Sunday, December 16, 2012

A Hundred Diets

Over the years I have heard and read about so many different diets and weight loss methods.  And, I expect that every single person reading this has had some personal experience with at least one attempt at losing weight.

That is, unless you are one of the odd ones like my son Caleb, who is working out like a crazy man, eating lots of protein, drinking "recovery shakes," and generally doing everything in his power to "bulk up" and reach his goal of weighing 200 pounds.

Men are frustrating to me like that - usually they just have to think about losing weight and it falls right off.  Women, well at least this one, just have to work so hard to lose a single, stinkin' pound.

Back to the methods of losing weight.  There is the simple "counting calories" method.  I suppose you set a daily caloric limit and only eat up to that amount.  Staying below this boundary would guarantee some weight loss.  For me, this would be tricky.  First, I would need a little medical help to determine what my daily calorie limit would be.  And then I'd also tire of always wondering about the calorie count of everything I put into my mouth.

Then there is the "counting carbs" method.  I was once ordered to do this by my physician, because I was overweight, and my blood tests showed I had developed Diabetes Type 2.  Although I did have to learn over time the typical carb count of many items of food and learn to eat appropriate foods at set intervals, over a year and a half I did lose 132 pounds.  Of course I had combined my food modification plan (I hate to say I'm on a diet) with lots of strenuous exercise.

I have heard of many other diets too.  The Atkins diet, the grapefruit diet, the cucumber diet, the blender shakes diet, a soup only diet, and who knows how many others.

Of course we've all heard of those weight loss companies too - the ones where meals are delivered right to your door.  I suppose the theory is that if you only ingest what is delivered to you in a packaged meal or snack, you will lose weight.  From what I've seen, these programs are just way too expensive for a normal person to even consider.  And there's also the future to think about.  Will you be ordering these meals for the rest of your life, or will you gain weight when you cancel your order?

I'm writing all about weight loss today, because yesterday I had the interesting opportunity to accompany my daughter Sarah as her guest to her weekly Weight Watchers event.  Actually I was her driver.  She's recovering from surgery in which a very large mass was removed from her abdomen last week.  Photos of this benign mass laying next to a ruler show it to be 6+ inches and sized like a cantaloupe.  Her surgeon estimated it to be 4-5 pounds heavy, and so Sarah wanted to get a weigh in and see on the scale her dramatic one week weight drop.  The weight loss was 4.2 pounds.

At the meeting that followed her official weigh in, all sorts of tips and encouragements were given to attendees on how to continue their weight loss journey successfully.  I realized at that point that I am so, so, SO out of the loop of modern day weight loss methods.

Words like TRACKING were thrown around.  Apparently this is a method of recording your food intakes on the computer.  Then at any given time your available remaining points can be seen.  If you want to splurge on several slices of pizza, you know how many points you have to use on the pizza.  As long as your available points aren't exceeded, you are still in the weight losing category.

Many of the attendees spoke of wearing an ActiveLink - an activity monitor clipped onto an undergarment that records activity during one day.  The brochure we received says it's like a mini workout buddy.

Then there's the Weight Watchers Mobile app, for smart phones.  With this app you can scan the bar code on an item in the grocery store and you are shown then the point value of that purchase.  Ummm, I don't even have a smart phone.

There's also eTools for your computer, and the Ultimate Weight Watchers 360 Kit.  And on and on.

Every thinkable resource is available for members to access and ultimately achieve success in reaching goals, including rewards along the way, both small and large.  (A member can achieve a lifetime free membership, if his goal is reached and kept over time.)

Sarah has had good success in the several months since she joined the Weight Watchers program, losing about 30 pounds to date.  This is a program that works for her, and that is what it is all about.  And, she attends workouts and meetings with her good friend Emily, which is extra incentive and accountability.

For me though, this method is too complicated, as are many other diets out there.  I am currently fighting the mind battle and formulating my strategy to lose weight again.  Come January 1st, I will charge back into the battle.  As before, I will win it.

But really, whatever happened to just eating less and exercising more?

1 comment:

  1. Your final line said it all. Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.