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Wednesday, July 4, 2012

It's an agonizing spiral....and I'm not talking cinnamon roll

Where do I begin to make someone who's never had a weight problem understand? 

Being overweight and unfit is more than just overeating and not getting enough exercise. It involves so many other emotions, uncertainties, and struggles. It's like you have all the pieces of the puzzle to put together and create a new picture of yourself....but even when you lose weight and get fit, the mind of a former fat girl keeps her questioning--if she has all those pieces put together correctly--if she'll be able to keep the new picture. It's tough getting over feeling that if you slip off the wagon food-wise or exercise-wise that you'll slip down the black hole and end up the same fat girl you used to be.  In many ways being overweight is not so different than being an alcoholic or a drug addict......when you're overweight, food is your drug of choice, not getting enough exercise is your downfall.  And like a reformed alcoholic or a clean drug addict, keeping the weight off and staying fit is something you have to work on everyday.  For anyone with any kind of addiction, that every day chore can often feel overwhelming and scary. You have to find a way to find balance in your life while still maintaining "sobriety". 

I've been there, I've done that....I continue to fight the fight and cry the tears and struggle..........struggle so hard to find a way to find some balance in my life without feeling like if I splurge one weekend or miss one fitness class that I am not doomed to return to my former self.

I just have to listen with an opened mind and heart to those who love and care about me..........and others who are my wise trainers when they tell me to trust myself and what I've learned; when they tell me that I know what to do to maintain.  When they tell me that if I miss a fitness class in order to allow myself to write - or read- or sew - or keep an appointment - or take a vacation that I can adjust my diet and take in fewer calories.  When they tell me that if I eat a little more than I should or eat things that are not healthy....I can add another fitness class that week.  When they tell me that I can adjust, I can maintain.....and most importantly that I must have balance in my life or I will surely fall off the wagon because I'll will be trying to do something that I cannot do for the rest of my life.  Sounds pretty simple to someone who has never struggled with the "addiction" all their lives.

But for a former fat girl.....and I know my fellow weight watchers will be shaking their heads in agreement here.....maybe even be crying tears with me here when I say (heavy sigh), it's just so scary to lose weight, lose inches, feel fit and then think about maybe not doing 8 fitness classes a week, plus gym work and power walking.  It's scary because we're afraid that if we don't continue to do what has gotten us to our "better selves" we'll lose all joy we've found and gain all the weight back.  I can't explain it's just what makes a former heavy person (woman or man) tick.  We may see a much thinner person in the mirror, we may see ourselves actually easily zip up a pair of 4 jeans....but our minds will not let us accept the fact that we can make this a lifetime achievement.

We have to find balance in our lives.  If you've worked very very hard, counted calories, eaten healthy, exercised like crazy and are near or met your goal........ask yourself this question,  Can I do the things I am doing for the rest of my life?  I think the answer must surely be the old song says "I never promised you a rose garden". 

I am at a crossroads in this journey of mine.  I am within 15 pounds of my goal weight and I can get into a size 4 jean....but I seem to be at the perverbial plateau.....not going down in weight and more scary than that either roller coastering up and down or gaining a few pounds at each weigh in.  And besides the life long roller coaster ride I've been on with my weight, I've been on this really serious (albeit successful)journey for 10 months.  Everything was working fine until I stopped counting calories and changed up my exercise routine of going to the gym every morning --even on days I had fitness classes--but those things were working for me and I let others talk me out of that routine.  Maybe that's a process of formerly or presently overweight people....they are easily swayed. 

Well I'm giving this some deep thought and my thoughts are to go back to what was working for me....what motivated me .....and I have a sneaky suspicion it involves standing up for myself for once.  I know I can't go overboard.....I KNOW!  But this new way is not working and I'm feeling like a failure.....and believe me coming from a formerly fat girl......feeling like a failure is not a good thing.  Can I get an AMEN!

OK.....I hope I haven't lost you along the way or made this sound like doom and gloom....I'll work this out.  It may have happened in the past....but you have my word this time I am not back-sliding and losing all the ground I've covered.  I'm not going back to how I used to be.  So bear with me, breath a heavy sigh of understanding if you've understood every word I've written here and lets move forward and start fresh.  We can do this!

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