No, no. Not the morning after pill. What inspires this post is the feeling you get the morning after the first day of your diet. (Sidenote: Yes, I started a diet on a WEDNESDAY. It’s practically making me crazy to have started mid-way through a week.) But oh my! I remember that feeling at the end of the first day of your diet when all you’re really tempted to do is eat something you’re not allowed to eat. And binge. Too often for me that has happened. I have, quite literally, allowed what I eat to control me. But this morning when I woke up, I felt the deepest sense of pride upon remembering that yesterday…I did it. And today, I can do it again.
I cannot and will not make this entire blog about my “journey” with any kind of dieting or weight loss. You don’t have to look hard via the inter-webs to find that if that’s what you’re really looking for. But this “being healthy” has been becoming a bigger part of my life recently.
My love-hate relationship with food and exercise started (as all issues do) at a young age. It’s safe to say that I’ve been not-tiny for my whole live. I’ve never been petite, pint-size, snack sized, or fun sized. I’ve always been a little bit taller and bigger than normal. I realize now how humiliated I would be to shop with friends who were a size zero (WHO IS A SIZE ZERO ANYWAY). Because even they were complaining about their weight. I’m sorry…but you’re in middle school, you’re less than 100lbs…in my opinion you don’t have much to complain about. At least not legitimately. Meanwhile, I would have killed to fit into a medium anything.
I’ll not bore you much longer with the details of that here, except to say that in my mind being “tiny” was glorified. And being not-tiny was the worst. And subsequently…I was the worst. I’ve come to realize that no one is ever content. Women who base their happiness on a number that they see on a scale will never be really happy. Because even once they get there, they will obsess and stress just as much as they did before to make sure that number never changes.
I’m not about that. I hate the stress of it. And I hate the idea of being stressed for every single day for the rest of my life about being a certain weight – and allowing that to determine my happiness. What I am okay with developing healthy habits and routines that will allow me to still live my life, and life it fully.
That being said, I think I’ve done my fair share of setting restrictions and then failing because those restrictions were not very realistic. I heard over and over again that goals need to be attainable. Set smaller goals so that you can achieve smaller things at first…then work your way up to bigger and better goals.
And it’s been paying off! When I started working at the Marriott, I would work an entire 10-hour day on my feet – walking the floors of the 16-story building. There were days when I would come home and just lay in my bed and not move until the next morning because it hurt so bad. And now, those days never come. I finally worked enough to the point where I was adjusted to the amount of walking I would do each day at work alone, and still have enough energy for the gym. There are days when I’m sore or days when I can tell I pulled a muscle. But all in all, my body is so much more adjusted to being active. I’m getting stronger from the inside out. And now, I go to the gym every day of the week (except one skip day!) because its my time to decompress, and my time to feel emotionally and physically stronger.
I dropped 40lbs. over the course of the summer, following graduation. And gained a few back over the holidays (and didn’t let myself lose sleep over this, because everyone did). My goal is to be healthier. I think that in the back of my mind I have an idea of what I would like my scale to say. But it is so much more important to me to realize that I am not only obligated to be a good steward of my body but also of my time, talents, and relationships. If I allow the scale (or the gym, or food) to be my idol, I am giving the middle finger to everything else.
So, for 2013 my goal is to let no one thing rule over me. Not food, not exercise, not my job, not any one friendship, not any dream I have. There have been periods of time where I have allowed certain friendships, worries, tasks, and even jobs rule over me. They so easily consumed my thought life to the point of distraction and general un-productivity. And when I have moments of doubt, I’ll remember that “morning after” feel. A feeling of pride, accomplishment, and strength. If I am willing, I am able.
I’ll close this post with a little snip-it from Adele that I had laminated and have kept in my wallet for about two years now. I hope that this helps keep me grounded and keep me sane in moments of panic, during times when I don’t have time for the gym but do have time for healthy eating (hint: it doesn’t require that you have extra time, really). I love this because it serves as a reminder “walk along your own pathway” to get to where you want to be. Sure, Lindsay Lohan has chosen a criminal life of drugs, probation, rehab, not rehab, and thievery to get where she is today (not that I know where she really “is”). But being tiny or being skinny or whatever is never going to keep me from my dreams. Only I will keep myself from that. And at the end of the day…does it matter how much I weighed? Or what I actually did with my time?