For all my Weight Watchers friends, you know the feeling...
...you walk in the door. Those annoying jingle bells ring (Really, what's with the jingle bells?! Christmas is over.) You are greeted by the smiling faces that you are used to week after week. Before you commit to stepping on the scale, you peruse the products.
"Oooh, let's read what exactly is in the Chocolate Smoothie mix!!! Oh, wow, look at these calculator skins...I like the abstract art one. It says I'm creative and colorful."
Now, you have no intention of buying any of these products...Well, maybe the Cinnamon Crumb Bars. Those are friggin' delicious (and get'em quick...they are going the way of the Dodo, so don't be surprised if you see me carrying them out of a center like a pack mule. This is serious...serious as Elaine stocking up on sponges on "Seinfeld.") And the Praline Bars are like CRACK...
But really, you're thinking maybe if you stare long and hard enough at the 3-Month tracker, you will be able to stare away a few ounces, just so you can score a loss...or just avoid the scale altogether. But then, she sees you...a receptionist or a leader sees you and says "Hello!" And they are so friggin' nice about it...and they KNOW.YOUR.NAME...There is no turning back because they are just so nice.
And you think "Oh damn, I thought I had faded into the coffee stained carpet."
...and you step onto the scale...and you LOST!!!
Alert the Coast Guard! Release the doves! And if the other members in the meeting room know what's good for them, they will break out into a choreographed dance number...because you LOST weight.
And everything is great. You sit in the meeting room. You celebrate. You get your star! You share this really awesome recipe that you saw on Skinnytaste...
...and as people start to head out, the panic sits in. You have to do it ALL over again to have another great week!?!?!? WHAT.THE.HELL?!?!
And what's why determination is key in this journey. Sure, it would be easy if I lost every week. It would also have been easy if when I first lost all my weight in 2005, I didn't put it all back. It's because I wasn't determined...I didn't fight for it.
And let's be honest, if every week was a loss, the entire journey would be cakes, rainbows and butterflies...well, 2 point cakes, obviously. But that's not reality. Sometimes, we eat too much, we don't exercise enough, or our body just decides to betray us.
And that's okay...because Weight Watchers never promised me it was going to be easy. It taught me to stick with it...and it taught me get my butt in that meeting, whether I lost or gained that week. As I've said before, and as I say to members I encounter...you pay for the meeting...so you should go to the meeting. The ONLY way I was able to get back to Lifetime this May was because I went to my meeting week after week after week.
And how awesome is this...if you've weighed in for the week, but need the support and encouragement, you can go to any other meeting you want. HOW AWESOME IS THAT?!
I just realized how many sentences I begin with the word And. My grammar school English teachers would be PISSED...
...so, why am I talking about determination?!
This past week, I did my monthly weigh-in. Now, it was a bit late this month. Traditionally, the first Saturday of the month, I'm there in my ratty gym shirts and ratty v-neck t-shirt, ready to weigh-in. And yes, I head out during the winter months...when it's still dark out and freezing cold...in really thin gym shorts.
You have your sports superstitions, I have my weigh-in superstitions...don't judge.
But, the holidays definitely got the best of me. It happens when you have an Aunt and Uncle who own and ice cream shop, a future sister in law who cooks for a small army during the holidays, and bartenders who like giving away free drinks to wish you a Happy Holidays.
And the holidays have ALWAYS been when I screw up. I eat my cookies, I get embarrassed that I gained weight, say "screw it", and just hope that training for the Long Branch Half will help me negate all the cheesesteaks, Ben and Jerry pints, and Boneless Sparerib combos I'd inhale.
So, I was also lucky enough that the first few Saturdays in January, I couldn't weigh in. I was also in Disney...and although I made some pretty good food choices for breakfast and lunch, I couldn't resist the Kiwi Lime Martinis (with a graham cracker RIM!) and those Mickey and Minnie frosted cookies (that made me poop GREEN!)...
...and I felt REALLY, REALLY, REALLY close to saying that I didn't want to care anymore. But there was a small voice in my head that reminded me how far I'd come and how I had the tools to undo everything that the holiday had done.
It hit me. This is a lifestyle change and I CANNOT imagine living any other lifestyle. I also thought about how easy it would be to treat my body like a dumpster again...and I punched myself in the face. I mean, as much as I love pizza and ice cream, I don't really like being a 38 waist and getting winded from riding the elevator.
I was determined. I wasn't going to let history repeat itself.
So, I came home from Florida, and tracked the heck out of my food. I was a faithful WW member and was determined to ensure that I had my 8th month of Lifetime.
And I did. I got on that scale and was below my goal weight....because I had the determination to make sure that I was living the life that I had committed to when I stepped back into that meeting room.
It really is a journey. It really is a lifetime. And I hope that people out there who may have given up on Weight Watchers or who had a few rough weeks understand that the journey isn't easy all the time...but without the struggles, we wouldn't be able to celebrate the victories.
Because the 8 months at Lifetime wouldn't feel so good if it had come easily. I worked for it. I sweated for it. I cried for it. I even tried tofu for it...
...and it was worth it.