I've gone over it and over it in my mind... not just this week, but for years... decades, even. But twenty years ago when I wondered "will it work?" in regards to a weight loss strategy, I had nothing much to base my opinions on. I was new at being fat, and new at losing it. I didn't have a background in dieting aside from watching my mother weave in and out of Weight Watchers meetings, losing and gaining the same 30 pounds while eating frozen WW pasta meals for dinner and then breaking down into a bag of potato chips every so often (sound familiar? Except for the WW part...) I didn't have Internet yet so I just trial-and-errored my way through losing weight and regaining it and losing it again through six pregnancies and 15 years. And then the Internet came into my life, I found weight loss message forums, learned about the many, many ways people lose weight and eventually, started blogging. The rest is history (or archives).
Now that there is an overabundance of information available online... everything from scientific studies to people's personal opinions. And you know, like they say: anything will work, if you work it. Weight watchers will work, Atkins will work, Any of hundreds of plans, diets, lifestyle changes will work. And all of them don't work, too. For every person who doesn't lose weight, there are others who have succeeded with the same plan. Heck, I tend to think now that losing weight is the easy part, but keeping it off is the hard part (and that is, at least in part and maybe subconsciously, why I am so resistant lately to losing again. I know I can get the weight off somehow, but I am very leery of doing it just to end up regaining it all again. It's painful).
So I ask myself, will anything work?
Counting calories and biking worked, until it didn't and I spent almost 2 years trying to keep losing by that method and failing.
Medifast worked, until it didn't and I spent another year or two trying to get back on plan with Medifast and failing.
AIP worked, even though it wasn't a weight loss effort, until it didn't and I gained all the weight back.
Those are the three methods that have "worked" for me over the course of blogging. Nothing else I have ever done in the past decade has "worked" (and by working I mean weight coming off consistently). But why did they stop working? Well, AIP stopped working because I stopped doing it (got sick and couldn't cope). Medifast stopped working because I got packet fatigue and couldn't bear to eat them anymore after ten months straight, and I didn't transition back to real food properly. Calorie counting and biking stopped working because... well I think it was because even if I was "on plan" 26 days a month, I could be "off plan" the other four days and it would negate all the weight loss, resulting in no loss (basically up and down the same few pounds for almost 2 years).
I can't "cheat" on AIP and lose weight.
I can't have a few days overeating each month while calorie counting and lose weight.
I *can* cheat some on Medifast and lose weight, but I can't stand to eat packets anymore.
Basically what I know "works" and what I know I can do is either AIP or counting calories and biking.
And yet I don't know if I can do it enough to make a difference.
I don't want to do the diet/fail/diet thing anymore. I am tired of the cycle. I am sick of getting all excited and working hard and sticking to a plan (call it diet, call it lifestyle, doesn't matter) for weeks or months, losing weight, feeling good about it, and then fall back down the rabbit hole of off-plan eating and not exercising... whether it be because I got sick, I got stressed, I had an injury or got depressed or lost a loved one or just got sick of vegetables and wanted to eat cheesecake. So I hesitate to "start again" with something I am 100% committed to when I know that I am not perfect and cannot be perfect, that something, someday will come up and I will eat too much of something or the wrong something, maybe for a couple of days. I will get sick or busy and not get my regular exercise in. Stuff is going to happen.
I know if I can hold it together 95% of the time for six months I will lose a good amount of weight. I am pretty sure I can do that. I know I am capable... I've done it before. The fear is what comes next? What comes after the six months, the year of weight loss when I screw up like I have done before? I don't think I can stand another 50 pound loss and regain. It's tough, emotionally, physically. I am afraid of a regain more than I am afraid of staying this weight. That's probably the real, "deep" reason I have stagnated lately. Fear. Will anything work... forever?
Some days I think it's not worth another try. Other days I can't stand it and have to believe I can lose it again AND keep it off. But if I lose it again I *have* to keep it off. Can I? Can I... that's the big question.
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