The Yoyo Factor

My weight was always a yoyo: lose 90, gain 80, lose 50, gain 70, lose 40, gain 60.  Even when I was in my teens it was a series of lose-gain, lose-gain. Do I still yoyo? You bet, but now I keep it within an 8-pound range. I love food — macaroni and cheese is my spirit animal — so this is somewhat inevitable, and that kind of short range is okay with me. What changed to decrease the Yoyo Factor? Moderation. Moderation changed everything.

When my life consisted of one “diet” after another, there was always a down followed by an almost immediate up. It took me years to realize that until I stopped using the word diet and the mindset of diet I would never keep the weight off.  To “go on a diet” implies that your healthy food choices have a beginning and an end. And what happens at that end? Often we’ve learned nothing, we’ve changed nothing, and the weight comes right back on. Unacceptable.

So how do you avoid the Yoyo Factor? Think about a actual yoyo toy: How do you prevent a toy yoyo from vaulting back and forth? Steadiness and balance. That same type of moderation is key in your exercise and food choices, too. It’s not that you have to exercise constantly or deny yourself good food (the horror!), but simply balance a night of overindulgence with a strong workout. Adding that balance should help you cut that yoyo string once and for all.

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