Move More Eat Less May 2011

Cathy ZielskeCZ Life99 Comments


I don't have a layout ready to share this month.

I don't know how much I weigh at this exact moment.

I don't particularly want to know how much I weigh at this exact moment.

I don't know if my waist is a 32 or 33.

I don't know the exact measurement of my thighs.

It's been a hard month.


What do I mean by hard, anyway?

I suppose it means it's been a month without measureable results. On the upside, it's been a month in which save for last week which I spent entirely on the couch miserable with a cold, I definitely kept up my Moving More end of the deal. But Eating Less part? Mmmm. Not so much.

On Saturday morning, I skipped the scale. I've only done this a few times, and this week it was simply a move of self-preservation. After not being able to breathe through my nose for a week (yet strangely able to swallow copious amounts of Goldfish) I knew that to do my monthly weigh in over the weekend was going to make me feel like ka ka du jour. And so, I just said no.

Am I in denial about putting on a few extra pounds this month? Possibly. Probably. Okay, yes, I am.

But at the same time, I am really trying to resist that siren-like lure of self-loathing in my 45th year, so I had to side step the Bearer of My Self Worth for this particular month's end.

I'm reading a book right now called "Why We Get Fat" by Gary Taubes. In it, Taubes challenges the long-standing modus operandi of weight lossโ€”the calories in/calories out model. We know it as Move More, Eat Less. Ingest fewer calories, expend more calories, and the result is weight loss. I'm only on Chapter 6 of this book and I'm already feeling a slight fracture in the foundation of what I've been doing (and preaching) for the past year and a half. I plan to post more about this later, but for now, I just wanted to share what I'm reading and studying.

The key to what I'm facing right now is the notion of sustainability. I dropped 40 pounds in less than a year, only to see a solid 15 of it make its way back onto my frame. During the past 5 months I've been steadfast in my exercise efforts, but not as vigilant on the food side of things.

Right now, I am trying to decide when it's going to be the "when" phase. You know, when can I just say, "when"?

What does sustainability look like as a lifestyle?


Relating back to last week's post about the idea that someone will always be thinner and so forth, maybe I need start moving into a place where I'm okay with where I am and where I realize, in order to be much thinner, I have to adhere to a lifestyle that has nearly zero wiggle room with food. And that lifestyle doesn't have much room for chocolate cupcakes.

And you know what, damn it? I like chocolate cupcakes.

Again, this is me talking out loud instead of measuring my midsection and putting it on a layout.

You dig?



Want to learn more about Move More Eat Less 2011? Click here to learn more about the concept.

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Cathy ZielskeMove More Eat Less May 2011

99 Comments on “Move More Eat Less May 2011”

  1. #1

    Oh I dig. I’m about a year ahead of you on your journey but we seem to be running the same course. I’m healthy. I’m fit. I’m over weight. Two out three ain’t bad.

  2. #3

    I ate way too much goodies last week (5 birthdays in our family) but this is a new day and a new week and I’m definitely going to gym today and start again my weekly routine that kind of got forgotten last week. But such is life. Sometimes we succeed and sometimes not. But we keep trying!

  3. #4
    Lee Currie

    I just got back from a 10-day wellness trip where I learned a ton from nutritionists and exercise physiologists and all manner of “expert”. They all agree that “the last 20, 10, 5 pounds” is all in our heads and we are committed to a number and should just be committed to healthy. I’m just at the start of my journey but now with a solid diagnosis (thyroid disease) there is a lot of room for positive choices. You should be so proud of yourself, Cathy! Enjoy a cupcake ๐Ÿ™‚ One. Another “expert” tip? The first three bites of a dessert or sweet are all you need to feel satisfied. The rest is just the rest. Try it, it works!

  4. #5
    Karen F from New Zealand

    I hear you… I’m at that point…a need to make a decision for me at where I’m going to be happy. Motivation is a start…to keep going or getting back to the exercise I love. Looking at what I want… a little soul searching and healthy balance!

  5. #6
    katie squires

    I must start by saying that I had A LOT OF CHOCOLATE this weekend and just can’t imagine not eating it. I ENJOY IT! I love it!

    now back to you ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m really glad you didn’t get on the scale this weekend. I am happy you see the power those numbers can have over you (us) and didn’t go there.

    In so many ways I feel like I am going through/feeling many of the same things you are. I am rocking the move more but the eat less well not so good.

    For me I fee like I get so much more out of the move more. I feel POWERFUL, INVINCIBLE, AMAZING as I run further, lift more, move more. I love the way I feel. I love the people I am meeting and relationships ๐Ÿ™‚ I find the relationship I have with my ‘exercise’ buddies is so healthy, supportive and motivating. Funny thing is relationships I have had with people more on the DIET side have been much more competitive and negative. So for me, I keep asking myself…does it matter if I loose weight is it that important? I feel great. I like the way I look. I am far cry from the size 22 girl. Yep I still weigh over 200lbs but I ran 15km for flips sake. Does it matter what I weigh? I really want to let go of the weight part because no matter how hard I try it always drags me down. That being said yes I do need to eat better. But I think I need to think of it in relation to the ‘athlete’ (hehehehe) in me…I need to better FUEL myself. I also think that chocolate can be part of that FUEL.

    So I challenge you my dear inspiring awesome Cathy…to forget about the numbers on the scale this week and the numbers around your waist…and go look at how many miles you have run this year. How many days of the year you have sweated. How many laps you have swam. How many people you have inspired to join you and have there fore changed their lives! Those numbers are the ones with real power!


  6. #7

    I can’t get myself to that book fast enough.

    Congrats on stepping away from the scale. Like Lee just said, we need to step away from the numbers game and step toward a healthy lifestyle. We’re many miles apart on the planet, but side-by-side in this midlife journey toward wholeness. Yep. Wholeness.

    To me, wholeness is not a lopsided lurid fixation on being thin, eating only certain foods with a vengeance, measuring this and that, and being ball-and-chained to a rigid set of exercise rules. Wholeness DOES mean I can not also eat ice-cream, cookies, chips and a plate of green beans and consider myself a poster child for “balance”. My college roommate ate what she wanted, when she wanted, and to this day remains thin and healthy. Good genes? Sure. Good balance? Yes, indeedy.

    All that being said, I’ve cut way back on my carbs, Cathy. Let me tell you – it’s helping. I am not being rigid, I don’t know how much I weigh or if I’ve lost any weight, and yes, I did have a slice of carrot cake and chocolate over the weekend. I’m just fine-tuning the ‘balance’ thing so that I don’t feel deprived, but at the same time, I’m dismantling the throne of “thin makes you perfect”.

    We all tell you how talented you are, you know you possess great aptitude, competencies and gifts in the realm of expression and journalistic preservation, and you have a legacy for yourself and your family that I envy beyond the color green. All that won’t make you feel good in your own skin until YOU feel good in your own skin. That’s what I’ll be pushing for for you (and for me) in these moments.

    So, hears to no MMEL picture this month, to enjoying chocolate cupcakes, and to seeing the world as a place that needs you and your contribution. Don’t throw out the baby with the bath water on what you’ve already accomplished – just accept yourself with as much appreciation as all of us do!

    Whew. another epic post. Time for a pop-tart.;p

  7. #8

    Cathy you are still an inspiration, a real person.Those cupcakes looked good, hoped you enjoyed them.

  8. #10

    sustainability…that IS the key. I too am not sure yet what that is. I lost 16 kg 2 years ago only to put most of it back on…I am back on track and have lost 5 kg so far but when I get to where I want to be…sustainability is the issue. Will be very interested in this book!!!

  9. #11

    sometimes reading your posts is like reading what is going on in my own head! The key for me has been to take it one day at a time, and have a damn cupcake once in awhile!

  10. #13

    I’m sorry – but do you have mind reading abilities? This post is so how I feel. I am so tired of the guilt I feel about food. And truthfully, the more guilt I feel, the more I eat. That guilt just weighs on me – literally. If I could just find a way to stop feeling so bad, then maybe I would eat less… to the gym I go!

  11. #14

    I totally dig.
    Yes – Eat Less, Move More … but, also, nutrition is relevant … and what and INDIVIDUAL can eat to feed ones body varies among us all. Food as FUEL not fun … that is a hard lesson!

  12. #15

    Did you ever listen to “Cut the Fat” podcast? They talk about how calories are important, but they types of food you eat are just as important.
    Another good podcast is “Beyond Diet.” I just listened to one where they talk about eating more food instead of less. Interesting stuff. BDP #54 is one of my favorites – Tosca Reno is on talking about her Eat Clean Diet books.

  13. #16
    Kathy in San Antonio

    I’m also reading WWGF – really amazing book and very compelling. I’ve been avoiding dieting for the past few years – I lost 120 pounds in 2001 and have watched it slowly come back. The whole idea of sustainability has become so important to me. I don’t want a diet, I want a lifestyle.

    I do think the books points us in the right direction. I think we’ll end up some day with genetically-based diet, where everyone’s diet is a little different. I think we all just need to learn what works for us, given our background.

    The other really compelling book I’ve read lately is The End of Overeating – where David Kessler looks at what the food industry had done to food to make us come back to their restaurant over and over again. You’ll never look at Chili’s the same way again!

    Best of luck to all of us in this struggle!

  14. #17
    Pilbara Pink

    I am also reading Gary Taubes – and finding it challenging to have so many of the ideas I have carried around for so long exAmined and shredded! I was reluctant to get on the scales this month but was glad I did. I need to decide if I want to stay at this wieght, higher than my ‘ideal’ weight (in my mind anyway) or make some changes to drop some pounds. Rather than feeling like I failed for not meeting the targets I set in January I feel more empowered at giving myself a choice to be ok as I am or to tweak my eating/exercise routines to see a change. I realised recently the only reason I believe I should be a certain clothing size is because a salewoman suggestec that was the size I must be right after I had lost a huge amount of weight and didn’t know what size to try on! Imagine spending several years struggling to maintain a weight to fit into a certain size just because a total stranger (and probably a savvy salesperson!) suggested it! Well, no one ever accused me of being sensible!!! So now I am having a convesation with myself about what I really want – and the answer can vary from day to day. But at least now I am making the choices, not letting some random stranger (and my big fat ego) dictate to me.

  15. #18

    I’m five years ahead of you age-wise, but right by your side journey-wise. I spent all of April with zero motivation – tired of logging, tired of depriving, tired of it all. I had a goal for my big 5-0 (which is the end of this month) that I’m not going to reach and I need to decide if I really care. My body is at a weight right now that while not thin (solid size 14) is one I can maintain and have a little “wiggle room” for chocolate and the other occasional indulgences. I’m trying to decide if it is worth the constant vigilance required to wear less or wear a smaller size.

  16. #19

    You are not the only one to “skip that scale” in order to maintain a better attitude throughout the day. (Or week?) Sometimes, like after this particular week-end of birthday parties, we already know what we did and what we now need to do to balance that, so why assign a number to it this morning that will drag us down for the rest of the day? Especially when that number is most probably temporary? I find it much easier to get my shoes laced up and head for the treadmill when my hope is not lying shattered in pieces around that stupid scale.

    Way to go, Cathy.

  17. #21

    Hey Cathy, I read that book earlier this year and loved it. I have always inherently known that eating carbs make me gain weight but he solidified it for me. I was down 130 lbs. after cutting out carbs such as pasta, bread, cereal and rice totally and limiting sugar and potatoes. I went from 286 to 156. After reading that book and being a lot more strict with my carbs I am now down to 146. Best part is you are not hungry eating this way! Unfortunately I think this is just too much of a lifestyle change for some people. Good luck to you whatever you do!


  18. #22

    I’ve read Tuabes’ book and I think he is correct on at least one tenet– we as Americans eat way too much sugar and the wrong kind of carbs, and these are metabolized differently than other kinds of calories. Like you I am grappling with the fact that—to maintain my thinner bod—I cannot have chocolate cupcakes (or rosemary foccacia, or pasta, or etc. etc. etc.)nearly as often as I like. So perhaps the skinny bod is not, utlimately, where I should be? So health is my new goal, and if the thinness can be maintained, great. But if a few pounds come back on and I am still maintaining an overall healthy diet (and I am typically running 20-30 miles a week to boot), than that is what is meant to be! Best of luck to you, Cathy, as you continue on your journey. You will work it out.

  19. #23
    Kay Gregory-Clark

    Oh Cathy, how I relate! Your story is my story the past month. I was within about 2 pounds of my goal, only to blow it big time. Not only did I stop moving (The wind has been steadily HORRENDOUS, like 50 mph, with a slow speed of 20 mph, and my walks are outside; or, it’s been pouring rain; or it’s been too cold), but for some reason there have been way too many food temptations. Dinners out, celebrations, company. And just plain old 9 p.m. cravings. I was just on the verge of fitting back into some clothes I love….do you think there’s something psychological about that? But I agree so totally with your assessment about the starving myself and always focusing on food (or lack of), with no “wiggle room.” Is that a lifestyle I want? I don’t think so, but then I think about how good it was to feel that slack in my pants. Then I think about dessert. And pasta. And comfort food. IS THERE AN ANSWER? Please keep posting!

  20. #24

    I was looking back at pictures from my honeymoon, the thinnest I had ever been in adulthood, and told my sis-in-law that I missed that body. She looked at me and asked, “Were you satisfied with your body back then?” and to my dismay, I remember I wasn’t. When is ‘WHEN?’ Looking forward to your thoughts on this.

  21. #25
    Karen G

    Cathy, You are beautiful in this photo. I pray you come to a place where you are happy with yourself and whatever that is, works with your life. Hugs.

  22. #29
    Carol Zeitz

    What a beautiful post. Thanks so much for this. I’m not exactly in healthy mode right now, but I AM focusing on loving myself for who I am. I’ve been at the same weight for three years and the 30 pounds I would love to lose just isn’t going to happen without a major change in eating habits. I’m not willing to do it because I love my life and I love food. So I’m going to do the best I can, be the best that I can be, and be happy that I have gorgeous blue eyes, a pretty smile, and a body with curves!

  23. #30

    The carb thing is hard. I am trying to find different ways of eating proteins and other things. Working a hard boiled egg or two into my lunches in order to cut out the whole wheat pita I eat with my steamed broccoli every day. Im only on Ch. 6, so I have much more to read.

  24. #32

    Thats just it. The only time I remember thinking, HEY, I look good, was when I smoked a pack day, ate as little as possible and even Dan said I could use a little cushion somewhere. Sigh. Twisted thinking that Im rewiring.

  25. #35

    I have found Taubes info fascinating! For me I absolutely know that the refined carb and sugar keeps me plump. The trick is to find balance. I am finding success in maintenance by allowing treats but being fully conscious of my choice. I have found most sugary treats aren’t as good now. Bread products must be superb or they aren’t worth it. I find the insulin information interesting. I have a feeling that if we can learn to control insulin we would have better health.
    Taubes wrote an article for the New York times. It is titled. What if it’s been a big fat lie. Find it at

  26. #36

    HA! I’m totally sitting here eating a cupcake for breakfast in my workout clothes… headed to the treadmill in an hour.

    Cathy, you’re incredible. You’re real. And I think you’ve got it figured out.

    Eat a cupcake. Run a 5K. Wash, rinse, repeat. Everything in moderation. Life (and cupcakes) is meant to be enjoyed.

  27. #37

    I have read that book and it is mind boggling, especially to a former Weight Watchers veteran like myself who choose anything low points – fake food, low fat, high carbs – I have even gone Vegan to loose weight and nothing worked! Following Taubes, I have lost 20 pounds in 3 months without exercise. I has been hard to be such a carnivore at times but I am getting used to it. I did also watch “Fat Head”, its on Hulu and Netflix and that illustrated the principle of insulin resistance for me.
    I am still trying to break out of the lowfat diet mentality. It is still hard to fry eggs in butter, but dang! It is yummy and I am losing weight!

  28. #38

    I can’t believe how many times after reading your blog I say to myself “she’s been in my brain again”. ๐Ÿ™‚ Plus we’re the same age by about a week. I know you’re not my long lost twin, I already have a twin and I know where she is. It’s just really funny to me and worth a giggle every time you post a MMEL blog. Thank you for being you and for speaking my mind ๐Ÿ™‚

  29. #39

    I’m gonna have to check this book out I think.
    It’s funny, because just the other day as I was lamenting the fact that those delicious Reece’s Pieces Egg Cup things are 170 friggen calories, my DH said to me “so what? Just make sure you workout. Workout, and eat what you want.” I literally laughed out loud at that concept. Easy for him to say with his fast metabolism and ability to eat juuuuuunk and not workout and not gain a pound, right?
    But sustainability is SO important! I was 5lbs away from my goal last fall. I’m now 13 pounds away. But if I have to live in a world with no cheese, no chocolate, no carbs, etc to make that happen… that really the way I want to live my life?? NO!
    When is when, but also where is my balance? Threw the baby out with the bathwater in the beginning of the year, and am slowly getting back into MMEL. Moving More, and enjoying it as I always have (so why do I STILL fight it???) but still struggling with the EL too. I need to find my balance, but I also need to be happy with myself. That’s where the when is. Magically hitting 140 isn’t going to mean I suddenly love my love handles, so why do I still hold onto that number and that idea?

  30. #40

    Dare I be the voice of dissent? Cathy, I absolutely agree that your self worth is NOT tied to the scale. But remember, folks, the scale does indicate at least part of your overall health. My thought: See your doctor or nutritionist for a semi-unbiased opinion. And enjoy cupcakes in moderation (those were small cupcakes, so 5 is probably fine, especially considering the awesome runner you are Cathy). But for me, I’d rather eat and enjoy in moderation for 60 more years than eat and enjoy in abundance for 20 more years. My motivation has been this video of Jamie Oliver. It’s really informative and surprising. Keep fighting the good fight, Cathy! Oh and I am not a size 2 with high metabolism talking out my butt. I understand the food issues folks. I am working off 4 babies worth of weight.

  31. #41

    good post. the last picture played with my eyes, though! i seriously thought that somehow you were floating, while holding a plate of cupcakes (which would have been crazy-cool!). then i saw that you were sitting on a chair.

  32. #42
    Karen in Brookville

    Cathy, first, amazing post and insight. I stalk your blog from afar, but I always get a lot out of it. In my humble, non-professional opinion, you look great and your attitude is one of being more real. You seem to be finding your way to I am being healthy, I am exercising and I am making good choices.. most of the time. No one is perfect. Is giving up all the cupcakes worth that extra few pounds, or would you rather be exercising, eating healthy, and occassionally enjoying your food? I think the latter is the answer. Keep moving and keep enjoying the little things in life. Just because you have a cupcake here and there (sometimes more than we all like to admit) doesn’t mean you have failed. It should mean that you are smart enough to enjoy what is in front of you. Just my thoughts ๐Ÿ™‚
    Congrats on all of your accomplishments.

  33. #43

    Having just this morning gone to the doctor for my well woman check, I hear you. I weigh exactly what I weighed in the fall, reason for celebration. Yet, I have to buy pants a size larger (turned 50 a year ago). The middle age spread is a reality. I really am trying to embrace being in my 50’s but so far, it’s a *&^%.

  34. #44

    Hey Cathy, just wishing you well on your journey. Thank you for putting words to most every woman’s weight issues. Even the woman I know who plays hockey and is incredibly buff thinks her butt is too big. We all seem to have something.

    I also wanted to chime in with a book I am currently reading which is “Mindful Eating” by Jan Chozen Bays. She talks about 7 different types of hunger and how “mind hunger” and “heart hunger” can overpower signals from the stomach and body. This happens to me all too often. What I am trying to do now is be more mindful of why I am eating. Sometimes when I’m really on (not too often yet), I find I can feed that heart and mind hunger in a different way without food. But food is still my stand by. Anyway, I am finding this book helpful just to make me more aware of my food patterns. Some of which I knew about and some of which have been a surprise.

    Wishing you well. You rock!

  35. #45

    See, I get you on this. Because if I hit my magic number, same thing: I would still look at my body and say, Okay, if I lost another five… So I want to move into something more realistic. For me.

  36. #47
    amanda gibson

    Cathy, I totally dig.

    I lost almost 100 pounds with Weight Watchers several years ago and have kept off EVERY SINGLE POUND since then. But am I happy with my weight? NO. Can I lose the last 20 pounds that I’d like to? Probably. Have I? Hell, no!

    I should get a gold star for maintaining though – that has to count for something, right?

    Anyway – I’m with you – I’m wondering “when”. When will I be happy with myself AS I AM? When (if?) I lose this last 20 pounds – will I be happy or will I feel like I need to lose 20 more? As an adult – can’t I just be happy being “medium”? Why does it have to be a contest to see who is the smallest, thinnest, prettiest? When will I just be confident as I am – right now?

    I see all these women – who are “medium” just like me – and they don’t seem to worry over everything they put in their mouths. They don’t seem to obsess over whether or not they look bloated today or if their belly sticks out too far. What is their secret? I sure would like to know.

    I guess there’s something to be said for trying – and for at least being conscious of what we put into our bodies – even if it is cupcakes.

    Happy Monday, Cathy – and thanks for being so straight forward and honest about your weight loss / move more / be happy with yourself journey – it’s always great to know that there’s someone else in the same boat, huh?

  37. #49
    Jennie Hart

    Thought-provoking as always Cathy, you seem to have the knack of phrasing what a lot of us think. I did lose all the baby weight quickly calmly and without any sense of loss after my first (I had time and nothing else to do but raise my baby and lose the weight). I can’t say I was any happier, but I felt healthier and now I haven’t shifted it after the second baby, who is erm, 6, due to one reason and another (and my innate laziness). I know I don’t want diabetes heart disease and I really would like to run around with them much more easily! Thanks, Jen

  38. #50
    Kathleen S.

    Sounds like a healthy decision, and a step in the ‘rest of your life’ direction. The real weight loss key is actually keeping it off (as you’ve discovered). The accepted maintenance is 2 years, last I looked. Not many people make that goal. My idea is forget the last 10 or 20, and focus on maintaining the weight loss. It isn’t easy. It requires a different mindset, and, in some ways, more attention. Where is the maintenance balance point? What tips it? How to recover? Two years out I still have to watch the 5-10 pound creep. But the best part is that I am overall satisfied with myself, and, except when trying on bathing suits or looking at the Middleton sisters, happy with my bod. Happy with the middle ground, and the reality it represents. Keep on levitating — aids the evaporation of calories.

  39. #51

    I have to weigh out the choices… I eat the 330 calorie cupcake -what gets cut during the day in other foods, you know? It so sucks being someone who just can’t eat everything all the time. I really dislike those people. One cupcake forever will attach to my thigh. LOL But MAN can you have a mambo salad with all the extra veggies you want. If only they were sweet. ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

  40. #53
    Kim H

    My God Cathy you make me laugh…love the zen cupcake shot! I too am in a bit of a spiral heading in the wrong direction. It didn’t help that I made dulce de leche cupcakes this weekend and have managed to scarf down 4 so far!

  41. #54

    Hi, Cathy!

    I have never commented before, but I’m a longtime lurker and reader of your books, and I purchased the MMEL digital download.

    I had to comment, because I’m a longtime low carber who loves what Taubes has to say on the matter. But mostly, I wanted to let you know about some chocolate cupcakes that even Taubes would approve of. These are healthy and delicious!

    Thanks for all the scrapbooky inspiration over the years.

  42. #55

    here’s to finding our ‘when’s’ and quickly. I don’t want to waste another day waiting on ‘someday.’ I don’t want to miss today!

  43. #56

    Hey Cathy, thank you so much for once again being REAL. I’m going to have to check that book out also. I, too, am dealing with numbers and wanting to be real and comfy. Lots to think about; always look forward to your posts on this subject. I’d add more, but it would only duplicate what others have already said…love all the comments. Thanks everyone!

  44. #57

    Cathy, I am right there with you on the move more, but have a hard time with the eat less. I do not have a problem with really too much weight. I could stand to lose a few pounds, but like you said to do that would require giving up things like chocolate cupcakes (or in my case cookies and candy). I like them too much so I just keep moving and moving and moving!

  45. #58
    Alison Richardson

    Cathy – you are the poster girl for us ‘normal’ women! You say what we feel – thank you. I lost 10 pounds during April, I’m MMEL but I’m always just a millimeter away from shoving junk down my throat. It’s such hard work. Everyday. Hang in there – your army of supporters (all of us out here in the real world) are right behind you and alongside you.

  46. #59
    natural weight loss

    I firmly believe with this. Diet is really important for weight loss. First step is always the hardest part of a program. Make it a daily routine and time will come your body will look for it. Remember, what you look today reflects your daily activities. It’s time to change your whole lifestyle if you really want to lose weight badly.

  47. #60

    I am trying to figure this all out. I just had a baby..most people lament losing the baby weight. My problem is I am at my lowest weight after baby. Then I pack it all back on. I don’t know what it is with my body but suddenly I am the best eater, portion controller ever when I am pregnant and without any thought or effort. I just can only eat so much and can’t eat anymore. I am not dieting and am always overweight when I start out pregnant so my Dr is begging me not to gain weight. One week after my baby I was down 30lbs from my last well baby check and had only gained about 5 lbs my entire pregnancy. So here I hover at this new weight, still need to lose 30 lbs to be near my goal weight, and am trying to figure out how to be different. I feel like my body is fighting me 100% though. I can literally feel every ounce wanting to come back. I have listened to a podcast called Fat2Fit Radio in the past that has pretty sensible advice. I am still in the recovery period after giving birth, so am not pushing the excercise so much, and I am feeling really tired of every food that exists. Nothing sounds good to eat, especially the healthy stuff! anyone longest post I have ever left, but you touched a nerve. You are not alone, so many of us struggle! I can’t wait to figure it out. One day at a time..One day at a time.

  48. #61

    Cathy, I love your blog more than any other on the internet, but I’m calling BS here. Get over it, this is month 5 of this stuff. The National Weight Control Registry has studied long term weight loss success and its findings include ( Expect failure but keep trying…don’t deny yourself…weigh yourself often (perhaps daily)….exercise an hour a day…add bits of activity to your daily routine…high carb, low fat diet…average 5 meals a day. You’re sliding and you know it. Carry around a 10 pound bag of potatoes for a day. You’ve added that + back on. Your body doesn’t deserve that. You hit a plateau and you quit. Time to buck up and move on. Increase the intensity of one of your work outs. Add in something else. Quit eating while watching tv or being on the computer. Get outside!

    If you were my friend I’d get your hinney outside. And-you can work out while you are sick. It was a cold. And another excuse. Quit hiding in old patterns. This is doable.

    The whole didn’t get on the scale thing-wouldn’t your 170 pound self have loved whatever that scale said on Saturday? The scale keeps you honest. If its going up and you don’t like it, do something about it.

    Rant over. Well mostly. But as someone who has maintained a weight loss for more than 5 years I can say its hard work. Its something I work at And its completely worth it. People still think I’m in my 20’s. I look good in shorts. My hair is healthy. My skin is healthy. I’m healthly dang it. And for the first time in my life people think I’m an *athelete*.

    Go forth! Time to get back on that darn horse you fell off of months ago.

  49. #62

    i totally dig, cathy!

    moving more is much easier then eating less. after lots and lots of losing weight with restrictive diets just to see the extra pounds coming back after a while, i’ve decided to go to the gym (inspired by you, thanks a lot!) and made an appointment with a nutricionist. she came up with a diet that is more like a food education program, based on my age, activities, my likes and dislikes. i believe we can eat everything, just have to be careful with how much we are eating. you’ve lost a lot of weight in a short period of time (too fast, if i may say so), a pace that is almost impossible to keep. be kind to yourself, you’ve accomplished a lot in the past months. we’re all cheering for you!

  50. #64

    Hey there–I just came upon your blog for the first time, and will have to become a frequent visitor. If it’s not too impolite I am going to wade right in! I lost 45 pounds before my 40th birthday and culminated the whole experience by doing a triathlon on the day I turned 40. That was a few weeks shy of five years ago, and it looks like I’m about to turn 45 with those 45 pounds back on. I very recently rejoined the “eat less, move more” group/program that helped me 5 years ago, and I’ve been giving a ton of thought to who I am around food.

    During the past five years, I’ve tried an Eating With Grace therapy program, revisited individual therapy, read tons of books, and thought hard about me and food. My “truth” is that I come from a long line of genetically anxious people. Despite that, I’ve been leading a pretty successful joy-filled life. I have family members who manage stress with drugs and with alcohol and smoking, or who keep their life small and avoid risks. With food as my drug of choice, I’ve led a pretty big life. But at 45, with aching knees and sore feet and the possibility of diabetes taunting me in the future, my drug of choice is starting to take its toll.

    Like others, when I look at pictures of me doing the triathlon 45 pounds lighter or even pictures of me 85 pounds ago in grad school (and then I weighed 150, so I wasn’t ever scrawny), I can see how healthy and fit I was. But at the time those pictures were taken, I remember being unhappy with how I looked. Even then, at the weight I would love to be again someday, I felt fat.

    So (and I will wrap up!), my truth as I see it is that despite being quite a joyful person overall, I will never have a completely healthy perspective on my own body (so I’ll have to trust my intellect over my eyes) AND I will never have the relaxed relationship with food that I envy in others. What I believe I can have though is a degree of fitness maintained by hard work. Some people might be able to relax and kick back and stop weighing themselves and not record most if not all of what they eat and do, but I don’t think I am one of them. From past experience, I know that when I am not losing weight, I am gaining it. Sounds like a terrible paradox, but it helps me to see that weight maintenance for me will have to be an active decision pursued with the same determination and vigor as weight loss was. I have to make an educated decision about what will be a healthier weight for me (not necessarily a thin weight, but one where fewer body parts hurt and moving is easier and yeah maybe buying clothes is a little more fun), get there again with support, and then stay nearly as rigorous about it all to maintain my health. I can envy those who have what I want–effortless weight maintenance because they found their true “healthy/thin” selves–but that’s not going to be my story.

    Thanks for sharing what you do…I am off to explore your stuff more!

  51. #66

    I know this should make me want to take up arms and run into the streets, but my reaction is more, Meh. Im not trying to bullshit anyone. I am, however, really tired of hating my body. Im slowly learning that has more to do with my entire lifetime of experience and formative training than it does with my post age 40 chub. But I havent quit anything yet. Not quite yet.

  52. #67

    I say screw the measurements. If you’re exercising that much, you’re doing pretty damned well. Definitely re-evaluate your goal weight – personally, all I care about is that my BMI is within the “healthy weight” category rather than “overweight”, and I think you’re there already!

  53. #68
    Debbie Rosenkranz

    Very well put!!! So true!

    Cathy keep rocking it out, you’re doign awesome. I have the ups and downs to and I am not dieting. I am trying to eat better not perfect and I am definitely moving more. I see results, they may not be as fast as I would like…but damn it it is working and I absolutely REFUSE to measure or weigh. I do see change and I FEEL IT TOO! Isn’t that all that really matters? Damn it!

    Rock on and revel in your success and shrug off a minor setback(is it really?Nah!)

  54. #69
    Debbie Rosenkranz

    love, love, love Tosca Reno! What a turn around she made for herself starting at the age of 40!

  55. #70

    I just read some of the descriptions and comments of that book, and I find it somewhat worrying. Pretty sure that having your cholesterol go up for the sake of losing weight isn’t a good thing. I used to work in a health food store during the Atkins craze and I met a few people who ended up with permanent heart damage from that diet.
    Having said all that, due to several birthday parties, Easter, and having 2 weeks of not walking the kids to/from school, my jeans don’t fit.

    I think we just have to keep doing the best we can. My kids are happy and healthy, I’m not as heavy as I used to be, and other than when I undress to get in the shower, I’m pretty ok with me.

    Although I’m going to have my husband hide all that damned Easter candy.

  56. #71
    shelley s.

    hi kathy–

    seriously, you have the most admirable jaw line…& this is no small thing!
    despite losing 30+ pounds over the past year (you were part of my inspiration!) i have that saggy jaw thing that just happens with age. it’s the one part of my body that makes me cringe. i’m doing my best to just go with it.
    love what you’ve got, sister…


  57. #72

    Well don’t quit. If I could hold an intervention, I say don’t you ever quit. This is your life. You only get one shot at this. And I’m living the post-40 life too. I grew up being Velma, not Daphne. I still laugh inside (and sometimes out loud) when I’m called *athletic*. (I didn’t start exercising until my 30’s.) There are other things to try-up the intensity of the workouts (sprints, weights)…figure out a way to love yourself that doesn’t involve eating (massage, pedicure)…or let it go and move on to other things.

    I don’t mean to be mean or even to pick, I’m really not that kind of a person. And by god I love reading your blog and reading how you feel about this because most days its how I feel, but the thing is … just … its doable. Its hard, but its doable. And you CAN do it. You are still successful. You’ve kept off how many pounds? You quit smoking! You already are an athlete! Go back and read about how you felt when you started this journey. So enough with the Meh. I know I can’t find that spot for you, that one thing (like bringing in the herd) that will change it for you. But it IS out there Cathy. Keep looking, keep trying. Go forth and find it.

    (And I’ll still love you either way. Really.)

    And now I’ll get off my high horse.

  58. #73

    My husband and I were talking just yesterday about the scale. He weighs himself literaly every single day. Doesn’t miss a day. I weigh myself about twice a year and then I am in a funk for weeks, no matter what the number is. He’s all “yeah, but if I watch it every day, then I’ll know if my weight is creeping back up and I’ll immediately stop it.” And I’m like “all the scale’s going to tell me is that I’ve gained some pounds, and you know, my jeans already told me that.”

    I don’t think either one of us has the right balance.

    i DO think, though, that you are on to something: you have to find a place you can maintain while still also having some pleasures in your life. That’s why I hate that saying “nothing tastes as good as thin feels” because, you know…sometimes, some things DO taste better than being super-skinny. While I DO wish I had the gumption to lose the last 15 pounds or so, just because then my thighs wouldn’t rub together when I’m running…keeping them on means I can also have cookies sometimes. And cookies sometimes really are better than non-touching thighs.

    (I think…my thighs have never actually NOT touched, no matter how much I did or didn’t weigh!)

  59. #75

    Thank you so much for your honesty. I love to read your blog and know that I am not the only one out there who struggles with weight loss and food issues. Thank you again for sharing both your successes and your challenges. ๐Ÿ™‚

  60. #76

    I love your move more eat less posts. Since the end of January this year I decided to make a life change. I set a goat to lose 20 pounds before my cruise to the Bahamas in May. I downloaded my fitness pal on my phone, iPad & iPod and began tracking all my daily food, water & exercise. It was a long hard fought battle but I won (and did it before my trip!). However I too struggle with the food. I’m a stress eater. Let’s face it I’m just an eater. Knowing there are others out there that struggle like me is comforting.

    We can do this all of is…and the end still enjoy chocolate cupcakes!

  61. #77


    Can I just tell you that you CRACK ME UP???!!! Honestly, soul sister, you bring a breath of fresh air to my days. I skipped my WW meeting tonight to eat deep dish pizza with my family. After I’d eaten two rather large pieces and some dessert, my husband looked at me with a completely straight face and said, “I bet you still have time to make it to your meeting.” What???!!!

  62. #78

    Cathy, just DO YOU, girl. Do you!! Don’t try and “do” anyone else or be anyone else. And don’t do it for anyone else. You are a good person. Just do you, Cathy!

  63. #79

    Boy do I dig! I have the spade, the shovel and the little garden thingy. I almost hate reading your blog because it echoes the thoughts in my head that I’m too scared to hear.

    I had a baby (surprise surprise) at 41! Nine whole years after my other ‘baby’ was born and 11 years after my first. My obstetrician said, “Be careful with weight gain you’re old now and you’ll find it harder to lose.” I so wish he hadn’t said that it’s like having cancer and being told you have 6 months to live and lo and behold you live for 6 months to the day. Well finding it hard is the understatement of the century and as I approach 45 nearly two years later I’m bigger and bigger again than I was before.

    It gets me down


    But…….I keep reminding myself that at the funeral of my Mum (an obese woman) some 16 years ago no one said she was really lovely but boy was she fat. Or she was a great friend but she could have lost a few kilos. Or she was a dedicated mother that loved her children more than anything but she would have been better had she lost weight.

    No what she weighed didn’t matter to anyone … all.

    So I remind myself…strive to be happy no matter what shape size, weight or hair colour. Because people won’t remember our appearance or how our back fat fell over your bra strap they only remember our energy and whether it was good energy.

    I say if running makes you happy but it doesn’t budge the scales – you’re happy aren’t you and you’re movin so your doin’ it right!

    Fran is Sydney OZ

  64. #80

    I’m another one totally in the “move more” camp. After all these years, I just can’t get into the deprivation thing. I actually really enjoy exercising – especially right afterwards! ๐Ÿ˜› But counting calories? Totally unappealing.

    I *do* like to commit to “eating better” because then I feel like I’m doing something positive not just depriving myself of things I love. And I know that when I eat more of things that are better for me AND I exercise, I eat less crap and I eat less for “emotional filling myself up.”

    I just know that if I go the full-bore diet route, I always feel like I’m teetering on the edge of total disaster (binge, feel awful, get right back to where I was). Always. Every single minute of every day. It’s not a healthy way to live mentally or emotionally, and I just won’t do it anymore. But aiming for exercising even if I’m not eating well, and – every day – working at getting more of the “better foods” and less of the quick-sugar-high pick-me-ups — those are goals I can keep working toward without feeling panicky or completely deprived. AND without just saying the hell with it all.

    It’s an awfully hard balance.

  65. #81

    I totally dig it. And I agree with Katie. You have accomplished so much both for yourself and in inspiring all of us. You can’t quantify that. You can’t measure that on a scale or with a tape measure.
    I don’t know what the answer is, but I do wish you peace in finding the right balance. I know I am just starting and hoping to get there as well.

  66. #82

    I find it incredible that all the margarine my dad was forced to eat in the ’70s is now bad for you. And they did a study that appears to indicated that lowering your salt intake can cause a heart attack rather than prevent one. Go figure. My mother did everything ‘wrong’ and lived, so far, to be 88 years old. I really think it’s just genetics.

  67. #83

    Thanks for sharing your journey – it is helping to try and motivate myself. We are almost I am three days younger than you and a couple of years past the 40 mark my thyroid went haywire, and what used to work just no longer did. I am buying this book and adding more fat into my diet, maybe this will work for me. Thanks again for sharing your story.

  68. #84

    That book has been popping up on my radar repeatedly the last few weeks. And since I find myself picking out everything that’s wrong with my body lately, instead of finding joy in the fact I have knocked 28 pounds and 2 clothing sizes off this body, I need some more internal work for sure. Love you, Cathy. Eff the monthly layout.

  69. #85

    I’ve got to chime in with KathyinMN here – if we could, we’d get you outside for a run right now. To love yourself, just follow this heirarchy: 1) exercise – get outside and exercise with friends, exercise where it is beautiful or where you feel inspired. Find a running group. Take a weight class. Never, ever be intimidated by people who (you think) look more in shape than you. Let them be your inspiration, find out what they’re doing. Sign up for a 5k or 10k every weekend if that’s what it takes. And, yes, you can work out with a cold. Exercise is the first priority because it makes you feel the best. 2) once you realize how awesome you are because your an exercising godess, then treat your body to the good stuff. Now that doesn’t mean that you can’t eat bread or sweets ever, but you know what happens when you eat a lot of them two or three meals in a row – you want more, and then you start to get tired and you gain a few pounds and then you feel all crummy. So, just don’t get carried away by the carbs! You know what the healthy food is already. I’m a woman over 40 and I’ve found that when I go low carb, I don’t crave the carbs anymore. You’ve probably had the same realization. I satisfy my hard-core sweet tooth with a handful of dark chocolate covered almonds every night (Trader Joe’s!). Now, when Cadbury mini-egg season comes, I get off track a bit, but eventually I throw out the rest of the candy in the house and get back on track. I’ve also found that a tablespoon of peanut butter on a slice of high-protein whole-grain bread as a snack every day (with coffee or a galss of skim milk) is a good way to taper down off the carbs.
    Anyway, get yourself back on track, Cathy. We’re going to cut you some slack this month and let you skip the scale, but we want you back on it next month. We’re all cheering for you!

  70. #86

    Hi Cathy,
    I read “Why We Get Fat” about 6 weeks ago.
    This book has been life-changing for me. All of my previous beliefs about meat and fat have been turned on their heads. Personally, I refuse to go on another “diet”. Food is food and nothing more – not bad, not good. I think we all need to find a way to eat that we can live with each and every day.
    I look forward to your thoughts about the book.

  71. #87
    Denise K.

    You inspire me in MMEL, whether losing or gaining or staying the same weight/measurements. I dig. Been there. Feeling more human about myself. You are my Oprah.

  72. #89
    Jan C.

    You’ll get back on track, Cathy. Don’t beat yourself up because you have put some of the weight back on. That doesn’t mean you are destined to slide all the way back to where you started. It just means you need to get re-dedicated to moving more and eating less.

    Here’s a trick that I read about in the book “French Women Don’t Get Fat.” The author says she eats half of what’s on her plate, then asks herself if she’s still hungry. If she is still hungry, she eats half of what’s left, and so on. She always ends up leaving something on her plate, which reinforces her idea that she is totally in control. It’s always a conscious decision to eat more or less, and it is dependent on whether she is really hungry. No need to feel guilty either way. This works like a charm for me. Maybe it would be another little strategy that would help you as you try to refocus. Just a thought.

  73. #90

    I read this days ago, and have been reading & watching everything with that author since then.

    Two thoughts: I love that you are sharing your own unique journey. I think Taubes is right that what works for some does NOT work for all, and we each have to find what our body reacts to.

    I know carbs mess me up. At the same time, I’ve been working to get our family completely off factory-farm meat, which means less meat over all due to the cost of grass-fed or organic. My head is spinning with how to readjust…

    2nd thought—the running for me is essential. I don’t care if it doesn’t help me lose one pound; I feel so good after doing it. I’m still slow, but I know it’s helps my attitude and my mental health—and I never would have gotten to this point without your MMEL posts (and nike+ recommendation). Can’t wait to see where your journey leads next.

  74. #91

    You know what Cathy? I usually do not comment much in your blog, but this hit home.
    About 5 months ago, I had a baby boy (my second child); despite watching what I ate and exercising, my body decided the correct amount of weight to put on was about 50 lbs (not my ideal…)
    Before baby I was in TOP shape. I was a pretty good triathlete, finishing in the top 10% of my age group consistently. I knew how to get into the “pain cave” and stay there for the duration of the race. I LOVED IT.
    I still love it to this day, I am still training; but not as much or as involved as before. Have I let the goal to be the winner of my age group go? No at all!! But right now, with everything I have going on (2 kids- one of them an infant-; a husband and a full time job) I do not have the time to commit to the sport as I had before.
    It has been a hard thing… to accept this is my reality now. Going from being in tip top shape, to feeling like a slug.. sure I still get out there and race and i still LOVE it; but I have had to adjust my expectations.
    I think there is a time for everything; and I am sure my time of being fierce and extremely dedicated will come back.. just not right now.
    And I have a feeling it is the same way with you Cathy; you will find a happy, healthy you; when the time comes ๐Ÿ™‚

  75. #92

    Thanks for the comment Danni. Im getting myself back on track and basically detoxing this weekend from crap. When I start to dabble in sugar and extra carbs it always bite me in the tushka. Its a time to refocus. I will. : )

  76. #93
    Sarah H

    Cathy, your post and the comments have me all choked up. I too have struggled with my weight for so long and I do look at pictures of a thinner me and think,”I thought I was fat then” what is wrong with us as women that we are so stuck on our weight? It is maddening. I weigh 20 lbs. more now than I did 5 years ago, but I have run four 5k’s in the past 3 months and I never could have done that back then. I feel so much stronger and fit, but the scale still makes me so stressed and frustrated! Thanks for sharing with us. Obviously you have struck a nerve with many of us! There is a song by Jonny Diaz that is called “A More Beautiful You”. Look it up on YouTube. I’m pretty sure you’ll love it!

  77. #94

    See, this is definitely something I am connecting to, the idea that I am in the best shape of my life. MUCH better shape than when I weighed 130 pounds and smoke a pack of cigarettes a day. For sure. Ill look up the song.

  78. #95
    sheilah stewart

    Cathy, I haven’t heard all the responses, so maybe you have heard this already. but the name Gary Taubes jumped out at me, b/c I just heard him interviewed on a local (twin cities) nutrition radio program, and he was fabulous. The program is called Dishing Up Nutrition, and it is available as a free podcast at Itunes (and I know you know how to use that). It is put on by a local nutrition center called Nutritional Weight and Wellness, and these folks rock. I have learned so much from them. They have been saying what Gary says for years, and have had him on before. You can also find his interview if you go to their website and then click on radio show, and archives. I now follow his blog as well.

  79. #96

    I am very familiar with this because my neighbor tipped me off. Shes taken classes at the center. I have the podcasts all set to go, I just need to make the time to listen! : )

  80. #97
    sheilah stewart

    Okay, do what I do – load it up on the ipod then listen when you run (I walk). You can’t imagine how virtuous it feels to listen to how important it is to exercise…while exercising. I’m actually going in for a consult myself this week, after many years of listening to the program, and am really excited.

  81. #99

    Cathy, I have something to share with you. Check “chrononutrition” on google, it’s a method by a french doctor, Dr Delabos.You could find some pages in english. You can eat chocolate, cheese, bread, fruits but not at any time : cheese at breakfast (philadelphia is ok;-), meat+ potatoes or rice, pasta at dinner, fruit and chocolate at 5pm and fish + vegatables or nothing at night.
    I decided to began it last month…
    hope it could help you !
    hugs !

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