One of the most common questions I get from readers is “How do you have such strong willpower?”
I have my slip ups. Once in awhile the old “demons” return in terms of not being able to resist temptations. I guess the biggest lesson I’ve learned from my weight loss journey is that IT’S NOT THE END OF THE WORLD. Sure, I slip up; sometimes my weight fluctuates because of the extra indulgences. But I remind myself that each day is a new day to try harder.
Lori over at Finding Radiance mentioned something on her blog yesterday about how she was reducing her exercise in order to lose weight. She stated that she loses weight better when she exercises less because she in turn EATS less.
I can understand that logic. When I was running a lot I was so hungry all the time. It felt like I was always eating. I ate a lot of calories too. If I burned 700 calories with exercise during the day I ate all of those 700 calories back. Because I was eating those calories I didn’t really lose much weight. It wasn’t until I stopped running, started weight lifting and eating less that I started losing weight. In fact I lost about 4 pounds that first month!
It didn’t really last long though. Once I got over the initial injury and started running again my appetite came back. I’m back to eating the calories I burned.
Currently I weigh 147 pounds. I am 3 pounds under my original goal weight and I am really happy about that. I got through the Thanksgiving/Christmas/New Year’s holiday without gaining a lot of weight PLUS I enjoyed lots of treats and good food.
I would like to weigh 140 pounds. There’s no specific reason I want to reach 140 but somewhere along the journey my mind got fixated on that number. Part of it is that I would like to have more of a “buffer” between my current weight and my old goal weight (150).
I know that doesn’t seem like very far away but for some reason I cannot reach that goal. Yet I’m having a hard time finding the motivation to lose 7 pounds. I don’t really need to lose that 7 pounds. I am pretty happy with my body and how it looks and feels right now.
All the photos in this post are recent. They are from the September photo shoot, the October magazine debut and Christmas. Seeing photos of myself and feeling good about what I see is HARDLY a motivator to lose more weight.
That’s where I struggle.
When I was obese all I thought about was losing the weight. That was my motivation. I was focused, I was determined and because I saw results immediately I had Iron Willpower.
So how does someone find the willpower to lose weight when health is NOT a factor? When it’s solely about vanity?
So back to Lori…does her plan make sense? Does it make sense for ME? Should I start limiting my calories again and NOT eating the calories I burn at the gym?
If I do that, that means I eat 1600 calories a day. Period. If I burn 600 at the gym, doesn’t matter because I’m not eating anymore calories beyond 1600.
It seems drastic but it works. That’s how I lost my 100 pounds. But can I do it now? Now that I don’t have the “motivation” of health concerns pushing me?
Howard Stern recently interviewed the figure skater Johnny Weir. It was a great interview but what I remember the most is that Johnny says he eats a salad with steamed chicken and that’s about it. He is an Olympic Athlete and he only eats 400 calories a day?!
In the interview Johnny Weir mentioned Michael Phelps (my hero) and said that Michael Phelps eats whatever isn’t nailed down. True. He’s rumored to eat 12,000 calories a day when in training. I can totally buy this too because swimming burns an insane amount of calories.
I’m conflicted. I honestly don’t know if I have the motivation to lose 7 pounds by restricting my calories in a drastic way. How do I find that motivation?
Maybe the Portland Century should be my motivating push? Training on the bike doing 50+ miles a weekend will increase my hunger immensely. Maybe my goal for the next 3 months should be to restrict my caloric intake to 1600 calories in order to lose those last 7 pounds. If I lose the 7 pounds now, then when the intense training begins I can eat more calories without seeing much difference in the scale.
Thanks for reading my internal debate I’ve been having with myself for a few weeks now. Any insight is welcome. 🙂
QUESTION: What is your opinion on this topic?