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Not A Race

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Recently, I made an interesting discovery. I realised that I had always made my health journey time-bound. It was as if I had some sort of deadline…or had to get healthy by a certain date. I wanted to project my results, and stick with something for a year or so, even while saying I wanted to keep those changes for life. All that did was make it easier for me to view myself as a failure.

Like, thinking about it, I was never ashamed of being fat, but I had become ashamed of still being fat, because I had embarked on a health journey, and had clearly abandoned it. I’ve fallen off the wagon so many times, and I think I’m sticking with it this time–but only because of the lessons I learned each time I failed. This is not a race. I don’t have to lose 2 pounds every week; I won’t always make it to the gym four times a week; every meal won’t be clean…and so what? Isn’t that life? Highs and lows? Good days and bad days? On days and off days?

Now, I no longer beat myself up when I begin to slack off. If I’m too tired for the gym, I know I’ll push harder the next day. If I eat unhealthy food, I know I will get back to my routine, because working out and eating real food is now a part of me. Since this is part of my life, I don’t need to watch numbers or feel like a failure. I can see where I need to improve, and make choices that are better for my health. More than anything, I can keep going, and that is the only way I will achieve my goals.

Every day won’t be a good day. Give yourself room to fail, because that’s how you learn. No matter what, never give up. You are doing this. You can do this!

P.S. I really think God is helping me to be more consistent on this journey. My overall lack of discipline has been a concern for a while. I’ve been praying about it…and I’m finally beginning to live it out. Slow progress is still progress. 😀

Blessings!

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Perfect?

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The pursuit of perfection is, at best, paradoxical. Has that stopped me? Nope.

It is not necessarily that I want to be perfect, full stop. I just want to be as perfect as I can be. I want to not fail at things I know are within my capabilties. For example, I had work-related training this morning. There was a quiz at the end, and I got one question wrong. I’m not over it…not because I got it wrong, but because I knew the right answer. I can’t bring myself to focus on all the others I got right. That one is stuck in my head, because I knew it, and I’m still smacking myself for it. In the end, the important thing isn’t that I get all the answers right, but that I have the requisite skills, and can apply those when needed. Still not over it.

It’s what I do, though. I don’t necessarily set lofty goals, especially as it relates to my health. I try to make things as feasible as possible. When I fail at that, I’m not necessarily motivated to keep pushing. I should know better, and I do know better, but I don’t do it. Isn’t that just so human of me? Don’t we all fail at things we can handle? Don’t we all make mistakes we could have avoided? Isn’t it just like us to beat ourselves up for not being good enough, very often according to our own standards?

I can’t promise I won’t do it anymore. That would just start the cycle all over again. I will struggle with this, maybe for a really long time. Still, I think I’m learning. Failure may mean I am not perfect, but it doesn’t mean I am worthless or incapable of change. All failure does is reveal where I need to grow, and if I allow failure to cripple me, I’ll never grow.

I will fall. I will fail. I will not give up.

Perf

I Dare…Again

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When I blogged this in November, I was scared, but definitely more confident about success than I am now. This is my journey, and owning it is hard. It’s not going so well, but I can’t keep giving up. That’s no way to live. The only words I have are those already expressed…and I need the reminder. Badly.

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November 6, 2013

I DARE…

So, my last post seemed to be right…there will always be something else. Another hectic month, but I’m back.

I turned 28 recently, and I did something revolutionary (by my standards, anyway). I set 28 goals for the coming year. Seven of those goals are health-related. I was talking to a friend last week, pretty much filling her in on life and stuff, and I mentioned that this health thing is something I want to take seriously, but it is so terrifying. She said the coolest thing: “Dare to live, Lori.”

So, I dare.

I dare to believe I can do this…that my goal of losing 100 pounds in one year is achievable, by God’s grace, and if I make the choices I know are within reach. I mean, an average of basically two pounds a week should not be that hard. One of the things I wanted to do was to make sure I wasn’t setting goals that were unlikely to be achieved. Based on my current weight, success means losing an average of close to 1% of my weight each week. If I can’t do that, I have bigger problems than I thought.

I dare to fight, even when that means learning how to. I’m so good at just accepting whatever comes my way. I’m honest and realistic, but I sometimes use that as a crutch…as if admitting I have a problem means I don’t need to work on it. This won’t be easy. So much bigger than weight loss and numbers, this is about getting my life back.

I dare to be weak, because not facing weakness is a surefire way to have it beat you. For too long, I’ve let weakness overcome me, as if I could handle it myself. If it means asking for help, I’ll do it. If it means learning to be vulnerable, I’ll…I’ll work on that one.

I dare to be strong. I’m physically strong, and as I develop discipline, I’ll become strong in other ways. After two months at the gym when I was with my sister last year, I know I can take the pain. The muscles I came home with proved that. It’s so weird for me to even think this, but I am strong. I can’t keep living as if I was meant to be a victim, a casualty of circumstance.

I dare to accept that failure will come. There is no perfect path. I will mess up, I will fall, I will fail. Pretending otherwise will just make it more likely I’ll give up when it happens. But, here’s the best part: I don’t have to be perfect. I just need to do this, and keep doing it.

I dare to share. I’ve spent so much of life in hiding, even from myself. So, I’m committing to being honest on this journey, whether it’s going great or not…even when it’s not going.

I dare to be excited. I never do that. This is going to be all kinds of new and scary…and ugly. But, it’s different. It’s something other than going from day to day with no aim or destination in mind. Man, I should be excited. 😀

I dare to live.

Weigh-In No. 7

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283 (04/05/13) … 3 pounds.

Good things come to those who hydrate.

My lesson this week: you don’t have to get everything right. Did I work out? No…well, not on purpose. I stayed hydrated, though…and I did better at eating right. Oh, and green juice? Epic stuff.

It’s funny how I’m changing. I usually think I have to get it all right, or it’s a waste of time. Now, I’m learning that good choices count as much as bad ones, and I have to decide which I’ll make. Change isn’t hinged on any one decision, good or bad. Change is an act of grace, and I’m grateful there’s more than enough of that to go around.

Do I want to get back on track with my workouts? Yes, please. In the meantime, though, I can choose healthy food options…not that I always do, but everything counts.

Guess what, guys? We can do this…we will  do this. Let’s take the lessons each day brings us, not just those that come from success, but those from failure as well.

Weigh-In No. 6

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286 (27/04/13)

Quite the miracle (I didn’t gain any weight). Didn’t exercise all week, unless you count the 15 or so squats I did out of sheer idleness on Saturday…oh, and the 2 or so minutes I spent experimenting with some device of torture posing as a resistance implement that I saw my nephew with.

Like, I keep telling myself to snap out of it…to just get going, and it’s just not working. In some ways, it might be, but it is not going as well as I’d like it to. I’m realistic enough to not have expected anything great, but I have so much to work towards.

You know what? This is me we’re talking about. I’ve been at this for over a month…like, that’s historic. I’ve deliberately made the choice to keep going. Why am I just seeing this?

There is hope for me after all. Teehee. There is hope for all of us.

Fall, we shall…if we must…but this really is the rest of our lives. It has to be more than some experiment. It’s learning to live, one breath at a time.

This song… Thank God for people who are honest enough with Him to write such awesome stuff…(I cannot vouch for the accuracy of the lyrics. :P)

So Glad It’s Over…

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cLIMB2

Sigh.

This has been one of the longest weeks ever. I had fallen behind on a deadline, and I just wanted to get my work over with. It took ages, but I managed to finish today…and I made very few healthy decisions this week. I guess I could say I didn’t have the time, but I could have found it.

Anyway, up and downs aside, the lessons were many:

  • There’s no guarantee that life will EVER slow down. I must make the right choices, even when–especially when–it’s hard.
  • Only in an ideal world will I readily have time to be different. I much choose to be different, each time the opportunity presents itself.
  • Life is never so hectic that my health must fly out the window…or be flung there, screaming. I must decide where my priorities lie.
  • Preparation is key. If I had taken the time to prepare healthy options in advance, I could have grabbed one of them whenever I needed a quick meal. I must be wise in my approach to change.
  • Discipline is hard. I’m no superhero,  and I’m not required to be. God is fully aware of my limitations, and He hasn’t given up on me…He won’t. I must admit I can’t do this, and take hold of a strength not my own.

To all you lovely people out there, who encourage me to keep going, just by representing well in your section of the blogosphere, thank you very much. All your stories and updates give me more drive to go on. Thank you for being true to the process. If you’re just starting out, welcome to club. We’ll do this. One step at a time.

Blessings.

Weigh-In No. 2

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285

Yep, last week was 283.

The scale hates me. Kidding. I really ought to stop joking about the scale, though. I’ve heard the numbers really bother some people…I’m just too terrible to care what my scale says. I’ve decided it’s not a point I want to prove.  On a more sober note, however, I think some part of me does care. I want to see the numbers decreasing, mostly because I want the affirmation that I’m doing this right. Thing is, though, the numbers do not always provide that, and I need to just trust the process. The scale does not define us. Just making the choice to eat healthy and be more active is a giant leap in the right direction.

I was kinda holding out on posting this. You know, maybe I was retaining water, maybe I just needed to check my weight at a different time in the day, but it is what it is. The reason I do weekly weigh-ins (every Saturday night at roughly the same time) is that I want to document the highs and lows of this journey. Every week can’t be awesome, and I want to be honest about that.

That said, I know it wasn’t because I wasn’t eating right. I’m not sure I ate enough, though. I”m terrible at remembering to eat regularly throughout the day. Food just isn’t a priority for me…unless I want an excuse to stop doing work. Teehee. I think I also need to hydrate more. Sure, I drink a lot of water, but I wasn’t so good at that last week.

Scale or no scale, I have to make the right choices, however difficult. Let’s see what this week brings.

Until then, take a moment and smile. God is really good at giving even a few of those every day. We need only to look for them.

Blessings.