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,
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
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! firstname.lastname@example.org