Counting Victories: Changing How to Define Success in Weight Loss

In Palm Court, Florida on vacation a few weeks ago.

Weight loss can turn into a nightmare, if we allow it to become so important that we lose sight of everything else in our lives. I became obsessed in being resolute about reaching a goal weight that my research indicated would mean that I was no longer overweight.

But, I awoke one day last week and realized that I had to change how I looked at victories and defeats on this journey, if I am to retain my joy at the size I am today and be able to enjoy my life. I needed to simplify how I defined victories, and not use the numbers on the scale as the only means of determining how successful I have been in losing weight. I have found that weight loss is as much about the mind as it is about the body!

This epiphany came after I had visited my cardiologist last Friday. With a twenty-pound weight loss, my defibrillator had shifted downward, because the skin is thinner there now. I was suffering insomnia because when I turned over to sleep on my side, the device would move with me, sticking up in my chest. I was afraid that it would fire accidentally, as it was so loosely in the pocket.

In my interview with the doctor who reinstalled the device last year, he asked if I had lost the twenty pounds intentionally, and I told him that I had lost the weight because if I had contracted the coronavirus, I wanted every opportunity to survive it. He smiled and told me that losing the weight was a good outcome for me. He made me feel victorious!

It was then that I realized that how we define success in losing weight matters as much as the steps taken to lose the weight. The fact that I am healthier and my heart is healthier is a victory for me that I can celebrate every day. When I tell people that I don’t take medication for my diabetes, but maintain my low A1C by diet and exercise, they are impressed and I am glad that I am not on medications.

That I can now go on two-hour and three-hour walks on the different paths and trails around us and when on vacation with my husband counts as a great accomplishment. The knowledge that at age 69, I take one daily medication, and that is Lipitor for high cholesterol, results in people proclaiming how well I am doing. Lastly, being able to buy sizes 6 and 8 in blouses and pants at the Goodwill store means there is a lot of choices, as a lot of people can’t wear those sizes.

As a Christian, scriptures matter to me and I try to live them, and Romans 12:2 speaks of changing how you live by changing how you think, or of being transformed by the renewing of your mind. For me, changing how I think of my weight-loss success makes it easier for me to appreciate the work I have already achieved.

But mostly, changing the criteria for defining success means I no longer feel to xertz down cookies and candy like there is no tomorrow when I perceive that I have failed. Instead, I focus on eating healthy foods at each meal, exercising at least 100 minutes a day, and finding peace in my Bible studies and the Masterclass programs I am taking this year.

These are victories that I can count each day, and if I trip up on one of them, I just get back on the horse the next day. If I follow the way that I have mapped out, the weight loss will come, and if I find that this is as good as it gets, then I can still celebrate the weight that I have already lost.

Fandango prompt is Simplify. Ragtag prompt is Interview. Word of the Day Challenge is Xertz. Your Daily Prompt is Resolute. The Daily Spur prompt is Size.

10 thoughts on “Counting Victories: Changing How to Define Success in Weight Loss

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      1. I don’t think so. I think I am good for someone my age. Also, I am at an age where going down to skin and bones doesn’t make sense to me. So, I am going to work to stay where I am, but not deprive myself of foods that I love. Life’s too short for that. It took me time to realize it and stop obsessing about losing the weight.

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      2. Good idea…I am of much the same philosophy, bu tstill have a ways to go. I flutter aroud one plateu, up and down a lb, then suddenly lose a few more.

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