Thursday, October 20, 2011

The three phases of post weight gain depression

There's no other way to cut it or spin it- weight gains SUCK!

Wouldn't weight loss be so much less stressful if all you saw was a steady downward trend? Well, the reality of weight loss is that you will never see that, no matter what the infomercials say. Even those that work the hardest will have maintains, gains and the big scary P word- plateaus. The worst for me was when ww switched to a new program- I stalled out for a solid 3 months before regaining my footing, changing some things up and getting my weight loss back in gear. It was the most frustrating 3 months of my ww journey with enough little losses, gains and maintains to make me ready to pull out my hair- and I really like my hair! But somehow I got through it and realized what I needed to switch up- no free fruit for me!

Typically after I have a run of solid losses I might have a tiny loss, maintain or even a small gain. But this week- I gained 2.6 lbs! OUCH! At the meeting I felt the typical first phase of post- weight gain depression: sadness. What did I do to deserve this? ::Insert pouty face::

Then, quite quickly, I went into the next phase- denial. It must be water retention from too much sodium or from working out really hard this week. Everyone knows that when you increase your activity you have extra water retention. Or maybe the scale was just mean and lying to me. Um..... so basically- my denial phase was filled with EXCUSES. Pathetic, I know- but it's all part of it.

Today I snapped out of it and hit the final stage of my typical post-gain movement- acceptance. I had an hour and a half drive into work today and it gave me a lot of time to think. All I thought about was why did I have a huge gain when I worked out like crazy all week between the 8 hours of horseback riding on Saturday and all the circuit training?

But wait....there was hibachi in Pittsburgh for the DVM dinner for our Chief Medical Officer on Thursday night. I haven't seen that much food on my plate in years....and I polished it off. You know how stress makes some people stop eating? Ugggh, I WISH! I get stressed out and food disappears. How could I forget that?

And then there was Saturday night after the before mentioned riding....after hardly eating all day, I devoured bean dip (absolutely delicious and low-cal thanks to Jen!) and baked Tostitos till I finally felt full- which took a while. How could I forget that?

And how about all the free snack-size bags of Herr's baked chips (only the best baked chips in the world) I went home with after Fair Hill International. Those are gone already? How could I forget that?

So, denial is now over and I'm into full blown acceptance. Time to tighten up my food a bit and remember that it's my responsibility to say no when somebody forces a Georgetown Cupcake on me. Cut me a break- you can't get mad at me for that one- have you ever HAD a Georgetown Cupcake? It's a food-gasm!

So what did the three phases teach me? A gain is not the end of the world- and most of the time they are totally deserved and telling you there are areas to improve. So thank you, terrible 2.6 lb gain because you gave me the routine slap across the face that I need to keep going.


  1. Great way to look at it Colleen, so proud of you for taking something positive out of a negative:)

  2. I stall in phase two...surely there must be some other reason why I gained 10lbs? Can a woman suddenly gain 10 lbs of muscle? I see it in Oxygen all the time! Yeah, no.

    Loved the post and a reminder that I need to take responsibility for what's causing the weight gain and get back on track!