Take it off | Week 51: Planning


So this week I want to talk about being prepared. Part of the reason I got to 240 lbs (and beyond) was due to lack of planning. I go through much of my life without any real direction. Whether it is fear, laziness, general malaise or free spirit, much of my life has gone unplanned. And when you go through life with no plans, seemingly simplistic things like planning a meal or budgeting time to exercise become an almost impossible task.

But plan we must, in order to be successful.

I learned a hard lesson in planning last week when I decided to go on a run. Usually I know exactly where I'm going. I have a route that is safe, well lit and perfectly routed for distance. After running about a mile I came upon a trail I had bypassed many times. Despite my instincts telling me ‘no, don’t use it’ I veered off my route onto this unfamiliar trail. This trail unbeknownst to me was 2 miles long with no outlet until the end - something I didn't realize until I was too far along to turn around.

What did I get at the end of my unplanned adventure? Almost another 3 miles to get home along a poorly lit, busy highway in the setting sun wearing only a long sleeve t-shirt and sweat pants for warmth. As luck would have it, my husband had his phone on vibrate and had no idea I was calling him to pick me up.

Needless to say I got a lot of time to think. Mostly my thoughts went to the future when I wasn't cursing the dropping temperatures and myself. The obvious lesson here is that lack of planning can lead to some serious trouble. This is especially true when it comes to weight loss.

I've mentioned before that I worry a lot about transitioning. Lately I've become more relaxed about the idea. This is in part because I'm making plans. Really it's nothing major. But my hope is that creating plans and setting small, attainable goals will help to keep me on track.

Mostly it's little things like scheduling in 5ks or projects I'd like to do at home. I also want to start doing things like meal planning and coupon clipping. This will be really important to help keep the weight off. I also have goals for my writing (like not waiting till the last minute to do it) and for my painting (like opening an etsy shop). I'm new to this whole planning thing, so even though I'm feeling very ambitious, I will take it one day at a time. But I feel like the more I have to occupy my time, the less time I will spend thinking about food. Of course let's not forget family time as well. I plan to squeeze a little of that in too. ;)

I also think about how I plan to support those that have shown me so much love and support over the past year: my husband, izzy (even if she doesn't know it) my family, friends and my Internet family and friends. I especially want to support those of you that have made commitments to get healthy. Even after I reach my weight loss goal, I know that part of my success in maintenance will come from keeping others motivated.

Other ways that planning can create successful weight loss:

  • One of the best ways you can prepare yourself to be successful in weight loss is to create a support system.  If you are local to me (in the DE/PA/MD/NJ area) and you want to run a 5k, give me a shout! I'm happy to run at your pace and even walk. Need a pep talk? Hit me up on twitter or email me! Don't be afraid to reach out now and in the future. Embarrassed that you ate a whole sleeve of cookies? Yeah, totally been there. I've been where you are and I'll be with you until you get where I am. 
  • Prepare all your foods in advance. Pack lunches and snacks.
  • Plan meals when dining out. Be reasonable in your choices if you plan to indulge. Review restaurant menus before arriving and decide what you will have ahead of time Avoid temptation by keeping that menu closed! (Also, check out this post about dining out while on Medifast)
  • Make exercise more convenient by always having your gym back packed or your clothes laid out. Keep all of your gear in one spot, including your iPod, headphones, armband, heart rate monitor, etc.
  • Let your people know you have exercise goals. My husband helps me create extra time in my day by picking up some extra chores. He knows I'm less likely to run if there are dishes and laundry to be done.
  • Avoid everyday temptations to break bad habits. I used to drive by Dunkin Donuts every single day and get lattes. Now I take a completely different route to work. The only thing on that route is a run down gas station and a really nasty McDonald's (but aren't they all?). Now I save calories, money and time! I still drink coffee at work but it's 20 calories vs. 200+.
Planning has helped me find a comfort zone that is building my confidence in my ability to succeed.  These are just a few ways that planning can help in meeting long term weight loss goals. I'd love to hear some of yours! 
• • • • •
I'm down two pounds this week. I never thought I'd see the day when I only had 18 pounds to go. I'm considering tacking another 5 to it. But one day at a time. I'll get these 18 off first and then I'll see if I want to try to get down to 135. This is one idea that won't get any planning. I'll wait and see how I feel when I get there.

Month One: -16 lbs
Month Two: -5 lbs
Month Three: -6 lbs
Month Four: -6 lbs
Month Five: -6 lbs
Month Six: -8.5 lbs

Month Seven: -7.5 lbs
Month Eight: -5 lbs
Month Nine: -2 lbs
Month Ten: -5 lbs
Month Eleven: -6 lbs
Month Twelve: -4 lbs
Week forty nine: -2
Week fifty: -1
Week fifty one: -2

Total: 82 lbs gone forever! Current weight: 158 lbs Distance from goal: 18 lbs!!

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For your first order of $250+, use my code, and enroll in Medifast Advantage to receive 28 free meals. Do the same on your next order and you’ll receive ANOTHER 28 free meals! This offer is only valid if you enroll in Medifast Advantage, and it’s limited to one per customer. It’s not valid with prior purchases, any other promotions or discounts, or for Medifast Ready-to-Drink Shakes. Check out Medifast’s website for complete details on program and discounts.

*FTC Disclosure: Medifast provides their products for my personal use for free. I am not paid or compensated in any other way for mentioning their products. All thoughts written here are mine. I love complaining so I would tell you if I didn't like something in the program. :) 
Medifast products and the Medifast Program are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or illness. Any medical improvements noted while on the program are related to weight loss in general, and not to Medifast products or programs.

~*Stephanie at A Grande Life*~ 
~*Jenni at Jenni From the Blog*~
~*Stephanie at Goober Monkey*~
~*Alison at O My Family*~
~*Jessica at The Unemployed Mom*~
~*Mariana at The Domestic Buzz*~