16 stone exactly, 8 pounds loss across 3 weeks. I could not be more happy, another milestone achieved. It was Father’s Day yesterday and I decided to give both my boys and myself a treat. Ever since starting my diet I have refused sweets and biscuits from them to their great disappointment. For this one day I decided to accept the offers and have no restrictions at all. I therefore had three Bourbon biscuits, four Matchmakers and a packet of Spearmint chews (a particular favourite of mine). The strange thing is I did not enjoy them anywhere near as much as I thought I would. What this highlighted was how much I had eradicated them from my life.
This morning as I reflected both on my loss and yesterday’s excesses I am completely convinced about a few things. Firstly dieting should never be undertaken. Changing how you live to be slimmer and fitter is the only way forward. I started my diet with the intention of losing three stones and then allowing myself to eat treats infrequently once I hit target. This may well have worked but I now buy into changing your lifestyle as opposed to making a temporary change. My second point is that of “habit”. By changing what I do when I have a cup of tea or when my children have sweets I no longer consume large numbers of calories in the form of biscuits and sweets but use my worry beads to keep my hands busy and my mind distracted. I am therefore replacing a bad habit with a good one. It is the same with my exercise. I used to drink a leisurely cup of tea in the morning with half a packet of biscuits but now I drink it much quicker, get up and go to the gym. To make the habit easier to keep I am consistent about the days I go to the gym. For me, first thing in the day is best and I MUST go Monday to Friday in the same way as I regard work Monday to Friday.
My worry bead substitution and exercise habits have been going for several months now and when it came to treating myself for Father’s Day my brain kept rejecting my teats as being alien. Whilst I did consume hundreds maybe thousands of calories more than normal the experience has given benefits far greater than the negatives. During my months of abstention I have had cravings but by intentionally allowing myself them for one day I have learnt that I don’t really want them and could easily do without. I now know that in future I will remember back to this day when I have a craving and it will help me rationalize I don’t really want to eat them.
This habit training I have gone through with my diet helps provide a potential explanation for the general success of worry beads in my life. Using them is a good habit that I have introduced in replacement for a bad habit, or in my case a number of bad habits and now it would seem very strange to undertake the bad habits I have replaced as my natural reaction is to pick up my worry beads.
I will close with one last thing about my weight loss. The actual loss in weight apart from being a number has become irrelevant. What I value and notice far more now is my reduction in size and my “feel good factor” that I have through being fitter. If you are dieting I would recommend you don’t just worry about the numbers, if you feel better keep on with the new way of life the weight loss cannot fail to come along at some point.
The English Worry Beads Co.