Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Forgive Me For Getting a Little Testy...

I normally don’t take issue with fellow bloggers over their beliefs or opinions about weight loss, but this post really has me p’ed off.

I’ll leave it up to you to find the culprit, but here’s the post (it’s very short):

“I Hope You Gained Weight Over The Holidays”

That’s what I’m telling my patients.

Frankly I think for many (certainly not all), significant losses over Christmas and New Years carry a worse prognosis than small gains.


Why? Simple.To lose weight over Christmas and New Year for many would require an overly strict approach, a slap-your-wrist, wish you could have seconds, damn than stupid pie, type approach. An approach otherwise known as a ‘diet.’

Diets by definition are temporary. Lifestyles are forever. Life includes Christmas.

Hope you enjoyed yours.

(And if you did lose, don't feel guilty, just ask yourself if you were reasonably indulgent and if not, perhaps loosen your reins just a touch)

What the…? Reasonably indulgent? Life includes Christmas? It also includes Valentine's Day, Cinco de Mayo, Easter, Fourth of July, Labor Day, Memorial Day, birthdays, and every other excuse of a day to eat. I’m sorry, but gaining weight is NOT part of my agenda. I don’t give a sh*t what time of year it is. Choosing not to eat sugary sweets or overload on potatoes and meat doesn’t make me strict or a “dieter.” It means I’m consistent and have a plan.

I lost five pounds between Thanksgiving and Christmas because I’d slowly gained weight due to excess carbs and I wasn’t feeling my best. I tweaked my eating a bit, but never did I “slap my wrist” or yearn for seconds. I never felt “deprived” (I really hate that word). For my efforts? I feel fabulous.

Many people feel differently about the holidays and indulging and that’s totally fine! I just think it’s absurd that a doctor would encourage his patients to gain weight over the holidays, and to call those who stuck to their plan and menus “unreasonable” is way off base. It’s the wrong message to send to a public already confused about what the hell they’re supposed to eat and when.

I realize how defensive this sounds, and I don’t write this entry as a way to make excuses for my weight loss or apologize for my position. I’m simply tired of all the mixed messages from the medical community about weight loss. If you have a plan, stick to it. You needn’t feel guilty for it, whether it incorporates extras during the holidays or not. I just don’t want to see anyone condemned for doing what it is the medical community suggests they do in the first place and that’s to lose weight.

Geez….

18 comments:

  1. and :) IMO one can enjoy and indulge AND not gain weight.

    Im running out but had to comment.

    totally agree.

    Miz.

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  2. I totally agree. The medical community, in their infinite wisdom, have to keep sending mixed messages because if we all did get fit and healthy, they would be out of work. Obesity issues have made a lot of "fat cat" doctors. Pun intended!!

    Yes, this really "irked" me as well!

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  3. I posted on that blog with this:

    "I didn't gain, and even lost a bit - and I certainly didn't feel deprived at all.
    Just because it is the holidays doesn't mean you have to stuff your face for 30 days.
    Part of living life is learning how much is too much and how much is too little. I think that's called moderation."

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  4. That does seem like absurd advice. I lost weight over the holidays, but I never felt like I was depriving myself...I was just choosy about what was "totally worth it" instead of stuffing myself with whatever, like I used to do. I enjoyed some planned-for indulgences, and corrected course for the unplanned ones. And I stayed active. I've used this revolutionary strategy ;-) for the past 6 months, and it seems to work pretty well for me.

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  5. Lynn you have and are an inspiration to so many people out there!!. You have given back so much, to so many people including myself. You have found what has worked for you, and to share all that you know, you have helped us readers find our own paths. I thank you for this, as I am sure many other readers thank you as well.

    Now to comment on that post….lol

    What I see reading this post, is that he/she is quite unhappy with themselves and are envious of others successes. Permanent weight loss involves being mindful and to plan: Not only on Holidays but everyday of the year.

    I work as a Nurse. I have to say this is a first to see a MD “write a prescription” for "weight gain" lol. I don't believe that this comment was written by a MD, more then I believe that this writer has even come close to permanent weight loss themselves

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  6. I agree, that is absurd. I lost 4-5 pounds between the holidays as well and NEVER once felt deprived or on a diet. From DAY 1, which was August 1, 2007 I vowed to never deprive myself again and to learn to eat consciously and on purpose and to enjoy my foods. I don't consider anything I've done "overly strict" and I have been so much more successful because I stick to my plan, which includes occasional planned indulgences. I can portion my way through any holiday and celebration and have never felt better and more in control of what I am eating. And I have a small piece of dark chocolate almost every day. :) Whoever wrote that has no clue of life long weight loss and maintenance.

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  7. We must eat to live and not live to eat. Yes indulge at the holidays but in moderation like anything else in life.

    I see what the Doc was trying to say but I think his or her Ego got in the way. Yes life involves all those holidays doesent mean you must say food kill me though. Its almost like saying to someone with lung cancer oh smoke one more you already have lung cancer anyway one more wont kill you.

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  8. I agree more than I can express! Christmas was not originally a binge holiday! Our current society has made every holiday into a binge-tastic feast! Most promote a ton of drinking too! Really? I lost weight over the holidays and I had my cake and ate it too! I ate potatoes and smoked ham and pie and cookies... but in small portions! My hands didn't shake in my struggle- I just didn't stuff myself like all my years past!

    I am glad you went off! I shook my fist with you!

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  9. Lynn I totally agree with you. What is wrong with these people? I lost 4 lbs over the holiday (still have not figured that out yet) but I also ate way too much and just because it was a special occasion - being healthy is something we do everyday. Great post!

    Mara
    http://24stepstogo.blogspot.com/

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  10. I agree with you completely. When we start making lifestyle changes, our desire for the things that previously tempted us, seems to wane and we can actually eat healthy and sensibly on any given day, even high days and holidays.

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  11. So by this guy's definition, "reasonably indulgent" means eating so much you gain weight? I lost weight over the holidays & I felt like I was "reasonably indulgent."

    And what kind of person hopes you gain weight? Aaaarrrggggghhhhh!

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  12. Thanks everyone for your comments and feedback. Not sure if you noticed, but I erased a criticism by an anonymous poster, not because it was a criticism, but because it was anonymous. Anonymous called us a bunch of whiners, which this person has the right to believe, but I have an unwritten policy (born from my days at the newspaper) that if you don't sign your name, you don't get to play :)

    It's my blog and I get to make up the rules.

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  13. Admittedly I do not do well with situations where food options are out of my control. Buffets are my enemy. I certainly overindulged during the holiday. But, I also made sure to try on my tightest skinny jeans every day. This motivated me to keep up my workout schedule, and guess what - those jeans still fit even after new years! I did not lose weight, and I did not try to lose weight, because I have a hard time with it normally nevermind when one plate of food at a party is what I normally eat in a day. But I set a very realistic goal of maintaining my weight - I even called it "operation skinny jeans" - and reached that goal.

    I think self defeatist attitudes, and the cultural support for them, are a large part of why many people struggle with lifestyle changes.

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  14. Through the holidays this year we've had an incredible amount of stress (stuff with my SIL and our middle son). I've watched my dear husband put on weight as he emotionally eats, but I have maintained. The holiday is past us now, but we're headed right into the Valentines candy-fest....then Easter. No, that doctor is wrong, if we gained weight at every holiday we'd never ever lose a pound. Crazy.

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  15. Yeah, this post totally annoyed me too because of EXACTLY what you wrote Lynn - there are 10,000 days a year when we are supposed to "indulge" - in addition to all the holidays there are birthdays, anniversaries, baby showers, wedding showers, bachelorette parties, weddings .... the list goes on and on. I think having a plan and sticking to it - having a structure to rely on - is important in weight loss and weight maintenance. That is not to say that I didn't decide that my mom's stuffing was "totally worth it" on Christmas Day. But I plan ahead and make these decisions.

    One last thing I'll say, this post makes me even more nervous to go back to the doctor. I honestly haven't been to a physician in about 7 years (OB-GYN, yes). I had such bad experiences when I was overweight with doctors being rude and insensitive and telling me that the actresses on magazine covers were "healthy" and should be my role models (hello, Hollywood is totally crazy!) that I don't trust them. Now that I've reached and maintained at my goal I'm scared to go back because I'm still at the upper end of the weight chart for my height and I really don't want some, excuse me, a**, telling me I NEED to lose more weight. I know that I might ultimately be doing more harm than good to myself by avoiding doctors, but I just don't know if I can put myself through it, or trust anything they say if they can't respect my weight.

    Does anyone else feel like this about doctors?

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  16. Thanks! this post really helped me out!

    follow me on my weight loss journey!

    http://nicolesweightloss.true.ws/

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  17. Hi Lynn,

    Great Entry and so true. I always feel a bit smug after everyone loosens their belts after a big meal. Not that I don't indulge either. I indulge. People who have maintained there weight throughout a lifetime manage to deal with the holidays without gaining.

    Glad to have found the blog.

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  18. I completely agree with you Lynn. I have that blog bookmarked as a daily stop, and I was very surprised to see that post. I understand that making eating guidelines that are unrealistic does not lead to success...but I believe that post went too far. Someone has to demonstrate by gaining weight over the holidays that they have a healthy approach to setting guidelines for eating? That sounds like a slippery slope to me...

    Lynn, your blog is among my online daily stops that provide support and inspiration for me as I work to lose significant weight (~150 lbs). Knowing that losing over 150 lbs is possible and maintainable is powerful stuff. Thank you - I benefit every day.

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