Friday, June 3, 2011

60 things I've learned from living and losing 60 lbs (twice)

60 things I’ve learned from living and losing 60 lbs (twice) 

1. It can be done. (and it can be done twice) 
2. Motivation is mysterious. You know whether it’s there or not - but you do not know how it comes or how it goes. 
3. You have to eat. Skipping meals is counter-productive. Don’t do it. 
4. Exercise is exercise. No matter what you do - it’s better than sitting on the couch. 
5. Normal people really don’t judge you at the gym - as a matter of fact, they really don’t even notice you because they are too busy focusing on themselves. (People who do judge you aren’t worth the sweat that you are leaving on the treadmill so don’t worry about them) 
6. You have to drink water - there is no way around it. 
7. There are days when workouts are not scheduled that you really feel like working out - then go workout. 
8. There are days when workouts are scheduled and you don’t feel like working out - workout anyway. 
9. Cheat days are ridiculous. Why would you torture yourself like that? Cheat days imply that every other day isn’t normal - and they should be. 
10. If you can not live the rest of your life eating what you eat and working out the way you workout - then you will gain back all of your weight (experience talking here). 
11. “Ill start/start over on Monday” is a mindset that sets you up for failure. This gives you “permission” between now and Monday to eat a bunch of crap and do nothing. Start NOW. 
12. The second half of any exercise always goes by faster than the first half. 
13. It’s not your body telling you that you can’t do something - it’s your mind. Don’t let your mind tell your body what it can and can’t do! 
14. Speaking of “can’t” - this word should officially be removed from your vocabulary. Even if you think it - don’t let it come out of your mouth. 
15. Healthy food is WAY more appetizing when you make it beautiful. If you are going to have a salad - at least make it pleasant to look at for crying out loud! 
16. You just can’t lose weight eating out all of the time. I know, I know - Jared did it. You probably won’t. (Don’t kill the messenger) 
17. There is nothing in the world like doing something you thought you couldn’t do. 
18. Plan your workout music ahead of time. Listen to songs that are upbeat and interesting to you - if you don’t, you will get bored. 
19. Always challenge yourself. Don’t let there ever be a time when you don’t have a goal or an event to work toward. It will hold you accountable. 
20. Be honest with yourself and others. If you are having a bad day - then have a bad day. Don’t apologize for it - just have it and then get over it. 
21. With that being said - Treat people with kindness and respect no matter what. Just because your scale was up 5 lbs this week doesn’t give you the right to be nasty to people. 
22. If you don’t feel beautiful and valuable right now - then you never will. I don’t care what size jeans you wear. 
23. When someone compliments you - just say “Thank you” - nothing else is needed. 
24. Bragging is not egotistical - when you accomplish something, brag about it. Maybe it will inspire someone else to accomplish something. 
25. Unexpected things happen. (for example...your food is planned out for the day and your boss decides to have a lunch meeting at Ruby Tuesday’s) Just roll with the punches and do your best. 
26. You will cry. You will cry when you fail, you will cry when you succeed - get used to it... and get used to others seeing you cry. 
27. Just because it’s a salad - doesn’t mean that it is healthy. The cheese, croutons, dressing, ham, bacon - What? You thought those things magically became healthy just because they are laying on top of lettuce? 
28. There is a such thing as a plateau. No, its not just an excuse people have for “slacking off” - it really does exist and it sux!! 
29. When people notice that you are losing weight they will ask you to help them do it too. Run away from these people. Just trust me, it never ends up good. 
30. When people notice you are losing weight they will ask you how you are doing it - like there is some kind of secret that you have stumbled upon and you MUST share it NOW. When you tell them that you use portion control and exercise - don’t be surprised when they seem disappointed. 
31. It really is harder to lose weight after 30. 
32. It really is harder to lose weight that you have re-gained. 
33. If you haven’t drank your water in a few days and you start getting in your daily required amount - make sure you wear something that day that you don’t have to tuck in because you will be visiting the bathroom quite often. 
34. Invest in some nice workout clothes. You already feel uncomfortable on the gym equipment - do you really wanna look like a brown paper bag too? 
35. Being healthy (although it is admirable) isn’t necessarily the ONLY motivation you should have to get healthy. Sometimes you need other motivation - find it. 
36. There is more than one way to exercise - find your way. 
37. Gyms could make a KILLIN’ if they would sell socks and earbuds! 
38. Buy a pair of jeans that are one size smaller than what you wear and hang them somewhere where you have to see them every day. Try them on periodically for inspiration. 
39. Take progress pictures. You will forget how far you have come and you will need them for a reminder. 
40. Make your weight loss plans public knowledge - the pressure is good for you. 
41. Running outside really is harder than running on a treadmill. 
42. You don’t really feel like a runner until you can run outside. 
43. When you start to eat more healthy - you will sometimes make other people feel bad about their food decisions. You don’t mean to, don’t feel bad about it, it just is what it is. 
44. You will learn more about yourself during the weight loss process than you ever have before. 
45. When you start to lose weight your fat will jiggle more - don’t be alarmed. It is jiggling because there isn’t as much fat to hold the rest of the fat up. Be proud of your jiggle! 
46. Success is like a drug - once you taste it... you have to have more! 
47. You don’t realize how much life you are missing when you never do anything active. 
48. Even after you have lost 60 lbs your mind takes time to catch up to the fact that you aren’t as heavy any more. You will be faced with something that you couldn’t do before (ie. bungee jump, climb a rock, sit in a flimsy chair) and you will think that you still can’t do it. 
49. Everyone’s struggles are important to them. Someone may only have to lose 5 lbs and it is just as hard for them as it is for you. Don’t down-play their struggles. 
50. There are people out there who are skinny and still have issues with food. Just because someone is skinny does not make them fair game for jokes or weight comments. Those things are hurtful no matter what your size. 
51. Once you lose enough to be in a smaller size - you will suddenly ONLY be able to find jeans in your old larger size ... it’s like the stores are laughing at you on candid camera. 
52. Its fun to imagine (while you are in the middle of a really intense workout) that the girls who teased you about being fat in 6th grade walk in the gym weighing more than you and are unable to keep up with you - I know...Im so mean. But it’s fun. 
53. Its also fun to imagine that all the people on the treadmills at the gym are thinking that you probably can’t do much because you are so big and then you start running, and you don’t stop, and they leave before you thinking, “Dang, she proved me wrong.” 
54. Setting small goals and giving yourself non-food rewards is important. 
55. Tracking your food is important, but there will come a day when you don’t have to track because you just know how to eat. 
56. Diet soda will mess with your scale. It has tons of sodium and makes you retain water. 
57. You will probably go down a shoe size - who knew? 
58. You can’t do a million crunches and suddenly lose fat around your abs. You have to do cardio to lose fat all over and then the muscle you gained from the crunches can show through. 
59. Yes, it is true. Muscle weighs more than fat proportionately. Get used to hearing that because 500 million people are going to tell you that when your scale doesn’t budge. Its like the only weight loss fact that anyone knows. 
60. Losing weight is about more than just depriving yourself or even disciplining yourself. It is about creating yourself and not allowing life to just happen to you. Next year you will wish you had started today. Live your life! 


  1. Number 14 and 24 are hysterical. love it. ha.
    Well written Adrienne!

  2. 41 and 42- so true! and running in warm weather is much harder than cool weather. and even a teeny tiny incline can seem like torture during a distance run. but i was still proud the first time i ran a whole 3.1 on a treadmill. and even more proud when i ran a whole 3.1 on pavement. and sad when i pulled out my winter clothes to find my t-shirt from a 5K I ran, almost 3 years ago. :(

  3. It is nice to revisit some of these blog posts. This one in particular is so 'real'. I'm so proud that you never quit, doesn't matter how many times does it?