Are you familiar with that moment in time, where everything suddenly makes sense and you begin to understand what once was just a haze of smoke? I think a lot of people experience this sort of epiphany moment – whether it’s a new job, a new baby, a new relationship, an old relationship, or their health. I think that for Chris, it was that moment when he found out he was diabetic, and that he could control how he felt through diet and exercise. Once he got out of the hospital, and began to feel better, I could see that things were different for him. The same thing happened to my dad – when he found out he was diabetic, he stopped at the supermarket on the way home from the doctor’s office (he wasn’t feeling bad at all, I don’t think; it was through routine bloodwork that he found out he was diabetic), picked up diet soda to replace his one regular soda every night, and boom! He dropped quite a bit of weight and went on with his life. I always thought that it was because of the life-threatening disease that both of the men in my life with diabetes made such quick and wholesale changes to their lifestyles, and maybe it was. But I didn’t have that sort of wake up call to make everything click for me … and I was very fortunate that it didn’t take something like that for me to wake up.
I’ve always thought it was really difficult to lose weight, and to a large degree, it was. But the reason why it was so difficult for me to lose weight was because I sabotaged myself without even realizing it. I love sodas – and I know they aren’t good for you, so I don’t even need to hear about the “science” as to why I shouldn’t drink them. It really is my one true vice; I’ve never smoked, I don’t drink regularly and I’ve never tried any sort of drug for recreational use – legal or illegal. But once I switched from regular to diet drinks and I noticed a weight loss as a result, something clicked for me. But it still wasn’t exactly what I needed to light a fire under me, and kick start my weight loss efforts, though it did push me in that direction.
To date, I’ve lost 16 pounds, and I’m happy about that. But today, I took my body measurements for the second time (the first time was on November 30, 2012). I really thought that I hadn’t lost much in the way of inches because I haven’t been doing any sort of workout, except for a little walking and stair climbing. However, I know that it’s good for my mental image to measure myself and see if I’m losing inches. I was happy to find that I have lost more than five inches in the last six and a half weeks. In fact, I was surprised to find out that I’d lost more than five inches in that time frame, particularly since I’m only measuring my neck, bust, waist, hips and right thigh (I don’t know why I haven’t measured my left thigh, but I haven’t measured my arms because I am not Wonder Woman LOL).
Combined with the weight loss, the realization that sodium is NOT my friend, and the knowledge that small changes can have a big impact (sodas as the case in point there), my epiphany moment came today, when I realized … I absolutely CAN lose weight, and it’s not all that difficult to do it. I’m not downplaying the mental and sometimes physical challenges that come with weight loss, but … once you get your head in the right place, weight loss can be easier than you think. My problem in the past has always been that my head wasn’t in the right place, but now that it is, it’s like a whole new world has opened up to me. A world that is offering me the opportunity to have the body I should have …
What I’ve learned in the last few months is this – if you ever need motivation to do anything, whether it’s change careers or lose weight, the motivation cannot come from somewhere outside your being – it has to come from within. I was inspired by my success with removing regular sodas from my diet to put forth a little more effort. I was motivated by the subsequent weight loss to begin looking at ways I could increase my chances for success, which led to cutting down on sodium in my diet. When I noticed that I am constantly having to turn my wedding ring around because it keeps sliding, and when I put on a pair of pants yesterday that had previously fit well but were a little lose, I took my measurements and compared them to where I was six weeks ago and found that I’m down at least five inches. This has inspired me to keep going, and to add some more serious exercise goals to my plan. I’ll let you know how that goes, but if it’s anything like what’s happened to me over the last three months or so … I’ll be looking for new ways to kick it up a notch in just a few weeks.