Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Thoughts about RTM (Route to Management)

Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about what I want to do when I complete Foundation (the initial 14 week period of total food abstinence), and whether I’m going to do Route to Management (RTM - the further 12 week period of gradual food reintroduction you undertake when you’re near your goal weight).

When I started this, I had no intention of doing RTM. 12 more weeks, are you kidding me? I thought ‘I’m not a true fattie, I don’t need that much support’. Plus, my friend who did LL had similar food issues to me, and lost a similar amount of weight - she didn’t do RTM and she’s fine.

But I’ve been getting a lot of support on the Minimins forums - much of it from people who have completed LL (RTM inclusive) and are maintaining their weight. And they swear by RTM - for them it was the biggest challenge of the entire diet - and they get a bit irked if you say you’re thinking of not doing it: they remind you of the importance of RTM and that lots of people who didn’t do RTM have piled the weight back on.

Which basically led to me deciding to do RTM purely not to piss off the people on the Minimins forum.

Which, now I think of it, isn’t an honest decision at all. So I’ve been sifting carefully through my thoughts, picking out the ones that are driven by self-sabotage and the need to please, and isolating the thoughts that are purely about what’s best for me (these ones are the hardest to find).

And my decision is:

When I’ve lost 2.5 stones, I’m going to switch to Lighter Life Lite (LLL).

If you have 3 stones or less to lose, you can do LLL. I was offered it when I started, but I chose full abstinence. On LLL you have 3 packs a day and, instead of the fourth pack, you have a proteiny, low-carbohydrate meal.

My reasons for this are twofold:

1. I really want the challenge of preparing my own meal each day
Although it’s my choice to stay abstinent and it’s up to me not to lapse, being on full abstinence feels a bit… external. It’s like drinking a magic potion someone else gave me and seeing the weight fall off. Doing LLL would be like drinking a magic potion someone else gave me 3 times a day, and then once a day making the potion myself, and still seeing the weight drop off. It would give me a greater sense of control, responsibility and self-reliance, and improve my confidence around food.

2. The LLL RTM is just 4 weeks, not 12
I’ve thought very carefully about this and it’s not self-sabotage speaking: this is all me. The more I learn about myself and why I overeat, the less I feel I need the full 12 weeks.

I want to return to the way I used to eat before I put on weight - I have wanted to for a long time, before I even head of LL, before I even thought about losing weight - just purely because I was tiring of the food I was eating, and wanted to feel like "me" again.

I want to do this properly, and I totally understand the importance of RTM, both in terms of your metabolism and successful weight maintenance, but I really don’t think I need 12 weeks. 

Also, I’m going to Las Vegas in February, and I don’t want to be dieting! The entire point of the place is decadence - decadence in moderation, but decadence definitely!

And I feel guilty about this decision, even though I could have done LLL from the start. And even though I think there is a world of difference in the support that someone who’s been obese (or worse) for years and years might need, versus the support that someone (like me) who’s piled on 3 stone (above ideal weight, this is, only 2 stone above healthy BMI) over the last few years through unhappiness, would need.

At the end of the day I really feel this is the best decision for me. Which is an odd idea to get my head around.


Angela said...

Hi Bea,

Just read all of your Blog, you write very well and I have found all of what you have to say thought-provoking and inspiring.

I am on Day 1 of LL.

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