16 July 2009

SparkPeople & "Me and My Shadow"

A couple of months ago the morning news show, Good Morning America, ran a segment on weight loss. They interviewed a female doctor that has recently lost over 100 pounds. She had been overweight for years and felt it was important for her to loose the weight and set a healthy example for her patients. She said she owed a lot of her success to the motivation and tools she found on the web site SparkPeople. After the show, I looked up SparkPeople on the web and after reading some of the success stories I decided to sign up as a member. I have have been a yo-yo dieter most of my life, but the tools for tracking nutrition and exercise have made it so easy to stay on top of our daily goals. Now that I have mastered a balanced diet and portion control for the first time in my life, I use the SparkPeople tools to track our food intake and browse the recipes members have contributed to find new and interesting meals.

There is also a community forum for members were we can post stories, words of encouragement, etc. Today there was an interesting story from one of the members that echos my goals for the future.

I asked Trudy, another SparkPeople member, if I could share her post on our blog and she has graciously agreed. Here it is...

"Me and My Shadow...

How does that song go?

I was walking the other day and looked down at the sidewalk and saw this stranger walking with me. I stared at the image and for a brief moment I asked "Who the heck is that?" "This person doesn't have all those lumps and bumps of ugly fat on her that I do"... A brief moment, then tears came to my eyes as it hit me. This was ME.

I weighed myself yesterday. The scales said 141.6...I realized that I had now lost 70 pounds! Then I put on my gift to myself- a pair of size 8 Kymaro jeans I was saving for this moment. Never in my life have I worn a size 8. They look good, yes, I can honestly tell you that. Oh, the journey is not over, far from it with another six pounds to go in order to reach my goal and then toning up my body. All in good time, but for now I reflect on some of the things I have learned on this my journey of a million steps.

I have learned that the prison of shame and guilt that I had built was my own creation and that I had the power to tear it down, or to build it up. It is all up to ME.

I had to learn to take personal responsibility for every bite of food that I put into my mouth, and that I had to eat healthy to BE healthy.

I had to learn that you either do IT (diet/exercise), or you don't -- there's no middle ground and that life is full of choices and I choose to be happier and healthier with mine.

I learned that I could acknowledge myself in ways other than eating. I no longer have to be an "emotional eater" to do that.

I learned to admit to myself that I was fat and unhealthy because I chose to overeat and I chose foods that were unhealthy and fattening.

I learned I just needed to find a diet plan that worked for ME. For me this is the idiot proof diet plan. Eating the right combination of foods, eating small portions knowing I will eat again in two hours, and eating healthy food was and is my key to success.

I learned that I am not a failure even though I may have "failed" when I dieted in the past.

I have learned that "temptations" along my journey are merely a test to my commitment. And, if I give myself the "gift" of an occasional temptation it makes the journey go much better.

I have learned that losing weight is not the end result but the beginning of a new chapter -- complete with new challenges, commitments and dreams!

I have learned that the journey will NEVER be over for me, that this is just the beginning of another journey to a happier and healthier life full of mountains and valleys, but with the help of all my SparkFriends I will accept the hills and valleys and travel with them...with the knowledge that I CAN continue, and I CAN do this, with their help and support."

Thanks to Trudy for sharing...

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