This series this month on “Why I wrote a book” has forced me to try to distill some of the hard fought lessons that have had the biggest impact on my unending efforts to achieve health and balance. You can’t talk about weight management without talking about food, but I wanted to talk about a different theme: learning to not be miserable.
Reason #3 (for the book): Long-term weight loss isn’t easy, but it need not be a life of deprivation
I recently had my annual physical memorializing the completion of my third year at goal weight. It’s a fact that I’m pretty proud of. Suffice to say, I’m extremely happy about the fact that I’m healthier today than I was when I was in my 30’s. Good blood work, low blood pressure, low resting heart rate, etc. But wait! There’s more! I’m also not too proud to admit a SLIGHT bit of pride over being able to wear clothing intended for thinner people. It almost makes me forget the impending age lines wrapping around my eyes and my rapidly greying hair.
So what horrible price did I have to pay for this treasure trove of benefits? Do I now have to live a loveless life without any joy for eating any more or ever again? Do I wander the earth like one of those ghosts from A Christmas Carol dragging a huge cinder block & chain, moaning my eternal life of deprivation and hunger?
|Just not unrequited love...|
All of the most important lessons I have learned about food have been about how to not live in deprivation. The simple truth is that some food will fill you up while others will leave you wanting for more. The beautiful and incredibly convenient truth is that there are no shortages of good foods that have a crazy combination of 1) being filling, 2) being full of nutritional awesomeness and 3) being low in energy (calories).
Everything I have learned about my current “diet” has been about cheating the devil. I grew up liking to eat a lot of food, and I still like to eat a lot of food. I’ve just learned to do it without the collateral damage to my gut.
This is one of the key messages I wanted to share in the book: if you live in deprivation and hunger, you will almost certainly fly off the wagon. The trick is to find a predictable set of foods, meals and strategies that you can live with. Forever. And happily.
Important announcement redux redux
Don’t forget. Your book purchase helps a kid get a square meal. All of my proceeds go to Share Our Strength. They deserve your money more than I do.