Losing weight

One thing I’ve learned about weight loss over the past several decades, it’s not as easy as it used to be. When I was younger, I was much more active and my metabolism was higher, therefore I burned more calories per day. I could “cheat” on a diet and get away with it. Oh my, how times have changed.

For me to lose weight now I need to employ a more holistic approach. Weight loss will have to include mind, body and spirit. Otherwise, I am likely to fail. Now the trick is to figure out how to do that.

The mental aspect: I intend to write down on paper a start date and what I plan to accomplish. For me, seeing something spelled out reinforces it. This includes breaking down my main goal into smaller milestones. The physical aspect: this includes the obvious, diet and exercise. I intend to spell out the regimens I will use. The spiritual aspect: this adds a mystical element to it. It attempts to keep my mind and body from wanting what I am denying it. When I reward a milestone (sub goal), I bolster my spiritual and mental well-being.

So, if I want to lose 20 pounds I should break it down into a few smaller milestones and capture those in writing. I should decide what type of diet I’m going to use, whether it’s low carb, low fat, portion control, if I’m eliminating snacking, etc. My plan needs to include what form of exercise I’m doing, whether its counting steps with a Fitbit or exercising for 15-20 minutes, etc. Spiritual discipline, I’ve discovered over the years, can bolster mental and physical capabilities. Personal devotion can play a part. Also, focusing on having a positive attitude and being thankful for what I already have and not what I lack (or can’t eat) has a bearing on how long I can endure a diet.

Have you set a “Red Line” for your weight?

A few years ago I got off the couch to train for a five kilometer fun run. One major obstacle impacting my training turned out to be my weight. I carried an extra 25 pounds with me everywhere I went.

The whole process leading up to the 5k event took about nine months. It took all of that time to shed the weight. Training turned out to be the easier part. Being in my sixth decade, losing the weight is much harder now than it used to be. So, I decided to set a red line for my weight. I promised myself if I ever breeched it I would address the issue right away.

During much of the covid-19 crisis, I was pretty successful at staying under my target weight although I flirted with it frequently. That is until I stopped weighing myself some time after Christmas. When I jumped on the scales last week I was considerably above my red line. For the next several days, I jumped on the scales at different hours of the day hoping the result would change but it didn’t. Stay tuned!

Consider setting a “red line” to manage your weight goals.

Peanut butter and fruit

I read an article recently that championed eating peanut butter with fruit. I love apples and I love peanut butter so it sounded like a great idea. The combo is said to offer a good balance of protein, fat and fiber. A tablespoon of peanut butter with an apple offers a healthy alternative to snacking.

I also carry a small container of peanut butter and a teaspoon with me in my sack lunch. I eat a spoonful of it with my banana on my morning coffee break at work. The carbs in the banana boost your energy level (as does the coffee) and the protein in the peanut butter is said to prolong the effects of the energy boost. Bon appetit!