A few weeks ago, while I was whizzing through my grocery store, I breezed into the dairy section and snatched up a container of Greek yogurt for my cart. As I was about to leave the aisle and dash off to the checkout, someone called out to me to ask about the Greek yogurt I’d chosen.
We ended up talking for five minutes or so, about weight loss. She was also a member of Weight Watchers, and had lost nearly 20 lbs. I told her about Greek yogurt, couscous, and my favorite protein snacks. She, in turn, told me about a fitness class she was taking at a studio that offered Zumba, something I’ve been interested in trying. It was a good exchange, and both of us were thankful to have learned something that would be helpful to our efforts.
I could use more moments like that. My weight loss journey has been relatively solitary over the past several years, with the exception of my participation on the Weight Watchers message boards early on. Otherwise, it’s been me tracking food, looking for new recipes, trying to modify old ones, trying to motivate myself, etc.
My desire to lose weight was a good motivator for the first 40 lbs., but I think I need something else to keep me going at this stage. I’m thinking that what I need is more connections with others who are fighting the same good fight, and others who have reached their ideal weight and have figured out how to stay there.
Besides my supermarket encounter, I had been hoping to find good role models on the Web, but I hadn’t been too successful at identifying them. Until I checked out Pinterest. In the past week, I’ve found a gaggle of people with delicious, creative recipe ideas, and people who have lost upwards of 100 lbs. and have kept it off for several years. Where scouring the Internet at large proved to be a challenge for me (have you seen the results you get if you search for weight loss?), finding a way to get to a more targeted subset of people with special interests has done the trick.
I learned about quinoa about 10 years ago, and I’ve bought some over the years, but I’ve never really known what to do with it to make it interesting and appealing. But in the span of the past week, I’ve seen three good recipes for doing things with quinoa that I never would’ve thought of on my own. I’ve seen creative uses of wontons, and I’ve learned that grilled avocados is a thing. My skinny desserts list has grown exponentially, and I’ve gotten inspiration for trying fresh figs this year, rather than dried. Vicariously picking other people’s brains has kick-started my brain in a way that I truly needed.
Sure, I could go to Weight Watchers meetings (I’m an online-only user), but in the times that I test-drove meetings, it seemed to be pretty challenging to connect with others, unless you catch someone quickly after class. That’s not the easiest thing for me to do, based on my personality, but an even bigger problem is the logistical challenges I would face in getting to regular meetings in the first place. For now, I guess Internet activity will do, but a group or a weight loss buddy would be a nice thing to have. I’ll keep looking.
Are you a lone ranger of weight loss, or do you have a friend or a group to lean on for support? How did you make those connections?