Slow and Steady wins the race

(New!) Read (or post) about people who have stuck with No-S for 10 or more months, lost 10 or more pounds, or 10 or more percent for their starting weight. Periodic updates strongly encouraged -- you can think of it as "Yearly Check In."

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Slow and Steady wins the race

Post by Merry » Sat Dec 10, 2016 6:15 pm

(Copied from my check-in thread):

Wow, I'm so excited, thrilled, and a little surprised (happily so!) that I've stayed with No-S for a year! I hope to have many more yearly updates Smile. I started the Monday after Thanksgiving last year, when my weight was at an all-time high (even with my highest pregnancy weight), and I just thought, enough is enough. I can't just keep letting my weight creep up several pounds each year!

I've been perimenopausal for several years too, so I knew I could hit menopause any time--and all the hype about how menopausal women can't lose weight scared me, quite frankly. I have to say that reading through the testimonials, it's amazing how many menopausal women can and DO lose weight--what an inspiration! It's never too late!

And it's never too late to gain saner eating habits. That's the big thing that drew me back to No-S (after a failed attempt many years ago). I knew I needed something that was long-term sustainable. I've done diets for health (candida diet, allergy rotation diet, vegan diet) and diets for weight loss (intuitive eating, calorie counting) and work-out plans--all except for ie "worked" for me in that I lost (even lost 50 lbs. in a year with two combined plans)--but I gained everything back and more when I stopped them. I knew I needed a lifetime eating plan--not another yo-yo diet.

Enter No-S. I often say--it's not fast (or not for me anyway!) and it's not flashy, but it will do the job if you're willing to stay with it. It's certainly much easier and much more long-term sustainable than anything else I've tried. I started at 208.8, and am down to 185.4 at the one year mark--23 lbs lost!

A quick recap of my year:

(In the "olympics" post, a gold month is one with up to two NWS days but no reds. Silver can have one red, Bronze has 2 reds. I do always take two NWS days. I like that it's a fun, easy way to track how much I stayed on habit each month.)

I had 4 gold months, 3 silver months, 2 bronze months, and 3 no-medal months (3 reds each). I'm pretty happy with that! I like that No-S encourages us to focus on the habits and not the scale. Both are important and have value, but we have more direct control over the habits. Habits allow us to see success right away--and they help us to look at things in smaller chunks (it's easy to see each day if we were on habit or not, while a scale might not move for a couple of weeks or longer, or might fluctuate up and down before reflecting all your hard work).

Over time, I believe there's a subtle but powerful mental shift. I think it's easy to look at our body shape and see fat rolls and disrespect ourselves. However, when our focus is on habit, we can see persistence, consistency over time, the ability to handle a failure and get right back into things and try again, and the development of self-control. We can see strength and ability--not overwhelming failure. I realized when I looked into the mirror the other day that I still don't like my fat rolls and I still want to lose them--but I don't feel a sense of disdain or disrespect for myself over that now. I feel a sense that I'm doing something good and healthy for myself and that I'm making good decisions. Even on weeks or months when I'm not losing, I'm thankful I'm not slowly gaining like I was before. I find I'm more thankful to God for the body he's given me, and that my thankfulness doesn't come from appearance and rules our culture defines. I am thankful that I can move and that I feel better, mentally and physically. I realize that the end result doesn't have to be what our culture defines, and it doesn't have to be perfection--but we can keep working towards good habits. I think I'm more gracious towards myself now.

One thing I did differently this time than the first time around that I tried No-s was to read the book, and I can't recommend that enough. The book really gave me a lot of food for thought (I actually re-read it several times, and hope to re-read it each year). Very logical and sensible, and I find the statistics and changes in American eating trends fascinating (and sobering!) It brings me back to "here's what 'normal' SHOULD look like." (And it defines gluttony in such a concrete and helpful way!)

I haven't recorded my meals, but it might be interesting to see what changes over time (or people may just wonder what I eat--not incredibly healthy but not the worst I suppose):

Favorite breakfast: fruit and yogurt smoothies (usually frozen berries and vanilla yogurt, sometimes a banana or some greens thrown in)

Lunches: half a sandwich (pb & J or meat/cheese), piece of fruit, pretzels & hummus, or sometimes leftovers, or sometimes cheese and crackers and fruit.

Dinners: nothing fancy--egg casserole, lasagna, homemade mac & cheese with fish, meat/potatoes/salad, biscuits and gravy, meatballs and potatoes, tacos, spaghetti, meatloaf, homemade soups...teens like us to have pizza every Friday, so we usually do that. Sometimes I'll have cereal & milk for dinner since I don't have that for breakfast & it just sounds good sometimes.

Decaf coffee (cream and sugar) or tea (sugar) or water to drink. I've cut diet pop to about 2 per week.

Favorite S-Day treat: peppermint mocha in season, or a caramel mocha.

S-days: some are still wild, some not. Today was not too wild--large mocha this am, fruit smoothie, small hamburger for lunch, a piece of pizza and a mug of ice cream at dinner.

Exercise--I haven't committed to daily exercise. It's one of the next things on my list. I started a habit-cal for it once, but deleted it when it got discouraging! I work from home so there's not really any place to walk to. I seem to go in spurts with walking or doing an exercise video or my elliptical. I'm experimenting with some goals right now, to exercise 4 times a week. We'll see if I'm more regular with that by next year!
Homeschool Mom and No S returnee as of 11-30-15.
2 years and counting on No-S.
29 lbs. down, 34 to go. Slow and steady wins the race.
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Post by reinhard » Mon Dec 12, 2016 1:45 pm

Congratulations, Merry! And thank you for posting here.

I love all the detail -- all your "intelligent dietary defaults," even though you don't call them that. Such a better way to get a "good enough" handle on quality than meticulous recording of every meal.

I'm also so gratified to hear how helpful the book was too you. And that the "olympics" helped as well.

Thank you again and best wishes for year 2!


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Post by Merry » Tue Dec 13, 2016 1:01 am

Thanks, I'm looking forward to year 2!
Homeschool Mom and No S returnee as of 11-30-15.
2 years and counting on No-S.
29 lbs. down, 34 to go. Slow and steady wins the race.
Respect Moderation

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Post by fisker » Tue Dec 13, 2016 10:06 am

Awesome! It is great when we find a plan that we can follow, AND makes us happy!

Way to go! :D

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Post by Whosonfirst » Sat Dec 17, 2016 2:05 am

Big Congrats Merry, You're a Jewel on NoS.

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Post by Tessytwinkle » Sun Jan 01, 2017 7:47 pm

Dear Merry. It's New Year's Day and I'm struggling to start again after a very difficult year. I really want to try noS again I did start again a month or so ago but failed. But today I just looked up the testimonials just in case they might inspire me and encourage me. And I came upon yours, I am so grateful to you for sharing, I'm so impressed by your year. I shall now trust in your words, and your actions, and try and commit myself again . I have about the same amount to lose as you, I am 210lbs and I really want to lose about 21lbs this year. Thank you for your example and let's hope I can follow. :-) Happy New Year x

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Post by noni » Tue Jan 10, 2017 4:11 pm

Thank you, Merry, for the details and the encouragement you give to posters. Will be looking forward to hearing from you in new year. Best to you with your exercise regime. I know mine suffers as well.
"Never go back for seconds. Get it all the first time." - Garfield

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Post by Lilybug » Wed Jun 14, 2017 9:34 pm

Congratulations for your success and thank you so much for your input on these boards. It's reassuring to know that it can be done and without losing your mind or beating yourself up for every "failure".

I love that you are appreciative of your body. It's easy to be hard on ourselves, but really we should be so grateful to be able to move and touch (and taste!)


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