Friday, December 09, 2005

Hitting moving targets

At first I was pleased with each individual pound or kilo, and I didn't think at all about where it was leading. I took each pound, and added them to a pounds lost tally. Without a pounds to go thought. Actually, that's not quite true, I originally weighed only in kilos. That was good, if only for the simple fact that I had no conception of what weights in kilos equated to or what they should be. 118kg was a number. I didn't know it was eighteen and a half stone. Had I known that would I have been panicked or daunted? I'm not sure. I didn't, so I kept on plodding away.

Then I worked out my BMI. That was a big shock. I knew I was fat, but even admitting to obesity was a push for me. So to realise that I was within a stone or so or being morbidly obese was a big wake up call. A very big one. I'd managed to lose some weight, and after my first stone I decided to try to lose another. And it was only at around this stage that I worked out how many stone may need to come after that.

I had no idea of an ideal weight for me, as I'd never been there. When calculating what would get me to a BMI of 24.9 I made a slight miscalculation, working it out on the basis of a height that was an inch or so taller than I actually am (I converted it to cm in my head and was a bit off). But it gave me a nice, round, targetty figure. To lose 40kg to get to 78kg. That's a nice round number if ever I saw one, so that became my goal.

It was always a tentative, hesitant goal. For a long time I subscribed to the misguided theory that I carried my weight well and that I just wasn't necessarily meant to be thin. That I didn't really need to lose that much to be healthy. I didn't know whether I'd make it , whether I'd want to, or whether I needed to. (And the answer to that is, yes, I did need to, and yes, I do want to).

It sat on here for quite a long time. My ticker had my 40kg goal, ticking down slowly, edging towards the right hand side. At some point in April I sat down and I worked out that it was actually achievable. If I lost 1kg most weeks, mixed with a couple of 0.5kg weeks when I knew I had holidays or visits or birthdays or December, then it was doable by the end of the year.

So when I realised that my BMI would only be "healthy" at a lower weight than I'd originally calculated, and that losing 100lb would be pretty cool, I revised my overall targets, but kept that 78kg figure in my head for the end of the year. I'd probably need to keep losing on into next year to get to my ultimate goal, but getting to 78kg would be the bulk of the battle won.

So, this morning I stepped on the scale and read

77.8kg (172lb)

I did it! I expected it after my last (oh so close) encounter with the scale, but it's nice to see that number, confirmation of what I've done.

Although it's a milestone, this isn't a time for huge celebrations.
Of course I'd rather lose 40kg than 4kg (and yet I remember how happy I was when the first 4 were gone), but there's more weight to lose. I know that now. Far from 78kg being unachievable, it's still noticeably heavier than I need to be. So much for carrying my weight well. I've lost 40kg/88lb, and if I can't really carry what I've got left then how on earth did I think I carried what's gone?

But, from where I was this time last year, this would be miracle territory. When in fact it's not miracles that we need, but good old fashioned hard work.

It's funny how your perspective changes though. I once found an ideal weight calculator on the internet. It was interesting to see how perceived ideal weights changed as your starting weight changed. I'm already well past the figure that was given for people starting at 260lb might want to aim for. As the weight you put in it goes down, so does the ideal weight it recommends. I wonder, does there ever come a point where it says "stop, you're fine as you are"? Is there ever a point where a woman's mind would agree with that?

So I have the new targets, and I'm starting to wonder whether I'll also end up going below that. Maybe I won't aim to go below it as consciously as I've been aiming for 160, but maybe it will happen. I'm getting the impression that I could certainly manage to go below 160 without looking too thin or being any more obsessive than I currently am. I don't know whether I'll try, but it might happen anyway. Because at the end of the day I'm not going to stop exercising and start eating chocolate the day I hit 160 and use that as an artificial line in the sand beyond which I don't want to go. I might try to cut down weighing and tracking of my weight, or I might change the balance of my exercise and try to get away from deliberately trying to lose - maybe take up a new energetic activity rather than spending so much time in the gym. But the way I live now I feel confident that I won't just magically stop losing at a randomly set number.

And maintenance, too. That's a challenge I've still got to face. I won't lose 40kg next year, but I'd be happy to keep off what I've lost. I have to remember to focus on that and find something else to keep me going when the numbers dropping down on the scale don't.

(and don't ask me what's going on with the fonts here - I keep on trying to edit the post, but it keeps on putting paragraphs in random fonts for me...)


Blogger SkinnyME said...

Congrats YP on 77.8kg!!

6:29 PM  
Blogger Haloranch said...

I love your new picture. Now I am eagrly awaiting a photo of you in your killer Christmas dress. Don't forget to post one!

6:40 PM  
Blogger YP said...

Oops, I did post one but for some reason it's not showing up. That's just reminded me to have a play to try to find it.

7:39 PM  
Blogger B said...

Congratulations YP!! What a milestone for you. You've done a remarkable job, so yes, celebrations are indeed in order.


10:46 PM  
Blogger a mummy losing it said...

You are doing fabulously well. And remember the biggest changes happen in the last few kilos - that's when you'll really notice it. but honestly, from your photos, you look great!

4:09 AM  
Blogger Making muscles said...

Hi Bunny, I celebrate your loss, or what some here call "your release." I've lost 2 lbs so far. Your 100 pounds speak of great honor for your body. You have made thousands of little decisions over the past months, and look where they took you. I'm thrilled for you. I love reading your blog. Today I raise a glass of ... water your health.

5:32 PM  

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