Sunday, December 26, 2010

New Year's Resolutions - Keeping 'em Real!

Mollie writes:

I'm a big one for making resolutions for the New Year, but not so hot at keeping them.  Last year, I resolved to start a 'domestic" blog with a friend and voila, Ask Millie and Mollie!  The year before, I resolved to learn to use my embroidery option on my sewing machine . . . ok, I've done a couple of embroideries, but I've hardly mastered it.  And so it goes.

At the ripe old age of 58, it suddenly occurs to me that keeping New Year's resolutions is easier if you keep them reasonable.  Loosing 40 pounds this year is unreasonable;  I'm 5'4".  I weigh 168 and would prefer to weigh in at 130.  But the amount of effort it takes for this post-menopausal MS patient with physical limitations is simply not available to me.  How can someone who has a difficult time walking 1 mile on level ground ever 'burn off' what it takes to reduce weight?  And eating a healthy, balanced diet?  If I eat reasonably, meaning meats, dairy, fruits, vegetables, legumes, carbohydrates and healthy fats, a sensible diet still puts me over the calorie/carbohydrate  limit of effective weight loss.

And it isn't just the dieting and exercise, it's the medications many of us MS'ers use.  Steroids tend to ease recovery during an exacerbation, but they also pile on the pounds.  And it's yet to be determined how 15 years of interferons impact the entire bodily system, not just the immune system.  In the end, all I can really do is just do my best and take my lumps.

So I watch what I eat and plan on being happy if I can get my weight below 153.  I may not make it on the evening news, but if I keep my expectations reasonable, I may be able to lose 15 pounds in 12 months.  We'll see.

But my New Year's resolution isn't really losing weight, it's learning to keep my goals reasonable.  If I learn, in the next 12 months, how to manage my weight with the plethora of medical issues I have to consider, I'll have kept my resolution.  But I also have to factor in other issues as well, meaning travel, family get togethers AND my love of cooking.  So what I'm really hoping is that if I can lose 15 pounds and maintain it, I'll have made a realistic resolution.

And that's my real goal.

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