Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Feb. 24: Accountablity

"It is not only what we do, but what we do not do, for which we are accountable."
Moliere, 1622-1673, French playwright and actor
Of course, it's hard to know what you have been doing wrong (or right, for that matter) if you don't keep track of it. Most successful diet programs require a food journal. It's too easy to get off track if you don't. I've even said no to food because I cringed over the thought of writing it down!
The thing for me that is different about my weight loss this time is journaling. I have tracked both publicly and privately. I keep an online journal on a forum, which is great, because I get lots of input from a group of really kind, supportive people who are fighting the same battles. I keep this blog, in which I research different topics and share what I have learned. I keep a personal journal of my thoughts about my life, my nutrition program and my fitness program. All combined together, this introspection has brought my brain along for the ride this time!
Journaling and keeping track of food makes you accountable for what you are eating, or not eating, for that matter. Moliere had it right - the things you don't do can affect you just as much as the things you do. I skipped my 3 litres of water for a while and the weight loss stalled. I went out to eat to often one week and I gained. I have recorded my measurements and taken progress photos, and this has allowed me to see the difference when the scale hasn't moved quite to my satisfaction. I can go back and look at times when I have lost really well to see what I have slacked on.
I've also worked out a lot of my feelings about food in my various journals. I don't turn to food for comfort any more. It has lost the power to comfort me and make me "feel better" when I am down. Emotional eating is what made me fat to start with, and the fact that I just don't do it anymore means once I am rid of this I will never have a weight problem again. By writing about why I ate a particular junk food meal, I learned that it really did not improve the way I felt. So why do it? The aftermath of guilt should have been enough, but the understanding is what really slayed the dragon.
I strongly recommend a food journal and a supportive place to track your weight loss efforts. Find a forum with like-minded people and start today. Track religiously and you will find that your weight loss efforts will take on a new life!

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