Tag Archives: plateaus

Pouting Then Celebrating Now (Day 91)


Real life plateaus are actually pretty cool. This picture is of The mesas of Island in the Sky district of Canyonlands National Park, as seen from the Needles district. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:IslandInTheSky.JPG

Yesterday I pouted and didn’t go for my walk. I was too frustrated that I’d hit the beginning of week three without the scale moving.  My grumpy I’m-not-doing-this-if-I’m-not-getting results attitude was self-sabotage. I knew it but didn’t work my way out of it.

I hate plateaus!

A lot of people say they have cravings where they’re upset. I didn’t even want food. In the end I ate okay—no big binge, and I didn’t deny myself food either—which is honestly what I felt like doing. Just stop eating and maybe I’d lose. But that would be so NOT healthy.

When I went to bed I told myself I had to get up early and do at least a short walk before I started my busy day. Getting outside has become more than just a way to lose body weight. It helps me drop emotional pounds, too.

So that’s what I did this morning. Got up and got outside! This plateau will NOT win!

Real Time Update:

Of course not long after these posts about the plateau I dropped about four pounds all of the sudden, then the cycle of stalling for a week or two then dropping 3 or 4 pounds started again. What I’m reading is this is very normal as you draw nearer your ideal body weight.

This week I was down another 2 pounds, which put me completely into the “normal” and “healthy” range for my height. Wow. I was pouting back in January, but I’m celebrating today!

How About You?

Pouting or celebrating? why?


Pesky Plateaus! (Day 90)

Angry today.

I’ve had 21 days without moving down the scale.

Here’s the results of the on-line research I did:

To lose weight I should take in 1308.65 calories a day. Sometimes I’m slightly under, but overall I think it is about right. I might consider not subtracting my calories when I exercise and upping my app to 1300 . . . but overall this feels like I’ve been pretty wise and done things correctly—of course there was a hormonal issue listed in this article that I haven’t checked on.

The other thought from this article is timing of calories. I have been eating heavier than I need to at the last meal, not above calorie count, but more food later than I did originally.

This article was a little more convicting. Even though I’ve been good with calorie intake and regular exercise, I haven’t been good with water intake. Maybe I need to track it again. Also, I’ve tried to stay in calorie range, but I’ve had more carbs lately. I think I’ll try to cut back here and up my fiber intake. I also have been craving salty foods . . . this may be causing me to retain water.

Synthesizing this article basically says to put more intensity or more time into working out.

There’s a lot of conflicting information out there, and after messing around trying to research this thing, I still don’t feel I have a clear answer. Ugh.

~ January 21, 2013

Real Time Update:

Looking back on this post I smile. I lost weight so quickly at first that when it started moving more slowly it was upsetting. But it does keep moving, and I am down another 14 pounds or so from the day I wrote the above entry. I looked up my body mass index and for the first time in at least ten year it says I’m in the “normal” and “healthy” range for my height! When I started I was considered obese. My ideal weight is still a few pounds away, but experiencing normal after years of abnormal is beyond amazing.

In my weight loss journey there has been another interesting experience. When the scale stops moving for a while, my body is reshaping. I don’t know if this happens for everyone on weight loss journeys, or if it is related to the BENew products I’m taking. They actually shrink visceral body fat. It is sweet to think that during those icky weeks when the scale didn’t move, I actually had a lot of comments about how much thinner I was, AND I had to buy smaller clothes. Maybe that was simply God’s little gift to me during the rough spots.

As I revisit this experience today I am convicted again that I’ve let my water intake lessen. My lips feel dry and scaly, and I’m sluggish. It’s amazing how something so simple as getting enough water makes such a huge difference.

How About You?

Any tricks to help you get your needed water intake? How about plateaus?

Weight Loss Journey Day 50

I’m under calorie count today because I burned over 500 calories exercising! (I’m learning I can stay satisfied on the amount of calories I eat as long as I earn at least 300 by exercising. That means I actually ingest 1500 or so, but burn 300 so my count stays around 1200.) Today I earned over 500, then didn’t get around to eating them all. Crazy! When I first started this journey anything under 2,000 seemed like torture!

After my surprise prayer adventures, I often start off walking without a plan and ask the Lord to show me where to go. Today, I made a point to walk around the elementary school again now that I know more specifically how to pray for those kids and teachers. I prayed that the 50% hired back would be hand-picked by the Lord to help move the school toward healing, and that those left without a job would be led to the right place for this stage in their life/career. I also prayed for the kids, for the families, for community people who will be a part of the healing.

After I finished I walked past an empty strip mall that was very close to the school. I found myself praying for a church to build there that would know how to care for the needs of the families of that school.

Then I kept wandering, asking the Holy Spirit to lead me, and ended up walking to the nearest high school just as they let out. I mingled in the crowds, praying silently for the kids I walked by, for the school, for the teachers. I also prayed specifically for the baseball team, since my boys play on it.

I still weigh 190 lbs. Ready to drop again. I’m told sometimes you stall out, but I don’t like it.                                        ~December 12, 2012

BeNew Outside 2

A recent picture taken about 2 pounds ago. Unfortunately the sun was in my eyes so my face looks a little weird!

Real Time Update:

After I wrote the above I plateaued briefly at 190, then dropped another 7 pounds pretty quickly. Then things slowed again.

I’m now another 60ish days into the weight loss journey and down to roughly 175 pounds, which puts total weight loss of 35 pounds. I gotta tell you, the last ten has come off MUCH more slowly than the first 25! But the point is that it continues to come off!

I don’t know if I can prove this scientifically, but it feels like my body needs some time to adjust in between losses now. I’ll be frustrated for a while, then suddenly drop 3 or 4 pounds. But I’m learning not to get too excited when I start dropping again because it doesn’t last too long before the weight loss slows again.

Weight Loss Journey Day 28

Since I’ve returned home I’m trying to live a little like I did at the beach. I splurged on salad stuff instead of waiting for the discount store to have some that looks fresh and make a point to fill at least a third of my plate with it at the dinner table. I try to add a little beauty to our family meals, like candles or a tablecloth or pretty food.

And best of all . . . sometimes I walk as the sun sets.

denver sunset walk

Or break from my rushing to slip into the backyard to watch it descend over the mountains

denver sunset mts

Or pause and gaze through my kitchen window as the orange filters through the tree branches

denver sunset tree branches

Real Time Update:

It’s hard to think about the important things in life–like sunsets or pretty food–when life gets busy. But I’m still looking for ways to embrace beauty, to pant after joy, to let peace envelop me. And I’m still eating salad!

This weekend was amazing. I attended a BeNew celebration in downtown Denver. I was asked to be a runway model for the product (not really as glamorous as it sounds, but super fun.) It’s been a long time since I had to find my inner ham while on stage. I have to admit having dropped 32 pounds helped me be willing to flounce across the stage! (Did you catch that? The plateau is over! Yay! The scale has started moving again!)

How About You?

What little every day pleasure are your purposeful about enjoying? As you’ve lost weight, where have you noticed more courage or confidence?

Weight Loss Journey Day 23

sunset cloudsI’m feeling it. That sense that this blessed rest is almost over. Tomorrow will be our last day on the beach. We’ll be gone before the sunrise on Saturday.

Introspection takes over.

I’m tired of not getting sun on my tummy.

I’m tired of hiding next to my condo door when I want to feel the ocean on my feet while I seek the sun.

I do it.

I wrap in my towel. Drag the lounge chair and my journal to the ocean edge. Where people will walk by. People who may or may not even notice that I am there, just another sun-seeker at the beach. Another middle-aged woman in a bikini top. (The bottom swimsuit piece is still granny style. Just can’t go there all the way.)

I pull the towel away and quickly plop onto the chair letting my toes dig into the sand and delighting in the tickle of the gentle tide that laps over them. I feel the sun. I relax.

Someone walks by; I panic. I imagine they are a conservative couple who would never have a bikini top in their home, and who have read my articles. I imagine they are now appalled to see me like this . . .

But they don’t even notice me, not really. And I am angry with myself for this crazy game. I’m tired of being afraid.

I’m tired of hiding.

I sit a while longer. The sea washes over my tattoo. The one on my foot that reminds me that Jesus delights in me. The one that matches my daughter’s, connecting us as she gets engaged and prepares to connect with someone else in a new way. The one that says we delight in each other.

my cool tattoo

The one I sometimes hide.

I let it go, this angst.

Then, finally, I pick up the little blank book.


Then finally, I write.


Maybe you’d like to know what. I’ll tell a little, carefully edited. Raw but not completely revealing:

“[Last Thursday] I was tired of crying alone, of hiding . . . of having no human place to undress. Years of compressing anger, the fears, the pain, have taken a toll. Sometimes it expands, too often and unbidden, to full size. And sometimes when it does I cry. I know it as raw, feeling pain—but other times it doesn’t feel like anything.

Then a car comes out of nowhere, and my body hurts. I hurt.  I rest and try to heal.

All used up.

. . .

I don’t want to be a burden. To hurt others. To ask for what can’t be given.

But I don’t want to be that little girl crying out for solace into a void where there is no one able to give it.

. . .

I want to be naked and unashamed. I don’t want to cry alone. I want to cry with arms around me. I want uncloaked intimacy of body, heart, and soul.”

And as I wrote these things I saw a little girl Paula. She watched to see how the words would be received. She heard voices of the past that kept her quiet.

And I remembered the little girl who wrote in her journal, unable to write real words sometimes, just harsh, cutting marks, bearing down so hard that for pages after her quiet explosion the writing space was ruined.

Nobody else was strong enough to be trusted. Just God and her journal.

But now that little girl looks curious. She’s watching to see if I truly unveil. She’s watching to see if there are people strong enough for all of her.

And I write more:

“I’m afraid I’m just a vapor with nothing left to give substance. I’m afraid of leaning and being leaned upon. What if relationships topple, too much vapor for leaning?

I know God is in this somewhere. I’m pretty certain I would have already crashed and shattered without hope of being put back together again if He weren’t. But right now I don’t want to be told He is holding me up. (Though I’m sure He is.)

. . .

I’m wearing a bikini top as I write. I’ve wondered why—at 47 and very overweight—I would crave the sun on my stomach, on the long unexposed part of my breasts. But I’ve begged it to come and color me bronze. I long to feel its heat in those typically hidden places.

The first few days I cowered, barely leaving the lanai, begging the sun to meet me there. Funny. I have burned shoulders and upper chest, but these places I expected to be so tender, those so long hidden, have not seemed to draw in the sun at all.

Today I did the unthinkable, dragging my chair out where people are, so hungry was I to have the hidden places touched. I think the water might reflect the sun, and I might actually show that I have been changed, there in those vulnerable parts.

There is risk. A few still walk the beach, and I am seen. I might even be noticed, though I hope not. The biggest risk of this exposure is that my vulnerable, hidden places will not only be warmed bronze, but seared.

Real Time Update:

So far no searing . . .

There’s some confusion about how I’m doing this blog, especially with people who started following the blog after this post released, so check it out if the timing stuff confuses you. Basically, the heart of today’s blog is about what happened on the 23rd day of my weight loss journey even though today I’m at something like day 87. The real time updates talk about my present struggles/success, but in less detail. I hope getting both perspectives help!

And about yesterday’s real time update–I did get it together to return to exercise, and I’m researching plateaus and praying about how to approach this one.

What About You?

Have you hidden? Come out of hiding? Been seared . . . or healed?