Skip to main content

Progress, not perfection

So how am I going to measure my progress as I move forward in the current pursuit of health and wellness? (Oh, okay, and weight loss.) Well, this is the hard part.

The bathroom scale provides information, but all too often the number I see is all tied up with judgment and guilt and shame. Sometimes the number is 'good,' and I feel like I deserve a reward. Sometimes it's 'bad,' and I feel like giving up. In either case – good or bad – I go off the rails. This is not, of course, the fault of the bathroom scale. It's completely my attitude upon seeing that number.

Knowing what I know about my relationship with it, then, I clearly need to find a different way to measure progress. At the same time, I'd like to know what that number is. But only occasionally. (Okay, I'd really like to know what it is two or three times a day. But that's counterintuitive to the process.)

So here's the deal: I'm going to weigh myself on the 25th of each month. I weighed myself Christmas Day and right that minute started figuring out what my plan was going to be, in spite of Christmas dinner. I began tracking my food and exercise on the 26th. My daily goals are pretty simple:


  • 1598 calories/day (according to LoseIt! I should lose a pound a week at this level. I'd originally thought to keep calories at 1500, but I'm going to try 1600-ish the first month)
  • Limit (but don't eliminate) sugar. I can't knock it out completely, but I can save it for Mondays (see below)
  • Drink more water. I don't know if the old rule of six to eight glasses a day is still necessary, but I get way less than that. And, like chicken soup in a car wreck, it can't hurt. Right?


  • Monday - Free day (no intentional exercise, eat whatever, don't log anything)
  • Tuesday - Walk outdoors or elliptical, yoga
  • Wednesday - Walk outdoors or elliptical, dumbbells
  • Thursday - Walk outdoors or elliptical
  • Friday - Walk outdoors or elliptical, yoga
  • Saturday - Walk outdoors or elliptical, dumbbells
  • Sunday - Walk outdoors or elliptical

I will measure my progress between weigh-ins by noting whether I've completed each day successfully or not. Have I eaten at or below 1600-ish calories? Have I done the workout(s) I said I would do?

So far, so good. The dumbbell and yoga workouts have been short and sweet. I have an all-or-nothing personality, and am deliberately taking this slowly so I don't burn out. I also have NO desire to end up sweating for two hours a day, as I did 20 years ago. (I'm also, um, 20 years older than I was then, and it's, um, harder to sweat for two hours a day.)

With the 25th of the month being weigh-in day, I'll be weighing myself on my birthday when May rolls around. Already I'm thinking I'll be 20 pounds lighter by then. And already I'm wishing it would be 30 or 40 or even 50. Ten pounds a month, that's possible, isn't it?

See what happens when I start projecting into the future? That's why ODAAT is So. Damned. Important. And why perfection is so over-rated.


Diandra said…
Sounds like a good approach. Instead of concentrating on numbers, I try to concentrate on whether the things I eat are good for my body and whether I got my daily exercise, enough sleep and water. Once that is established, I will try to figure out what to do next.

Popular posts from this blog


Update on the water: the circuit breaker tripped, either due to a power surge when the electricity came back on last night OR when lightning struck in the area. My neighbor's electric fence control box got hit in the same area. He was able to reset the circuit breaker for us and we have WATER! I think I'll go do a load of laundry. Heh.

And the winner is …

Kitten with a Whiplash, who left two comments and it was the second (which had nothing to do with the contest) which won the prize. Congratulations, and since the Kitten was the only commenter who expressed any interest in actually winning it, I'm so glad the Universe took care of it. Heh.

What a weekend! But first, how was yours? I hope you did some fun stuff and got some necessary stuff done, as well. It's all about balance.

Saturday was our fun day (but we had to drive, drive, drive to get there and then drive, drive, drive home again, all in one day, boy was I tired). We went to my husband's granddaughter's first birthday party. In addition to a sweet little doll, suitable for ages 0+ (meaning it has no parts that will come loose, and do you know how difficult it is to find dolls for babies when you live in the Middle of Nowhere?), I made her this:

I haven't sewn anything in a month of Sundays, so was a little apprehensive about finishing it on time, but this p…

I seriously thought this was sponsored by a drug company

My gingersnapping friend posted results of an online personality test, which clearly indicate she is in need of some serious therapy. Since I'm extremely well-adjusted and my psychiatrist husband hasn't pointed out any of my defects (lately), I decided to take it, as well.

Personality Disorder Test Results
Paranoid||||18%Schizoid||||||||||||||58%Schizotypal||||||30%Antisocial||||||26%Borderline||||||30%Histrionic||||||||||34%Narcissistic||||||||||34%Avoidant||||||26%Dependent||||18% Obsessive-Compulsive||||||30% Take Free Personality Disorder Test
Personality Test by
Whew! At least I'm not paranoid. I was really worried about that. Heh.

Similar tests on the internets are sponsored by drug companies. (This one apparently isn't.) They want you to be sick so you'll ask your doctor for their drugs. There are quizzes for disorders that you can physically test – blood pressure, diabetes – and for symptomatic conditions – pain, depression. Since I'm no…