Tuesday, February 05, 2013
I just read a story about a woman who, after being overweight her whole life, had her eureka moment when she hurt her ankle and because she was so overweight, couldn't even be helped by her husband. She was the mom of 3 young children at the time, and she realized that something had to change. So she lost 212 lbs. She started by joining a gym and walking a few minutes at a time, and gradually worked her way up. She lost 100 lbs before she even began thinking about changing her eating.
Last week, I read about Joyce (GATORJOY), a fellow Sparker, who lost 60 lbs at 60 years of age. Her program was to adjust her eating to reasonable portions, do ST just about everyday, and add in some cardio and yoga a few times a week.
Earlier today, I read one of INDY~GIRL's blogs, saying she's out shopping in a store and is no longer in plus sizes. I don't know the exact weight loss for her, but it's in the multi-hundreds. She began her journey, as I recall, doing cardio with her arms because she wasn't at all mobile, and making small changes to her eating at a time.
Each of these women has found their own way. Each of them has enormous potential to inspire us.
Each of them seems to somehow have had a eureka moment, and found the fortitude to stick with it for the long haul.
So, as inspired as I am by each of them, the one thing that these stories makes me sure of is that the most important part of this journey is to find my own way. And I think the way for me, and for anyone, to do that, is to listen to our own little voices, to be guided by that voice, but also to be able to distinguish between the voice that knows what works for us, and the voice that comes from the part of us that put us in the position of needing to take these steps in the first place.
That is not always an easy thing to do. My story goes back to when I was quite young. I have been overweight for parts of most of my life, but I have also had some incredible success in losing weight. Sadly, I have never found that place of being able to lose and finally, permanently, keep it off. So there are parts of my voice, I'm sure, that say to my inner self "why bother?" I don't hear that voice clearly, because the part of me that knows there are a hundred reasons to bother would not stand for any negativity would kick the sorry a$$ of the skeptic. But she's in there, of this I am certain.
Instead, I have just, for the past week, decided to do what I can, when I can. There is no right, there is no wrong. I will exercise most days for as long as I can at the hardest intensity I can.. Some days, that has been 30-40 minutes, some days it has been 15 minutes. I will eat reasonable portions at meals, and have small snacks twice a day. I have done a fairly good job of holding myself to that, and will see what I hope is the fruit of that work on the scale tomorrow. But I will not beat myself up if I don't get it done. I am giving myself permission to say no, it just isn't going to happen today. Because for me, if I don't give myself that permission, I am not moving forward.
Let me explain.. On Sunday, I really, really wanted to go to Church in the morning. But because of some plans that I had on Saturday that kept me from doing some of my usual Saturday chores, I also had a ton of things to do...laundry, house cleaning, running some errands, and my son had a hockey game at a rink about 30 minutes away in the late afternoon. No matter how much I wanted to, if I went to Mass, I was not going to be able to exercise, but getting to Mass was very, very important to me. So I made the choice. I did not feel guilty. I did not try to rob Peter to pay Paul (a little pun there, unintended). I went to Mass, I spent my time with God, and I had a very good day. I ate well, I didn't pick on junk.
I did not allow my skeptical self to push the guilt on me, and I listened to the little voice that guided me to church that day.
Someday, when I lose my 100 lbs, if someone asked me "the secret to my success," I believe from the very core of my being that the secret will be that I was kind to myself, and that I allowed myself to make the heartfelt choices I needed to make, even if they seemed counter-productive at the time. I also believe that by not shoving this process down my throat, I will much more easily adjust to the baby steps I believe are the key to getting, and staying fit and healthy.
I hope all my fellow Sparkers find their own way. I believe strongly that only our own way is going to succeed for us, no one elses..