Time to Get Real

I have a confession. And I’m pretty sure I probably make the same confession at the end of summer every year…I have definitely gained a few pounds. I decided to take the summer off from the scale. This summer was a little different than the first time I consciously did a Scale-Free Summer. That experiment was a good practice to see where I was in my maintenance and happily, I did not gain weight that summer. (Check out these old posts on the subject: Redefine Your Relationship with FoodYo-Yo Dieting.)

This summer is different because I was avoiding the scale because I knew I wouldn’t like the number I saw. When I got back from my vacation in California I knew it was time. I stepped on the scale and was actually surprised it wasn’t worse!

September 4th – 149.2 pounds.

I’m still under my goal weight but too close to 150 for my comfort. This time last year I weighed 144. That’s the number I’ve pretty much stayed at during my maintenance. There are fluctuations up and down, but it usually stays around there. I saw that number go up to 146 at the start of summer. Those last 3 pounds were definitely vacation weight!

I also think my injury finally caught up to me. I’d been able to maintain my weight this year while not doing much cardio activity but I definitely saw a slow creep. By the time summer was here and our usual festivities that always include eating good food, I was getting kind of lax. Read: lazy. I know I was lazy. Lazy with calorie counting, lazy with eating, eating more junk food, giving in to stress eating. This post — An Excuse to Eat — was pretty much my summer. I made a lot of excuses! I was CELEBRATING. I was BUSY. I was on VACATION. Excuses, excuses. I stress ate, I happy ate, I gave in to lots of cravings and urges and OVER-ate.


I knew it before I even got on the scale. My pants were all tight. I kept talking myself out of it, though, telling myself I don’t SEE the weight gain in any of the vacation photos. Where is it?!? But it’s there. The scale told me and the tight pants reaffirmed it.

Time to Get Real

The desire to lose weight has nothing to do with the wedding. Honestly, the wedding feels like it’s so far away I can’t even focus on that. I just want to get back down to the 144 “normal” weight that I’d been at for so long.

I’m being honest with myself. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, it’s easy to get LAZY about counting calories and ignore/deny the bites and nibbles. I am so guilty of this. ALWAYS. My whole journey has been this way and it needs to stop. I need to be HONEST about what I am putting in my mouth or this won’t work.

I need to make better choices. Yes, I still believe “everything in moderation” but that doesn’t mean I can go crazy eating junk. When I was on vacation I didn’t feel great because my diet was lacking fruits and vegetables. That is most definitely back on my place! This also means that I need to decide whether I want a glass of wine with dinner OR dessert. Just because I worked out does not mean I get to do both ALL THE TIME.

I need to stop lying about portions. This has always been a struggle for me. A portion size is never as much food as I want to eat. It’s hard to change your thinking and tell yourself “STOP. You have a portion of food on your plate, do you REALLY need more?” Usually I don’t need a second portion. I just WANT it. Needing and wanting are totally different.


It’s been a few weeks since I weighed in. I’ve been counting my calories diligently–even the nibbles. I’ve been making better choices for snacks. I’ve been *mostly* honest about portions. I’ve also been trying to drink more water. There are also no desserts in my house right now and there haven’t been for the last month! That’s huge for me!

So here are the weigh in check ins:

September 4th: 149.2 pounds

September 13th: 148 pounds, -1.2

September 27th: 145, -3

PROGRESS. Already I feel better. Seeing the scale move in the right direction gave me confidence that my plan works! Counting calories, being aware of the food I eat and staying with the exercise routine has helped me lose over 4 pounds! I’m almost there. Hopefully my next weigh-in in October will show 144!

One thing I’ve noticed is that I went up in jean sizes this summer. Part of that was the weight gain. I went from a size 4 to a 6. I was surprised that losing the weight didn’t make me go back down to the size 4. But honestly, those 4 jeans are super tight in my hips, butt and thighs. Even with the weight loss. Then I read this post by Suzanne from Workout Nirvana. Weight lifting changes your body composition and the way clothes fit. That explains a lot!

QUESTION: Are you being honest with yourself regarding calories and portions? Why or why not? 

19 Responses

    1. Thanks Suzanne. I was in denial most of the summer. Which is fine, because I think I just needed a few months to not be “on it” if you know what I mean. As for the strength training I’m still doing it 2-3 days a week, kind of a mix of your three programs you gave me. I intend on signing up again but I just bought a groupon for the local kettlebell gym. I want to take that class to get my kettlebell form down before signing up with you again. I will let you know asap!

        1. I take occasional breaks from calorie counting–like I’ll take a weekend off here and there but not often. I don’t want to “fall off the wagon” completely and get out of the habit. But it was kind of nice having a break. Back at it now! And glad the scale is reflecting it.

  1. Loved your post today. !! Good example of what long term maintenance requires.
    Glad you’re looking quick action to reverse the trend. Critical actions. Bravo!! I would like to do a positive blog post and link to your story- is that okay? I think that it’s helpful for those just entering into maintence to see this and be in the know. Keep up the good work.
    Karen P recently posted..National Coffee Day 2013

    1. Thank you Karen! Maintenance is usually pretty easy for me. I think maybe I was just burned out this summer. So much going on and even though I kept the exercise routine the same, I definitely let the food part slip.

      Yes, you can link to the post! Anything for another maintainer. 🙂

  2. It’s very easy to get a bit too relaxed about calories and portions. It really doesn’t take much to gain weight… I usually try to be honest with myself when it comes to portions and calories, but there are certainly times when I let go a bit. I just make sure to get back to my usual program pretty soon.

    Great job getting back on track!
    Andrea@WellnessNotes recently posted..Weekly Meal Prep

  3. I needed to read this. I have put on around 3 lb and I know that all I need to do is get back on track and they will fall off again. Thanks for the motivation!

  4. I totally hear you on this. I am a vacation eater, and I also tend to find all the excuses in the world. Need to get back to reality myself!!

    I haven’t been reading up on blogs on a while and just read about the wedding. Congratulations!!
    Irina @ I ❤ 2 Eat recently posted..Costa Rican Cuisine

  5. First, let me say I really appreciate your honesty here! While I haven’t hit my goal weight, I’ve totally noticed how being “in the public eye” (if that’s what you want to call having a blog) can be really tough when things aren’t going according to plan.

    Secondly, I feel compelled to answer your question at the end of the post. I’m a calorie-counter, hardcore (not hardcore as in, in a disordered way, but rather hardcore as in it’s what really works for me). And the past…oh holy wow FOUR days I haven’t tracked. Rarely do I let even one day go by. I feel like things might be getting out of control at this point, and I’m not quite sure how to handle it. My usual status quo is to post an honesty post (like this one you posted) and use that to propel me back into making better choices. But something is holding me back, and I really don’t know what it is. I feel kinda lost in my journey. It’s like someone took me blindfolded out into the middle of a field, spun me around a bunch, took off the blindfold and told me to head “west”. Except it’s not exactly like that because I *do* know the steps I need to take…I just feel like I’m unsure *how* to get to those steps. Wow I’m not making any sense at this point…perhaps I should refrain from commenting on blogs after 1am! Anyway, I guess with all this rambling I really just wanted to say thank you for posting this and giving me something to think about. I think an honesty post is due from me soon…hopefully sooner rather than later. I need to rein in the damage before it gets much worse! (Which feels really weird to say, because I’m such an advocate of the idea that at ANY moment you can turn things around by making better choices. I just feel like something is holding me back.) Okay. Seriously. No more comments this late!
    Ashleigh @ Passion for Life, Love, and Health recently posted..JYWLJ Day 2

    1. Maybe you just needed a FEW days to relax and let go. Now that you are aware of it, get back at counting! It was actually kind of comforting when I went back to being smart about my calories. Much less stress for sure!

      I think sharing the ups and downs of maintenance is important. I know it wasn’t a lot of weight to gain, but it’s the reality of maintenance. You have to work extra hard to keep the weight off and not get complacent.

  6. I’m quite the opposite. I lose weight in summer because I realize how out of shape I am and need to get the beach bod back. Winter I definitely hibernate and put on a ‘winter layer’.

    1. I understand what you are talking about. Sometimes I can be that way in the summer too because I am SO active–biking 40 miles, hiking on the weekends, etc. But this summer was not as active due to injury.

      Also, winter time is easier for me to be spot-on with food and exercise. I tend to switch to weight lifting in the winter, which really helps keep the weight off.

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