When three people recently asked me – within the same day – if I’d lost weight, although I answered demurely and with no small measure of cultured restraint, “Why, I might have lost a few pounds, uh-huh, yep, thanks for noticing,” my internal Oprah was screaming triumphantly, “YES!!! Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes!!!”
This from a dyed-in-the-spandex choco-athlete who exercises just so she can eat more chocolate.
Weight has been a lifelong battle for me and like many others I know (maybe even you), I’m more often than not on the defeated team.
But I’d much rather be on the losing team. Losing as in losing that extra fluff so that my knees don’t creak and I can fit into my normal clothes.
Yes, girlfriend, I know you have them too – the three halves to your closet consisting of your normal size in the middle, a stash of wishful thinking smaller sizes on the left (or maybe they’re hidden away in a box?), and those dreaded just shoot me jumbo sizes on the right. Ugh. The only ones I’ve been able to fit into since I ate my way through the UK last fall. The very ones I vowed NEVER AGAIN! when I hit my all-time high weight ten years ago and proceeded to lose 40 pounds on Weightwatchers just before my book Mom NEEDS Chocolate debuted. Looking back, I have to grin at the teensy size 2 me in promo pictures, my toothy smile taking up most of my shriveled face.
Unfortunately, I am not a natural size 2 – or 4 or 6- and all that extra hanging skin only made me look like Prunegirl.
It took nine years to gain it all back, but thanks to Boo Baggage (my Coty Near-Fact of Science where 3-5 pounds creep up on you each year until one day a big pile of rotten, stinking pounds jump out from behind you – or maybe from your behind – and yell BOO!) I somehow managed to do so, and then some.
Mom needs chocolate a little too much, I guess.
So last December, when buttons began popping off my jumbotron clothes, I knew it was time for action. Come January, I took advantage of WW’s buy-three-months-for-the-price-of-two membership promo and have been toeing the line ever since.
So far I’ve shed 17 of my 20-pound goal – woohoo!!! (I knew I would not realistically be able to maintain size 2 again – and who wants to be Prunegirl anyway? – so I decided to shoot for size 8 and try to stay there.)
Friends have now started to notice and ask me how I’ve lost weight. When I tell them the simple truth: by cutting back on my calorie intake and increasing my activity level, most say, “Oh, I could never do that.” And they have all kinds of great reasons why: no time or energy due to crazy kid schedules, work, family problems, health issues, etc. etc. etc.
I get that. I really do. I felt the same way just a few months ago. But you know, nothing will ever change if you aren’t motivated enough to do something to change it.
However, I thought it best to keep my oh-so-helpful thoughts to myself.
That is, until this morning, when the scripture inside my morning cup of hot chocolate jumped out and bit me. “Encourage one another” (1 Thessalonians 5:11). At the time he wrote it, the apostle Paul was speaking of spiritual encouragement, but hey, I believe Papa God wants us to apply that verse to every aspect of our lives as we help each other get through physical, emotional, and spiritual challenges alike.
That’s what girlfriendships are for, right? At least if we want to all be on the same (hopefully losing) team.
So I’m here today to offer my BBFFs (Blessed Blog Friends Forever – that’s you) some tips that have helped me get a handle on my bulk, and I mean those love handles flopping around my rib cage and the beached humpback whales attached to my hips, refusing to return to the open sea (I call that area my OOPS: Obstinate Orca Propagation Site).
I’m scattering photos of a few of my personal favorite weight-reducing products around this post in hopes that they’ll work for you too.
Bear in mind that WW goes by points (1 point = 25-50 calories) and an average woman is allowed 25 points per day (give or take a few based on her height and age). The GREAT news is that on the new Freestyle system, which is aiming to make good food choices a permanent lifestyle instead of a temporary diet (bad, bad four-letter word), fruits, veggies, eggs, and some meats have NO points! You can eat as many as you want so you never have to be hungry.
If you stick to your allotted daily points, you should lose 1-3 pounds weekly. In my experience, it has worked, as long as I don’t fudge more than one day at a time (who doesn’t splurge on a chocolate chunk ice cream with the kiddos from time to time?). It’s all a matter of planning ahead and substituting “better” choices for balance.
So dear BBFF, what do you find helps keep your weight under control? Please feel free to comment below and suggest a few of your own.
*Disclaimer: I’m not promoting WW; I’m just explaining how it works and why I like it.
**Be sure to enter my Spring Fling Giveaway at DeboraCoty.com (click on “Freebies” to find the giveaway details) to win FREE copies of my brand new Too Blessed to be Stressed books, My Prayer Journal and the adorable Perpetual Calendar (both great Mother’s Day gifts, by the way!).