Thursday, January 6, 2011

Motivation and Accountability

"What is necessary is never unwise." Sarek to Spock, Star Trek 2009

In a recent holiday post, I mentioned in passing that I could stand to lose a few pounds. Since I never make New Year's resolutions, I decided that I would casually start my weight loss program on December 28th - the day before my birthday. Why wait for the new year to start the fun? In previous weight loss attempts, I have been successful; and by 'successful' I mean that I've lost the weight that I wanted to lose only to regain it again. Losing weight is the easy part. Keeping the weight off is the hard part. I needed a little encouragement and motivation and it came on New Year's Day in the form of this article on CNN Belief Blog.

After reading the article, I had to admit that a large part of my problem (no pun intended) is that I simply don't pay attention to what or how much I'm eating. Another part of my problem is that I eat on a schedule rather than wait for that rumbly in my tumbly. In times of stress I turn to food instead of God. Finally, I don't exercise enough. I decided that these things needed to change, so...

  1. I'm paying attention to what I eat by writing down what I eat and adding up the calories in a spreadsheet. Good old fashioned calorie counting.
  2. I'm waiting for my stomach to growl rather than feeding it to prevent the growl.
  3. I'm reading a daily devotional for dieters, as well as other inspirational reading at Proverbs 31 Ministries.
  4. I'm walking for at least 40 minutes a day with a pedometer.

Now, all of this is fine and good, but since it's so easy to lie to myself, I also decided that I needed some accountability. First, I've connected with friends who share my faith and have similar weight loss goals. Next, I weigh myself every morning and chart the results on my calendar. A little obsessive? Maybe, but I need to see the numbers in black and white. I bought an Omron pedometer that measures steps, moderate steps, calories burned, and distance walked. Having this pedometer has really been an eye-opener. You can see the results of this morning's walk in the pictures. Today I walked 2.51 miles, 5541 steps, 5439 moderate steps, and burned 289 calories in 44 minutes. I know, only 289 calories. Suddenly those extra cookies don't seem worth the effort of 44 minutes of moderate walking. On the bright side, I've lost 3lbs so far. The fun is just beginning.


  1. I, too, started before the New Year. I didn't want to be one of those people. Whatever. :) That is why I won't be at MNO tonight. I will be at a meeting (Weight Watchers) That is my accountablity. Good Luck to you and I'm glad that you have 3 pounds gone. I also weigh every morning just to keep me honest, and I also write everything down that goes into my mouth.

  2. Have fun at WW. We'll miss you. Good to know I'm not the only one who's obsessed with numbers on a scale. :-)

  3. I heard about this book this week and I had to have it. Picked it up yesterday. Can't wait to start reading it tonight. Read the first chapter online and she has been on a lot of radio shows this week since the book just released. Check it out.


  4. Let me know how you like that book. I've been thinking about getting it, too.



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