Struggling with Weight During the Holidays

Kids, have I ever told you about the time I was a total cliché?



Like most people, I imagine, I have found it incredibly difficult to stick to my weight loss plan over the past month and a half. Although there’s a legit study that says the average American only gains about 1 pound over the holidays, my weight has gone as high as 13.4 pounds over what I’d gotten it down to. So frustrating and disappointing, and so entirely a result of my own bad choices.

My only advice (as much for myself as for anyone else) is: beware of the landmines that abound this time of year. Disruptions to your routine. Parties with delicious food and booze. Being so crazy busy you don’t have time to breathe, much less get to the gym. Travel. Holiday treats.


This is what Grandma’s famous oatmeal chocolate chip cookies REALLY are.


And also, DON’T GIVE UP. I was commiserating with a coworker (as we stuffed our faces in the break room with homemade fudge someone had brought in) about weight gain and the difficulty we were having and he said, “Oh yeah, I’m just writing December off.”





Part of me was tempted to agree with him and do the same. As David Wong said in an awesome Cracked article, “your psyche is equipped with layer after layer of defense mechanisms designed to shoot down anything that might keep things from staying exactly where they are.” Giving up was certainly the path of least resistance. It would make everything so much easier. But if I’ve learned anything this time around, it’s that long term successful weight loss depends on an almost Sisyphean determination to keep picking yourself up after missteps and start again. Over, and over, and over.




And, the sooner you start rolling that boulder back up the hill, the better. Setbacks are going to happen, and sure, they’ll make your goal further away, but they don’t have to mean not reaching it at all. That’s up to you.


So, I’m back on the wagon for the millionth time and I’ve got an ambitious short-term goal to make by the end of the year: get back down to 194.2, the lowest weight I’d achieved so far in this journey. I’m weighing in daily instead of weekly. I’m trying to take it one day at a time and make good choices (like at my office’s holiday potluck today where there are tamales, my kryptonite). Wish me luck!

9 thoughts on “Struggling with Weight During the Holidays

  1. Way to get back in there and keep working at it. Some of that might be salt weight, you know. I gain a bit on the weekends as I allow a cheat meal and that meal usually has allot more salt in it than I traditionally allow. Way to keep at it and not let set backs get you down.

    • Oh definitely. But if I write off every Monday weigh-in as a “fluctuation,” I’m letting myself off the hook too easily. Time to buckle down!

      I was super impressed with your swimming progress. Way to go! I know you are more focused on training for your triathlons, but how much weight have you lost so far? It must be significant!

      • I started at 320 and dropped to 300 up to September. Since then I have been at 300 pounds. But, I started at a size 55 inch wast and now I am at a 48 inch waist and falling. 48 inch pants are now getting loose and all my tight compression shorts are getting too loose. Joy! It would be frustrating if I did not keep track of other measurements. I recently hit the awkward stomach uneven stage, so its been fun. I can feel my abs hard as rocks for the first time ever under my belly fat!!! Your are doing awesome.

  2. Well said, and such good advice! I feel like it has been forever since I last ran and I keep making excuses, but you are right…it is never too late to start again!

  3. Pingback: Slow Going « The Game Plan

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