Wednesday, July 27, 2011

What Happened?

I like to look at other weight loss blogs and when I do, I like to peruse their blogrolls.  You never know where you'll get inspiration. Some are up my alley and others I don't connect with and that's fine, I just move along as we all should if someone's approach isn't our cup of tea.  I'm noticing a disturbing trend on a lot of pages though.  In clicking links I would see months or years pass with no posts or the link was dead. I initially didn't think much about it until I saw more of those than active ones on many blog sites and I began to freak out a bit.  They were trucking along, feeling on top of the world and then what happened?  Were they out living life?  Did blogging get to be too much for them? Or were they going through a rough patch and feeling less than inspiring so they were hiding rather than admit it wasn't going to plan?  Did they gain weight?  Heck for the ones who haven't posted in years, did they die? 



Then I saw a lot of "okay, I fell off the wagon hard but clean slate now."  Boy do I relate.  Falling off the wagon, get run over by it and feeling like you have to come back and either explain yourself or do some big new mission statement on how 'this time is different' if you're part of a weight loss community whether a website, message board or blog.  You feel like you let people who invested in your journey down somehow and it can just as much pressure as it is supportive when all is going well. 

The reason I freaked out is because I thought about how when those people were cruising along losing their weight, doing everything right, they never saw themselves going back.  They came too far, worked too hard, etc.  Then something happened and they became a ghost page or do a 'sorry I haven't been around much' kind of thing.  Is that my destiny too?  I mean at 185 lbs lost and 3 years of doing this, I'd say I've pretty much got it down but how many other people thought they did too?  I see plenty of people who have lost what I lost and more and then they get to this evening out point and then you start seeing "I've gained some weight back" posts if they post at all or wait until 50+ lbs has come back on and they post about what they need to do to get back to it.  It breaks my heart.  I've had several people that lost 200 lbs or a little more and then something happens.  It's almost like it's this cursed number.  So you can understand the mind game trying to creep in as I approach this number.  I mean thank God most of you will never know what it's like to have to lose that much but maintenance (if you get there when you have a LOT of weight to lose like the Mr and I) is the true test over actually losing the weight.

The Mr and I had one of our pre-workout talks the other night and we made a pact that no matter what devastation happens in our lives, we will NOT let either of us get off track.  He said if God forbid, one of our parents or someone close to us died then we exercise in the morning and get on with the grim tasks at hand.  I agree.  We have already exercised and made healthy choices through 2 diseases with family members that would've had me skipping exercise and diving head first into pizzas in the past.  That gives me a bit of confidence that our coping mechanisms have changed but we both have agreed to be hyper aware as there are some potentially devastating events in our future with family members.  We don't want to sacrifice our own health anymore over something we can't change.  I am praying this pact will help us stay true to our goals and that we can continue to trudge on toward our goals to not only be part of the group who loses a ton of weight but to be part of that small percentage that keeps it off.

For all of those people who started sharing their journeys and have stopped for some reason, I hope you're doing well.  I say a little prayer for yooooou.  You know you have it in you to do what needs to be done and if you're still doing it, maybe do an update post for people who have invested in your journey to say "hey, I'm still working it.  I'm just out living life baby!"  I wish every person out there who has a story to tell whether losing baby weight to 100 lbs to having to lose the amount of an overweight dude the best of luck, the healthiest of lives and the yearn to share again!

Have any of your favorite weight loss bloggers/friends stopped blogging?  Does that effect your mentality at all to see someone who inspired you and was so successful suddenly stop?

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17 comments:

  1. It;s hard when you're following someone and they just drop off the planet. I feel like at that point in their weight loss, they should know that everyone has a bad day, week, or month, but it's not a "reason" to give up. I feel bad for them. Coming all this way, and then just throwing their hands up. Hopefully, they'll all come around again!

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  2. I am guilty of not blogging about what's going on with me for weeks now. Last time I blogged I was ecstatic about finally breaking through a six month long plateau. I had lost 5 lb and broken into new territory at last. I thought my friends on the site I blog at would be ecstatic for me. I thought I'd get tons of responses to my blog that I was a rock star for sticking it out and changing things left and right until finally I found what did it for me. I thought people would find my tale to be motivating. But none of that happened. Sure, I got a few responses, but nothing like I had received in the past. I felt abandoned and let down, like people had given up on me as one who only got so far and stopped, even though I was there every day supporting others in my time of struggle. It was then I started questioning the time I spend on that site. I know that it's all really only for me, but it's also nice to know that I'm helping others too.

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  3. I see a lot of people abandoning their blogs. I know life gets in the way, it does with mine. When I first started in the blog world I read everyones blogs but then I started weeding out which ones I wanted to read. Now I have a handful.....may be people just feel overwhelmed. I feel like that sometimes when I read other's blog feeling like I need to have an awesome blog.....

    Okay I'm rambling....I love your commitment to yourself and your hubby! You all will definitely prosper in all areas of life and have already!!!

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  4. Websites/blogs/whatever are like the tide, rising and falling in response to the ever fickle interests of human beings.

    I've learned from experience that "the internet" should be viewed as a fun/motivational/whatever BONUS not the main source. It's not reliable enough.

    That said, yes I do get let down a bit when I get used to the routine of checking out a certain blog/message board and the activity has dried up. That's usually when I go looking for another site to supplement (but don't give up on previous sites until they prove they are really, truly dead).

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  5. I love this post! I share a lot of the same fears as you...I worry all the time that this time WON'T be the last time because I will allow life to sidetrack me. But the more I recognize that fear and conquer it in my brain ahead of time, the better...just like you and the Mr.! You are both so wise...don't ever stop telling your tale because if you did, you would most definitely be on my list of those I miss!

    Love ya girl! Thanks for sharing with us...

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  6. I've had that happen to several Spark friends. It broke my heart. I struggle off and on but I refuse to give up. You are so lucky to have one another to motivate each other on a regular basis. I truly believe that if you are able to stay on the sites and keep motivated you will do so much better than dropping off the face of the earth. Even if I have a bad day I still usually get my fruits and vegetables in which used to rarely happen. Overall even though I have some bad days I track what I eat and move on. I eat a lot healthier meals than I used to.

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  7. Uggh, in the few seconds that it took my computer to switch from my e-mail notification to the actual, physical blog, I thought to myself "girl, you really gotta get back to your blog, reading others isn't enough". LOL-how do you always get inside my head?

    Lately, I've been doing well enough with the whole shebang. I'm exercising (could do more), I'm trying to make wise choices (kids got Wendy's for lunch yesterday, I got a plain, basic hamburger (then forgot to eat it), while they all got a frosty with their lunch item. No frosty for me on a hot summer day? That is a change in thinking, yes it is. I've had several "proud of myself" moments, but no loss and no gain.

    Fact of the matter is, I'm just OVERWHELMED right now. Kids home all day is MUCH harder than kids in school. PTA President? who in their right mind decided that should be me? Not me, in it as a favor to a friend, how stupid is that? Keeping me busier than I want to be. Still working on finishing that elusive bachelors degree (20 years late). My house is a wreck and most of my exercise is happening at 4 in the freakin' morning just so that it doesn't get shoved out of the way later.

    So, for me...life is taking over, but only temporarily. I am 100% not gone.

    However, I do feel a pang of sadness when somebody drops off the planet. But, in a way it makes me want to try harder so that I don't turn into one of "those".

    Thanks for a GREAT post and wow-I wrote a novel-lol!

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  8. Whew. I am glad you changed the tone of your blog midway. I was thinking that if you are thinking that way then you are predestining yourself for failure. Positive affirmation time? I WILL SUCCEED TODAY. It's my go to affirmation for rough days.

    I love your pact and that you are not letting other people's misfortunes get in the way. Keep on going girl. YOU WILL BE SUCCESSFUL!!

    On a personal note. I don't write an official blog because I know me...it's a lot of work and I will burn out. I would rather not take on the task. I have a feeling that a lot of people partake in blogging and find it exhausting. Cattitude also made a good point. Sometimes it is frustrating when you think you accomplish something amazing and no one says a peep. You think well if I am not inspiring anyone I might as well keep my thoughts to myself.

    Anyways...YOU CAN DO IT GIRL!!!

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  9. I think there are a number of reasons that people drop off (or seem to). Some just lose their "oomph", others get busy, and still others might be going through some stuff. I know for me, personally, I've never been a big blogger. I'll write occasionally, but I tend to do more one one one interactions, especially since I dropped many of my teams (sooooo many of them had such little activity or wouldn't want to talk about weight/health goals, etc...weird). I try to get on the computer once a day, but with the job situation, sometimes it's been 2-3 days before I can. I'll add my fitness minutes at that point. I think for me, since I'm not a big blogger, I've never had a big "friends" list. I'm pretty private so I've been choosy about who I include in that circle. There are some friends who've been gone for a long time, but I'll see them pop up occasionally. Others are active, and we interact somewhat, but not a lot. The ones I'm close to know about the job situation and the recent health stuff, and I've made sure to put it out there that I'm still alive and kicking, and definitely working my program, even if I can't get online as much. I'm finally getting a routine down, which will make me more regular (*snort*...that just sounds funny). Part of my stress is not having my computer time, ironically! Right now it's work, exercise, quick dinner, and off to bed. It's really quite pathetic. Oh, but a I have a funny for you...today, 5 days before my 40th b-day, I got my first gray hair! I found it this morning while putting on my makeup and I just cracked up (I saved the hair because I'm a dork like that). It was my moment of entertainment for the day.

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  10. Thanks everyone for sharing your thoughts on this. I totally understand wanting to feel that validation and feeling like people fell short to give it the appropriate kudos. It can make you want to take your toys and go home. Then sometimes you have to chalk it up to something for YOU to look back on and see your progress. It can be so hard not to take it personally sometimes.

    For those feeling overwhelmed, try journaling or if you can delegate *anything*, do it. I think a lot of time as women we think we are supposed to do it all and last you checked there probably wasn't a Superwoman cape in your closet. ;)

    It's just so sad to me when people drop off because I know how hard they worked and the eventually disappointment that may be on the horizon if they don't take care of themselves. You want to share what you've learned to help but then you remember how condescending it could've sounded when you got off track before and know it can do even more damage.

    So to any bloggers on hiatus or struggling, your readers miss you! :)

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  11. It's hard when you see other people you look up to stop. Personally, my workout buddies, my mother and sister-in-law, have quit with the working out. So everyday it's just me and it's really hard to get motivated when I know I'm all alone.

    It's sort of the same problem..but slightly different. Thanks for the reminder to keep it up and push forward every day! :)

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  12. Dalbador1 could have been ghost writing for me. I've never had a big friends list and I don't blog/journal or even comment regularly (although I'm trying to be better about that!). I don't have internet access at home so everything is done at the office, which is ok but restricts what I post and when. It's one of the reasons that I'm a champion 'lurker'. I know that it really makes me sad when people I follow disappear, their pages go off-line with no explanation or their blogs sit there and gather dust. I keep working on myself, some days I make better decisions than others but I try not to beat myself up for it. My job has a lot of stress and I'm working on ways to manage that stress which I think is contributing to the weight not coming off like I'd like it to. I've been on a plateau for about 4 months, so I tweak and then I tweak some more. I'm not quitting. Not. Quitting. I'm so glad to be able to peek into your life, it gives me hope for myself.

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  13. I'm not what you'd call a "huge" success story - but I know I have dropped off the earth (well, the internet) a few times and maybe people wondered where I went. Or maybe not so much. I tend to be most active in the summer, and then during the school year my healthy habits (including keeping up with Spark) slip away one by one as OPD (other people's demands) eat away at my time. In past summers I've been pretty active on threads/teams over at Spark. This summer I've been more active with my "friends" and just two teams instead. I feel a much more personal connection to people this time, so I'm more motivated to stay in touch during the upcoming school year.
    When I see people drop off, I always hope that they have found new tools and are still trudging along. I do miss them though.

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  14. I'm so sorry...I'm just not much of a blogger :( I am still around...I am one of those people who has gained weight back (bows head in shame). I know I have no one to blame but myself even though sometimes I use my sitdown job as an excuse or my rotten PF in the foot which is worse the more you weigh. I read your blogs and it brings me up to see how well you and da husband are doing and your always so good with words...sadly I have adult ADD and I can't really focus long enough to type more than a comment...oh what was that...ok I'm back...ummm yeah I'm kind of lurking, I'm kind of ashamed of myself, I'm kind of committed to a workout again and hoping I can stick with it at least until my new cathe comes in September. My diet leaves alot to be desired at the moment~ I wish I could afford the personal chef I know but right now we are food poor so we can fix our house the way we want. It should be higher on the list to eat the more expensive stuff thats good for you but alas tis not---least my white turkey hotdogs aren't ALL bad :) Keep blogging, I'll keep reading...keep losing and you'll catch up to me!
    D

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  15. Thanks for continuing to comment and share your thoughts. I don't expect big blogs from people, I just like to know people are still out there whether they're on track or not. I know how it feels to not want to admit you're not working the plan to its original potential but its so important to make your health a priority. Everyday people are getting sick from things that they can't control but obesity related disease is so preventable that it would be horrible to see someone go through a health crisis when they didn't have to. Funny how it changes from wanting to be skinny or look better when you're in your teens and early 20's but the focus changes from then on out. I mean a hot ass in a pair of sweet jeans is always nice but it doesn't mean much if you're not healthy enough to enjoy it.

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  16. I guess you never think - this is going to be my last blog. Its like the weight issue itself. I mean, you dont one day stop eating healthy and decide - "I am going to get fat again." Its a gradual thing. And I think for many people their lack of blogging is a reflection of what is happening in their lives. Gradually they start over eating again, picking up weight - as they gradually stop blogging. For others - once the goal is achieved they dont feel the need to blog anymore. Theirs was a 'weight loss blog' not a 'weight maintenance blog' and no need to continue. To those folks, it would be nice if they did give a final post and say - "the Journey's over - its been fun but I'm off to do things outside!" or something like that. I dont have a weightloss blog, but I have been toying with the idea... for the moment I live vicariously through all you people that do!

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  17. You have come a long way and you will succeed and stay the course! We all love and depend on you! YOU are our hero(es). I often wonder what happened to people who I used to hear from all the time.

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