December 23, 2018

Weight Loss Plans for the New Year

Last year, I was so sure that I was done with ever making another "New Year's Resolution" to lose weight. I know it's clichรฉ, but I really do love the idea of starting fresh in a new year--even though it's just another day on the calendar. (Throughout this post, I'm including a photo from January of each year that I started blogging here in 2011)

me in 2011

I've always loved setting goals, but they seem extra special when it's time for a new year to start. That said, it totally contradicts my post about "Waiting until the new year". If we make changes that we're willing to live with forever, then we shouldn't have to wait until January 1 to start. Regardless, there is something motivating about that first day of a new year.

me in January 2012, on my 30th birthday

And now, being the highest weight I've been in eight years, I am starting to feel a little panicked. I thought it would work itself out, like it usually does when I pick up some weight, but I am just having the hardest time getting the scale to budge.

Me in 2013, on my 31st birthday

Last year, I was doing great with my own little combination of intuitive eating and eating only at certain times of the day (8, 12, 4, and 8). It was a year ago that things started going downhill and my weight started going uphill. I was REALLY worried about Jerry, and I focused more on that than I did on anything else.

Me in 2014, during Runner's World photo shoot

Recently, I tried the experiment with intermittent fasting. While I really liked it (mentally, it really helped me to stop thinking about food all the time and it felt easy to do), I didn't lose a single pound. I may have been overeating, but I didn't want to count calories AND fast. I was hoping the fasting would be an alternative.

I've lost a lot of the intuition that I'd built last year, so intuitive eating (by itself) just isn't working anymore. I definitely don't want to do Weight Watchers, or Keto, or any of the other "diet" plans out there. So, I've decided to go back to what has worked so well for me in the past--counting calories, and nothing else.

Me in 2015, after Becky presented me with my race t-shirt quilt

When I dropped 40 pounds pretty quickly in 2015-2016, I was simply counting calories (along with training for the 10K). I made the calorie counting work in a way that fit into my lifestyle. I didn't worry about what food I was eating (I ate what I wanted most) and I ate four times a day (8, 12, 4, and 8). I kept my portions moderate. And I felt good!

Me at nearly my thinnest in 2016

Counting calories is something I know well, and I know that it works for me. I don't feel deprived while doing it, and there aren't any "rules". The biggest drawback (for me) is portioning out food, especially while cooking.

My solution for that is to relax a bit. I don't have to measure things right to the gram. If I don't know how something is prepared, then I just look up something similar and count that. As long as I'm eating moderate portions, my calories will be in check. (I wish I could do the moderate portions while NOT counting calories, but I haven't mastered that yet.)

Me in January 2017, hoping to appear thinner than I was

I'm going to use my Fat Secret app to keep track of my calories. (Funnily enough, as I was looking up that link, I found this post that I wrote in April about my plan to get back to my goal weight. We'll see if I'm any more successful this time! Haha). I also like a paper copy, so I'm going to do the old school tracking method, too.

I'm not going to make any claims just yet about running and if/how/when I'm going to get back to a routine. Each time I think I'm ready, something happens that I just stop doing it. Lately, it's been working on the home remodel. I've spent every spare minute working on that. Other than the island countertop and the flooring, we are pretty much done (aside from just a few minor things that aren't on a time crunch).

My sister's weight is up a bit, too, and she asked me if I'd want to start exchanging our food logs each day. It sounds simple enough--we've done this in the past for accountability--but it really does help. When thinking about my food choices, I remember that I'm going to have to write it down and send a picture to Jeanie. Not that she's judgmental, but there is something about sharing things like that that makes us feel vulnerable. And that can be helpful!

Me on treadmill in January 2018--starting to gain weight

I'm going to Phoenix on January 25th (my birthday!) and I'd love to drop some weight before then. Ambitiously, I think I could lose about 10 pounds (the first five will come off quickly due to water weight). But, I would be happy just to get back in the 150's.

I'm not going to wait until New Year's Day to start. I don't have much going on--my family is coming over on Christmas morning, and we're just having a simple brunch. And then on the 28th, I'm having my childhood friends over. I'm going to make Wendy's Chili for that, which is pretty healthy and SO good. I actually feel pretty good about getting started! I'm tired of thinking about it and not doing anything about it. I need to read Andrea's advice about "Just get it over with!" again ;)  (Seriously, check out that post--it makes so much sense!)

I don't have any current photos of me, because I've been avoiding the camera like the plague. (Just now, I took a selfie--see below--no make-up, gray roots, and all.) I am going to take some current photos this week because I need to quit avoiding it--avoiding it doesn't make it go away.

So, I will face the camera, pick out my first pair of "milestone jeans" and then get to work. (I've been debating whether to post Wednesday Weigh-ins again every week. I love the accountability, but it is a very vulnerable thing to post, especially when things aren't going well. So, I'll think about it some more. Regardless, I'll share my progress now and then.)

Merry Christmas, everyone! (Or Happy Holidays, if you don't celebrate Christmas!)


  1. Aww you're coming to Phoenix. I live in Chandler, are you just here to celebrate your birthday? because it's not that fun here LOL

    1. Haha, just visiting a friend! Her birthday is on the 22nd and mine's on the 25th, so we're going to celebrate together :)

    2. That’s what I figured! Lol Merry Christmas and happy new year to your family :)

  2. I just wanted you to know that I believe in you.

  3. I've been playing around with IF and struggling to get past 16 hours and then I had the stomach flu (ugh!) and had no desire to eat for about 24 hours and then I decided to just see how long I could go. If I had been home I would have had bone broth to keep me going but since I was traveling I just had electrolyte powder in water (Ultima -- I LOVE it and i've never liked any artificial sweeteners before). And ever since then I've been doing either 24 hour fasts or close to it.

    Something seems to have clicked. I don't have access to a scale but I think I'm losing? And apart from a little headache, I feel really good. And I LOVE not having to think about food all day! No choices to make! I just don't eat! (I do have coffee with cream in the morning but supposedly a small amount won't break your fast or spike your blood sugar.) I was planning to eat lunch today but just didn't feel like it.

    Anyway, I am sure you will find a way but if it's something that still interests you, you could play around with changing your fasting intervals.

    Good luck!

  4. Please post your weighing in each week and how younhandke your ups and downs. It would really help those of us learn to accept these normal and natural fluctuations. For us, you are just mirroring our struggles too, and I value your thoughts and how you handle life’s trials. Good luck to all of us in w019!

  5. Merry Christmas and a happy new year. I hope you and everyone else has lots of fun family and friend time. Thats why we try to be the right weight.

  6. You've got this! Yeahh! I downloaded FatSecret to try as well. I like the idea of having a new app to go along with a new attempt to lose weight. And I think it's great that you're taking selfies again. Own your wonderful self!

  7. You can do it! I feel like we share a similar story...I lost 30lbs back in 2012 on WW. Since I didn't really learn how to properly maintain a loss, I gained 10 of those lbs back in 2013. Then I signed up for my first half marathon at the beginning of 2014, and I got back to goal within 6 weeks. In the spring of 2014 I got pregnant with my son, and gained 60 lbs. Since his birth in January of 2015 I've not been able to get back to my goal weight. I've come close (literally within 5 lbs), then the emotions get the best of me and I binge for a while. Now I'm back up to 25 lbs over goal, the highest I've been in 6 years. I've tried going back to WW but can't seem to get my head around the Freestyle program. I've also tried to count calories, but, again, my head isn't in the right place. I'm still running very regularly, thank goodness but my time is almost 2 minutes slower per mile. Your fresh start is inspiring me to do the same. I think I'll try counting calories as well and allow myself to have a higher calorie day for all the things I feel I'm "missing out" on. I'm also following your "Best 10k" running plan to speed myself up. Sorry for the long response, I really want to let you know that you're an inspiration for me and we can do this!

  8. It just shows that we are never done with weight loss. I also lost about 65 pounds on WW back in 2011/12. I fairly easily kept the weight off and got down 20 pounds under goal.

    The newer WW programs don’t work well for me and I’ve bern gaining weight. I’m up about 30 pounds and back to my goal weight. It’s the top of my range but I much prefer myself 10 pounds lighter. It’s my fault- I’ve bern eating too much.

    So I’m also determined to lose at least 10 pounds. We can do this!

  9. Merry Christmas, and good luck with your goals! btw...i don't see a single gray hair in that current photo - you're adorable as ever!

  10. Thank you so much for posting, and for the copycat Wendy's Chili recipe. We are vegan and made it with Boca crumbles. OMG - SO good! We might have a new Christmas Eve tradition! Merry Christmas to you and yours!๐ŸŽ„๐ŸŽ…๐ŸŽ

  11. Maybe don't worry so much about the scale and posting weekly weigh-ins. Post how many days you ran or if you stayed on your calories-- you can't control the number on the scale, only what you are DOING. So only report on what you are doing. Set goals for those areas and see how it goes. I talk a lot about this on my IG @52_Weeks_of_Change where I am documenting my own trip back to a healthy and fit body. YOU CAN DO THIS!!

  12. Right there with you girl.....I always feel January is wonderful for a fresh start....I plan on making 2019 (and turning 50!) my BEST year YET! I too will be journaling and will keep in check with you and your progress...we are all in this together!! Lets Goooooo.

  13. You are not alone! If you want to do a Wednesday weigh in, I will post mine to, if that helps. I have a lot more to lose than you! I'm currently at my highest weight of the year and it's not good. :-( I could use some accountability myself.

  14. You've been amazing with losing and keeping off the weight. And from reading your blog you've had some blips and you know what to do and you'll do it. As a member of Sparkpeople (and I know you are too) maybe getting active there might help??? I know it helps me with maintenance.

  15. I started back up A week ago, and am already down five lbs! Gotta love the water weight! I know this rate won’t keep up, but it’s very motivating.

    Your ten pound goal is achievable. I know you can do it.

  16. I remember reading you on the OpenDiary and weekly wiegh-ins were a real inspiration... I hope you will do that one day! I think others will benefit as well. It also helps to connect on your journey by trying to do the same. Veronika

  17. I'm starting on the 1st. I've gained all my weight back (haven't stepped on the scale in months though, avoiding that like the plague lol) and I forgot how to run. I really miss running so I'm going to start the couch to 5k over again. I'm just going to count calories again too since I know that works. My sister in law is doing great on the Keto diet but I think any diet works as long as you stick to it. My mom is doing some extreme way of eating (some Dr's book blah blah blah) and I know that is not sustainable for me.


I used to publish ALL comments (even the mean ones) but I recently chose not to publish those. I always welcome constructive comments/criticism, but there is no need for unnecessary rudeness/hate. But please--I love reading what you have to say! (This comment form is super finicky, so I apologize if you're unable to comment)

Featured Posts

Blog Archive