I am just back from a week all alone in a self-catering cottage in the Yorkshire Wolds, while Ann was a few miles away at a residential summer school. Apart from missing the love of my life, it was a great week, walking in that beautiful part of the country. But it was also a chance to test out my new trick, which was supposed to stop me getting fed up about having to lose the weight that I usually put on when I am away from home. The trick is simply to lose the weight before I even go, so when I get home I am still at my target weight. This looks like a winner – in theory! Things got off to a good start last week, because I did lose quite a bit of weight before I left home.
One very important thing to take on holiday was the bathroom scales. I am convinced that daily weighing has played a huge part in my weight loss. I know it’s not for everybody, but daily weighing keeps me focused on my weight, and shows bad trends very early on, so I can then do something about them. I weighed myself on the first holiday morning and I was 83kg. I was going to be pleased if I could get home and be 85kg or below (the top of my OK range), so that meant that I had 2kg – four and a half pounds – to play with.
I knew I had to be careful about what I ate, even though I was doing a lot of walking. I was aiming for 24,000 steps a day, and that worked out at burning about 700 calories a day more than I usually would. Not much really, so if I ate my usual meals, but felt I could reward myself with a daily whole pizza, then I would already be putting on weight. And if the rewards were even bigger, in the week I would probably put on even more than the 2kg I had allowed myself.
In the event, I did manage an average of 23,000 steps a day, and had a great time, as well as picking up a couple of blisters. And when I got home, I weighed myself, and I was…83kg! So, I did it – a week away on holiday, and I didn’t put on any weight. I made the lose-it-first trick work, so hopefully I can make it work again. But, and it’s a big but, this maintenance thing is difficult! I had a whole week right at the limit of the exercise I am capable of, and still being very careful about what I ate, but stayed the same. Like it or not, being very careful about eating will be permanent.