I was going to give another simple status on where I am but, instead, I feel compelled to talk about something related but, probably, more important: goals.
Often, I have had some long-off goal to reach my goal weight by some date off the the future, typically 12-18 months from the day I was “starting” (actually, I should call it “re-starting” based on all my stops and starts). However, what I’ve failed to do in the past is develop short-term goals. In other words, I never set milestones to say “to make sure that I am on-track, I need to be at x-weight by this date.” Honestly, I would let the handy on-line calorie calculator set the big goal date for me. You know the one — it tells you if your current weight is this and you eat this many calories per day and work out this many calories per week, you should hit your goal weight by this date. That sounds good but, how do you know if you’re on track to reach that goal?
It not the fault of the tool, it does just what it is supposed to do: give you a rough idea of where you can be in a certain amount of time but, it can’t control your motivation or your need to do the monitoring necessary to track your progress.
This is where milestones come into play. I shared that my latest milestone is to lose 30 pounds in 8 weeks. I am not recommending that everyone do this but, for me, I believe this is doable. I am not starving or dehydrating myself. In fact, I am drinking a gallon of water daily and eating sensibly. What I have done, however, is to lay off the fast food, sodas, cakes, cookies, candy bars, etc. In other words, cut out the junk food. I was already going to the gym pretty regularly but, my eating was atrocious. Now, the two are lining up and I am seeing positive results. For example, I hit a smaller goal: I am finally just under 280 pounds (279.6 according to my digital scale). It’s been a while since I hit that number. My next mini-goal is to get below 270, a number I haven’t seen since my late 20’s. My final goal for this sprint to get below 260, putting me at 30 pounds lost.
This is going to require focus and discipline. However, milestones should help with this. I’ve noticed that when I give myself a goal date off in the distant future, I tend to behave like I have all the time in the world and slack off. At times, this has put in a worse predicament than I was before I set the goal. However, working on milestones builds in some accountability on my part.
So, here I am with less than 7 weeks to go. Here’s to milestones. May they be a tool that helps me to stay on track.