sorry for the lack of numbers, but I don’t weigh myself very often)

Overall,  I feel really good physically even though I’ve had some bad times.

All these changes have been pretty stress-free, mostly because I had the sense to keep the changes really small. I also attribute a sizable portion of my success to my improving mindfulness skills – learning to not take my thoughts and emotions so seriously has helped me stick to my healthy lifestyle choices.

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In retrospect, year 2013 was a really odd year what comes to trying to lose weight.

I was losing weight for the first few months, but that came to a an abrupt halt when I entered a stressful period in March/April. In July I was so frustrated in my fruitless attempts – and feeling pretty burnt out– that I decided to stop trying to lose weight for a while.That lead to gaining back most of the weight I lost in early 2013.

Luckily, I emerged from my “bubble” in January. I’m still not sure if my feelings of frustration actually had anything to do with weight loss per se or just my life situation. I suspect the latter.

How I feel about what is going in my life immediately seems to affect my weight too.

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What comes to physical training, I haven’t been as conscientious with it as I intended.

Mostly I’ve managed to do two strength training sessions per week, plus my salsa class and incidental exercise. I still haven’t started doing the metabolic circuits that are part of the Female Body Breakthrough program, but I intend to start them asap.

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There are some downsides to all this. 🙂

One day I decided I want to indulge in my favorite pick-and-mix candy and bought a 170g (0.34 lb) pouch and proceeded to eat them. To my disappointment I soon discovered that with the exception of the first few pieces of candy they tasted like cardboard. I also didn’t feel very good after eating them, which I had to jot down in my food journal.

I think it might be a good idea to test a new strategy to treating myself with food. I could go and buy a few hand-made confections from a real chocolate shop and have them when I want to have something special.

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Comments

  1. My 2013 mirrored yours Satu but like you, 2014 is looking up. I am focussing on the numbers more than I’d like (as Weight Watchers requires me to) but they’re not the MOST important thing this time. My weight loss has been slow (I can’t feel it in my clothes yet) but I feel better and I’m reminding myself that THAT is the most important thing.

    I like the idea of small incremental changes and so much of the theory behind habits etc say that’s exactly what works. I’m planning on some chocolate at Easter and I wonder if I’ll be disappointed!

    Deb

    • Satu says:

      Hi Deb!

      I think the idea of big dramatic changes is so alluring that most people – including me – just ignore little changes even though they seem to work better.

      Er, I wish you’ll enjoy ONE chocolate bunny. 🙂 I was about to write at least ONE but then I realized it means > 1. 🙂

  2. It is never too late! Stress and difficulty in life can make losing weight really hard!

    • Satu says:

      Thanks for your kind words Diane! There seems to be a pattern in my life – if I’m too stressed and unhappy I gain weight and am unable to lose it. When my life becomes easier and more satisfying I can lose weight…

  3. Kevin says:

    Don’t worry, it’s not bad for you to stumble a few times on the way to your goal. What matters is how you learn from them and how you come back strong from every mistake. I also think that it’s good that you do not focus on the numbers on the scale. How you feel and how healthy you’re doing is what’s far more important. Keep it up!

  4. Lori says:

    Stumbling, tripping, falling. Story of my life.

    I never have problems with exercising (unless injured), but the food is what takes me down. The important thing is to just keep going!

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