At the start of each year one of the biggest resolutions made by people around the world is in regards to their health. Whether it is to diet, workout more, or lose a certain amount of weight – people overwhelmingly make resolutions to get healthy. I’m one of those. The beginning of a new year gives you the feeling that anything is possible, so it’s the perfect time to make a change and become better. Sadly, most of the time those resolutions – just like all of the other resolutions made – fall by the wayside.
That is something I’ve thought a lot about over the past year. When I decided to go on this journey, it wasn’t at the beginning of the year. It wasn’t a resolution. I walked into PHC Weight Loss on some random day last March and began the program on some obscure day in April. It wasn’t at the start of a new year or even a new month for that matter. It was when I was ready. I think that was my key.
There is a difference between wanting to get healthy and being ready to get healthy. When it comes right down to it, as much as this journey is about eating the right things it is also about being mentally ready for the struggle because let me tell you – the journey is a mind trip!
It’s easy when you get started to eat the right things, but how long does it last? A day? Two? Maybe a week? A month if you’re lucky? You’ve got to be ready for the struggles, and you have to decide that no matter what – you want this!
If you’ve ever had the occasion to tour Television Park, you’ve probably seen what we fondly refer to as the dinner table in the middle of the newsroom. When we moved into the building the idea was for us to be able to gather around it to discuss what stories would be covered over the course of the day. What the table has actually become is a buffet of desserts, donuts, and countless other snacks. On occasion you’ll find some veggies or fruit there, but that is rare.
I also work in a building where not one, but two cooking shows are produced and recorded. Yes, we have a functioning kitchen which is utilized almost weekly. There are some wonderful treats that come out of that studio, and we often get the pleasure of sampling the latest concoctions.
When I started my journey, I didn’t really think about the things that would be struggles. Meals were really easy enough, and before I started I made sure to rid my cabinets of things I would consider “no no’s”. There are times when you don’t have control as to what is around you, though, and I had to learn to deal with that. I had to learn to say “no thank you” when one of my directors would bring me a goodie from one of the cooking shows. I had to figure out how to eat at a catered baby shower and station sponsored event.
Each time I was faced – and am still faced – with one of those things I think to myself, “How much do I want that? Is it worth it?” Most of the time I find that I can walk away, because I don’t really want it, I just want it because it’s there and everyone else is snacking. And, at the end of the day, getting the thrill out of seeing the numbers go down on the scale during one of my weigh-ins is worth more than having that donut that I would inevitably feel guilty about later.
Here’s the deal, though, and this is important – I can do that because I want this. I want to make a change for the better for myself. That is where the mind thing comes into play. Until a person decides that they truly want to change their lifestyle, no amount of diets will work. You have to truly want it. You have to want it enough to fight the temptation.
I’m not going to sit here and say that I’m perfect. Believe me. I have treats, but I’ve learned how to handle it. One example that I’m proud of is from last year’s vacation. I spent a week in Richmond, Virginia with my dad. Spending that week with him meant a lot of eating out, but I made a decision. If I was going to splurge during one meal, I’d keep the day in check. One day, for example, I knew we were going to The Cheesecake Factory. Lets be real – I was having a piece of cheesecake. That meant, however, that breakfast and lunch were kept in check. That following Monday when I went for my weigh-in, I hadn’t lost, but I hadn’t gained either.
This journey I am on can be exhausting. There are times that I want to “eat like a normal person”. What I’m learning to accept is that this is my new normal. I have my fettuccini alfredo and that cupcake but not as often. This is a journey to a new place, what I believe is a better place. And I want to get there. I want it enough to skip the coconut cream pie that has been staring at me from the dinner table today.