I know, I know, long time, no see (well, I guess "no write" would be more appropriate). Things have been crazy busy this month. I haven't been able to have my normal routine a lot of days, and now that I finally am able to go back to normal, I'm finding it more difficult than usual. Vacation last week was like a free-for-all food-wise. It was whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted it. And let me tell you, my stomach did not seem to appreciate that one bit. Exercise has been a struggle too. I'm making it to the gym, but now that it's getting so cold outside, it seems to be much easier to stay snuggled in my warm bed than get up at the crack of dawn and go running out in the frozen tundra (okay, not really that cold, but cold enough for me!).
I keep asking myself, "What are you doing?!?" I tell myself to get it together, but I just can't seem to do it. And knowing I'm not doing what I should be doing has made me feel kind of down. However, maybe this morning was a turning point. This is going to sound really random and maybe you'll think I'm crazy for putting stock in a dream. But whatever, it was a really vivid and awesome dream. So in this dream, I was working out with Jillian Michaels (hence the awesome part) and some other random people that I have no idea who they are. But in the dream, like in life right now, I just wasn't feeling it (which sucks, because I always thought if I got to work out with Jillian, I would totally try to kill it). Jillian could tell something was wrong and took me aside. And then I spilled to her everything that was going on (which also is really going on in my life). She said I needed to remember why I was doing this. That it's about more than a number on the scale. She also said that just because I've had some set-backs does not mean that I am a failure. The important thing is that I get back up again. I think there was also some profanity sprinkled in there. Then we hugged, and because my dreams are apparently quite true to life (at least from what I've seen of Jillian), she told me to get my ass back to the gym. I'm sad that that is where the dream ended and I didn't get to find out if I did awesome after that talk.
I woke up then, and weirdly enough, it was 5 AM on the nose, the time I usually go running in the morning. I hadn't set my alarm or anything! So I looked at the clock and feel back asleep. Haha, just kidding! How could I do that after a dream like that? I got up and ventured out into the frozen tundra. Hey, motivation comes in all forms, even in the form of a personal trainer you have only seen in real life one time. And you know what? I already feel better and more like myself. I think I was feeling down because I felt like things were out of control. But things only felt out of control because I was allowing myself to let them be that way. I could choose to take control back at any time. It doesn't have to be a downward spiral back to where I started. So I choose to take control back today.
A key thing that Jillian asks her Biggest Loser contestants is what is their powerful "why"? What is their motivation for eating healthy and exercising? It can never just be "I want to lose 100 lbs" or "I want to wear a bikini". Those kinds of motivations are all well and good, but they are probably not going to get you out of the bed everyday to run on the frozen tundra (can you all tell I am not a fan of the weather lately?). And I think that lately I have gotten too focused on my motivation being that I wanted to lose my last 40 lbs. So when the weight wasn't coming off like it should, my motivation seemed to disappear. That's a prime example of why your primary motivation shouldn't be weight-centered.
It was so easy to be motivated in the beginning. I felt so bad physically and mentally then that I was willing to go through anything to get the weight off. I saw the physical and mental results of my efforts almost every week. So it was easy to keep going, easy to make the necessary sacrifices. But 160 lbs later, I don't see a change every week. The changes come much more slowly. When I look in the mirror now, I don't see a disgusting blob (sorry, but it's how I viewed myself before). And while that's great for my self-esteem to think I look okay now, it becomes much more easy to be complacent. The truth is that while I still need to lose some weight, I look and feel like a pretty normal person now. So I don't feel that desperate need to lose weight so I don't have to worry about stares from other people or getting winded after climbing one flight of stairs.
So what is my motivation now? The main one is that I eat healthy and exercise because it makes me happy and makes me feel like my best self (wow, that sounded like an Oprah thing to say). No, maybe sometimes in the moment (like at 5 AM), I may not be particularly happy to make the healthy choice. But overall, making those choices DOES make me happy. And while losing the actual pounds does contribute to my happiness, it is knowing that I am doing the right thing for my body and mind that really makes me happy. When I don't make the right choice, it definitely affects my mood. I also want to finish what I started. It is almost like a matter of character to me. I think the real measure of a man (or woman) lies in what they do when things get hard. Do they just give up or do they try harder than ever to accomplish their goals? In the past, I have given up. But that is not the person that I am now, that is not the person that I have striven to become. I set a goal for myself 16 months ago, and I refuse to let myself slack off anymore right before the finish line.
I feel like I am in a much better place (metaphorically, of course) this morning than I have been lately. So thanks to dream Jillian Michaels! And also, I guess thanks to my own subconscious! I'm not sure what it says about me that my subconscious apparently decided I needed a come-to-Jesus talk in the form of Jillian Michaels, but hey, whatever works!
Motto for today: