July makes me reflective.
July 2011, I joined a “little workout class”, that forever changed the trajectory of my (and my family’s) life. The left side of this image is what I looked like at that time: (Note the TWO pieces of cake! Gross!)
I was in a size 16 (barely), should have been a size 18, and was essentially numb to life and going through the motions. The minute that picture was snapped, my smile subsided. Enter bootcamp and learning to live a healthier lifestyle, the rest is history.
By February of 2012, I am at my fittest: (size 6-8)
And this was taken just a couple of weeks ago: (size 8-10)
Transitions, with regard to weight loss, are definitely messy with lots of highs and lows. There is no “Okay! I’ve hit my goal weight/size! Now I’m done with that!” and going back to being sedentary. Fitness is for life – as corny and cliche as that sounds. There is no finish line – it’s just the start of the next race. (Thank you Trainer Laurie Weber for that one!)
I’m going on two years of this “transition” or fitness path, and I don’t ever want to go back to the way I used to be. While there are and will be setbacks, there will also continue to be striving ahead, strength gains, and new goals. An on-going continuous way of living that will include moving my body (a lot!), moving heavy things, and eating! Eating good, tasty, and whole foods most of the time.
What I have discovered though, is that for this to be a sustainable, long-term way of living, things have to be in balance as much as possible. I have to enjoy what I’m doing. I refuse to minutely obsess about macronutrient ratios, cry when I don’t like what the scale says, or restrict food to bland chicken and broccoli every single night. (I haven’t weighed myself in over 2 months! Gasp!) I food log every few weeks when I need to gauge where I’m at if I need to, but I try to listen to my body and eat intuitively. (For more on listening to your body, check out Linda Bacon’s book “Health at Every Size: The Surprising Truth About Your Weight”.) While some may see this book as a “Just give up and eat whatever you want”, I do not. I don’t believe dieting and restriction is a long term solution.
Bottom Line: Health is not an arrival point. There is no point B in fitness. You never arrive. It’s an on-going, continuous journey. And as much as I like the completeness of being at the destination, this is an area where I have to accept that it just doesn’t exist.
And that’s okay.