How I Had To Jedi-Mind Trick My Way To Weight Loss
I love reading and seeing Brande’s weight loss progress. It encourages me so much that I always reach out to congratulate her and let her know how much it keeps me going full force with my weight loss pursuit. But one day, when I hit her up on Twitter, she mentioned how she was hoping to see me put out my transformation pics one day as well.
That’s when I realized that… I didn’t have any. And I was trying to figure out why.
This isn’t my first time in the weight loss rodeo. During my freshman year of college, a life of late nights, early mornings, buffets, sedative studying habits, and fast food restaurants that delivered until 3am, I easily gained 30 pounds. So during the summer of my junior year of college I decided to go full force in the gym and drop the weight. During that time I always did the weekly weight loss photos, and compared them to see my progress.
But this time, while losing my baby weight, I didn’t do that. What was so different this time? That’s when I realized how I had to change my entire outlook on my weight loss attempts to stay consistent.
In past articles I addressed how I had a three week stamina problem when it came to working out. I would go full force with the work out DVDs, weight lifting, and healthy eating, but at the beginning of the fourth week was when I would peter out. I would just lie in bed, staring at the ceiling, waiting for the time that I would usually work out to pass.
I didn’t understand why I would continue to stop working out during the fourth week. That was when I realized what my biggest problem was: I was putting entirely too much pressure on myself and my weight loss.
During college, when I lost those 44 pounds, I initially started going to the gym once a day, five days a week. But during the second month of my weight loss pursuits, I upped the ante, with two workouts a day, 7 days a week, and running a total of thirty miles a week. I. Was. Intense.
On top of that, at night, I would do specialized targeted work outs to hit certain trouble zones.
It was effective, and I kept that routine up for a whole year, but I eventually burned out at the gym. I got to the point that I couldn’t even step foot in it.
Fast forward to having a child, and once I finally felt strong enough to lose the weight, I found my mind back to College-Kendra, and I was obsessing over the work outs, and doing a second workout, and then running on my mother’s treadmill, planning what to eat, and what to avoid when I grocery shopped. All that overthinking caused me to have a good start, but after three weeks, it was me, a couch, and Chili-Cheese Fritos, wondering: “What happened?”
So this time, I stopped obsessing. Not even obsessing, I kind of stopped thinking about weight loss. I decided to turn it into something that was as mechanical as walking upstairs. You know how it is, when you’re walking up the stairs, but if you think too hard about it, it immediately seems like the most arduous thing in the world? That’s how I had to approach going to the gym.
I had to take the stigma (good and bad) out of working out. I stopped getting on the scale, I stopped measuring myself, I stopped thinking: “By next month I want to have lost [insert number] amount of pounds.” I just stopped thinking about it.
Once that happened, everything else just sort of fell into place. Instead of obsessing about what to eat, I just ate what I craved. Ironically, my body stopped craving the unhealthy food I loved, and instead trying fad diets, I just listened to my body.
My mother finally convinced me to get on the scale, and I saw I was over 30 pounds lighter than the first time I weighed myself.
Even with that, I still don’t think too much of it.
I went to a mental place of living life; no planning, no obsessing, just living. In fact, I hardly noticed that I was shopping smaller sizes until my mother pointed that out too.
Weight loss is different for everyone. Sometimes it helps to be very conscientious of what you eat and how you work out. But for me, tricking myself to not think about weight loss is what actually got me to stay focused on it. Three months later, I’m still going to the gym.
It’s not perfect, but it’s perfect for me. *Kendra shrug*
If Kendra Koger does find a before picture, she’ll probably post it on her twitter @kkoger.