In 2007 I lost about thirty pounds. It's the same thirty pounds that I've kept off through holidays, and tough semesters and Ben and Jerry's pittyfests. I lost it when I was really scared for my health and had three miraculous, stress free months during which to focus myself.
But then in the fall of that year, a long brewing problem with my parents blew up. Things got bad and I needed to find a new place to live in a hurry. It's not that it wasn't about time I was out on my own, but it was the way it happened and the terrible hurt it created that set me back. I gave myself permission to stop trying "for now" and went back to the chocolate chip self medicating.
Then Christmas of that year came and I was stressed out about the rift in my family that continued throughout the holidays. I just couldn't diet then! Then in January, my cat died and I was devastated. How could I say no to pizza? Then I had a tough semester. Then I went on a conference. Then I took a summer class. Then I was robbed. Then more conferences, holidays, heartaches; then more challenges with grad school and work. Then I had a car accident. Then I bought a new car. Then someone hit my new car.
The point of my list of major stressors is not that I want sympathy. In fact, if this was a contest, I bet that each of you could come up with a list that would put mine to shame. Actually, my point is that easing my expectations of myself seemed to make sense each time. It seemed like a smart idea to wait for a "good time". Why complicate life? What I didn't realize until recently is that there will never be a good time. That's life. There will always be some drama and heartache and if I only use the times in between to work toward my goals, I'll never reach them.
That's why, even though I'm in class five hours a day after work this month, I recommitted myself to my weight loss efforts on June 1st. I wanted to shout it from the roof tops. I wanted to tell all of those people who checked in on me while I was waiting for the "right time" these past three or four months that I was back, that I missed them too and I was ready to do it this time, but I thought it might sound hollow after all of my past false starts. I needed the words to be 100% true and I needed to have some success under my belt.
So I'm back and am officially on my 17th day of badass discipline. I'm tracking every last bite and sip on SparkPeople and I'm making exercise a priority. I'm staying within a calorie range of 1600-1950 which is allowing me to lose weight at a modest pace without turning into a chocolate craving beast.
How am I doing? I started the month hanging my head at 243 lbs. I had gained some wait while I was waiting for life to be perfect. I weigh in on Mondays, and this Monday I was at 235.0 lbs. This time around, I am focusing on nutrition: getting a balance of fiber, protein, carbs and fat. I'm eating enough fruits and vegetables and drinking enough water. And you know what? I feel amazing. I have so much energy. Normally, I would be dragging myself through class, but I feel energized and purposeful. So really, by rededicating myself, I've turned this into the "right time" for positive change.
So don't wait! Come with me if you haven't started yet. We'll weather this together and come out happy and better able to handle those bumps in the road. If you've been going strong, thanks for blazing the trail. I've been so inspired by so many of you along the way.