My senior year of college I lost about 100 pounds. It was incredibly empowering and one of the best things I ever did for myself. It was also the first time in my life I really felt in control of my body. Looking back, there were weight loss mistakes I made that didn’t set me up for long term results.
A couple of years after the weight loss I went through a bad break-up and a quarter-life crisis. I was unhappy in my relationship, job, and life. Even though I was the thinnest I’d ever been, I was also incredibly insecure and constantly living in fear of gaining the weight back. I was depressed and quickly fell into old habits. I started drinking and partying more, and slowly but surely about half of the weight crept back on. I was so wrapped up in what was going on in my life I didn’t even realize it was happening.
I went into panic mode, of course. Anyone who has ever lost a large amount of weight will tell you that it’s not fun or easy and more often than not feels damn near impossible. Unlike the first time I lost weight, this time I knew exactly what was ahead of me.
If you’re struggling to lose weight, there might be some barriers in your way that is causing this inability to shift the weight. Take a look at this article for a rundown of some of the possible reasons that you aren’t losing as much weight as you want to – https://www.dherbs.com/articles/are-these-the-reasons-you-arent-losing-weight/.
Lucky for me (kind of?) there are some benefits to losing weight a second time around. Here are some weight loss mistakes I won’t make this time around.
Weight Loss Mistakes I Won’t Make Again
1. I Won’t Advertise My Weight Loss on Social Media
The first time I lost weight I was incredibly proud of my accomplishments and wanted to talk about them. I heard from a lot of friends and acquaintances that my story was inspiring them; that kept me going. When I started gaining weight back I felt like everyone was watching me. I felt that if I gained weight I was letting other people down. I worried more about what other people thought of my weight gain than what I thought of it. This was unhealthy and made me ashamed of my body for no reason. This time I’ll be steering clear of over the top weight loss announcements and before and after photos. This weight loss is just for me to feel more comfortable and healthier. It’s not for inspiring anyone but myself.
2. I Won’t Get Sucked into Crazy Workout Schedules I Know I Can’t Maintain
The first time I lost weight I was at the gym or running at least six days a week. I was training like an athlete and competed in triathlons, half marathons, and relay runs. I loved the endorphins working out gave me. Looking back, I think I had an unhealthy relationship with the gym. If I skipped a workout I would “make it up later” and shower myself with guilt and shame for failing. This time I want to have a workout plan and stay on track, but I want it to be full of things I truly enjoy.
3. I’m Not Going to Go Crazy on the Cardio
When I started gaining weight again I had an ankle injury and couldn’t run. This led me to the weight room, which was something I was terrified to try. This time I know what I’m doing and I’m going to make resistance training a major focus of my weight loss routine. Doing too much cardio and not enough resistance training led me to being “skinny fat” last time and I do not want that to happen again.
4. I’m Going to Stop Looking at My Stomach in the Mirror Every Day to See If It’s Gone
I’m also not weighing myself every day or taking measurements all the time, that was a big weight loss mistake from before. A once a month check in is enough to let me know that I’m on the right track. Daily check-ins just make me feel overwhelmed and like I’m getting nowhere. They also make me focus too much on the end goal and not enough on what I should be focusing on, which is building a healthy lifestyle for the rest of my life.
5. I’m Not Making Diet and Exercise the Center of My Life
When I lost weight the first time around I dropped everything to focus on it. At the time it was okay. After coming across the Dietprobe website, I realised that my diet was the first thing that needed to change. I needed to make slow but effective changes to ensure my weight loss is sustainable. This time around I have a lot of goals I’m working towards. I also know I have no interest in becoming a professional athlete, so if I’m not the best or fastest it doesn’t matter. Trail running, hiking, and strength training are going to be parts of my life, but if anything they should serve as the supporting roles for my creative life.
6. I’m Not Getting Caught up in Fad Diets or Overly Restrictive Ways of Eating
Diets are a weight loss mistake I don’t plan on making again. The first time I lost weight I tried everything from vegetarianism to veganism to raw foodism to gluten free and any fad diet I read about on Pinterest. Adding in all of these restrictive dietary needs made life hard and losing weight a lot more stressful than it needed to be. I frequently remember being so frustrated with not having anything to eat within my dietary restrictions that I would binge on food outside of my diet and feel guilty.
7. I’m Not Racing to the Finish Line
Last time I lost weight I made the weight loss mistake of playing the “what if I lose ten pounds by April” game. This led to frustration, undereating, and overexercising. This time I have a general weight goal, but I’m not on a timeline and I’m open to seeing where it goes. I’ve already lost about twenty of the fifty pounds I want to lose and feel much more comfortable in my skin than I ever did when I lost 100 pounds. It’s not about what size jeans I wear or what the number on the scale says; it’s just about being healthy and comfortable.
8. I’m Not Basing My Self worth on My Appearance
I have gone my entire life basing my self-worth and how I felt about myself on what I saw in the mirror. I am so done doing that. For one thing, I’m 25 years old and I know that what I see now is probably some of the best I’m going to see in my life. Most people don’t wake up at 40 more attractive than they were at 25. I would rather be known as an intelligent, active, outspoken activist than the prettiest girl in the room. No more looking at Pinterest or watching television and saying, “If I just lost 15 pounds I might look like that.”
9. I’m Not Going to Make Weight Loss a Main Topic of Conversation
It seemed that when I was losing weight all I talked about was losing weight, eating, and exercising. I have so many more interesting things to talk about. If people want to talk to me about weight loss or exercise I’m not going to shut the conversation down, but I’m also not going to be the instigator. I don’t think everyone needs to lose weight and I see beauty in people large and small. I just feel more comfortable at a lower weight.
10. No Detoxes, Juices, Fasts, or Anything I Heard about on Dr. Oz.
These crazy gimmicks sometimes lead you to short term results, but they’re just that. Short term. I’m in this for the long haul, so I refuse to binge on chicken wings and follow it up with a juice fast that gives me a headache. Just, no. I don’t care if it actually is healthy or isn’t healthy. I already have a headache like 95% of the time anyway.
Those were my weight loss mistakes and going through a large weight loss before, I am better prepared for doing it the right way the second time around. My weight loss mistakes doesn’t mean that these are mistakes for you. Have you made any weight loss mistakes that you want to share? If so, leave a comment.
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