If there is one thing I've learned from getting in shape is that having a good mental outlook is critical. When you're stressed you're more likely to eat or, to make matters worse, psyche yourself out of losing weight no matter how hard you try. I got to that point yesterday.
I handle the stresses of life quite well, at least I think I do. Thomas and I got through our move without divorcing each other. Work hasn't changed much at all. Life is just as great as it always is. One difference though, I got lazy and stopped putting effort into my workouts. I ate things I shouldn't have been eating. I was drinking more than usual. All of that equals pounds put back on. So I immediately put myself under the stress of getting rid of those pounds as quick as possible. In turn, my body and my metabolism gave me the middle finger. In two weeks, I had lost a pound. One single pound.
Yesterday I spent most of my morning thinking about what I was doing wrong. I was achy from head to toe from pushing myself at the gym. I was hungry even though I had plenty of healthy clean food within my reach. I had busted my ass at the gym every day for two weeks and there was no pay off. In desperation I began to scour the internet in search of the latest and greatest in weight loss pills. I had officially plateaued and no matter how much I ate or didn't eat or how much I lifted or sweat, I was at a dead end. I was both physically and mentally exhausted.
When you're strength and weight training and you hit a plateau you have two choices - either eat a cheat meal to throw your body back into fat burning mode or change up your routine. I chose the latter. I chose to change up my routine by going home after work yesterday and resting. I ate an extremely healthy dinner and got some sleep. It was exactly what I needed to reset my brain. I woke up this morning to a smaller number on the scale and a good outlook for tonight's workout.
There is a very fine line between putting pressure on yourself to lose weight and having a goal weight in mind. I get frustrated with myself when I don't squat what I think I should, or when I don't lose what I think I should lose. The body is directly affected by the mind, and if the mind isn't right the body will react negatively. I've set a new short term and long term goal for myself and at this point I'm confident I'll hit them both. However, I need to remember that it took a long time to gain the weight and it may take a long time to lose it. Some times it's quite okay to sit back, reset, and give myself credit for what I've already accomplished.