As I sit here snacking on the vegetable sticks I didn’t eat from lunch, looking out my dining room window into the grey twilight I’m trying not to feel too overwhelmed. You see, I am trying to think about what is really important and what’s not so important. There are so many different kinds experiences both good and bad and I find that sometimes either kind can make me feel overwhelmed. That’s how I’m feeling right now,
I’m thinking about some big exciting professional goals. I have worked on a project for a long time, years. I have been rejected, dug in and tried again. I have worked tirelessly with the belief Ithat I have something unique to offer. Now it’s almost here, (I can’t announce it yet) and it’s a strange feeling, I’m thrilled and terrified at the same time. Sometimes standing out leaves you open to ridicule. I speak from experience because for one reason or another, since I was a kid to the woman I am today, I find myself always standing out and I feel the same uncertainty. But I keep going because I can’t let fear be my ruler.
I’m also thinking about a person who I thought was a friend to me. I really trusted this person and it turns out I made some misjudgments about her character. She really let me down. I always seem to assume the best about people and I know how gullible that sounds. A woman I knew once told me something about myself that really hit home, it struck me because she was so wise and at the time her words really startled me because I had not myself in this way before. She said, I lead with my heart and that can get me into trouble if I’m not careful. Now I find myself in a similar situation, and I am beginning to understand it and it makes me sad. I love the idea of leading with my heart but the thing is – leading with my heart leaves me so vulnerable all the time. But I keep going and I hope a little wiser because I can’t let sadness be my ruler.
I’m also thinking about the weekend, and how I need to take a breather. I work hard, I am very dedicated to my career. I have some big things coming up next week that are going to require a lot of care and attention. So even though it’s the weekend, there is so much work I still need to do. I’m feeling crumpled under the stress of it at the moment. It makes me feel anxious but I know if I just get started, schedule a little bit each day I will get it done. Letting it sit is what would make it worse. So I keep going because I can’t let anxiety be my ruler.
I’m thinking about weighing in tomorrow as I work to hold onto my last big goal (oh yeah, this is a weight loss blog I lost 93 pounds). I can celebrate that I am not burying my feelings with food. I rolled over 31 points this week. I achieved my fitness goal, and I remained mindful. For example, I elected to try a bit of cinnamon bread, I ate it and really appreciated how good it tasted. Then I tracked it and didn’t go back for more. I just let it be and was happy for the experience of eating that small piece. If I ate more, it would just be more of the same taste and then I’d feel bad because I most certainly would have exceeded my healthy eating zone. That’s what maintenance is – it’s a journey and I can’t let food my ruler.
Even though my situation is the same, I feel better. Thinking through my feelings and honoring them helps. I recommend it. I think most people know that significant weight gain is seldom about cookies, chips, or candy as much as it is about coping. I think I’m better than just coping I think I can be my own ruler who understands that feelings come and feeling go it’s up to me to do what’s best. I can do it, so can you.
I was in NYC today attending a conference at Columbia University. I was feeling so proud of being able to lead my colleagues through the subway system. Then, all of a sudden, on the way, I saw a second grader board the train. He was all by himself! That put some things into perspective for me. This was a big deal for me, but it was commonplace for him. I stood there in awe of this child doing his thing, off to school in the morning – it’s just another day in his life.
What is normal? Leading my colleagues on the subway was a big deal for me because I was stepping out of my comfort zone. Does my accomplishment mean less now that I saw a child doing the exact same thing? No, I don’t think so. I think the important take away here is that the most important thing is to keep growing and improving. My life isn’t a competition to be better than everyone else. It’s a challenge to be better than myself.
When it comes to weight loss, fitness, or health-related goals I think it’s very important to focus on everything that I’m doing to improve the quality of my life, while encouraging and supporting others in the same pursuit. There will always be other people who are healthier, more fit, and better informed than I currently am. I want to be part of what is good. If I make my journey a comparison to everyone else, I might be in danger of feeling inadequate instead of empowered. Maybe jealous instead of inspired and what a shame that would be. I’d be missing out on the best part being a witness to the accomplishments of others, admiring their strengths, and getting a glimpse of their stories.
Sipping on some water out of my brand new water bottle (more Christmas loot) I am feeling really good. The sun is shining and the skies are blue. It’s New Year’s Day and I am full of optimism.
I began my day with pancakes. It is very comforting to know that I can eat pancakes on WW and still lose weight. It would be pretty sad for me if pancakes were off the menu.
Yes, I do have to lose some weight even though I’m at Lifetime. I need to stay within a two-pound range of my goal weight if I’m going to continue to sit in a free seat. There are a few ways I can think about my current situation.
Old habits can be subtle and creep back in without realizing.
If I’m going to maintain my weight loss I will have to defend it.
Sometimes I will make bad choices.
Sometimes my resolve will win out.
My new habits are very powerful and I can decide what happens.
All of these statements describe me and what I’m going through every day. If weight loss was easy, obesity wouldn’t be an epidemic. It is an epidemic because according to a 2017 report published by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) 70. 7% of Americans are either overweight or obese. This means being a healthy weight is now the minority.
Losing weight and living a healthy lifestyle is really difficult. Difficult because it’s so easy to make unhealthy food choices everywhere I go. It can be tiresome to be so aware of food. That’s one way to look at it. On the other hand, losing weight and living a healthy lifestyle is liberating. Liberating because it can be done. I’m living proof it can be done. I lost so much weight and I am now in a healthy weight zone.
Do you want to get at the heart of the matter? I’ve been reading a new book, Fierce Conversations and when I think about weight loss these are the questions that come to mind:
What is keeping you from achieving your weight loss goals? Write it down in one or two sentences.
What will happen to you if you don’t achieve your weight loss goals? Write down what is at stake for your future if you give up on this goal.
Answer the: How? When? Why? Where? weight gain started happening. Summarize this background information.
What have you tried so far? Either successful or unsuccessful. Write it down. Now you are ready to make a strategy for how to keep going.
Discussing weight loss is a tough thing to take on because it’s so personal. However, I look at it like this – I can always be honest with myself. I think the most important thing is to just think deeply about my current situation. In the book, it’s called “interrogating reality” and I sort of love that expression. I love it because it gives me permission to think objectively and critically about something I’m sensitive about – my weight.
I really hope this post helps you if you are looking for help that is. If you are in a good place, “Go you!” I mean it since this is a hard thing to do, if it’s going good then go with that.
As we roll into 2019 I wonder what this year will bring. This is what I am wishing for:
Continued success with my weight loss.
Good health – physically, emotionally, mentally.
To have a prosperous year.
Opportunities to learn and grow from.
New fabulous memories with family and friends.
Goals begin as wishes. Our actions breath life into them and that is how they become reality. If you are reading this and are wishing to transform your body and mind to better health here is how you begin:
Write down a why statement. Why do you want this?
Name what you are willing to do to make it happen.
Be kind to yourself – use kind words when thinking with your inner voice. Be sure to use your name as you consider your situation.
Enlist support from your family and friends you don’t have to do this alone.
Clean out your kitchen. Get rid of all the holiday leftovers and setup your spaces for success.
Happy New Year’s everyone. Let’s make 2019 a year to remember.
Learning to understand that some days won’t go as I planned is a constant lesson. Some days my resolve will be weaker than others. That is the way it goes. The important part is to keep going.
So if today was a great day on the journey – celebrate that feeling because that’s very good news to be happy about. If today was a difficult one give yourself a hug and say it’s ok, tomorrow is a new day.
Learning to change habits that have been set over time is not easy and they creep back in. Expect that will happen and then when it does know that you are the one who gets to decide what to do next. You can do this believe it.
New Year’s is coming and this is the time of year where we all reflect and make resolutions to change ourselves for the better. Don’t. You don’t have to change anything about yourself – trying to change who we are is kind of crazy. We are not broken, we are not in need of fixing. That said, I do think we are here to grow and learn. Growth stems from acceptance and in many ways change is consequential to that growth.
Do you. Embrace yourself for who you are imperfections and all. After all, it is our imperfections that make us perfectly human. What would the world be like if we looked at our imperfections as an opportunity for greater awareness? Maybe we would begin to see our weakest attributes as our strongest gifts. This is something I’ve been thinking about today.
It’s been said so many times before, but we really are better when we think together. At my WW workshop, my friend Beth mentioned this great new app: Paprika.
I have to say, it is amazing! I think it’s going to be very helpful. It organizes and saves recipes. It creates shopping lists and it is just the tool that this fledgling cook needs. I think I can create menus for the week using this app. Anyway, right now, I’m pretty excited to get started with this.
I want to laugh more in 2019. Who is with me?
Just because it’s still the holidays and I want to hold onto them for as long as possible...
I felt in charge and in control today. I went off plan a few days this week; however, I am very happy about achieving my activity goals I wanted to go to spin at least three times and I went four!
I fully embrace that I am not perfect and I am confident at the same time. I am not afraid to fail publicly – if some good can come out of it. The only regret I would have would be if I missed an opportunity to grow – this journey is about personal growth.
The truth? There is no good or bad in my pursuit for lasting weight loss. It is not a success or failure sort of endeavor. There is only a continuous inner search for balance. Today I tapped into my balance reserves and I felt in control and empowered for most of the day. That is a gift and I am grateful.
Coming home to routines is a comforting thing once the holiday rush is through. Comforting, yet, tricky because it’s easy to get used to more liberal snacking I’ve decided not to overthink it – just do what I’ve been doing.
I went to spin class this morning, I threw myself into it totally and after I felt fantastic. Later, when I was hungry between meals, I snacked on multicolored carrots, an apple, and I was careful to stay hydrated. I went out with my sister and tried on some clothes – I didn’t buy anything (another reality after the holidays is reign in spending). It’s still amazing to me that I fit into these small sizes.
I keep thinking about my mom and dad. My parents, especially my mom, would have been so happy to see me like this. Unfortunately, I didn’t figure this out until after they passed on. The thing is no one can convince you to lose weight. This is something you can only do for yourself.
When you’re feeling tempted or feel like you may break newly formed habits, ask yourself: What do I really want? Then you will know exactly what it is you need to do next. Treat yourself as you would someone you really love because you are incredible.
The quickest way to recover from the holidays is to be completely honest. What I mean by that is, it is a very good idea to track everything that is eaten. Tracking what I eat continues to be an important part of my weight loss transformation. “Always let your conscience be your guide…”
A clean conscious helps me to make better choices. I now understand that the only person I’d be fooling is myself – so instead, I just track it all. My decision to do this, to track what I eat, is the very thing that grants me freedom and control.
I am signed up for 5:15 am spin class tomorrow. I’m excited that I can use the amazing new gym bag that my beautiful daughter bought me for Christmas. These are the getting back to basics moves that will keep me 93 pounds lighter.
So… if you are thinking that maybe you are losing control and are feeling a little nervous – don’t. Just be honest. Write it all down and think about what you want your next move to be. You can do this because you are strong, resilient, and you know you can achieve anything you set your mind to.
Christmas came on in a big way. There were lots of gifts, laughs, and (of course) food. In the esteemed tradition of Bob Cratchit, I made rather merry and pretty much ate and drank whatever I wanted.
Tomorrow will be the decider – how I bounce back from holiday eating, will be a real indicator on my path to maintaining my goal weight. The good thing about taking a while to achieve weight loss is that all that time provides repeated practice and experience. That time is like a teacher that helps good habits to take root.
The big take away – the journey goes on regardless of Lifetime status. Achieving this is a big deal to me and it does help to know that I could do it but it’s not really done. They call it “Maintenance” for a reason – maintaining my weight loss over time is my next goal.
Time escapes us, and the thing I keep thinking about is to appreciate each day and to be grateful for each other. So looking back on Christmas 2018 – it was a great one for the books.
Remember the past, and plan for the future but treasure today.