Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Appreciation for What You've Gained

You've all heard the ad from Special K that asks the question "What will you gain?" right? Well that is my question to you today. What have you gained by living a healthier lifestyle? This is a question that I need to take the time to answer more often. The ad from Special K is only part of the reason this has been on mind. I think the ad placed the idea in the back of my brain and my subconscious has been playing with it, but this great post by Half the Woman I Was is what really got me thinking. She talked about how happy she is that she has become "sporty mom". She now enjoys playing sports with her kids and that is something she couldn't do before her weight loss journey. I realized that I have lost sight of the things I've gained since losing 80 pounds.

As many of you know, especially if you read my last post, I've really been struggling lately with the motivation to exercise regularly. I say "lately" but really this has stretched on for months and months! I have been sticking with eating healthy, but only about 85% of the time. Over the last week I've been asking myself "What have I gained now that I've lost the weight I set out to lose? Was it worth it?" Well the answer to the second question has been an easy YES! But the answer to the first question has been harder for me to define. Ok, the easy answer is that I know I'm healthier for my kids. But has it really changed very much in my day to day life? Hmmm that has been a little tougher to answer. I know that being 80 pounds lighter and exercising regularly gave me more energy. With that energy I have been able to accomplish my responsibilities faster and without feeling so drained. Which is why I know I have to get that regular workout back into my schedule! I know that I'm not as grouchy and that I handle stress better. Ok, good. Those answers feel very empty to me though.

I used to really enjoy that exercise time because it was "me" time. I was focusing on myself. Although I had kids to supervise while I exercised, and sometimes I really felt like spending the time on myself was selfish, I had this sense of fulfillment. Now that I've reached my goal I find that I'm not feeling that same fulfillment from exercise. As I write this I am also realizing that I haven't added anything to my life that I couldn't or didn't do before losing the weight. Yes, I have smaller clothes. Yes I have gotten some really cute clothes that I love to wear that I never could have worn before. But unlike "Sporty Mom" I haven't added anything just for fun to my life. I think I need to focus on that. I need to reward myself with some "me" time, and a "me" activity.

I have gained a knowledge that I probably will not have all the health issues in the future that I would have had without losing the weight. I have gained some self assurance and confidence that I didn't have before. I have recognized a passion for helping others lose weight that I did not expect. I have yet to find a complete way to fulfill that passion, but this blog helps. I see that for now part of what I need to do is ask myself, probably daily, "What have I gained? and How am I going to appreciate that in my life today?" Just recognizing it isn't enough, I need to appreciate it daily. I think that will be the most help in finding my motivation again.

So, again my question to you is: "What have you gained and do you appreciate it?"

Monday, April 8, 2013

Being Absent

So I have been absent from writing for several weeks now. Why? Well because I just have felt like I don't have much to say. I'm disconnected from a lot of things right now, one of which is my exercise. I am not feeling very motivated in my own life and it is so hard to reach out and say something encouraging. I read other blogs and think "I need to stay positive in my blog, don't bore people with my stumbling blocks" But then I think "Everyone has stumbling blocks, maybe I should write more about mine. Maybe that would not only help me get past them but then others wouldn't feel like they are alone when they hit those stumbling blocks too". So there is this weird balancing act that I feel like I have to do. It's absolutely ridiculous because I know that one of the things that helps me the most is to read/hear from people who are also struggling for one reason or another. That helps me to not feel alone and to realize that what I'm going through is normal and that I can and will get past it too. Then I feel guilty for feeling unmotivated because I have come so far, and I don't want to slip backwards.

I know I would feel better if I would just get back on my schedule and get exercising regularly again. There is no real excuse for not doing it either. I am back to being tired a lot and grouchy too. Even my husband recognizes that I will be happier if I can just get myself to workout regularly again! That's pretty sad to me when my husband is now prompting me to do it. I mean, he's always been supportive, but I haven't really needed him to say "we are going to bed early tonight so you can get up and exercise in the morning". Or "I expect to see you exercising while I'm getting ready for work tomorrow". That is apparently what I need right now though.

This lack of motivation is carrying over into all areas of my life right now. I just feel run down and tired, and I know that if I can fix this one thing then everything else will start to fall back into place again. So for now I guess I need that extra push from Larry, and maybe a few more people. I feel like I am so far removed from everything that I need to find a way to get more involved in the moment. There are so many things going on that are out of my control. But there are things I can control and I'm not. It's time to make another change. Until I get myself going I will accept the help and motivation offered by my husband and my friends, because that is why we are not on this earth alone. We all need each other to help, lift and support us at different times. Right now I guess it's my turn to receive some lifting. And I will continue to help lift others in any way I can.