U is for Unattainable


U is for Unattainable 

One of the common themes in emails I get from readers is the concept of weight loss being allusive and an impossible goal. This post is meant to discourage that negative thinking.

A question people often ask, myself included at various times in my journey, is  Why Can’t I Lose Weight? The short answer is that often times we make unrealistic goals for ourselves. According to doctor charts, I should weigh about 125 pounds. My body doesn’t like that and I’ve never seen a weight that low. In fact, I think I would look gaunt and unhealthy if I weighed much less than 140. My body likes the 145-ish range and so I don’t give myself grief about not weighing 125 pounds.

Another reason why weight loss can be unattainable is that the “diet” is vague or there isn’t a PLAN for weight loss. You can’t just say “I will stop eating chips and lose 100 pounds!” Sure, eliminating the junk food from your diet will help, but there are so many other things that factor in. Exercise. Eating a balanced diet. Drinking water instead of soda, etc etc.

For me, focusing on calorie intake and calories burned is what helped me lose 100 pounds. It’s also helped me maintain that loss for almost six years. That worked for me. Maybe the Weight Watchers points system works for you, maybe Paleo or a vegetarian/vegan diet is what your body responds to. Who knows. You gotta try to figure it out–and the negative self-talk discouraging you from even trying is not going to help. Find what works for you and stick to it.

For most of my teen years and early 20’s, I told myself that I would NEVER LOSE WEIGHT. I used words like never and can’t. I couldn’t lose weight. I’d “tried”! Really, I hadn’t tried to lose weight. I never addressed the binge eating food habits that were sabotaging whatever efforts I made in the gym. (Check out this post: We All Start Somewhere for some inspiration.)


If you never REALLY tried, you can’t use the words like never! Give it a fair shot and you might be pleasantly surprised! I sure was when I dropped 10 pounds that first month I started swimming!

Check out some of these old posts if you’re struggling with where to start:

New Year’s Resolutions To Skip

How to Start Losing Weight Now

10 Harsh Realities that Help You Grow

A few years ago I also wrote a series on How To Lose Weight. It was a big task to write about and so I broke it down into a weekly series covering a lot of the issues that come up during a diet change. It takes each topic one by one because baby steps is less overwhelming! Trust me!

How to Lose Weight Series: 

Week OneWeek One Check In

Week Two , Week Two Check In

Week Three

Week Four

Week Five

Five Truths of Weight Loss

Five Truths of Maintenance

Over the years I gave up that drive to try and reach a seriously unattainable number on the scale. Like I stated above, 125 pounds would not be a healthy weight for me. We need fat and we need muscle on our bones. I don’t want to be a skeleton just to achieve some ridiculous goal that isn’t something I can maintain for very long! Perfection is never going to happen, so I try to be happy with where my body is.

My hope with this blog is that the four years I’ve been writing it have inspired readers to try to lose weight. I wanted my readers to see that it WAS possible to lose weight and it was possible to keep it off too! I wanted to be an open book for everyone to see that you can eat “fun” foods and enjoy life without gaining all the weight back. Losing weight doesn’t have to make you miserable or deny you the foods you want to eat. Moderating all of that stuff is really what works in the long run.

I hope that this blog has shown you all that weight loss is ATTAINABLE.

Have you stopped the negative self-talk regarding weight loss? 

A-Abstinence * B-Balance * C-Calories * D-Vitamin D * E-Emergency * F-Fast Food and Fine Dining * G-Gym Bag * H-Happy Weight * I-Intervals * J-Jumping * K-Keeping Sane * L-Losing Weight * M-Measuring Mistakes *N-Nemesis * O-Open * P-Plateaus Q -Quitting * R-Runner’s Knee * S-Support * T-Truth *

Author: Lisa Eirene

About Lisa Eirene Lisa lost 110 pounds through calorie counting and exercise. She swims, bikes, runs, hikes and is enjoying life in Portland, Oregon. Her weight loss story has been featured in First Magazine, Yahoo Health, Woman's Day and Glamour.com.

23 thoughts on “U is for Unattainable”

  1. I’m on the same page as you. I’m supposed to weigh 120lbs but that is pretty much impossible for me. I tried for a really long time to get there, but I found that weight is just a number. I think it’s more important to build healthy habits and have non-weight markers of success. I know weight is very important, but it’s not the end all, be all.

    Weight loss is attainable, as long as you have a clear attainable goal 🙂
    Karla @ Foodologie recently posted..Spicy Black Bean and Kale Grilled Cheese

    1. I think that’s a good mindset to have. After I lost a lot of weight, I changed too. I didn’t want to eat low calorie processed junk, I wanted to eat real food and feel better instead!

  2. It’s certainly attainable for me since I’ve done it. I think it’s the maintenance that’s hard. Plus it’s a bit of a moving target because our systems change so much (trying to lose weight after 40 is very very different than losing weight in my 20’s). A plan is a great place to start. I’m in my second week of Fast Metabolism Diet which is a plan I think I will follow even if the scale doesn’t budge (it’s moving slowly).

    Most people lose a significant amount of weight by incorporating exercise. I’m convinced that’s essential, as you’d probably agree. If you’re not willing to do the work, then you get the results you get.

    1. I’ve noticed that it is harder to lose weight the closer I am to “goal”. Before the pounds came off easier. Now it’s so slow!

      I agree, exercise is an important component! It will increase metabolism too!

  3. This is a timely post! I’ve generally stayed in the same 15-pound range of weight, which I tell myself is better than yo-yo-ing, but I think I’ve used it as an excuse to never get really serious about weight loss either. I’ve managed to do events like Cycle Oregon even with 20-50 pounds more on my body than is probably ideal. My lowest CO weight was something like 184, but I’m 5’6″ – just think how much better I’d feel on those hills if I weighed less than that!

    I’ve now been using an app (loseit) to track calories for the first time ever. Before this, my dieting was either doing WW for a little while, or as a side effect of various changes to my diet. I’ve never liked tracking calories because it’s a little too real, to be perfectly honest, and also because it’s really hard to calculate calories when eating out. But, I’ve been doing this since early February and it’s going pretty well.

    So far I’ve lost 15 pounds – I picture three five-pound bags of sugar and am SO GLAD I am not hauling them around every day. I’m doing Cycle Oregon this fall, and have signed up for my first-ever run, a 7k in Vancouver WA in early August. I have no idea if I will enjoy running but it’s time to give it a try. I also want to start swimming in the next couple of weeks (I’m recovering from some medical stuff so will hit the ground running, biking, and swimming in another week or so).

    I’m a little worried I’m biting off way more than I can chew, but I’m also trying not to analyze it too much, but just grab the enthusiasm and ride that wave as long as I can. Thanks for your posts – they really do help so much.

    1. (I should clarify – I’ve lost 15 since the beginning of the year, and 5 of that was related to the medical stuff I’ve had going on. I have definitely lost about 10 pounds due to my own efforts since early Feb.)

    2. I think it’s so cool you’ve done Cycle Oregon! Way to go!! That’s a lot of miles.

      It’s great you are finding that you enjoy doing these physical activities. I don’t think it’s biting off too much. I think variety is good! Cross training!

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