HA! I thought that just might drag you in...)
I received e-mail yesterday from a person on another board in which I participate (DWLZ). She had noticed my posting in the Lifetime area about how much it was I had lost to make it to where I am today. Having herself a similar amount of weight to lose, she e-mailed me asking how it was I stayed the course. Seeing the long road ahead, just what was it that kept me motivated to do it all?

Well, I replied to her, but since then have given the topic more thought (always a dangerous thing), and got to thinking that what I had to say to someone with 150 (or so) pounds to lose might equally apply to those with smaller journeys (smaller in terms of numbers, but no less frustrating). In fact, I think it may also apply to those of us actually at goal who are experiencing problems with our motivation as we face the reality of the words "For Life".

You see, when I started losing weight (at 275 pounds, 263 when I joined WW), I NEVER ever gave a thought to the totality of what it was I would do. Firstly, because I NEVER would have believed it would be possible to do what it was I did. Oh sure, I wanted to lose weight, principally because I didn't want to die! (And, that's a really ugly reality.) I was a fat kid, a fat adolescent and a fat adult. The last meaningful activity I had gotten was at least 20 years in my past. I got out of breath simply walking from one room to another. I was on 10 pills a day to control my blood pressure. I lived in a family with medical histories that included adult onset diabetes (in 5 immediate family members), heart attacks (in 4 family members), bypasses before age 40 (in 3 family members), strokes (2 of 'em). And I was the fattest and most inactive of all. (Probably my inactivity had something to do with the fact I had not yet had a heart attack or stroke.) I didn't want to die!!!

So I decided to diet, but, after a lifetime of unhealthy eating (and, of course, fine role models within my close family), I didn't know how to do it. Twelve pounds in I decided to give WW a try.

Walking in the door WAS HARD! The immediate acceptance (just a matter of fact, business like acceptance of me...No one withdrew in HORROR or anything on seeing the numbers on the scale. They didn't even GASP!) a blessing. I took the stuff home, and decided to give it a try...just give it a try.

From the start, I never let the immensity of the challenge before me affect how I felt. Oh, I saw the "healthy weight ranges" in the introductory material, but since I had weighed more than the maximum for my height by the time I got out of elementary school, I knew that I'd NEVER be going there. I had no goals (other than staving off death in the near term).

So, that's how I did it...ONE DAY AT A TIME! I always knew (still do today) that I could quit WW any old time I wanted. On days that were hard (and, yes, there were LOTS of those), I would tell myself "Just this one day....Just do it for this one day. You can quit tomorrow. But do it for today." And, somehow when I woke up the following morning, the pride in having made it through the previous day gave me a whole new attitude to do it for just one more day.

I didn't think of "Long Term Goals". They were much smaller. I thought I'd be happy to get below 200 pounds (my weight in high school). Then, when that was achieved. I thought in terms of perhaps stopping when I reached the WW maximum for my height (I wanted the darned STAR and KEY). Then I wanted to be below what I was in fifth grade (the first time I was ever really aware of my weight...mostly when my mother GASPED when a doctor told her what I weighed, and that something really should be done about it). Then I wanted to hear that last big KERCHUNK, as they had to lower the large weight on the scale from the 150 mark to the 100 mark. (That's where I declared goal...and why...149 pounds, just to hear that "Last Glorious KERCHUNK".) After that it was just a matter of getting to where my body would be comfortable (between 120 and 125 for a whole year now).

And, even after a year at goal, there are still days on which "I don't want do do this ANY more!!!" I don't want to plan. I want to eat mindlessly like other people do. I don't want to exercise. I want to lay about. I don't want to count, or journal, or worry about 5 vegetables a day, or drink the d**ned water. I want to be like other people.

And, you know what? I can. I CAN QUIT ANY TIME!!! I can give all this up. I can go back to being what I was. I don't, and I WON'T. I'll just work on getting through this one, single day. Maybe I'll quit tomorrow.

Lynne