I don't know about most but speaking for myself the body has always been an issue. In my youth I was tall and skinny. In my twenties I was never skinny enough (in my warped view of myself). Why the obsession with our bodies? Does my worth come from how my body looks?
I joined Weight Watchers about 5 weeks ago and I love it. It's not a diet, it's eating healthy and learning how to do so with all the food I love. Portion control is what I needed to learn. My husband used to tell me when I was discouraged about my weight, " debi, you can't eat the same amount of food as I do and not gain weight"....that really was an eye opener for me. He is around 200 lbs, a hair under 6 ft. tall and works out five days a week. I on the other hand am 5'10, ***lbs and do not work out. Hmmm...kind of a no brainer huh?
My added pounds began when my Dad was hospitalized. My older sister and I decided to treat ourselves to ice cream sundaes or cones daily after leaving the hospital for the night... After his death, I continued to eat, and eat a lot. I spent most of my time in front of the computer or on my couch. The loss of my Dad and my job days later added a heaviness to me that wasn't weighed in pounds. It was my heavy heart.
Longer story short I gained easily 23 pounds in the last three years. My back problem and then surgery added to the lack of exercise issue. All I could really do was walk, but I was so discouraged by the weight I rarely did that. My friends never got the big deal....because of my height it was not noticeable to them just how much I had gained. I turned down offers of spa days, going to the beach or the pool. A couple annoyed that I wouldn't go because of my weight gain... "don't be annoyed with me because I don't want to feel miserable, I want to feel comfortable with MYSELF." It had little to do with what others thought, it was all about what I thought and felt. I find little difference in the act of changing clothes 10 times before you find the clothes that feel comfortable and you feel good about yourself once you find the right one. When a person has gained weight, they can't just remove it to feel better, they can't change into a new body. Not understanding why I don't want to wear a bathing suit? Let me dress you in an outfit that is easily 2 sizes smaller than what you wear and expect you to lets say attend your high school reunion in it :-) Isn't that a pleasant thought and even prettier picture?
What I'm getting at is this. I need to feel comfortable in my body and in my clothes. This is not the 70's or 80's mentality of I'm not thin enough! This is being comfortable in my own skin, regardless of what a scale says. In my particular case I know for certain that my food choices, portion size and lack of exercise are what got me into this mess and I can get me out of it! I want to feel good in my clothes and I have a clo$et FULL of clothe$ that I have been unable to wear. I refuse to by another pair of "fat" jeans in order to feel comfortable, occasionally. Buy the bigger sizes and I can assure you, those jeans too will eventually "shrink" and it's off to purchase the next size. I don't want to feel comfortable in a pair of pants that are a larger size, I want to fit in the clothe$ that take up 90 percent of our clo$et $pace!
I do not have a thyroid problem, I'm not going to tell you I exercise, eat right and don't understand why my body doesn't reflect that!! Come on people! I had a portion problem, a fast food problem, an, I can't resist that cookie, whom am I kidding, cookies...yes plural problem! I was the one whom once my Bible study gals left, I would likely finish off what ever junk food we were enjoying that night. They didn't need to know how many cookies I could put down when nobody was watching!
I would joke about my weight, my inner tube of a stomach like it didn't bother me....it did and I'm not going to laugh myself into a larger clothing size any longer. It is time to get healthy, not skinny, healthy and I have not been at a healthy weight. I have children and grand children I hope to be around for, and how selfish of me not to take care of my physical health in order to be there for them! Food is no longer more important than being healthy for myself and for those I love. Last I heard, heart attacks were the leading cause of death among women. What is the biggest contributor to that, poor diet and lack of exercise....
Food or family?
In five weeks I have lost 8 lbs. and that is without exercise. I wear a pedometer from the minute I get up until I go to bed. The challenge is to walk a minimum of 10,000 steps a day. I am usually about 6 to 7,000 but everyday I become more conscious of those steps and add to them. Little things like walking to the furthest bathroom in my house, I now take the trash out, a job my husband doesn't miss. I offer to be the one to get up to get whatever someone wants.....adding to my steps always.
I'm not trying to be an advertisement for Weight Watchers, but I am never, never hungry and I'm losing weight. I can eat unlimited fruits and vegetables that do not count as points. I have a certain number of points in day and it's up to me how I spend those points. If I want ice cream I can have it...but then I adjust the rest of my days food with the amount of points left.
I already feel so much better, full of energy and already fitting in to some of my clothe$ that have been head hostage in my clo$et for three years :-)
Fearfully and wonderfully made? Fearful, sometimes that I won't stick to it. Wonderful, I think I'm headed in that direction, I'm getting there.
I know I can't control the gravitational pull on every part of my body, but I can commit to being wise about how I live, a healthy diet and at least 30 minutes of exercise a day. I will no longer deny my body nourishment, nor will I offer it more food than it needs by overeating, or allow my muscles to atrophy because "its too hot to exercise" kinda attitude.
This is not about fitting into the sick culture of beauty and thinness, it's not about external beauty over internal genuine beauty. For me it is being mindful that my body is a temple of God, why would I spend my time allowing harm to come to it?
I do want to be at peace with that reflection in the mirror, I no longer want to be disappointed in her that she has not taken an interest in her health and allowed this to happen. I aim to get there and in the mean time my focus will continue to be striving for inner beauty. Beauty, a heart full of kindness, mercy and patience and grace. Once I am healthy on the outside I intend to be content with how I look regardless of a number on a scale or size my jeans are. Healthy because I eat right, exercise and I'm a healthy weight for my height. I'm on a mission.
I want to be around long enough to have many grandchildren, hanging out with a Gram that may have lots of wrinkles and sags, but they are attracted to my heart.
"I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
wonderful are Your works, and my soul knows it very well" Psalm 139:14
It's a new dawn, it's a new day...nah...that belongs to Jennifer Hudson..........
This is what echos from my heart today......