How much weight do you want to lose? 10 pounds? 20 pounds? 30, 40, 50 or more? When I was so overweight, the thought of losing over 150 pounds was absolutely daunting. I honestly could not see how it would be possible to lose over half of my body weight. If you are not overweight by such a large amount, it still may seem impossible for you to lose the amount of weight you desire. Your 20 pounds may seem as unattainable to you as my 150 pounds did to me. For me, as time marched by and my weight didn’t budge I tried to stop thinking about how much I needed to lose, and for a while I stopped trying to lose weight.
But the day finally came when I got serious and committedto weight loss. If you ever listen to Dave Ramsey, you will recall he often tells people to focus on their debt with gazelle like intensity. That’s what I did. I focused on myself and my health with the intensity of a gazelle. For once I didn’t let myself get distracted by the amount of weight I should lose and give up. Like the gazelle, who uses intense visual awareness of its surroundings to stay alive in their habitat, I used intense mental focus to stay on course. In my weight loss attempts, one big distraction for me had always been the amount of weight I had to lose. Let’s be real here – 150 pounds is an average size woman. My neighbor at the time probably weighed about 150 pounds. I needed to lose her.
As I started to have success, and people could finally tell I was losing weight, I was bombarded with questions like, “How much weight are you going to lose? When will you stop? How do you know when you’ve lost the right amount?” I vaguely answered these queries. You see, I wasn’t exactly sure what I wanted to weigh, because it had been so long since I had been a normal weight. I had determined that I wouldn’t focus on the number of pounds lost, but rather on how I was feeling about myself. The first time I saw 199 on the scale was a day of rejoicing. Hallelujah! But I wasn’t done yet. I didn’t feel done. I hadn’t quite reached the point of satisfaction with my physical abilities and my appearance.
From there, as the scale crept slowly down, I would often assess where I was.
- Clothing size
- Activity level
- Energy level
- Blood pressure
I realized that for me, the number on the scale had become less important to me than how I felt about myself. At almost 5′10″ did it really matter physically if I was 170 or 150 pounds? No. But as I started to get closer to an appropriate weight for my height, I could tell I was almost done losing weight. When I reached the point where I felt confident and energetic I knew I was finished. I had reached all the goals I set for myself. I could finally run without thinking I was dying. I could shop in a regular sized store. I didn’t waddle when I walked. People had stopped asking me if I was pregnant. My blood pressure was great. I was done.
I learned a lot about myself during those 14 months. One thing I learned was it’s not always about the number on the scale. There are a lot of mitigating circumstances surrounding weight and each person, preferably with their doctor’s input, should examine where they desire to be. And then try. Try again, because if you don’t try again, how will you ever know if today would have been the day for you? Diane
Today is the last day to enter the Gym In A Bag Giveaway! I will close comments at midnight CST! Thanks to everyone who entered. You will love, love, love it!