Writing and Weight Watchers

30 Aug

There’s a saying we use at WW. It’s “pick your hard.” It’s hard being overweight, it’s hard losing weight, and it’s hard keeping it off. So…pick your hard. Writing is the same way. It’s hard not being published, it’s hard getting published, and it’s hard getting another contract.

As a dedicated writer, I spend a lot of time with my backside in a chair (I have a friend who can actually write on a treadmill. She’s very talented.). I try to get as much exercise as I can, but with work, family and writing, my schedule fills up fast. Since buying a whole new wardrobe is a lot more expensive than joining Weight Watchers, I did the economical thing. What I didn’t expect was getting writing advice at a WW.

We use all sorts of motivating tools. People who reach their goal—be it weight or writing—aren’t perfect; they’re persistent. It’s the old, “hang in there until the end.” It’s been said so many times it’s a cliché, but clichés are clichés for a reason. Those who persevere reach their goals. I don’t get all my inspiration from WW. Thomas Jefferson is one of my favorites, “I’m a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work the more I have of it.” Wow, they knew it even back then.

If you trip, don’t throw yourself off a cliff. Catch your balance and keep going. You ate a candy bar for lunch…okay, two candy bars and a giant soda… but don’t jump off that cliff and have cake for dinner. Acknowledge the oops! Bust out the salad and move back toward your goal.

Writing is the same. Every time you trip, find out why and fix it. Enter lots of contests, but only the ones where they give feedback. When you don’t do well, take a look at why, and repair the problem. Then, send it out again to see if the solution works. Just keep pluggin’ along.

My biggest problem isn’t eating too much, it’s getting enough exercise. My brain gets tired from writing and I have a tendency to want to take a nap (Confession: I love a good nap.). I’ve found if I curl up on the couch for twenty minutes, I’m there for an hour.

I find a better option is to go for a walk. (You don’t have to do five miles. Around the block will do for starters.). With a walk, my backside doesn’t expand, and miraculously, my brain is more alert than if I’d given into the siesta urge.

My afternoon is a lot more productive with a little activity. I used to wear a pedometer, until the day it said I took 62,000 steps. By my calculations, that’s almost 30 miles. Trust me, the pedometer had a nervous breakdown. If you take 10,000 steps per day, you’ll lose weight (For those of you keeping track, that’s about 4.7 miles. That I can do.). My resolution
for this weekend is to get a new pedometer. My goal: more steps and more pages per day. If I stay after them both, I’ll be happier, healthier, and published.

I’m not going to give up on either goal. I want to walk more, weigh less, and see my name in print.

It all comes down to motivation. What gets you going, what keeps you going, and hanging in for the long haul. So pick your hard and go for it.


Posted by on August 30, 2011 in goals, writing, writing motivation


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31 responses to “Writing and Weight Watchers

  1. Deb

    August 30, 2011 at 5:03 AM

    Love your post, Peggy. Here’s to more steps, and more pages!

    • Peggy Staggs

      August 30, 2011 at 7:27 AM

      It’s amazing how much better you feel when you get in more steps.

  2. Liz Fredericks

    August 30, 2011 at 6:40 AM

    “walk more, weight less, and see my name in print” I printed this in red and placed it as a banner above my computer. Excellent motto – I’d only add – take time for an occasional glass of wine with friends. Great post, Peggy.

    • Peggy Staggs

      August 30, 2011 at 7:30 AM

      I’m with you on the wine. We’re going to have to figure out a way to work that in.

  3. P. L. Parker

    August 30, 2011 at 7:00 AM

    I try to walk 2 miles per day on my treadmill and then lift weights (very little ones). Sort of makes up for the big lunch and the “little snacks” I have during the day, but still not where I want to be.

    • Peggy Staggs

      August 30, 2011 at 7:30 AM

      Now that’s dedication. Keep it up.

  4. Janis McCurry

    August 30, 2011 at 7:07 AM

    Notice how most things in life comes down to balance? It sounds so easy. 😉

    • Peggy Staggs

      August 30, 2011 at 7:34 AM

      Balance is never easy. All we can do is keep trying.

  5. Carley Ash

    August 30, 2011 at 7:21 AM

    Great blog, Peggy. I like that – “Pick your hard.”

  6. Peggy Staggs

    August 30, 2011 at 7:36 AM

    When I read that it was like a light coming on. And it applies to almost everything.

  7. Paty Jager

    August 30, 2011 at 8:04 AM

    I agree anything you want takes perseverance. I’m bad at saying I’ll walk late rand then I never do it. I’ve been on a diet and lost 15 pounds but the rest isn’t coming off because I’m not moving. And i know it, but I feel behind in my writing and am playing catch up so I”m not getting up and moving. Your post is going to motivate me! Thanks!

    • Peggy Staggs

      August 30, 2011 at 8:16 AM

      I know what you mean. The hardest thing to do is something for yourself. We always put ourselves last. I’ve found if you have a walking buddy you’ll walk because you don’t want to let them down. Good luck on both walking and writing.

  8. Christy Hayes

    August 30, 2011 at 8:21 AM

    Exercise and writing go hand in hand. Some of my best ideas come when I’m walking, running or working out. Persistence, hard work and having a goal will get you wherever you want to go in life. Thanks for the great post!

    • Peggy Staggs

      August 30, 2011 at 11:17 AM

      That time you spend exercising is mentally very freeing. I enjoy taking a bread from the one eyed monster staring at me from my desk.

  9. Amy Hahn

    August 30, 2011 at 8:35 AM

    Great post, Peggy. I’ve earned more WW 10% stars than anyone i know…and you are right. There are many parallels between writing and weight loss…geez! I’m thinking of all the little cheats (telling instead of showing, leaving out the conflict & and purple prose) i think i can get away with in writing and how they compare to the “oops, were there really that many calories in a Java Chip Frappachino?” We always get caught, don’t we?!?

    • Peggy Staggs

      August 30, 2011 at 11:19 AM

      I hear you. If you look at all the five pound stickers I have you’d think I’d lost a hundred pounds. And Yes, I always get caught.

  10. Meg Bellamy

    August 30, 2011 at 9:52 AM

    I’m a fellow WW writer — lol, maybe we should form our own on-line chapter. I haven’t heard “Pick your hard” at our meetings but I love it and will share it with my meeting tomorrow morning. Despite a mediocre week, I’ll go now.


    • Peggy Staggs

      August 30, 2011 at 11:21 AM

      That’s the spirit. If you don’t keep at it, it’ll never happen. I sign up for the on line Writers for Weight Watchers. Anything to keep motivated.

  11. Patricia Yager Delagrange

    August 30, 2011 at 9:53 AM

    Persistence, hard work, and having a goal as Christy said is everything. I’m determined to write and though it’s hard sometimes to fit it into “life”, it’s my goal and I WILL do it. Nice post.

    • Peggy Staggs

      August 30, 2011 at 11:22 AM

      Presistence is the key to just about everything. That and a great support group.

  12. Marsha R. West

    August 30, 2011 at 1:27 PM

    Great post, Peggy. Yeah, I started counting those points the first of July and have lost 11 pounds. LIke a third of what I need, but I feel so much better. After retiring, I spent several years with my rear glued to the chair writing new stuff, and lying to myself as we sometimes do. eg: It won’t hurt. It’s only a “couple” of M & Ms. Yeah, right. Thank goodness Costco had such a good deal on those large bags or I’d be broke and over weight. LOL

    Losing weight (and keeping it off–the harder thing for most of us) and writing are both journeys. I get a lot out of our vacations, because I start researching and planning so far before the actual event. It’s that remembering to stop and smell the flowers thing–the journey is just as important as the destination and maybe more–it shapes who we are when we arrive.

    “Pick your hard.” That’s great. Thanks for making us think Oh, my exercise is Pilates. At 108 degrees–it’s way to hot to walk anywhere. Marsha

    • Peggy Staggs

      August 30, 2011 at 3:46 PM

      Good luck with the points. I love the new plan. As for the bags of M&M’s at costco. I try never to go to that section. 108 degrees is too hot to do anything in.

  13. Marsha R. West

    August 30, 2011 at 1:27 PM

    P.S. You can make room for a glass on wine using points. Very important. 🙂 Marsha

    • Peggy Staggs

      August 30, 2011 at 3:47 PM

      That’s what those weekly points are for…right?

  14. Meredith Conner

    August 30, 2011 at 1:32 PM

    Great post Peggy! I love the “pick your hard”!

    • Peggy Staggs

      August 30, 2011 at 3:48 PM

      Picking your hard is easier than having your house hit by lightening.

  15. Mary Vine

    August 30, 2011 at 3:30 PM

    I like your idea about taking a walk instead of a nap. I, too, want to get some exercise in as well as writing. Sometimes it’s almost like you only have time enough to do one or the other. Still, I don’t think I want to write on a treadmill!

    • Peggy Staggs

      August 30, 2011 at 3:49 PM

      The nap thing is a hard choice not to make some days.

  16. lynn mapp

    August 30, 2011 at 7:12 PM

    Most of us can relate to “pick your hard”. Yeah, it’s all hard. What a post. You’ve given us a lot to think about.

    • Peggy Staggs

      August 30, 2011 at 7:36 PM

      Thanks. I’ve always liked the saying it’s so true to life.

  17. Clarissa Southwick

    September 1, 2011 at 7:54 AM

    Peggy, those pedometers never work. Mine always say ‘zero’ even when the treadmill says ‘5 miles.’ Great advice on perseverance, whether in dieting or writing. Thanks for a great post.


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