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Be Your Own Hero!

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Wednesday, May 08, 2013

I am my own hero....I save myself from myself.

Flashback; End of February, 2012. There I was, at the highest weight of my life...286 pounds. Going to a women's gym 5 times a week and going through the motions of working out. Driving home from the gym, and stopping somewhere for greasy fried food, ice cream, candy, etc. Coming home, and spending the rest of my day sitting on the couch, eating, Sparking and watching TV. Planning to get back on track "someday."

And then a Spark friend mentioned that she was thinking of going vegan. And a suddenly, I felt a Spark. I used to be a vegan! I used to eat right and exercise! I used to feel good! I used to be healthy!

But there I was, sitting on the couch, about as UN-healthy as I'd ever been in my entire life. Addicted to processed, junk food. Lazy and unmotivated. Unable to move without getting out of breath or being in pain. Weighing 286 lbs. Could I turn it around? Could I ever be healthy again?

I had so much weight to lose in order to get back to my goal size. Just the thought of losing all those pounds was daunting. So I decided to do something radical. I would FORGET about the weight! I would kill the scale! Instead of trying to LOSE weight, I would focus on GAINING health!

March 1, 2012. The day I started stealing my life back and trying to reclaim my health. I started that morning with such optimism and enthusiasm. A new beginning! Day ONE of the journey! I was going to be a superhero!

Was it easy? No....on day one alone, I felt like quitting at least a dozen times. I thought "Maybe I should wait until tomorrow to start." But I forced myself to be honest. I knew if I waited until tomorrow, I would never do it. I would always put it off until tomorrow, and eventually I would just forget my commitment and go right back to my old ways. And to put it bluntly, that way was death.

So I fought with all my might. I ate healthy food. I tracked it. I worked out as hard as I could. In the beginning, "as hard as I could" was not that much. I quit the women's gym, and started working out at home instead. At first, I could barely keep up with the workouts. I had to modify the moves, and go at a slower pace. I could only work out for 15 minutes...and I would be exhausted, trembling, and covered in sweat. Just 15 minutes felt like I'd run a marathon. But I knew that if I stuck with it, I would get better.

Every day, I put my health first. I looked for non-scale victories. And slowly, I started seeing progress. After a few weeks, my 15 minute workouts no longer felt like they were killing me. They were still difficult, but I could see and feel that I was getting better and stronger. I pushed harder, and looked for more difficult workouts. My clothes started getting looser on me. My size 3X t shirts were no longer a little tight. The day I was able to move on to size 2X t shirts was like Christmas and my birthday all rolled into one. I cried from happiness, even though I still had a long way to go on my journey.

I went from 15 minute workouts three times a day, to longer and longer workouts. I tried yoga. At first, it was a huge struggle! I was not flexible or strong enough for a lot of the poses. Plus, my stomach was so big....it got in the way. But I kept going. Size 2X became too big, and before I knew it, 1X was too big too. I finally weighed myself in September...and I'd lost 71 lbs! I was so happy and so proud of myself!

But then I hit a snag. The holiday season came, and I somehow lost my motivation. I didn't give up, though. But I have to admit, I was not putting forth my best effort anymore. Instead of trying to do my best, I just did "good enough." My weight loss and progress stopped. But in spite of that, I kept going, and I didn't allow myself to go backwards. I did just enough to keep myself right where I was.

Perhaps it was progress to just maintain for a while, instead of slipping back into my old, unhealthy habits. Maybe you can be your own hero just by not giving up, even when you're not feeling motivated to keep going. I didn't give up, and now...my motivation is back! I am totally focused on my health again. I am ready to stop walking in place, and start moving forward, towards my goal. I know that I can reach it. I know that I WILL reach it. I am worth every ounce of effort that I can put forth, one day at a time!

Imagine what you could do by being your own hero too!

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