Sunday, March 22, 2009

Day 189 Time Marches On With or Without Us and The Magic Wand

Day 189

Time Marches On With or Without Us and The Magic Wand

I've always been rather impatient. I'm a “I want it now” kind of guy. This naturally impatient attitude has discouraged me during past weight loss attempts because the time that's required to get down to a normal weight seems so overwhelming. I guess until now I never really thought about the multitude of rewards and victories along the way. I always focused on the total amount I needed to lose, then I would look at the calendar and get discouraged. 'This is going to take forever,' I thought. Then someone would chime in with the popular “you didn't grow to over 500 pounds overnight, you can't lose it overnight either.” Of course then I would day dream for twenty minutes about how cool that would be, if we could actually lose it over night. On second thought that might be kind of scary. Too much too soon kind of thing. It's crazy that I let myself get discouraged over the time it takes to lose weight naturally. Because a year later I'd still be over 500 pounds. And that's exactly the point I had to convince myself. Time doesn't really care what we do. Time keeps moving right along like clockwork, uh, it is clockwork. No matter what we do in the next twelve months, good or bad, it's still going to be March 22, 2010 in one year. Time is a constant, that's a pretty simple statement. But it's one I really had to wrap myself around. I had to dig deep to battle my impatient personality. I finally realized that I really needed to forget about time. Time doesn't need me to worry about it, it'll keep moving right along without any help or hindrance. Instead of focusing on how much time it's going to take, I had to focus on what I needed to do each day to succeed. And then when I do take the time to notice the time, I'm happy with the progress I've made and continue to make. It's day 189 by golly, 189! I've lost over 131 pounds! That's almost three quarters of a pound a day! You can tell that I don't really pay much attention to time because on March 15th's blog I didn't mention the fact that it was exactly the sixth month mark of this journey. It totally escaped me. Will it take a year total to reach my goal? Maybe it takes another year from now? Who cares! I'll be there when I get there, then I'll look at the clock and marvel at how far I've come in such a relatively short time. I didn't grow to over 500 pounds in a year or a year and a half, but I can get to my ideal weight in that time? I guess time really is on my side huh? We've all been in a situation where we were watching the seconds tick by on a clock conveniently positioned near our face. Maybe you were in class, or in a doctors office, or at work. When you constantly focus on the clock it can feel like forever! That's why I don't. Time will do it's thing, and I'll do mine, we'll meet up later in a triumphant celebration of accomplishment.

I've noticed one thing about different readers of this blog. Those that can relate to the struggles of losing weight totally get it. Some that have never had a weight problem do get it, but still, I've ran into a couple of people recently that don't “get it.” Not even a little bit. And that's completely OK. Sometimes I wish I had a magic wand that would mysteriously make naturally thin people fully understand the mental, physical, and emotional struggle. What would be really cool, is if that same magic wand could make morbidly obese people feel what it feels like to lose a considerable amount of weight. Even if the feeling only lasted a minute or so, I guarantee it would have a dramatic impact for both obese and naturally thin alike. This magic wand would be in such demand that we'd have to have around the clock security and a strict policy against “wand abuse.” OK Sean, back to reality. Listen, I fully understand why some don't understand. When I hear about someone in the news doing something completely unthinkable, and then find out that person was on drugs or alcohol, I have a hard time understanding their addiction, because thank God I've never had an addiction like that. If you've never had a particular problem or been effected by the problem, then how can you know or understand the far reaching personal effects. You just can't. My addictions have always been food, laziness, and nicotine, so I understand what people feel when dealing with those things. I can't hold it against these naturally thin people, I'm not even jealous of them anymore. I can't tell you how many people I've “hated” in the past simply because they might say something like “I can eat whatever I want and I never gain an ounce.” That's awesome, good for you...I just gained a pound hearing you say that, thanks. I don't “hate” these people or anyone now. And the only time I have a problem with someone that is naturally thin is when they live with, or are close to someone who's on a journey like this, but they still provide zero support. I know someone that is making a dramatic change in their eating habits. They've started eating better and cooking better for their entire family. This person has made an effort to get out and exercise everyday. But this person is married to and loves someone who is naturally thin and not understanding at all. She's doing everything she can to make positive changes in her pursuit, but all she hears is how he's sick and tired of her being at the gym or fixing lighter portions. I can't imagine what it must be like to constantly have that negative energy, and constantly worry that these positive changes will enrage your significant other. Of course in the long run he'll see the amazing changes and results and he'll see her emerge from underneath a lifetime of obesity, and perhaps then he'll realize that the little sacrifices in time and bad habits were completely worth every single frustration he felt along the way. The good news is, the people that “get it” far outnumber the ones who don't. You get me?

Tonight we're headed to the trail for a nice workout. If you're in the area and you drive by and see me jogging for brief spurts, just know that I'm not being chased by anyone or anything. I'm doing it on purpose. I'm still mostly walking briskly, with occasional burst of “all I got.” I've learned that our bodies adjust pretty quickly to a routine and the only way to advance our workout is to recognize this and pump it up a little. I'm still extremely cautious while I'm out there. Believe me, I'm not doing anything I can't handle. Actually, I could probably handle more, but I'm too cautious! I was just jogging for burst of one minute at a time yesterday, and that's all I felt I could do at 5.8 mph. But did you see that episode of “The Biggest Loser” when the trainer made that 346 pound guy jog for five minutes? I think he was 346, something close if not, but did you see that? I was on the treadmill at the Y when I caught a few minutes of that episode, and I'll tell ya, I couldn't imagine jogging for five minutes at this time, at least not at 5.8 mph. It was all I could do to make it one minute yesterday. Of course that will change with time. I'm still around 370, so what will I be able to do at 270? I bet then I'll be able to jog for much longer than a minute! Before you head out and dive into pushing yourself to the limit, remember a few things...I never get to the limit, I just get close enough to see the limit, then I back down. I've also been through the EKG's and the doctors visits, my numbers are looking great across the board, and I know that I'm extremely lucky in that regard considering how long I was in excess of 500 pounds. I guess what I'm saying is, please check with your doctor before you get too hot and heavy with your workout. Make sure you're physically able. Chances are your doctor will tell you to go for it! But at least consult a doctor first. The dramatic health improvements exercise provides is amazing. I sometimes can't believe how far I've come from that first day. Slow and steady wins this race every time.

Thanks for reading my daily blog. Another successful day is in the books. Good night and...

Good Choices,
Sean

1 comment:

  1. Funny that you should write about patience--or impatience, to be more exact--now, because I am really struggling with being impatient. I have been so conscientious about measuring portions and counting calories for the last 29 days that I find myself expecting the weight to drop off at a rate of several pounds a week. I mean, why shouldn't my efforts be rewarded with substantial results? I have to confess that I wake up each morning and feel my belly to see if it disappeared overnight! I know it's ridiculous, but I check anyway. The biggest difference that I can discern is an increase in energy, a thinner face, and a more positive outlook on life, all of which I appreciate.

    I've lost a total of six pounds in 29 days, and seem to have settled into a loss of one pound a week now. At this rate it will be a year before I reach my goal weight, and that seems hard to accept--until I remind myself that if I don't continue this healthier lifestyle a year from now I will weigh what I do now, if not more, and that is even harder to accept! In fact, that is just plain unacceptable! So, like you and everyone else who struggles with losing weight, I have to have patience. It's tough.

    That reminds me of a coffee mug I once saw that read "Grant me patience, Lord,...but hurry!" ha ha

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