Today, I stepped on the scale and was disappointed to see that my weight - which I am desperate to get down - remains the same as its been for the past seven weeks. Seven weeks ago, I made some changes in my diet and quickly dropped 7.5 lbs the first week.; thereafter, my weight has been the same each time I do a weigh-in. My hopes for coming down significantly this summer were starting to wane and I was slipping into an abyss of hopelessness and listening to an inner voice saying, "Same old Linda. You know you can't do this. You're too old and set in your ways to lose as much weight as you want (50 lbs). You need to just get used to being fat."
I was having a pity party to beat all pity parties! But then a thought occurred to me. It pierced through the "why me?" session like the break of dawn: I've held steady to a 7.5 lb weight loss for 7 weeks. That signifies that I've made a lasting change. More importantly to me than the time that it takes to drop the weight should be to keep it off! In a research project led by Philippa Lally and published in the European Journal of Social Psychology it takes approximately 66 days to form a lasting habit.
So with 7 weeks under my belt of holding at my current weight I'm well on my way to being able to say that the dietary change I made has been grafted into my regular eating routine. The way that I've kept off the 7.5 lbs weight loss has now become my new "normal" and doesn't feel that difficult to maintain. And I'm not even exercising yet! Now for me to reduce further, I'll now have to make another adjustment until it's a lasting habit; and then make another and another and so forth.
I started out the day whining about not losing more weight, but when I opened myself up to a different perspective, I recognized that what I was whining about was actually a "win". I mean, when was the last time I dropped some weight and kept it off? Before this, I couldn't recall. So I am actually in the midst of a big "win". Now, I've got to keep on keeping on, make another lasting change, hold it and not let any victory slip past my notice. I suddenly am feeling hopeful again. Are you with me?