Obsessing over weight loss: can it go too far?

For most of my adult life prior to my thirties I sat well under 60 kilos. In fact, my average weight in the ’90s was about 55 kgs, which I had always considered normal. Given my height (166cms), 55 kgs is not a very small amount and is still well within a healthy BMI, at 20. When I lose weight, I don’t look that much different. I look like me, just smaller. My arms don’t magically go all thin and toned; my face doesn’t look drawn. And, totally annoyingly, my thighs don’t look all sporty. I just look like me, but less.

As I make my way back down the weight-gain ladder, I’m starting to wonder if I can get to 55kgs? That’s 20 kilos, or 40lbs, off this 42-year-old frame. Because if I can, I think I am beginning to obsess about this weight loss thing a bit too much. Today I did a little projection of my planned weight loss until March. I’m determined to get back down to 60kgs. Determined.

But you can see my dilemma! Here I am writing about losing weight, and obsessing about how much I can lose, and I’ve plotted its path too. I’m a bit sick in the head. Because, to me, 60 kgs is just the start. I have not-so-secret yearnings to get all trim and interesting, back to what was for me a normal weight of 55kgs. Can I do it? Will I end up healthy and really really fit looking, or will I end up just looking a bit drawn and tired and frail?

Because I have to, at some stage, make decisions about how to live, exercise, eat and drink. I’m getting better at the eating thing, but it’s jolly annoying when we go out to dinner and I’m madly counting calories and abstaining from a glass of something yummy. And I really miss those lovely desserts – I’ve not had any added sugar products for 50 days now. Will it be like this forever? DH is being very lovely about all this, but the poor man hates salad and vegies, and I’m stuffing them down my face and his as if my life depends on it. And he’s putting up with a lot.

There’s an interesting forum over on Calorie Count which I’ve included here and another blogger’s view here. Weirdly, I’m not having any side effects. I’m not obsessing over the things I CAN’T have: I’m obsessing about getting fit and trim. I’m prepared to put up with privation because I want to be smaller again. I’m not bingeing in the middle of the night, and even with plenty of temptations around the house (did I mention my DH has a sugar addiction?) I’ve not once broken, except when I’ve wanted a little drinky-poo, and that was WEEKS ago.

But once I’ve achieved weight-loss nirvana, what then? Maintenance? Can I cheat occasionally? Will I want to? Are hot chips going to be my downfall? Or the 3 glasses of champagne I had when we were out? Or the divine Tiramisu I just had to have? I’m not 18 any more. I can’t just eat what I want and work it off. While I’ve not had too much trouble losing weight, I have had to be dedicated and determined.

Will this be the start of a healthy new approach to living I’ve not really felt until now? Because, I have to admit, I’m loving the exercise AFTER I’ve done it, I’m loving the fresh food, and I’m loving the reveal, week by week, of a more chiselled, streamlined me. I’m looking forward to feeling lighter and having more definition but how much work am I going to have to do in order to maintain my weight?! Can I do four exercise sessions per week PLUS walk the dog? And will I want to?

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