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Cutting the strings to the past - Tales from 100# Down - Photo


Monday, April 01, 2013

I realized some time ago that I could never make much progress on my journey as long as I was still "tethered" to the garage. I think this is why I had so many false starts. I would begin yet "another" diet or fitness regimen only to make so much progress before I was back where I began. Not only did I return to the "starting gate" over and over but that starting gate got moved further and further from the destination of "Health & Fitness" gaining a bit more after each failed attempt.

I could cut calories and exercise for a time and pull hard against those cords but eventually I failed because I never CUT them. Somewhere in my head was the notion that it was just a temporary deprivation to get that desired loss but you and I KNOW that never works. We can't get there and STAY there without life changes. We have to CUT the cords.

I think before you can cut the cords you might want to try and identify them. Here were some of mine:

1) Continuing to use part of my calorie allocation to eat the poor quality foods that led me to my weight gain. Now, many will say that having a treat here and there keeps you from falling off the wagon. There are some that have that discipline and I feel I have finally achieved it 2-1/2 years into this journey but many do not and will not for some time. It's best to make a clean break rather than set oneself up for the "nibble" that leads to a "binge".

Just this past weekend several have shared that they succumbed to a "little" Easter candy only to find that once indulged they gave themselves permission to go further. This is why we have to view our path as one of PERMANENT change. Our lifestyles have to be altered.

2) Viewing exercise as a scheduled event rather than a daily practice. This one was hard for me. Exercise was not fun. It was not easy. I sweated a lot. I didn't like giving up the time it took and frankly at times I chose to be LAZY and just watch TV or play a videogame.

What changed? A sparkteam I was on offered up a program called STREAKING. The plan was 6 days of exercise for at least 20 minutes (didn't have to be at the same time) and one day of rest per week. I decided to give it a try with 10 minutes in the morning and 10 minutes in the afternoon/evening. It began what has turned into a LIFE HABIT of exercise. I don't even take that day off anymore. I'm always climbing on the ellpitical, bike, or treadmill and with nice weather around the corner I will be hoofing it outdoors.

You need to make peace with the fact that exercise/activity will be your new norm. It will help you lose the weight and SUSTAIN the weight loss. Find something you can do and DO it. If you get tired of doing that try something NEW. Just get that heart rate elevated. The heart is a MUSCLE and you need to work it!

3) Chuck the old clothing. I can't tell you how hard it was for me to give things away but hanging onto them was giving myself permission if not PLANNING to return to the starting gate. I have some "winter" things I bought this year. I can still wear them even though I've lost 17.2 pounds the past 10 weeks. I am bagging them up as soon as the weather has made the change. WHY KEEP THEM? To keep them means I PLAN to lose nothing between now and October. I won't accept that so OUT they go. This way I buy things I CAN wear in a smaller size come fall.

4) Giving up the ghosts of the past. I'm sure you have met this cast of specters. They moan and wail and pull on you but they are only shadows of what you once were.

a) The Ghost of Holidays Past - This festive wraith beckons you to PARTY HEARTY! It's a holiday! Eat, drink and be merry! This is how it's ALWAYS been. Don't believe it. The holiday will still come with each season and you can choose to celebrate it differently. Do not be afraid to make NEW traditions that co-exist with your new lifestyle.

b) The Ghost of Mom's Cooking - This one comes wearing an apron looking like June Cleaver holding her best pie. Just because mom cooks it doesn't mean you have to eat it. Further more, tell MOM that you would like to contribute a dish to the meal and bring something healthy or better yet - offer to cook FOR her and let her take a turn being the pampered guest.

c) The Ghost of the Fast Food Drive Through - Really - be honest - do you drive through and get just the water and the apple slices? There are a few that do (though one has to wonder why not just go to the market and buy fruit and water). If you choose to drive through you are just tempting fate and may find yourself driving away sipping at a 580 calorie Shamrock Shake or tossing back those greasy fries. This is a MAJOR cord to your past and will hold you back.

d) The Ghost of Neighborly Fun - This is that ghost that comes bearing a bottle of wine, a deck of cards and a bowl of chex mix. He's a jolly sort but you can banish him forever if you just use your head. Take your OWN snacks and water and enjoy the fellowship. Move the snack bowl as far from you as possible or better still - tell your host that you really struggle with snacks in your new lifestyle and ask if you can bring some fresh fruit instead?

These are just a few of those ghosts from the past. This is how we lived BEFORE. Throw open the window, let the light invade the room and march right out into the sunshine leaving those ghosts behind. YOU have a future and it's not tied to your past.

I have cut most of my cords in this journey (down 105 pounds so far) though I will admit there are just a few tugging at my heels. I think my recent progress has carried me to a new place where I'm ready to cut them too. I like what I'm seeing on this part of the journey. I'm feeling hopeful that the rest of the journey is just a matter of time.

Here again to motivate you ( a picture from my past and one made yesterday on Easter Sunday.)

It's worth it. Need some scissors for those cords?

PRESS ON!

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Member Comments About This Blog Post:
SUSIEMT 4/29/2013 11:00AM

    Good blog!

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STHOMAS1009 4/19/2013 10:37AM

    You are the best! emoticon

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KAYYAK1 4/4/2013 6:16PM

  having just come back after about 3 weeks & many binges and completely giving up yours was the first email I opened. Exactly what I need at this point to rethink and regroup. Thank you so very much.

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LUVSBULLDOGS 4/3/2013 12:04PM

    I love your blogs. They are so down to Earth and folksy. Love your picture. You look amazing.

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UZA77777 4/3/2013 12:53AM

    Outstanding! All points, so true.

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JANEMARIE77 4/2/2013 2:59PM

    yup it all about making food less important and everything else more important greaat job you look wonderful

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JANEMARIE77 4/2/2013 2:59PM

    yup it all about making food less important and everything else more important greaat job you look wonderful

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BARBARAROSE54 4/2/2013 11:01AM

    emoticon

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WACFIT 4/2/2013 10:38AM

    Great blog!

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EFFIEANNIE 4/2/2013 8:44AM

    I know you are right, but I stuff all my too big clothes in plastic containers in the basement. I am having a hard time letting them go.

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JCRAFT6 4/2/2013 8:39AM

    thanks for your encouraging words. I know I needed to hear them. Keep your blogs coming they help me. So glad you are doing so well on your journey.

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MADTHENURSE 4/2/2013 6:44AM

    You inspire others! Thanks for your words of wisdom!

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NVRGIVINGUP 4/2/2013 1:41AM

    You have come such a long was already and you are such an inspiration. This blog really spoke to my heart and I believe i'm ready to make some permanent changes ... finally. 'The Ghost' you speak of is active in my life today and I am banishing them forever.

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GOING-STRONG 4/1/2013 11:53PM

    Nice Easter dress! I had a real eating problem yesterday however thankfully got right back on track today. I take classes at the gym every week day and it is a habit now just like going to work. Having healthy habits and routines is a lifesaver for me when I get derailed.

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NASFKAB 4/1/2013 11:40PM

  beautiful thought provoking

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CHERIJ16 4/1/2013 10:55PM

    I really needed to read this today! Thank you! You look awesome too! emoticon

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TREE57 4/1/2013 10:27PM

    Thank you for bringing this topic to my attention. I tend to not want to address the cords. However, I truly know this is my biggest area of weakness because those darn cords stretch SO FAR!!!!

What a wonderful photo journal. You are so beautiful!



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MYTHMYTH 4/1/2013 9:24PM

    Those photos make me want to borrow your scissors!
Jane

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SUSIEMT 4/1/2013 8:08PM

    Another good blog. I have had to cut many cords as well! Sometimes not enough but that will happen.Keep up the good work!

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ALIWVU121 4/1/2013 7:40PM

    Great pointers and you look great!! Way to go and keep up the healthy living!!

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COCK-ROBIN 4/1/2013 7:15PM

    Snip! Snip! I cut the cords, and am now free!

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MARYBETH4884 4/1/2013 6:55PM

    Thanks, cutting the strings is truly necessary, I give my clothes away as I shrink out of them, I'm still working my way through smaller sizes I kept before but my closet has a lot more room than before. When ever I drive by a drive thru I think 9 months ago I'd have stopped. I kept telling myself it was just easier to pick up something even if I was headed home. No longer, I most of the time pack a lunch if I'm going to be out at that time. That way I know exactly what I' ve got to work with! Good food means feeling better! I've enjoyed your tales of 100 pounds down and you look fantastic!

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LIVINGLOVINLIFE 4/1/2013 6:49PM

    First your picture makes it all worth it. You look great just imagine what your Easter picture will look next year. Your blogs and hints are so welcome and eight on. I am not there yet. I can see the reasons and truth but am having trouble giving up some of these old habits. emoticon emoticon

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STAREYES723 4/1/2013 6:45PM

    Awesome job the pics are a great motivator

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WORLDSERIES11 4/1/2013 6:37PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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L*I*T*A* 4/1/2013 6:17PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MAMADWARF 4/1/2013 6:14PM

    Great blog. I really liked it and it made a lot of sense to me...especially the nibbling that turns into a binge *cough TODAY cough*

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TRAVELGRRL 4/1/2013 6:09PM

    ALL of your items are valid, but I have to say #1 especially resonates with me. I've recently come to grips that there are things I absolutely have to give up, forever and ever. And the truth is, the longer I go without them? The less I really miss them. I occasionally miss the IDEA of them, but that passes.

I also see lots of Sparkpeople who think they can order the "healthy" option at the fast food joints, but I think that's a fallacy...sooner or later you cave. As long as they keep you coming back, they know they'll get you sooner or later!

Thank you again for a very thought-provoking, well-reasoned and crafted blog.

Have to edit the comment: forgot to tell you that you look SO AWESOME in the new pic!!! emoticon

Comment edited on: 4/1/2013 6:10:41 PM

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TRISTAROSE 4/1/2013 5:48PM

    emoticon You look great!



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TERRIMMIX 4/1/2013 5:46PM

    I agree. I KNOW the reason I've kept failing at staying on track is because I do great during the week, but the weekends Ifeel like I need to reward myself by not being quite so strict as I was during the week. That's almost 30% of the time that I'm not doing what I need to do to make any significant progress. Great blog!

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CMWARDRN 4/1/2013 5:36PM

  Thank you for sharing. I agree. This is a lifetime commitment to live healthyfor me. I have a long way to go but it's not a race anymore. emoticon

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35ANGELS 4/1/2013 5:33PM

    You look emoticon

The Ghost of Mom's Cooking spoke to me. lol I'm definitely going to take something healthy next time. lol emoticon

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FITLIKENIC 4/1/2013 5:26PM

    How beautiful are you!! In both photos, yet you SEE it in yourself more in your 'after/ now'.

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FEMISLIM 4/1/2013 5:24PM

    Woo Hoo!!!! You look so great!! Thanks for the tips too.

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WORKNPROGRESS49 4/1/2013 5:21PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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JEANNETTE59 4/1/2013 5:19PM

  emoticon emoticon

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NITTINNANA 4/1/2013 5:19PM

    Again, great insight!

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