Saturday, January 23, 2016

Request for weight maintenance and weight loss bloggers to update status & photos- is there a best practice?

May 2011, high carb compared to  Jan 2016 low carb, 4 years weight maintenance

Request: Please!  1000X times, please, update your social media descriptions. Life is dynamic, and cyclic. For those of us traveling the inerwebz, it's important to get an accurate photo and description of your current focus.

Why #1 : There are no weight loss or weight maintenance social media standards. In my opinion, maybe there should be some best practice guidelines.  No amount of time will change your weight loss story and history, truth.

But time, age, and health does change maintainer status and weight loss status. 

A. No shame, no blame, just be current and accurate.

B. Weight loss has an end. Weight maintenance does not until you meet your maker. Truth!

C. Weight maintenance at 2+ years out is significant and varied in approach by person, genetics, environment, coping skills, habit changes.

Why #2 The <2 year maintainers  and those transitioning from loss to early maintenance need examples of what habits, steps, food that the long term maintainers are using.

Questions I ask myself when arriving to a site:
Is this information current?
Is the blogger being honest?
Is there a learning mindset or a victim mindset?
Are the photos photoshopped?
Is this a commercial blog selling any product, even if it's your own book, vitamin, plan?
Has the person changed focus or re-branded or abandoned their blog since the blog was created?
Did the person have remove foods to maintain or lose weight?
Examples might be go grain or sugar free, Paleo, Primal,  or Vegetarian, is the plan clear?
When the blogger does moderate, does that mean a few off plan foods eaten sometimes?
If the blogger is eating  moderately, do eating every food under the sun, including entertainment eating?
Are there lots of junk food photos or processed foods?
Is the person actively gaining weight, stable or still losing?
Is the person still binge eating?
Is the person close in age to me- or +/- 10 years,
For women is the blogger in or approaching menopause?
Are there other health problems solved? Hashimoto's, Auto-Immune Protocol, PCOS?

Why #3, Deeper Why: My time is limited. I need to both focus my reading time and if I might, just maybe grab a take away message from a persons' story, I would like current, accurate info.

Hey, I'm a 40 year yo-yo dieter. I get it. I've regained hundreds of times. Heck, I regained 5-6 pounds this year. I don't hide it. Just state  the facts. My updated profile reflects my status changes.  If you saw me in real life, you'd get what my photos reflect.

Weight Loss & Weight Maintenance Blogging- Karen's Suggested best practices 

There are no real standards for weight loss or weight maintainers, so feel free to add constructive suggestions to mine. There may be many more best practices.

1 Update the status of the blog. Minimum Quarterly, 4 times a year, or semi annually- 2 times per year:  even if you are no longer maintaining. Put some time frames around your loss and maintenance times. Own your history, but be current and own your present, too.

I recently updated these profiles: Blogger, twitter, 2 Instagram accounts, Facebook, and google +.  I'm not keeping 70+ pounds off, I'm keeping 65 of 70 pounds off. Truth!

2. Put dates on any photos. Make sure the photos are clear and represent your current message. List age or age range, health issues you blog about, length of time, weight lost, or time since you solved an health issue. How tall are you?

3. Tell us about what is working, what didn't work, what you've learned, key take aways. 

N=1 (self experimentation) is key. We all have different environments and food templates but we also have common practices and habits.

2. Re-brand if your focus has changed. No longer weight loss or weight maintenance blogging?  If your circumstance has changed, that's okay. Life changes, your focus changes, That's supposed to happen. It's okay for life to happen. The alternative is bleak. No personal growth is not awesome. Hopefully the bloggers are conveying what they love.

4. Go private  or suspend your blog if you need to do that. Or by invite only. Make a decision from a place of strength for good boundaries! There is a thing as too much information. You could be quoted on the front of the NY Times tomorrow morning from a comment on a blog post. Careful what you write. Somethings are better for smaller groups.

Providing information related to your story is a skill that can be learned.  Good boundary setting for yourself and your information sharing is key, in my opinion. Sometimes sharing your goals and methods is not helpful. That's okay. You can learn good boundary setting as an adult.

How old is that photo?????


  1. I could say so much here, but I'll just leave it at: Agree with all your recommendations. It is clear that you are referring to at least one blogger in particular, although your words apply to many of the BS-filled who clutter the blogosphere. Your intentions are admirable, but she is and has always been way outside the boundaries of reason...

  2. Waving hello, Norma. It's not one person in particular, although many fit outside the suggested best practices. The topic came up in the maintainers support group (Half Size Me) in an okay way. I work routinely within a set of guidelines both at work and on my blog, so I got to thinking, well, I do follow a best practice in weight blogging- and it's all in my head, so I might as well state it.

    Now, I'd hate for weight loss or weight maintenance to be regulated by any one person or one body- the major weight loss commercial plans (NO for the love of GOD, fruit is not free- it does fast track my path to diabetes and that is far from free- LOL) along with the US dietary guidelines would have us all eating high inflammatory oils, low points bars with frozen meals, and no to little fat. Because, science says so. Proven- on shaky science and society is paying for us following-like lemmings on the weight gain train-IMO.

    Anyhow, I warned my support group "This is NOT about you as an individual" It's not. But that being said, I think that we all have to vett our sources better. Too many time notable experts are pointing to resources that are way, way way out dated. There are only 3 states, weight gain, weight maintain, and weight loss.

    If there were a closed loop system on starting and ending and maintaining weight loss blogs- those looking for their own solutions could navigate a whole lot better. Too many times, I've been directed to weight gainers- moderate, moderate, wheeeeee look at me, I can have my weight loss and eat my XYZ, there's no reason you can't. Baloney. Maybe it works for the young, or genetically gifted. Good for them.

    Oh, Oh, okay. Yes, regain happens. It's happened to me a lot. Even this year 5-6 pounds. Despite my best efforts.- Not the Wheeee/moderation part, but I did gain weight. But covert blogging, not owning up to hey- that's not what I look like...that's not what happened after a few months/years. That's rare.

    Okay, end of my 2 cents. We as a group can do better.

  3. All those are great! I'm decent at posting, but I'm terrible with keeping up with the pictures and such. I need to do better!

    1. Beth Ann, It's just like photos in your album, eventually you'll forget what's important. Glad you update your blog- even if a little bit. Even if you have new focuses.

  4. Oh I love your cat's expression! LOL

    1. LOL, Katie!!! Tortoiseshells are are so funny sometimes. Those looks.

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  6. Hey there! It's definitely good when people update intentionally with the correct info. I have always tried to be as honest as I can even when I know I'm off the rails. I hope my blog doesn't come across as being inaccurate or untruthful. No one likes to post current pics when they've hit a gain or feel unsuccessful so I think when the blog is dead or hasn't been updated that alone IS the update for the most part and makes it clear the person might just not be in a good place. I know I have tried to keep posting updates when I could even when my focus was off. I did recently update my pics which was no fun to do as I'm not where I want to be but like you said I think it's important that people know where you are. I really hope I didn't fall into the category of being someone who has failed to be up front in blogging. I do believe in full authenticity. It's hard to do but important for the people who want the info.

  7. Holly, you are the gold star example of honesty, clarity, and non vague posting. I yo-yo dieted for 40 years prior so I completely understand

    I'll hit 4 years and maintenance next week and 5 years in long-term food sobriety in a couple of months. I can't tell you how many times I was directed to bloggers who were actually gaining weight when they were branded as weight maintenance. Fortunately this time around, I have my eyes wide open with my abstinence template

    Here's to your next steps and bravo for blogging Real time and staying within your message

  8. I made a comment last night but I'm not sure it posted... sorry if this is a duplicate.

    I, too, have struggled to lose weight while blogging, but I've always tried to be transparent and honest about my journey. I recently ditched one blog and started another because I just needed to switch my focus to overall transformation and not just chasing skinny.

    I know I am a food addict, and this will be the year that I focus more on recovery than just losing weight. Like you have said, the weight is just a side affect of the disorder.

    I appreciate your encouragement over the years. You have always pushed me to abstinence and a food plan.

    1. Hollie I give you a gold star for not hiding, for being honest, and for switching focus on your blog. Heck, I started as a Medifast blogger and still, half of my site traffic is via Medifast recipe searches- LOL.

      It's estimated that at least 40% of obese (former me), 10% of normal weight (me), and 10% of low weight people could be food addicts and could use abstinence as a tool for long term health. I'm glad that you are finding what works and are blogging about it. More key learnings in abstinence are really needed in the blog o-shpere. :) Thank you Hollie and safe travels. Karen P