Sunday, March 15, 2009

Perfection or bust

One thing I've noticed on this dieting lark is that so many people are paralyzed about losing weight because they think they have to be perfect or it just won't work. Like, you have to be fasting, only eating grapes or only having 937 calories a day, or you won't get anywhere.  All not true. It's actually easy to lose weight, I have found. 

Use an online calculator, and calculate the calories you'd need to take in to MAINTAIN at your goal weight (making sure to calculate your basal metabolic rate and then work upwards using your activity level according to the Harris Benedict Equation), and voila. Eat a range around that, and you'll get there eventually. Don't underestimate your activity level to lose weight faster as that just defeats the object. [If you're very overweight and this works out as more than 1000 calories less than you would need to maintain at your current weight, don't drop so low so quickly - work down from where you are.] You'll be able to eat a reasonable amount of food, including treats, and it'll train you to get out of the "diet" mentality - as you'll already be eating the right amount of calories for you, for maintenance for the next decade or so, so there's no "finishing" the diet and getting back to "normal" as you'll already been eating at your new normal.  Exercise for the health benefits, and because it lets you eat more. Of course, this does require that you track your calorie intake relatively accurately, but there's plenty of online trackers that do that to save all that math.  

I tell ya, 1800 calories a day is a LOT more pleasant than 1200.

Anyhoo, it set me off wondering about the rest of life. I certainly have bought into the "perfection or bust" attitude, both in my food intake and in every other area of life. I am trying to let go of that. And of course, as with all things, it brings me back to trying to conceive. 

I spent so long trying to live according to "the plan" - grow up, go to college, get a degree, get a fabulous job, travel, go up the career ladder, have some fun, meet the great guy, get married, have two beautiful children, blah blah blah. Of course, for me, that started to go wrong at the "meet the great guy" stage, and then really went to pieces at the "have two beautiful children" stage. I spent so long wallowing in how meaningless life would be if I couldn't have children. Life would not be worth living. I got depressed, and fat. I got angry, and bitter. Perfection or bust.

But after some deep thinking, I finally figured out that I have no control over where my life is going. I can just go with the flow, or I can fight against the current. If my life plan is not to have children, or to adopt, I need to be able to adapt to that and to accept it willingly, with an open heart for whatever adventure life DOES bring me. Basically, this is all a long-ass way of saying that I am dropping the "man in a can plan."  I haven't been making any progress on ordering some frozen spermy goodness, because, well, my heart's not in it. What I really want is to meet a real man, and have some great sex, and a lifelong partnership. And if I get so lucky as to find a good egg, all the better. If not, adoption is still on the table. I've been regretting the passage of every month lately, wondering if that was my last good egg, and that shows me that I still haven't really accepted a child-free life. I'm still clinging on to wanting to conceive. I need to let go of that, and open my heart to other opportunities, whatever they may be.

1 comment:

calliope said...

wow. I wasn't expecting that last paragraph but I so, so, so get it. kind of huge tho. Are you still in the mulling place or...?

as for the stuff about perfection- oh man, I so resonated with that. I often sabotage things in my life because I don't want to proceed if I am not an instant expert- which is pretty lame on my part.