Firstly, I'd like to apologize for going completely MIA on you all. I've just been so insanely busy with work and working out, I have almost no downtime to update my blog. The downtime I do have is dedicated to my guilty pleasures, also known as, reality TV (and documentaries, movies, TV series). But my boss is gone all week long, so I have a week of relaxation and almost zero work. Let's all say Hallelujah at once. (To set the record straight, my boss is awesome, but you know what they say: You have two vacations a year. Yours, and your boss's.)
So I will get right into the basics. After my eleventh week in the program, I'm down a total of 39.6 pounds. I'm super annoyed that I couldn't just get to 40 even, that was my soft goal, but next week I'll see that number, and hopefully more. Also, my blood work is completely normal! Triglycerides, liver function, kidney function, everything! That is a huge, huge relief because nobody wants to hear any blood work being abnormal. I guess all this working out I'm doing is helping me out, who woulda thought?
That brings me to my second point, and pretty much the whole reason for this post existing. I've been bad. Like, really bad. I'm talking polish hot dogs, barbecued chicken, garlic bread, and day drinking. I'm also talking meatloaf sandwiches, garlic fries, chips and salsa, and popcorn. After what I consider an unsuccessful week, only having lost 1 pound, I realized that all my choices contributed to the disappointment. I can work out as much as I want, but I'm kidding myself if I expect to lose 3-4 pounds in a week when that is what I am ingesting. So, I need to refocus. Regroup. Get myself back on track.
It's easier said than done. Even when I start the day dedicated to sticking to my diet, by the end of the day my will-power is at an all time low. I just don't get it. I believe when people talk about being overweight as a disease of the body, and also of the mind. The problem I have is that it isn't rational. If I have the ability to make smart choices in all other aspects of my life, why is this one area nearly impossible to conquer? Why can't I just say no to food? Even knowing that I should say no, I still reach for it, telling myself no the entire time it moves to my mouth, and yet I still open my lips and chew it. It's crazy.
So, that brings me to what we discussed in our weight loss meeting last night: Self-Control. The counselor, who I have mixed feelings about already, began to pound in our minds that if we derail from the program and eat, gasp, food, we don't have self-control.
I was astounded. To me, they really need to reevaluate their program, because it's just plain unrealistic and wrong to equate eating a meal with lacking self-control. I realize that I've committed myself to this program, which means abstaining from all food and eating the shakes/soups as replacements, and that requires an extreme amount of self-control. If I veer off, or have weeks where I eat, it doesn't mean that I lack self-control. Because while I admit to have eaten a Polish Dog, I also paid my rent. I didn't turn into a human food tornado, blowing rent on Big-Macs and Milkshakes and Pizza and Burritos. I ate a f**king Polish Dog. While I did veer off the program, my self-control is still very much intact. With her logic, once I eat one morsel of food, all hope is lost, and I may as well go crazy with everything in my life. Screw rent, let's inhale pasta. Work? Nah, that's for people with self-control, which apparently, I do not have. Ugh.
Instead of blowing up when she asked me about my self-control, which I easily could have, I chose to be real and explain it politely. In summary, I told her that my self-control is totally dependent on the day. I know that emotions and food go hand in hand, at least for me. I'm in the midst of an extremely painful and traumatic time, still going through the motions of grief having lost my Dad a year and a half ago. Emotionally, it may as well have happened yesterday, because that's how fresh it feels to me. And to be blunt, in grief, the absolute last thing that I care about is opting for a shake over a polish dog, so that I can demonstrate self-control and lose 3 pounds by next Tuesday's weigh in. I just want to feel better, so I go to comfort food. It may be a poor habit, but that is why the term "comfort food" exists. It comforts.
Secondly, the loss of my Dad is a very present reminder that life is fragile. Tomorrow is not promised, even for someone young like me. If my family or friends are having a gathering, I'm going to enjoy it with them, the way I would normally. I wont go crazy, but I wont deny myself completely. If I were to depart from Earth tomorrow, I would like to know that my last day wasn't spend having a mental tug-of-war between eating a shake or a hot dog and a couple beers. It has nothing to do with self-control, it's a conscious choice, and I don't mind owning that choice. Will my weight loss be as rapid? No. Will I be a happier person? Duh.
Where I could have demonstrated self-control, is with what I chose to eat. Did I need the polish dog? Absolutely not. I could have enjoyably had carrots with salsa, and THAT, to me, is demonstrating self-control. If I want to lead a healthy life, it means making sacrifices, but it doesn't mean denying yourself. Even then, there will be moments where you can specifically choose the unhealthier option. As my goal is to lose a significant amount of weight, I have to have the strength and self control to stick with it, and if I veer, veer in a healthy manner.
Life is not all about the number on the scale. Life is much more than that, and I have to remember that. It's coping with the ups and downs, it's enjoying the moment, it's living healthy. Right now, I started reverting back to the old me, but I have to remind myself that the end goal is what will be worth it. I want to learn to deal with my pain in a different way, but it wont happen overnight, and I'm cutting myself some slack for that. I want to learn to have the power to chose the right thing over the wrong thing, even in social situations. And lastly, I want to learn how to value my health, so the first two things will come naturally.
I'm still a work in progress, and I will be for some time, but I just have to regroup and refocus and get back on track. The best quote I've read thus far is, "NOTHING tastes as good as healthy feels." It's true, and I cant wait to taste healthy. :)