Wednesday, July 31, 2019

July 31st, 2019 Rails

July 31st, 2019 Rails

Yesterday and today were 4-star days: I maintained the integrity of my calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I exceeded my daily water goal Tuesday and hit water goal today, and I stayed well connected with exceptional support yesterday and today.

I really enjoy avocados. Good, affordable avocados have been in short supply around here, lately, but thankfully I found some for fifty-nine cents each at Aldi this evening. perfect timing, too, because it's National Avocado Day.

I didn't have time to break for lunch today. I sipped iced coffee and water while I worked. I needed something to hold me over until a late dinner, so I made an avocado toast with some melon. It was perfect.

I'm not the strongest person and I don't have amazing willpower. It's assumed that these things are necessities along this road. They're not.

When I end each blog post with the word, "strength," it's not necessarily strength to stick to your plan. It's about installing strength within your plan. It's about having the strength to open your mind to new perspectives and concepts. It's the strength to care enough to make what you're doing for you, important. But you don't have to be strong or have the best willpower. It's a common misconception.

If I relied on my own strength and willpower, I'd be over 500 pounds right now.

I've shared my 80/20 philosophy concerning a ratio of focus between food and exercise and the mental/emotional elements. Through my experiences, I contend the stronger focus remains squarely on the mental/emotional elements, allowing the food and exercise plenty of room to grow and develop naturally.

When I examine weight loss attempts in my past, I can clearly see how my focus was mainly on the food and exercise, accompanied by a constant reminding of how strong I needed to be and how much willpower I needed to exert in order for it to work.

Those attempts didn't work. Even though I had the good foods, I was walking a lot and I was doing my best to be strong and exhibit a super-human willpower...nothing stuck. I didn't maintain a shred of consistency during those times. And soon, like all the other attempts, my resolve would fade into the fog of food chaos and rapid weight gain. If you were to ask me what happened, I would have likely said something along the lines of-- "I guess I wasn't strong enough and just didn't have enough willpower." And most people would empathize with something like, "well, weight loss is really hard--hang in there, you can do it." 

If maintaining balance and control is hard, then doesn't it make sense to hold onto something for support? Like a rail of some sort? Or a series of rails, strategically placed along the way--providing balance and support? That's the key. It ISN'T building the perfect food and exercise plan from Day 1 and white-knuckling it all the way while praying for strength and willpower. It's about developing rails of support.

Some people need fewer rails, some more. I say the more the merrier. I have installed quite a few "rails" to guide me along the way.

My rails include logging and tracking my food and exercise. My rails include my personal meditation/spiritual time. My rails include staying connected in support daily. My rails include my accountability measures. My rails include writing/reflection regularly. My rails include making sure I have what I need to succeed; food, exercise--groceries...I have what I need, at work and at home. My rails include planning ahead--some days require more thought and more detailed planning than other days. My rails encourage awareness and self-honesty as I navigate each day within the plan that has gradually become suited especially for me.

What do you think would happen if I suddenly eliminated some or all of these rails from my life, in other words, "went off the rails?"

I've lived that scenario. I'm lucky it didn't end tragically, that time. Or any of the other times.

This trek we're on together doesn't require us to be superhuman or have the most will power. It's truly not about that stuff. If we want more stability, balance, and consistency, we must install rails.




Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Practice, peace, and calm,
Sean

If you're interested in connecting via social media:
I accept friend requests on MyFitnessPal. My daily food logging diary is set to public.
MFP Username: SeanAAnderson
My Twitter: SeanAAnderson
Facebook: www.facebook.com/seananderson505
Instagram: SeanAAnderson
Also--I'd love you to subscribe to my podcast Transformation Planet! You can find it in Apple Podcasts, in the Google Play store for Android, and listed wherever you find your favorite podcasts! If you haven't listened before, you'll find 20 episodes waiting for you!

Questions or comments? Send an email! transformation.road@gmail.com

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

July 30th, 2019 Certainty Dynamic

July 30th, 2019 Certainty Dynamic

Sunday was a 5-star day. Monday was a 4-star day: I maintained the integrity of my calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I exceeded my daily water goal again, and I stayed well connected with exceptional support.

The past couple of days have been filled with getting some things done. I've decided I'll be taking some much needed time off very soon. I don't know what I'll be doing with that time, but it's mine to take, so I'll take it and figure out the details later.

My daily practice has been in a really good place lately. I'm grateful!

I've found that maintaining a balance with my food and exercise requires that I'm mindful of my emotions and stress level balance, first. When things are going smoothly in the non-food & exercise areas of my life, I feel empowered and confident. When life throws a curveball or two, and suddenly things aren't as harmonious--that's when my awareness level must be on the highest setting.

I've given myself quite a bunch of self-study in this area of balance. My conclusion centers around one of the basic human needs: Certainty. 

When things get bumpy and out of sorts, the first thing that goes is the comforting feeling of certainty. My deeply ingrained reaction to the loss of certainty is to replace it as quickly as possible--if not with certainty, with something that gives me the illusion of certainty. For me, obviously--it's always been food.

Of course, it's only an illusion of certainty. A bag of double cheeseburgers never gave me peaceful certainty in the middle of turbulent times. It only gave me an illusion of certainty within the amount of time it successfully distracted me from the reality at hand. After the distraction, the uncertainty remained--but worse; compounded with self-loathing over the binge.

One of the biggest realizations for me was found in taking responsibility for my part in creating uncertainties. It's the, my own worst enemy deal. I don't create every uncertainty in my life, but I've certainly been responsible for a good share. Being mindful of my behavior and actions and how they can potentially upset my balance of certainty is a critical awareness to maintain each and every day. 

Nobody is immune to this certainty dynamic. How does anyone like me get through the loss or weakened state of certainty without taking a tour of every drive-through in the area?

In my opinion, it comes down to the ability to compartmentalize certainty. And doing that requires taking a personal inventory of things we're grateful for in our lives. In this exploration--this inventory, we can find certainty where we weren't looking. And then we can believe that all is not lost because we have something, several things, perhaps, that are certain in our lives. Instead of feeling like everything is total chaos--we can find peace in some areas and that helps us deal with the uncertainty in other areas.

My gratitude list is long and that helps my uncertainty list feel a little shorter.

I've written before about the importance of keeping my lifestream and fundamental elements stream running parallel and not letting them cross. Losing certainty in certain areas can create turbulence within the streams. When the forces of uncertainty are pressed and we're holding our fundamental elements stream steady, it's not easy. Dropping the fundamental elements stream, effectively allowing the lifestream to come crashing down across, might seem like a very natural thing to do--and considering the circumstances, we sometimes experience, it might also seem completely excusable.

But why would I drop something I'm immensely grateful for having in my life, especially in exchange for the chaos and uncertainty of whatever we're passing through at the moment? 

In keeping steady the things for which I'm most grateful and finding the certainty in the things I can, it will only help me in dealing with the uncertainty of most anything else. The illusions of the contrary will not fool me into believing otherwise.






















Do you own an "I'm Choosing Change" wristband? I wear mine proudly, daily, and more and more people are joining me in this movement! Email me and let me know if you want one. I'll send you a secure $15 PayPal invoice and personally ship it to you right away! transformation.road@gmail.com

Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Practice, peace, and calm,
Sean

If you're interested in connecting via social media:
I accept friend requests on MyFitnessPal. My daily food logging diary is set to public.
MFP Username: SeanAAnderson
My Twitter: SeanAAnderson
Facebook: www.facebook.com/seananderson505
Instagram: SeanAAnderson
Also--I'd love you to subscribe to my podcast Transformation Planet! You can find it in Apple Podcasts, in the Google Play store for Android, and listed wherever you find your favorite podcasts! If you haven't listened before, you'll find 20 episodes waiting for you!

Questions or comments? Send an email! transformation.road@gmail.com

Sunday, July 28, 2019

July 28th, 2019 Crystal Clear

July 28th, 2019 Crystal Clear

Saturday was a 5-star day: I maintained the integrity of my calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I exceeded my daily water goal again, I had a really good forty-five-minute walk in the park, and I stayed well connected with exceptional support.

Super late night! Noah and I had a blast today. It was a before back to school outing! Go-carts were involved. One of the greatest things was being able to ride with him in a two-seat go-cart without one shred of concern. It was one of those moments where the "why" becomes crystal clear. Being physically able to engage in things like this with him and someday, the other three grandkids is truly a blessing. Without the daily practice that helps keep me well, days like today wouldn't be possible.










































We had so much fun!



Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Practice, peace, and calm,
Sean

If you're interested in connecting via social media:
I accept friend requests on MyFitnessPal. My daily food logging diary is set to public.
MFP Username: SeanAAnderson
My Twitter: SeanAAnderson
Facebook: www.facebook.com/seananderson505
Instagram: SeanAAnderson
Also--I'd love you to subscribe to my podcast Transformation Planet! You can find it in Apple Podcasts, in the Google Play store for Android, and listed wherever you find your favorite podcasts! If you haven't listened before, you'll find 20 episodes waiting for you!

Questions or comments? Send an email! transformation.road@gmail.com

Saturday, July 27, 2019

July 27th, 2019 Still Happens

July 27th, 2019 Still Happens

Friday was a 4-star day: I maintained the integrity of my calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I exceeded my daily water goal again, and I stayed well connected with exceptional support.

This was supposed to be a day off but it certainly hasn't felt like one. I put in a few hours today, completed a production project--and I've yet to make it back out for my workout. But--the good news is, I can reframe my brain and turn this day around! When I get all "meh," I try to do a mindset-reset focused on gratitude for the blessings all around me. Also, when I get self-involved and slightly grumpy, it also helps get me out of my own head when I reach out to another and offer my support. These are things, like so many along this road, that requires intentional action and practice.

I've got to get into the grocery store this evening. I really enjoy the act of making sure I have what I need when I need it. I feel most connected with my food plan when I'm in the store doing the shopping. I'm the same guy that many times carried a very different perspective into the store and I'm still capable of going into a store with a completely different perspective if I relent on the daily practice that helps keep me well.

I think a positive trip depends on the intention and expectation I carry through those automatic doors.

If my intention is to buy things supportive of my plan with the expectation that it will provide what I need in order to maintain the integrity of my food plan in the coming days, then it's a completely different and good experience.

If my intention is driven by the gravitational pull of compulsive over-eating and my expectation is that it'll somehow "fix" something or fill a void of some kind, then I'm off the rails and off to the races, straight into a depressive cycle where the expectations are never met. Food is not a fixer. 

An exchange with a reader from the archives:

"I have never been able to not go off the wagon with food choices when I'm out of my routine. Say like a birthday, holiday, etc....and the much bigger problem for me is it's an opportunity to go nuts for a few days after that too. It takes that long for me to reel myself back in. Or another one is something happens to me that upsets me and I've always used food to numb myself. I can't figure out how not to. So what I'm saying in the long version is how do I gain those tools? It's just not happening for me."

My reply:

Thank you for sharing your struggle. You're not alone.

One thing that's helped me is making sure my plan is something I enjoy--in other words, I'm loving the foods I "get" to eat, every day. It isn't something I dread. What happens is, when my perception and expectation of what it means for me to be "on plan," is something I can easily live with, I'm less likely inclined to take a vacation or holiday from it. There's no desire to flee from deprivation into an anything goes type situation--because I don't feel deprived.

Now-- here's the rub:

Even with this "I'm loving it" plan in place, what you described still happens...

My abstinence from refined sugar may have very well turned off the "binge switch," those biochemical reactions in the addictive part of my brain--but what it doesn't stop is, my natural inclination to seek comfort in excess food when times get stressful and emotional. It takes a separate action plan to deal with that.

And it doesn't stop it to simply say, "excess food doesn't solve anything--it doesn't help resolve issues--it isn't a fixer--it's simply a temporary diversion--a distraction from our real experiences..."

Does it help? The only help it provides is that temporary distraction from whatever is weighing heavy on our minds at any given moment.

BUT AGAIN-- saying that, processing it, agreeing with it 100%, still doesn't stop the tendency to dive in when we're feeling those things.

One thing to remember: Feelings have a beginning and an end. Whatever it is, will come and go--weigh heavy, then subside--be on the forefront of your consciousness and then fade back into your sub-consciousness. When you're feeling like buffering your emotions with food--remember that this will pass...the moment will evolve and change...and in the meantime, while it's pressing: Find support asap!!!!

This is the most critical element I've discovered along my path: Building your support and accountability structure is imperative to your success. Find someone to be a support text buddy/friend. When those feelings start welling up and the obsessive food thoughts come flowing into your head--tell on 'em!!! Don't keep them exclusively in your head--because if you do, they'll typically win, almost every time.

Share what you're thinking--get it out in the open...When you "tell on 'em," it has a powerful effect.

What happens when a playground bully is exposed to authority figures? They typically turn into little angels. Same dynamic. When we expose those thoughts by bringing in our "support team," something powerful happens---suddenly we're not facing it alone...suddenly our resolve to maintain the integrity of our plan is strengthened--oftentimes, just in the nick of time. 

I share a bunch of reminders, ideas, and perspectives on weight loss here.  I do it in hopes of helping someone, anyone who might relate and identify with the challenges along this road.  But that's not the only reason.  I also share these for me.  My continued recovery depends on my awareness AND practice of elements critical to my success.  I gain inspiration and motivation from you and I sincerely appreciate your incredible support.  Choosing change isn't a temporary diversion, it's a daily practice, an ongoing education about ourselves and what we need to enjoy the rest of our lives free from the physical and mental restrictions of obesity.

Okay-- cleaning, store trip, exercise...exciting Saturday night ahead!





















Do you own an "I'm Choosing Change" wristband? I wear mine proudly, daily, and more and more people are joining me in this movement! Email me and let me know if you want one. I'll send you a secure $15 PayPal invoice and personally ship it to you right away! transformation.road@gmail.com

Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Practice, peace, and calm,
Sean

If you're interested in connecting via social media:
I accept friend requests on MyFitnessPal. My daily food logging diary is set to public.
MFP Username: SeanAAnderson
My Twitter: SeanAAnderson
Facebook: www.facebook.com/seananderson505
Instagram: SeanAAnderson
Also--I'd love you to subscribe to my podcast Transformation Planet! You can find it in Apple Podcasts, in the Google Play store for Android, and listed wherever you find your favorite podcasts! If you haven't listened before, you'll find 20 episodes waiting for you!

Questions or comments? Send an email! transformation.road@gmail.com

Friday, July 26, 2019

July 26th, 2019 Positive Effect

July 26th, 2019 Positive Effect

Thursday was a 5-star day: I maintained the integrity of my calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I exceeded my daily water goal again, I completed a good 30-minute elliptical workout, and I stayed well connected with exceptional support.

Arriving at the TG Sheppard concert



















Today's two station broadcast included eight breaks an hour, thirty-two breaks total, averaging two to three minutes per break. It's a lot of talking! But hey, I think we helped sell some hot tubs in July, so that's good! I finished up some work back at the studio immediately after the broadcast, just in time to get ready for tonight's excursion with mom to the T.G. Sheppard concert. It's a late-night! The good news is, I get to sleep in tomorrow. I'm really looking forward to that!

We had a great time! T.G. is mom's age, 74, but he's still got it-- he really put on a great concert tonight. Mom loved it!














Mom got to meet him after the show and she got his autograph on a picture. Concerts like this are certainly one of the nice perks of what I do. 

I've been feeling really well lately. My exercise schedule is getting some good consistency and that's helping me in wonderful ways. I just feel better all the way around. I must remember that positive effect!

Cutting this edition short and heading to bed very soon! Thank you for your readership!



Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Practice, peace, and calm,
Sean

If you're interested in connecting via social media:
I accept friend requests on MyFitnessPal. My daily food logging diary is set to public.
MFP Username: SeanAAnderson
My Twitter: SeanAAnderson
Facebook: www.facebook.com/seananderson505
Instagram: SeanAAnderson
Also--I'd love you to subscribe to my podcast Transformation Planet! You can find it in Apple Podcasts, in the Google Play store for Android, and listed wherever you find your favorite podcasts! If you haven't listened before, you'll find 20 episodes waiting for you!

Questions or comments? Send an email! transformation.road@gmail.com

Thursday, July 25, 2019

July 25th, 2019 Perfect For Me

July 25th, 2019 Perfect For Me

Yesterday was a 5-star day: I maintained the integrity of my calorie budget, I remained refined sugar-free, I exceeded my daily water goal again, and I stayed well connected with exceptional support.

Wednesday is usually my busiest day of the week and the one day I choose to break from the gym. I typically don't visit mom's place on Wednesday's, either. It was a good, very productive day! I enjoyed a short nap, prepared a really good dinner, and facilitated a couple of wonderful group support calls. It was a perfect Wednesday for me!

I'm headed out very soon to get a good workout, then a visit with mom before heading home to prepare dinner and get ready for my Thursday night support group call.

Our small and exclusive support group is something very special. The work members are doing is life-changing stuff. It's an honor to be a part of it each and every day. I keep it small and I don't advertise it very often. However, I'll mention it now. Our next 8-week session starts on August 14th and 15th. If you're interested in discovering how it works and how it can become one of the tools for your personal daily practice, email me soon. transformation.road@gmail.com We'll likely have only a few open spots on the team.



The "I'm Choosing Change" wristband with "Before Change Chooses Me" imprinted on the inside, will be available from my new website that's coming within a month or so (It's in the design phase)--however, you can get one early if you desire!

Send an email with your request: transformation.road@gmail.com and I'll send you a direct PayPal invoice for the $15 charge and then personally ship yours right away! It's a powerful reminder every single day--connecting us with our "why" as it helps keep a positive measure of awareness and mindfulness in place. It's certainly doing good things for my personal awareness each day.

Thank you for reading and your continued support,
Practice, peace, and calm,
Sean

If you're interested in connecting via social media:
I accept friend requests on MyFitnessPal. My daily food logging diary is set to public.
MFP Username: SeanAAnderson
My Twitter: SeanAAnderson
Facebook: www.facebook.com/seananderson505
Instagram: SeanAAnderson
Also--I'd love you to subscribe to my podcast Transformation Planet! You can find it in Apple Podcasts, in the Google Play store for Android, and listed wherever you find your favorite podcasts! If you haven't listened before, you'll find 20 episodes waiting for you!

Questions or comments? Send an email! transformation.road@gmail.com





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The Daily Diary of a Winning Loser. All rights reserved.