Friday, April 1, 2011
The Scale Hath No Power.....
Lately, I've been hearing the same thing from people in my life: "Oh my gosh! You're looking so thin!". I always react with confusion and genuine disbelief. Why? Because the word 'thin' has never been an adjective that anyone has ever use to describe me. No, the adjectives that best described me in the past were: thick, chubby, full figured, etc. And whats funny is, I began to accept those words, and I began to think for a long time that, thats just who I am. Boy, I was wrong....I was SO wrong!
I have to address first, the reason why I react with confusion. My confusion is genuine, and it comes from the fact that I don't see this "thin" me, that others seem to be seeing. No, I don't see myself as fat or grossly overweight, but I just see......"Me".....the same old Jules thats always been there. I don't feel that I look drastically different. Its not like I jump in front of the mirror and say, "EVERYONE! COME SEE HOW GOOD I LOOK!!!!" lol (sorry, shameless Ron Burgandy quote there). But, in all seriousness, when I look in the mirror, I still look only to the problem areas that need more attention during my workouts. However, there IS a difference with how I regard my reflection as of recently.
I took the advice of my Dad and stopped looking so critically at myself in the mirror. Instead, I simply use the mirror as a guide to see if my shirt looks okay, or if I look presentable enough to go to class like this, etc. There are times when I stand and point out my imperfections or "problem areas" but the difference is, now I don't look at those problem areas in disgust. I don't see them and hate myself or get angry...I simply regard them as more work to be done. I use those problem areas to remind myself that this journey is never over. No matter how physically fit you are, no matter what size pants you wear, there is always room for improvement. Maybe not in your appearance, but in your physical fitness abilities. We should always strive to better ourselves and perfect our human characters, after all, isn't that the point to this crazy whirlwind we call life?
I also firmly believe that my renewed state of mind and happier outlook on things has come from my discontinuation of weighing in everyday. In the beginning of my journey, I felt like I HAD to weigh in everyday. I felt like it helped me to know where I was at when I started my day and where I was at when I ended my day. And ya know what? It worked beautifully! But there comes a certain point, when you're rounding your goal weight, that you start to get frustrated with the scale no matter what it says. Its no secret that the last 20 or so pounds is nearly impossible to get off, and you might only lose an ounce or so each week, so it can be maddening and defeating for those of us who have worked so hard and gotten so close to our goals, to see this when we wake up. Stepping on that scale started to determine my mood for the day. If I got on, and I liked the number, I was happy. If I got on and the number was not what I wanted, I was depressed. If I got on after a binge and saw I gained, I was angry and lashing out at those I love. THIS IS NOT A WAY TO LIVE! It is important for us to remember that although the number on the scale is a good "mile marker", if you will, IT IS NOT WHAT DEFINES US. I started to feel like all my accomplishments didn't matter if the number on the scale wasn't going down. And nothing could be further from the truth.
I think I'm starting to win this HUGE mental battle regarding how far I've come. I'm now realizing that its really not about that number anymore. Its about all the things I can do and that I have accomplished, that I never would have even dreamed of when I was overweight. When I was at my heaviest weight, my world was full of: "No's" and "I could never..." and "I can't do that!". Now, my world is full of: "Bring it on!" and "Okay, let me give it a try". But most importantly, my world is full of happiness, love and positivity. Yes, I have my gloomy days when everything is going wrong and I'm overwhelmed and stressed and feeling a bit defeated.....but I have to say, those days are becoming few and far between.
Its so random that I'm remembering this now, but there was a girl in my High School Calculus class my senior year that started to lose weight. At this point in my life I was probably over 200lbs myself, so of course I noticed her success and complimented her on it. I remember her saying this to me, "If you don't like something about yourself, then change it!" Wow. That speaks volumes to me now. How right she was, how right she was. Thats really all there is to it. Like I've said in some of my vlogs, "Losers whine, complain, hope, and wish. Winners? Winners just DO IT!" This goes hand in hand with what that girl was saying in that calculus class. I now understand that her message was this: Don't sit there and complain about how much you hate yourself and how you wish you could look and feel differently. Instead, get up with purpose. Decide to change something in your life for the better, and work towards that every day. Even if the day ends up in failure, you still gave it a try which is better than what you were doing before, which was nothing.
When I meet new people on Youtube who watch my vlogs, they often ask me if I had one bit of advice for anyone who wants to start losing weight, what would it be? To them I say this:
Never Give Up. It seems simple, but its the key. We're humans and we're not perfect. We will all screw up in the journey for health and fitness. The key to success is not giving up. Do you know how many times I binged on junk food? Do you know how many times I failed at exercising? I can't even count how many times I've screwed up along the way. So, why have I had so much success with losing weight? Its because I refused to give up on myself. I refused to let my weaknesses win. I'm stronger than that. I can be a runner. I can be a healthy food-ist. I.CAN.DO.IT!!!!!! Every time you fall down, pick yourself back up again and fight the good fight. Do this over and over and over again if you have to. Just don't give up. Just keep going. Just keep doing. Love yourself enough to try, try, try again. Believe me, you owe yourself that much.