Lifting Off The Diet Plateau
I knew the plateau was coming. I’ve been told that I'd be cruising along, dropping baby weight as long as I ate sensibly and exercised, and then—as every mother assured me—there would be a time when that all came to a halt. And as promised, it came about 7 pounds before I hit my pre-baby weight.
And here I sit, at the plateau. I'm doing the exact same thing that helped me lose over 20 pounds, but I haven't lost a pound in the last month.
This, of course, makes sense biologically and rationally: My 20+ pound body had different needs than the leaner me; I could do less and lose more. I had more to lose. So if I want to really get my body back, I've got to raise my game.
But do I want to raise my game? I fit back into 90% of my clothes, and 100% if I squeeze myself into Spanx first. I'm curvier, but maybe that's fun, something I can play with. I can rock a snug dress and turn more heads with the new zaftig me. My BMI is 24.7; I'm just making it into the normal weight range. So I'm healthy, just rounded.
I'm torn. So I asked my husband what he thought. Popping a zinger to a husband like, "Should I lose the extra 7 pounds?" has only one right answer, and that's chocolate-covered honesty. He told me that he liked the new me, and that the curves are fun. He likes when we cook, eat and enjoy dinner as well as dessert. He also put a baseline on my weight loss, and said that at under 140 pounds I was too skinny (yes, you can be too thin)—and he asked me not to go under that number. But anywhere between here and there was AOK as long as he was concerned: the choice was mine.
So he put it back to me.
Today, I visited a gym. I didn't commit and join, I did a trial work out. I stood in front of the mirror and lifted weights for the first time in 1-1/2 years (I had a high-risk pregnancy, so weight training and running were off-limits). I wanted to be stronger. Leaner. More fit. So I fell into my old routine and worked out hard. I even got an exercise buzz, like runners high.
It felt great. And it was fun. And the question of the seven pounds fell off my radar. I just want to lift weights again. And in doing so, the weight will probably come off. Or it will stay the same and I'll get super strong. But that won't be my primary focus—loss is never a good thing to focus on. My focus is strength, muscles, and tone. The things I want to have, not the things I want to lose.
I'm still going to do my daily walks and yoga. And I'm adding strength training. Because I like it, it's fun, and it makes me feel strong. And it'll make me stop focusing on what I want to lose, and help me remember what I want to gain.