The truth is this: for me to stay healthy (and thinnish), I have to continue making smart food choices, and I need to exercise most, if not all, days. Sadly or not, this is simply the way we are supposed to live and the way we are supposed to treat our bodies. This shouldn't be such a bad thing as I am fully aware of the benefits of taking the healthier path:
- I feel better physically and mentally when I eat right and don't stuff myself
- I feel better mentally when I don't pilfer treats in the middle of the night
- I feel better physically and mentally when I am getting regular exercise. I can't remember a workout that made me feel worse afterward.
- I am improving my odds to live a longer, less sickly life, and hopefully spend as many productive, fun years with my family as is humanly possible.
- Truthfully, I look better in a fit state than in an obese state. There. I said it. I'm not above a little (no snickering please) vanity.
I'm coming on one year at Lifetime, and I have been in fighting shape now for close to two years. I've certainly been in better health over the full course of the 10 years I've been with Weight Watchers than I was pre-WW. I really should have purged myself of dark thoughts by now. Right?
Not so fast. I still am tempted by bad, impure food thoughts. I dream of four pound calzones, stuffed with sausages & onions, drenched with buttery red sauce. My palms get sweaty when I'm around nuts and cheese. I have deep seated lust for ice cream. I fondly reconstruct mental scenarios of my old life, spending every weekend eating mountains of crap (nutritionally speaking) food.
I went to dinner last night with a big crew of friends. They pretty much all ordered whatever the felt like eating, and I had a nice piece of cod. Should I have thrown in the towel and succumbed to a massive piece of fatty red meat, basted in blue cheese sauce?
Is there any hope for me? Am I ultimately doomed? Can I survive maintenance? Is it all just too hard? There are two reasons for me to be optimistic about the future: 1) I'm not really depriving myself and 2) perseverance.
On the point of not depriving:
- My fish was terrifically tasty and satisfying. It was a million miles from a hardship.
- I get plenty to eat. I'm not really physically hungry much anymore, as I've found lots of ways to get lots of bulk eating in without very many calories.
- Exercise is no longer a hardship. It's hard to push yourself while you are in the act, but the after effect is always worth it.
- In other words, the feeling of missing the my old life is purely in my head, and the "truth" in missing it is pretty false.
The point is, that I too have persevered and rose up to challenges many, many times in my life. Perseverance isn't a quality that you develop or an asset that you acquire. It's already there. We are all much stronger than we realize, presuming we don't let the little, misinformed voices in our head tell us we aren't. Did I just admit to having voices in my head? Ugh. Too much self-disclosure again.
Curious how all of you get the bad voices to cease and desist.
BTW, next week's topic at my Weight Watchers meeting is Physical vs. Emotional Hunger. It begs the question: are men emotional eaters? Stay tuned!