Monday, March 10, 2014

Just Me

One of my biggest inspirations in my healthy living journey is my mom.

Head over to her blog (Cathy Shows Up) and harass her to tell you her weight-loss story. Essentially, she lost a ton of weight several years ago and now, I think, looks like a completely different person.

(Regardless of weight, though, my mama has always been and will always be the most beautiful woman I know.)

I mean, look at her.
When we were in Michigan for my sister-in-law's baby shower in November, my mom and I talked a lot about healthy living, weight loss, fitness, and nutrition. At one point I asked my mom what jumpstarted her journey, and I will never forget what she said:

"I just realized that if I wanted to lose weight and get healthy, that was on me: no one else was going to do that for me."

That really hit me. We are the ones responsible for our journeys, no one else.

As I've mentioned a bit before, the past year was pretty hard for me, as I was in a relationship that I was so desperately trying to make succeed, a relationship that -- as much as I hate to admit it -- probably should have ended long before it did. (I am so optimistic, though, thinking that things will always work out, and so stubborn, thinking that I will make things work out, even when they are not supposed to.) 

This relationship -- not The Boy himself but rather the relationship as its own entity -- affected my psyche in so many ways. (I want to be very clear in that I do not blame The Boy for any of this: I wish him nothing but the best. He is a great person, but we were not great together.)

First, I was so exhausted, trying everything I could to make something work -- to no avail.  And because it was so exhausting, I literally had no energy left to workout and no energy to cook healthy meals. All of my energy went to salvaging a sinking relationship.

Second, I was so depressed. I seriously thought that I was a failure: if I couldn't get this relationship to work, something that should work easily, everything else was pretty much a bust as well.

Third, I was just so dispirited, and that feeling transferred to other aspects of my life. There were times that I honestly just thought, "What's the point?" in regard to eating well and working out. Much like I felt like I had exhausted all options relationship-wise, I felt like I had tried everything I could in regard to healthy living, and nothing changed. So, why not just watch TV and eat easy, cheap food?

Fourth, I did not necessarily feel the most supported in a healthy lifestyle, which made it even more difficult to maintain. For instance, I would often cook us super healthy, well-balanced meals, and then The Boy would bring a bag of Hot Cheetos to the table. And instead of going for a walk or a bike ride, instead of doing something physical and outdoors and fun, we would do a lot of sitting on the couch and watching TV because he had "been on his feet all day" (because clearly teachers work at desks...).

But, those are all excuses. As my mom said, no one can do it for me, and I am in charge of my own health, my own fitness, my own nutrition.

That is, essentially, why I decided to jump headfirst back into healthy living with the Whole30 challenge. It is a fairly strict nutritional plan that requires the utmost control and dedication, qualities that I feel I have been lacking -- at least in this regard -- lately. While I know that I will not always be as unwaveringly dedicated to Whole30 as I am now, it has been the best jumpstart to a healthy lifestyle, one that I honestly don't think I will stray from much after my 30 days are up.

In addition, the psychological aspect of the program really hit home for me:

Source: Whole30 Timeline
Despite the facade that I may put on at times, I have battled with self-esteem issues pretty much my entire life: I should be doing this, I should be doing that, I can settle for this, I don't deserve that, etc.

But you know what? I do deserve everything that I want, everything that I "should" have. I am important, and I am worth a full commitment.

And, I am capable of transforming my life. I don't "need" a cookie, and I didn't "accidentally" drink that last glass of wine. (This is the tough love piece of Whole30 that I referenced a couple of weeks ago.) Everything is a choice, and the decisions I make are up to no one but me.

That is one of the greatest things that Whole30 has given to me thus far: self-confidence, self-worth, self-efficacy. I am very thankful, and I am looking forward to where this journey takes me in the future.


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  1. You are amazing! Amazing as a friend, teacher, example and person. You DO deserve everything you want and desire from life! I'm inspired reading your blog!! Thank you for being so vulnerable and honest!

    1. Thank you so much, Chandra! It was great talking to you the other night! Miss you!

  2. Great post. You are so I inspiring. Ou are helping me change my life and be the best version of myself. Way to go after what you want! You deserve it all!!

    1. YOU are so inspiring to me. I love you so much, Aly -- I hope you know that. :)