The Dog Ate My Homework... (Pssss.... you're not ready..)

One thing I've noticed since I've lost weight is that my conversations with friends inevitably include talking about what I did to lose it, which leads to a discussion of the calorie deficit diet. This mainly happens with friends who I don't speak with that frequently. I have a few life-long friends that I catch up with every couple of months over the phone or through DM. I had one of those conversations a week or so ago. 


This friend, like me, has had a life-long struggle with maintaining a healthy weight. She had a medical problem where she lost a lot of her ability to taste food, so eating involves the hope of tasting something. She can taste chocolate which is both good and bad given her problem. Her relationship with food is very unlike mine. I just want to feel full. She wants to taste and probably craves sugar.


Dieting and weight loss whining are normally part of our 'catch-up' conversations. We would discuss how overweight we are, agree that given our lifestyles, metabolism, and stress levels, it was really impossible for us to lose weight. We did a bang-up job of giving each other permission to stay obese... for many, many years....  


Our most recent conversation was a little different. 


She was extremely happy for me having lost the weight. She wants to lose weight, but she can't do what I did. Because ....... I'm not even going to list all the arguments she gave me, from why she won't buy even organic lettuce (so, no salad to eat) to how she hates yogurt... berries... and has way more stress than I do. Also, dieting is harder because she's working and I'm not.  I could go on but there is only one real reason why she can't do this diet right now:


She's. Not. Ready.


When we create these reasons/excuses (I did this too), it's really to keep us from having to take on one more hard thing in our lives. Every reason or excuse, logical or not, that we employ to keep up an unhealthy lifestyle is for one purpose. To allow us to not have to make hard changes, for a long period of time in our lives, because we simply aren't ready.


I got sucked into the Facebook reels rabbit hole the other day and came across a clip of a Ted Talk video. A woman was lecturing on what was the number one indicator of success in children. It wasn't IQ, intelligence, economic circumstance or family structure. It was grit.... That was the one characteristic children, who became successful adults, possessed. I thought that was really interesting.  If you are interested, here is a link to that Ted Talk:


Angela Lee Duckworth The key to success Grit


Grit is also what you need to be successful on the calorie deficit diet. There is no instant gratification. It's going to take months to lose a significant amount of weight. You will have times where you eat things you are not supposed to on this diet, and feel bad about it, but with GRIT, you will brush it off and continue on with it and do better the next day. You will have to eat things you may not love for the sake of your health, maybe have to exercise a bit. You will have to invest the time to shop, measure and weigh food, plan meals and maybe prepare some foods ahead of time to have on hand. It takes time, energy, patience and perseverance to do this diet.... i.e. It takes GRIT.


Now, my friend has grit in spades!!!  She knew what her profession was going to be in high school while I was primarily focused on my weekly boyfriend drama with no care for my future. She focused on attaining her goal by engaging in activities and taking classes to help her achieve her goal.  She is still working in that field today. She has truckloads of grit. She can do this diet... no problem... BUT... She's... Not.... Ready.


Before you make a New Year's resolution/declaration about losing weight, ask yourself if you are really ready to make a commitment to do it right. If the thoughts that follow your declaration to lose weight are some reasons you will not succeed, then don't start a weight loss plan just yet. Spend some time getting to a place where all those excuses aren't the first thing that pops into your head when you think about losing weight.  Spend some time trying to figure out why you are stuck on your belief that a diet WON'T work for you. You may learn some things about yourself. 


If you are an older person, like me, who has lived your life in the US, you may remember this television show called ABC's Wild World of Sports.  It used to be on Saturday afternoons. Jim McKay was an announcer on this show. He narrated the opening introduction where he talked about "spanning the globe to bring you the constant variety of sports." His most famous line in the introduction was a voice over where he talks about "The thrill of victory... and the agony of defeat..." and the video is a ski jumper that falls over as he is coming down the jump and goes careening off the bottom of the ski jump. 


That's what dieting is like for many people. You have those days where it's "the thrill of victory" and others where it's the "agony of defeat."  


I want you to succeed in your weight loss plan. If you are starting a weight loss plan in the new year, or continuing one like I am, go into it with your eyes open. Diets can be hard at times (I'm hungry but no calories to spend), easy sometimes (Wow, I ate less calories than I could have!), boring as hell (I just can't eat another salad), time consuming (I have to shop, cook, measure and weigh food), depressing (Everyone is eating junk in front of me that I can't eat), frustrating (why did I let my weight get to this point?), and rewarding (I can't believe how much better I feel!). 


You can tell yourself every hour of every day that you need to lose weight. I know. Because I did this for 30 years. I have no idea why I was suddenly ready at 59 to do it. Maybe it was because I decided I was worth spending my grit on. 


If you are not familiar with a calorie deficit diet and want to learn more, here are a few posts to get you started.


This is How We Do It!


Calorie Deficit Diet - Ten Things I Want You to Know


As of January 2nd, I will be back to trying to lose the rest of the weight I need to lose.  If you are ready to get serious about losing your excess weight, please know that you won't be alone in your journey.  We can do this!


(photo courtesy of Breakingpic)

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7th Decade Redhead
7th Decade Redhead

I'm 60+ years old female retiree who is finally figuring out why she's been struggling with losing weight her whole life. I want to share the lessons I learned so others can help themselves with their own weight loss struggles earlier in their lives.

60 Pounds by 60 Years
60 Pounds by 60 Years

My final weight loss attempt after 40 years of different diet failures. No shakes, no supplements, no surgery, no crazy food, no purchased meal plans, no fasting. Creating a healthier relationship with food and facing the painful truth about my relationship surrounding food. No BS, just common sense. And it worked.

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