Saturday, August 23, 2008

It's Not Just About the 50 Pounds...

Anybody read Lance Armstrong's book, "It's Not About the Bike (My Journey Back to Life)"? You'd be crazy not to. This blog has nothing whatsoever to do with Lance Armstrong, or cancer, or even bike riding, but I think anyone in the world could gain some inspiration from that guy. (Never mind the weird celebrity-dating thing he's got going on now, he was just a regular guy once, in a superman body!) That's where I got the inspiration for my title.

So, here's the thing. I'm 37, I have a wonderful husband who I love dearly, and an incredible just-turned-three year old son who is the best. We have a townhouse that we like in a neighborhood we love, drive decent enough cars, and live the exurbs of a pretty interesting metropolitan area. My husband has a successful career that he finds fulfilling, I have a part time job in my career field that allows me some time at home with my son, plus I have started a new hobby business on the side. So far, so good, right? I even have local family support and lots of good friends. So, as happy as I am, why am I 50 pounds overweight, constantly tired and stressed, and feeling utterly out of control of my life on a daily basis? That is a hard question. I wear an awful lot of hats, and sometimes I feel confused by having so many different identities (mother, professional, wife, individual, friend, businesswoman, etc.) I debated about whether to start one blog or several, and whether to write about my journey as a mother, or about the plans for weight loss, or about the ins and outs of my career and starting a business, but it boils down to this: it's all intertwined.

Each part of what is going on in my life today is strongly impacting the other parts. Much of it I can not control, like the fact that my first career is at a major turning point, and someone at the top is hindering me from being able to take that next step; like the fact that no matter how fantastic a child is, there are tough things to deal with as well as the great stuff; and the fact that starting a business is both a pain in the butt and a little scary. Adding to the problem, I LOVE FOOD that tastes good, especially chocolate. I eat to enjoy taste, and I eat even more to soothe, and I DEFINITELY do not have an appropriate sense of portion control or restraint.

So, here I am, in the midst of a wild roller coaster ride, closing my eyes and even ducking my head down at times. My journey absolutely needs to include a new focus on my health, since that is one of the few things I can completely control and that would have the most positive impact on all areas of my life. This 50 extra pounds I've got on me is the primary obstacle. If I picked up a 50 pound weight right now it would be unpleasantly heavy and difficult to move very far, yet that is what I am toting around all day, every day. No wonder I'm tired! I am letting it slow my metabolism and energy levels, and raise my cholesterol and blood pressure. I just need to find that inner strength to give me confidence, 'cause boy is it easy to fail. And being something of a perfectionist, whenever I start to fail at something I seem to quit trying IMMEDIATELY, 'cause you can't fail if you don't try, right? Well, no, of course that's not how it's supposed to go, but I'm assuming that's the reason I do it. Not a good example to set for the kid, either! When it comes to weight loss/fitness plans, I usually end up picking a monumental day of some sort to start cold turkey, have some small setback within the first day or two, and then say "What the heck, I might as well eat whatever I want since I already blew it!"

This time needs to be different. This time, I can't throw in the towel each time I get tripped up. My kid needs me, my family needs me, and I'm too happy in my life to spend all this time feeling tired and unhappy. This time, I will continue to try through the failures, however frequent or large, to work toward overall success. Every day is a fresh start. I love roller coasters, so it's time to open my eyes and savor the moment!

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