Friday, January 7, 2011

Looking for Some Advice

     I'd love to know if anyone has any ideas about a good way to keep my weight off. Let me explain. Last summer, I lost about 15 pounds. But now, through the holidays, I've edged up on the scale a little bit. And I'm getting worried.

     Here's what happened. I was weighing in between 205 and 210 -- creeping up over the years from about 180 when I graduated from college. But recently I've been having trouble with a creaky left knee and some arthritis in my right ankle. I figured it could only help if I lost a few pounds. But how would I do that? I'd dieted before, and never did figure out a regimen that really worked. I would lose a few pounds, then gain them right back within a month or two.

     Well, last summer I ended up losing weight, almost by accident. B and I were getting our upstairs bathroom redone. We decided to do the painting ourselves to save some money. So one day in August, after procrastinating for several weeks, I got out the joint compound and the sandpaper and went to work.

     It was hot. I left the windows open to get rid of the paint smell. I spent two or three days preparing the walls, working right through lunch, sweating like a hog. I would eat breakfast around 9 or 10 a.m., then go to work and have nothing but water until dinner, around 7 p.m.

     I took a couple of days off and went at it again, all day long, applying first the primer, then two coats of paint. Another two or three days, working straight through, without stopping for lunch.

     By the time I finished I felt pretty good. And when I stepped on the scale, the dial teetered on the 200  mark. I had lost 7 or 8 pounds.

     I was so impressed with my work on the bathroom -- and my modest weight loss -- that the following week I started in on the garage. I moved everything out from the walls, repaired the dents and the holes, and put on a coat of primer and two coats of paint. Another several days sweating through the afternoon, eating no lunch, just drinking bottled water.

I wish!
     By the time it was all over, I was down below 195. One afternoon I registered as low as 190.6. That was an anomaly. But still, I leveled off in the range of 193 to 194, and I stayed there.

     I went back to eating a normal lunch. The only dietary concession I kept up was the bottled water. I had been used to drinking soda -- usually Diet Coke, or sometimes a ginger ale. So I switched to the water, instead of the soft drinks. And I stayed down below 195 through the fall, through Thanksgiving, right up to the Christmas season. But then came the Christmas cookies, and the cakes and pies and candy -- not to mention the big family meals -- that go hand-in-hand with the end of the year.

     The other day I stepped on the scale. It popped up to 195, then kept edging up to 196 and finally topped off at 197.

     I do not want to go back up to 200 pounds. I feel too good about myself to do that -- not to mention the load off my knee and my ankle. But I can see I've started down the road to recidivism.

     What can I do? I'm looking at several months of cold weather, when I won't be going outside very much -- and I sure won't be sweating. I do go to a health club now and then; but that doesn't seem to help much.

     So that's why I need some advice. Can anyone give me something I can use to help me keep the pounds off? Even now, as I write this, I can hear those corn chips calling to me from the kitchen.

3 comments: said...

I am an expert on taking it off, but keeping it off is another matter. When you sort this out, let me know. Otherwise, we can both hate my husband who eats whatever he likes and is very thin, I think it is genetic myself.

Kay Dennison said...

I believe that genetics is a huge factor, too. I'm lucky. I inherited my dad's build so I tend to be thin but I do watch my diet. My ex-husband got pretty heavy after we were married (credit my cooking and beer) and had to go on a massive diet and lose 60 pounds. I think I wrote about what I learned from that a while back and I'll send you the link if I find it.

June said...

It's just easier to Not Eat when it's good weather. Life is good, Life is comfortable, even if sweaty . . . and there's no need for the comfort of constant food-getting.

You could decide to clean out the basement and accidentally lock yourself down there. For weeks.
Or you could repaint the entire interior of the house. Would that be toxic in the winter when you can't open windows? Either way, it would work for weight loss, wouldn't it?
Or you could sleep, like bears do, all winter. They lose weight.
That would be my choice.

Here's my serious answer.
The only way I've lost weight successfully without constant diligent exercise was to eat small . . . very small . . . portions of anything every two hours. Constant tiny snacks all day long.

It could be genetics.
It could be that at this advanced age, you're turning into a female, in which case, forget it: You're gonna be fat the rest of your life.