|Plan for the changes|
One of the big steps I took during weight loss was to
1. PLAN for Weight Maintenance
Before I got there, about 20 pounds before I arrived.
For 40 years, periodically, I would just arrive at weight maintenance and not make any solid plans for the next, much longer phases of:
b. Year 1-Maintenance Junior
c. Year 2-Maintenance Senior
d. Years 2-5 and beyond, Maintainer Mentor
In the book Refuse to Regain (book), Barbara Berkeley, (blog) MD discusses the different phases of weight maintenance.
If I could make Refuse to Regain mandatory reading for all of us going from weight loss to weight maintenance transition, I would. Take what you need for tools and test yourself and make a plan. What sustained me in weight loss (no matter what my plan was: Food tracking, WW, Medifast), the skills I had in weight loss were not the skills I needed in weight maintenance. New and different skills and habits, were required.
Since the rates of long term weight maintenance are relatively low, be sure to make a plan, then adjust your plan if it's not working. Quickly!!!! It's hard (painful) to face small gains or upward trends. It's harder and more physically and emotionally painful for me to lose 20, 30, 50, heck 70 pounds! If I could have addressed a slow 2-5 pound gain earlier in the process.
Once I put a plan into place, then changed it up, that's where the sustainability of all the parts of weight maintenance came together. ( I have no crystal balls with the answer, only feed back of my body and mind). The answers were inside me at each phase. Being honest and taking action, early, with any trends was key. I guessed correctly more often than I miss-read what was the root of the re-gain.
What's working now
1. Lower Carb, Higher Natural Fat- Paleo-ish food template.
2. Planning food, movement, sleep, stress relief, in my 2.5 years of weight maintenance
3. Prioritizing #1 and #2
4. Staying away from "S" foods (as described in Refuse to Regain)
What didn't work in the past:
1. Highly processed diet, high in "healthy carbs!!!" Heart healthy whole grains, and low, low fat.
2. Plans that involved foods and habits that produced "gain" instead of "maintain".
3. Not prioritizing effective plans and not making changes and quicker course corrections if my plan was not working.
4. I ate a lot of "S" foods- sugary, starchy foods- in moderation. I never stopped to evaluate that moderation wasn't in the cards for me for the outcome I wanted.
All right- anyone else find differences in the first year, two, or longer? Did you make plans and make changes when your outcome was not sustained?
|My Weight Maintenance Planner|