Challenges. In an endeavor like this, there will inevitably be challenges. Last week was a challenge for me because I was so busy with work, I didn't get to continue daily diarying here, which I had hoped to do. I did stick to my diet, though, which is better.
Challenges can come in many forms.
One big category for me is losing control of food choices because of other events. Eating in a restaurant or at someone else's house is a nice challenge. Being stuck at a hospital on sick vigil with nothing but the cafeteria for options is not so nice. Travel makes for a nice challenge; having limited access to healthier foods because of economics is not. My first week of dieting, I cooked all the meals and while I love to cook, it got a bit much. This past week, by necessity, I ceded some of that responsibility to my husband. I've mentioned we generally cook healthily so while he might have used a little more oil than I would have, it was olive oil. Still lots of veggies, whole grains, etc. It helped that I stuck with portion control, measuring and weighing my food.
Emotions can be another challenge, for good or bad. Food is often bound up into happy events. People we love love to cook for us so how do you turn down your mother's apple strudel? I was in a good mood last night and wanted to make a little tea-and-biscuit tray for my daughter and me while we watched Downton Abbey even though I wasn't hungry. Food can also comfort us when we're down. It becomes a crutch. I had this challenge this week as well, feeling down and wanting a big pile of sugar, fat, and flour, preferably with a load of chocolate mixed in. And then I thought about the long term. Comforted, perhaps, now but not so happy in the morning!
Simple hunger can be a challenge to weight loss. Choosing a plan that doesn't allow you to eat enough food to ward off hunger sets you up to fail. Not eating regularly can also cause you to gorge when you do sit down to a meal or leads you to make bad choices at a vending machine.
Our own bodies can challenge us. I hit my calorie count, or went below it, every day this week but when I got on the scale this morning, I hadn't lost a pound. (Actually, I gained .2 pounds, but I refuse to be that micro.) I had a big loss last week and was hoping for something similar, if moderated, this week. Maybe two, maybe even five? No. So what happened? Part of it may be (hello, internet!) I will start my period this week. In the past I've found I just don't lose as well around that time of the month. I may make up for it the following week. Another issue may have been all the stress I felt with work last week. I've heard stress can make your body retain weight because of some ancient self-preservation mechanism. It's way too early in this process for me to hit a plateau, right?
These are just the challenges I could think of this morning. I know there are many more. Please share your weight loss challenges and any strategies you've found to deal with them!