and give a lot of love…especially self love.
Losing weight and maintaining a healthy weight requires a total lifestyle change…both emotional and physical. Once you find your groove, it’s imperative to remain in that groove and to keep moving forward while modifying when necessary. It’s like running a race…you have to stay focused and continue doing what is working for you until it no longer works. You will fall behind in the race if you are constantly looking back and comparing yourself to how you used to look or to your former weight. You will fall behind if you listen to the opinions of well meaning people or compare yourself to others…especially celebrities and models and the people that you see on social media. Weight loss is a “personal” journey and what motivates and works for some may not work for others. Get to know your body to determine when it functions at its best… for you are fearfully and wonderfully made. Identify your personal binge foods and avoid them or eliminate them from your diet altogether. Pay attention to how certain foods affect your body, especially your digestive system. Too many “bad” carbs and too much processed food makes my body feel like it’s running with a clogged engine. My energy level drops and my attitude tends to become more negative.
Why is it, however, that once we finally gain some ground in the weight loss battle i.e. begin seeing results, people start to notice…that we lose our focus and start to backslide? Is it overconfidence, a fear of success or failure? Is it because deep down inside we really don’t believe that we deserve the good stuff that a healthy lifestyle has to offer? Why do we sometimes sabotage ourselves and continue to live in the problem instead of pushing forward towards the solution? For 10 years at the conclusion of every OA meeting, I stood in a circle holding hands with fellow overeaters and repeated the phrase “it works if you work it and give a lot of love”. That truth is still relevant today.
Last fall after my son’s wedding, I hit an emotional low regarding my weight. I wrote about it and many of you read about it in my blog post titled “Did I Set Myself Up for Failure?” Many of you were kind and sincere in your responses but I couldn’t see myself the way that you saw me at the time. After a couple more weeks of wallowing and body shaming, I decided to do something about it. I immediately gave up the sweets (again) and embarked on a journey of “clean” eating with a goal to lose 50 pounds by June 1st. My start date was October 29th. That goal seemed reasonable enough and attainable at the time because it would allow me 7 months to achieve it. I realized that it would be treacherous with the upcoming holidays but I also knew that if I didn’t get things under control sooner than later, I would only have more work to do in the New Year.
Last Thursday was June 1st…the day of my big reveal…the day I planned to be rephotographed in the dress that I wore to my son’s wedding…my before and after photo! But guess what? I didn’t reach my total weight loss goal…but I’m over halfway there and I’m very proud of that accomplishment. For the last month I have hit a plateau. I have even gained a pound or two but I’m NOT turning back because I have come too far. It would be a lot easier to give up in discouragement than to continue pushing forward but I’ve decided that I’m in it to win it! I have a tendency to be a black and white thinker but I’ve decided that when it comes to achieving goals, gray areas complicate things for me. Sometimes I feel like I have one of those heroin flaps in my brain…once I start eating refined sugar, fast food and bad carbs, it’s almost impossible for me to control myself and stop apart from divine intervention.
So today, for the remainder of the weight that I want to lose, I have set some “mini” goals to insure that the last leg of my journey is successful. I’ve joked that I’ve made it this far by lying on the sofa (not really), eating healthy and tracking but healthy eating will only take you so far. Exercise (which I’m not a huge fan of) has to be a component when it comes to weigh loss and a healthy lifestyle and for me that’s been the missing piece.
Once again I’m reminded that “it works if you work it and give a lot of love”.
Are you struggling to reach your goal? As always your comments are welcome.