I’m not a perfect dieter. In fact, I am HORRIBLE at it. I can blame a number of reasons for this, but what I’ve found is (finally science is backing me up on this) dieting puts weight ON. The most fattening thing in the world is deprivation. One of my pet peeves is when people say, “Can you eat THAT?” I’m usually not nasty when I respond but can’t promise what’s going on in my head. The truth is that I’m grateful that I can eat anything. I really don’t know what I’d do if my way of eating was dependent on cooking, entertaining, vacationing, business traveling, socializing, girls nights, mini celebrations, or emotions.
I’m a social person. I have two jobs and not a lot of free time. And although I love to cook, I also like to go out and be spontaneous. I can’t blame life’s little happenings on the reason I can’t follow my diet. And I can’t schedule my diet around when I’ll have the least stress or a big event coming up. I can’t schedule the salted caramel shortbread for “after” my diet ends! And that’s it – diets begin and diets have an end date. I don’t want healthy eating to have an end date. I want a life.
Life happens. The little life happenings and the big life happenings – all HAPPEN. Just in the last few months in my life both of my kids have had major medical events happen, a college graduation, two vacations, an air conditioner not working properly (prevents cooking so as not to heat up the house!), date nights, bunco nights, quick getaways to the beach and just some spontaneous “I have nothing in the house to eat” days. And in the past – all of those events would have me going “off” my diet and “on” to whatever was convenient.
But what if – when I stuck to it (my diet) and after an adjustment period – I’d lose weight and feel awesome? Why can’t I continue doing that? It can’t be the plan that’s flawed – it’s perfect – it makes me feel good when I do it. Scientifically proven and I know when I do it – it works great! So it must be me that’s the failure, right? Who’s felt that?
You aren’t a failure. Let me say that again. YOU. ARE. NOT. A. FAILURE.
I don’t care what plan you’re on or you’re not on. I don’t care what you weigh. I don’t care if you have a gazillion excuses. I don’t care if you hate to exercise. I don’t care if you want potato chips for dinner. I don’t care what *blame* you say you own. You’re not a failure. Period.
I had to tell myself those very words many days. I still do sometimes. And although I accept a lot about myself, it doesn’t mean that I get a pass on not making myself the best possible version. (Currently I’m on Marci 8.0.)
I get to work hard IN the crazy life I have. I get to find balance in my indulgences. I get to nourish my body with mostly healthy food and my heart with family and friends.
I learned a lot about myself in the SIX YEARS at goal. Yeah – go me!
*I learned how to control my spaces. *I learned new habits. *I learned what it’s like when a member hugs you SO hard because of their successes. *I learned that I get to hit that restart button EVERY day – sometimes EVERY meal! *I learned that I hate the word “fattening.” *I learned that food isn’t moral – that unless I stole it, I wasn’t “BAD.” *I learned the power of support. *I learned that people from all over the country have my back and I have theirs. *I learned that I can follow my plan differently than thousands of others and it doesn’t make me – or them – wrong. *I learned that there is no food off limits but I can’t have it all at once. *I learned that if someone told me I can’t have something that – other than mushrooms – I’m going to want 10 of it. *I learned that sometimes none is better than one and that sometimes one is better than none.
Celebrate 6 years with me. What have you learned?