Wednesday, March 19, 2014
“…You did it—you lost weight and have kept it off. And it was so easy for you.”
A co-worker said this to me today. Initially, I shrugged it off, became embarrassed, but then I realized—she’s kind of right. I did do it; but she’s very wrong about it being easy.
I work in an environment with many women who, every January 1, pledge that they are going to eat healthy/exercise/join weight watchers. They go full steam for a few weeks, then by the middle of February, they’re right back to where they started because they didn’t stick to it. A few of them have managed to lose a great deal of weight over a period of time, only to gain it all back quickly. And then the excuses kick in. It makes me sad to watch.
What I’ve done differently is to stick with my healthy eating, which means saying no to take out lunches, and sticking with my lunchtime walks, even in below zero temps, snow, ice and rain. It means spending time on the weekend to plan and prepare healthy dinners for during the week, so I have time after dinner to exercise. It means having a plan in place to keep up the exercising/eating when I’m away on vacation. It’s making the decision to change my life and then sticking to it. It’s deciding that my health and well being is more important than the momentary satisfaction of eating a donut.
Of course, I can’t tell her any of that; she won’t understand until she is truly committed to making the lifestyle changes herself. We all get to that point, and then the magic really happens. If only she had really listened to her own words, she would realize that she already knows that excuses don’t work, action does.
The thing about losing weight and maintain the loss is that there is no end date or finish line. I realize that it’s something I will have to work on and think about for the rest of my life. The best part is that, at least for me, it no longer feels like work; it has become fun and something I look forward to. I get excited about trying new healthy foods that I most likely never would have tried before. Exercise has become my something I love to do; it’s respite, my stress reducer, and some days, my punching bag.
While the journey has definitely not been easy, it has been very, very rewarding. So I guess I did do it…but there is always more work to be done.