Walking My Talk Weight Loss Week 2: What went wrong?

Being the analyst that I am, I couldn’t simply let go of the lack of results I experienced last week. Why didn’t I get the results I wanted? It was time for some serious personal reflection and analysis. I was raised to believe “if at first you don’t succeed, try, and try again” and I’ve certainly never been one to give up. I don’t quit, I refocus. I analyze the situation for areas of improvement and move forward with a revised path.

Let’s translate that jargon into the actual situation. To recap: I want to lose weight. It’s a lifelong battle that I just can’t give up on. I am taking great supplements from the folks at Nutrition Scientific and have a solid eating plan right at my fingertips. So, the foundation is laid, and well thought out. What went wrong? I GAINED 5 lbs. despite being under calories. I did some research on reasons I might not be losing weight, and compiled a list of the most likely culprits:

1) Plain ole’ biology- My body is adjusting to a new routine, this one just takes time to resolve. Gaining weight in the first few weeks of a program is actually fairly common. I guess I should stop beating myself up.

2) Hormones: Women can fluctuate 5–10 lbs. in a single month.

3) Not eating enough: 1200 or fewer calories simply may not be enough for my body, and I very well may be putting myself in starvation mode, causing me to gain or hold on to weight.

4) Depression and Anxiety: These conditions affect your body and therefor your weight loss in a number of ways. Motivation is tough when you’re depressed. It also affects your digestion.

Having identified some of the potential problems I’m facing, the next step is to identify solutions. Here is what I came up with:

1) Just keep going. If my body is adjusting, or it’s a hormonal fluctuation, the only solution is to keep going and track the trends over time. As long as over time (months, not days or weeks) there is a general downward trend…then it’s a win.

2) I have to eat MORE and REGULARLY. Not eating and the concept of “starvation mode” is, apparently, a somewhat controversial topic. Rather than try to end a major biological saga, I’m looking for useful takeaways. Overall, what people DO seem to agree on is that routine is good for the body, digestion, hormones…it’s good for all of those biological systems imperative to weight loss. Protein is also essential. Overall, the body needs a certain number of calories to perform well, and craves stability to function at its best. I’m focusing on getting more calories, clean eating, and getting at least 1700 calories. I admit, I’m not super committed to tracking my calories. I’m recommitting for the next few weeks so I get a solid sense for how I am eating and making sure I hit that general range of around 1800 calories. Once I feel I have mastered how to eat within that range, and I start getting the results I am looking for, I won’t need to track every calorie every day.

3) Stress Management is a big deal. The opportunity to write this blog came about just as I am going through a very stressful time in life. Whether you are dealing with every day stressors or a major life crisis, the bottom line is, the body has a stress response system that thwarts weight loss. The good news is that there are a number of ways to reduce stress, including behavioral changes like meditation and therapy, developing consistent routines, and supplements. Did you know that Omega-3 Fatty Acids can assist in weight loss, help with anxiety and depression, and a ton of other essential functions like the heart health factors they are most known for?

Confession time…of all the supplements I’ve been taking, I did miss a few days of the Omega Krill HB. I wasn’t super worried about it because I’m so focused on weight loss, and not heart health, I was overlooking all the other benefits! No more of making that mistake…my favorite quote is “When you know better, you do better” (thank you to the brilliant Maya Angelou).

I really focused on getting in more calories this week, and Huzzah! Success, I lost 2 lbs.! I have kept going on my path, and reprioritized just a bit, and found incremental success! I may not be perfect, none of us are, but I can certainly keep putting one foot in front of the other. I can keep maintaining the healthy habits I am putting in place, eating clean 80–90% of the time, taking my supplements, and eating within my calorie range. My goal for this upcoming week is to incorporate more exercise into my routine. Let’s chat soon…I’m off to walk my talk.