So I have been on this “weight loss get in shape lose weight” thing for a couple of years now. I have not tried every diet know to man, however, I have tried enough to know it HAS to be a lifestyle change and the heart of the matter really isn’t what I eat. I have changed things in my “diet” like not drinking soda for the last two years. Reducing my sugar. Eliminating high fructose corn syrup (which is in EVERYTHING), learning I cannot do dairy anymore, switching to this and that to try to substitute what is wrong with what seems to be right. Yet, here I am still frustrated. Still struggling. Still not happy.
My daughter and I went for a 4 mile walk today with her puppies and it felt Amazing! But it was all shattered the moment I saw this photo. Yes I realize I was bundled a bit since we live in Michigan and the lake is still mostly frozen BUT this is not how I want to look. I was so mad at me for looking like this in a photo. For a moment I just wanted to give up. Say “Screw It!” “This is too hard” “It’s just not worth the effort” “Nothing is changing”
Then I stopped and said “I am Beautiful” I looked at myself in the mirror and told the girl staring back at me that she is beautiful. Then I cried.
Three years ago I started a group called Faith & Fitness Support Group. I posted videos of encouragement. Invited a few friends. Had a good thing started and then I got frustrated and gave up. I had several health issues at the time and could just not focus. I weighed more than I had every weighed in my life even being pregnant. I weighed 208 pounds. I was slipping into a size 18 and very unhappy. As I was beginning to crash in desperation I learned I needed to have a hysterectomy. I lost weight after that. I was regaining my health and finally was getting close to the 200 mark.
That jump start was enough to get me going in May of 2018. I then began to walk a bit and bike ride occasionally but nothing serious. I had a pretty good food program down (very close to the Daniel Plan) and I felt I was on my way and then I was stuck at 201 pounds FOREVER. Once again I was discouraged, felt like giving up. I was still having one health issue and it caused me not to want to workout. I finally went to the doctor and said I need help but I do not want a diet plan or a pill or the latest and greatest fad or surgery. I wanted real help from a real person. I know those things have helped a lot of people achieve their goals, it just wasn’t the direction I wanted to go in.
My doctor referred me to a nutritionist and my hope was stirred! I had just started going to the gym in December. I was going 3 times a week and feeling great! I restarted Faith & Fitness and we DOUBLED in size in like a week. We went from 30 members to a grand total right now of 84 fabulous people! I was so excited! Felt like I had turned a corner until my first follow-up with the nutritionist.
I had three things to accomplish in 8 weeks, lose 6 pounds, drink 64 ounces of water a day & exercise 3 times a week. When I showed up for the appointment I had only lost 5 pounds, I had not reached a steady pattern of the right amount of water BUT I had the 3 days a week exercise down. Oh! I did have one more thing to do, follow the low carb diet plan which I failed miserably. So I’m sitting in that room waiting for the disappointed look and instead he gives me a high five. Can you imagine the bewildered look on my face? I explained to him I failed at all of his expectations and he handed me this ball of flab and said “This is what you lost along with three inches off of your waist. You are doing FANTASTIC! In fact, here is another High Five!”
In four short months I had done a great deal of difference but because I “FAILED” to meet the expectation before me I felt defeated. What did I learn? Progress is Progress! Every inch lost, every ounce gone is a gain of life. But like I said it is not all about diet and exercise. There is so much more to this and I have found it to be so true.
I have been watching this reality TV show where people go through this process of transformation with their own hard work no surgeries. And at the end of the show they walk down this red carpet among their friends and family. There is so much emotion. So many tears. I cry at the end of every episode. So isn’t is just like God to allow me to see the episode tonight, after seeing that top photo and feeling sorry for myself, where the trainer sends the guy off to make amends with his father because he understood the reality of just how important mental health is in the journey of weight loss.
So on that note! Stayed tuned! There is so much more to come. My husband and I start training in April to run a 5K in July. I am not a runner. Not sure if I have every really run in my life but this is a goal. A goal I want to work towards for me. The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step and for me that one step is learning to love me. To love me in the victories and the failures. To love me at 208 and at 194 and at the goal of 150. I need to love me whatever the scale reads because I am not defined by a number, I am defined by my heart and how I move forward in life.
I am defined by a God who created me in His image and that is who I love.