Last Friday marked the end of my 4th Ultimate Loser program and while pound-wise it was my least successful, emotionally I feel that this was my best UL yet.
When I started 8 weeks ago, I set goals to make sure that I exercised and changed my diet in a sustainable way. In the past, I have been so completely burnt out by week 8 that all I want to do is order an extra-large pizza and sleep. However, this time I’m still good to continue working out and eating sensibly. All because I took it easier this time.
Not to say that I didn’t work… I did. Hard. Getting up every morning at 5:30 to spend an hour sweating (and often vomiting ;-) ) is work but I found as time went on getting up was easier and I looked forward to getting my blood moving for the day. I’ve improved my mile time, by quite a bit, even though I was exercising fewer hours a day. I also didn’t count calories as strictly as before. During past UL’s I kept my caloric intake to 1300-1400 calories a day and spent a lot of time dreaming about what I would eat when it was over. I would even shop for forbidden things and store them in my cupboards so I could eat them the second my 8 weeks were finished. I lost a lot of weight in 8 weeks but I also gained a lot of it back. This time I allowed myself more freedom. I had 1 free day a week where I didn’t keep track (at all) and I let myself have the occasional treat. I still lost weight, most weeks, but at a more modest rate and I’m okay with that.
So, I didn’t lose the 30 pounds of I’d lost in past competitions but I feel like I can keep going over the summer. I ended with a 4.2 pound loss during the final week bringing my total to 15 pounds lost. I have a long way to go before I start feeling like I’m looking any better but I feel better and emotionally I’m still raring to go.
And that, my friends, is Progress.