Today I am stepping out of my norm…and I won’t really be talking about IBD. Today, the thing on my mind is my weight loss and a revelation that I had.
I have mentioned it in some other posts and I don’t hide the fact that I am one of those overweight people with IBD. When you hear statistics about obesity in America…I am in those statistics. I never saw myself as obese..but my weight told a different tale. I am 5 Foot 8 inches and before my weight loss journey I weighed around 240 lbs. Now I knew I was overweight and had some issues because of it. My blood sugar was high and my cholesterol was high. My Crohn’s Disease was out of control and I was in a flare I just couldn’t control. I knew I had to do something.
One day everything seemed to snap into place. I was starting to get a new outlook on life with my Crohn’s so I decided to take it another step and control my weight. I knew this wasn’t going to be easy. I have been overweight all my life except when I first got sick with IBD. I knew I had to get my weight down to the 160’s so I had a long road ahead of me. The trick to this was finding what would work for me. I have tried eating healthy before (high fiber, whole grains) but that would just anger my CD. The things my tummy liked were white bleached products like white rice and white bread…the unhealthy stuff. So this time around I did some research.
At the end of January of 2012, I went Gluten Free. This was one of the best things I have done in my life for both my health and my Crohn’s. Besides this, I also joined Weight Watchers..for the 3rd time in my life. I swore to myself this would be the last time.
Here it is August 2012 and I have done pretty good. So far I have lost 25 lbs and that is now where the trouble is starting. The gluten-free diet has been trying some days but I have managed to stay on it. The Weight Watchers is another story. One thing they teach you and say you should do every day is track your food. This helps in keeping tack of your daily points for the day. Overall I have enough points right now to keep my satisfied. But lately, I find myself on the weekend skipping the tracking. Needless to say for the past 2 weeks I have gained some weight back.
Now one of the things they asked us is in a meeting was what keeps you motivated. WW has this idea of anchors. You should find something that when you look at it or touch it..it keeps you grounded and remind you why you are doing this. I felt I never needed an anchor. My biggest reason for losing weight was not only my bloodwork..but it was to keep my Crohn’s in check. That is my biggest reason and my main reason to never be overweight again. However, these past two weeks I have pushed that out of my head and ignored my body.
Last night as I travelled home, I reflected on the past couple of weeks. I was trying to figure out why I am self sabotaging myself. I have been doing so well with my journey. And then it hit me. All my life I have been overweight. When I look in the mirror I see a slimmed down version (although still overweight) of myself and I am starting not to recognize him. All I know is being overweight. Since I refuse to be that anymore…what is my life going to be like? How will I survive? Will I be able to maintain that life?
Some of my thoughts were a little irrational but I know they are in my head so I have acknowledged them. Whether the thoughts are rational or not, they are there and affecting me. So I looked into my fear in the eyes. I stared him down. I have been sick for too long and I swore I would get better. So here is this monster with chains in his hands telling me to come with him. Well…not today. You can take those chains and find someone else, because you won’t get me anymore.
I want to be healthy. I want to be in remission. I want to look in a mirror and say “Damn…who is that sexy guy?” For years I have wanted to feel like a skinny person. Well, I am going to get that chance..one day. I know my fears will come back and haunt me probably for the rest of my life. But I am done being overweight. I want to live. I want to enjoy life. I want to be around for a long time.
So, my journey continues. I have hit a fork in the road and a chose a path. So far, it is a clear path. I remember where I am heading and I am back on the yellow bricks again. My companions are by my side to guide me along.
My courage helped me face those dark fears. My brains helped me see those fears for what they were. My heart helped in clearing a path so I can step around the fears. And my little dog was there to lick my face and show me that everything is alright and I can continue on my way home. So I take those first steps again on the long road home. I will get there. It won’t be a short trip and there will be other obstacle. And if any of those obstacles are flying monkies..I am running.
Excellent post, Jeffrey… thanks for sharing your struggle. Your thoughts about self-sabotage really resonate for me. It’s amazing how we not only get used to things being bad, but that we actually get *attached* to them being bad! How, when things start going well, we start insisting that it go back to being bad. Kudos to you for noticing that, and for standing in your word. You said that you wanted to lose weight, and it takes a lot of integrity to keep one’s actions in line with one’s intentions. You should be proud of yourself for pushing through your own resistance.
Thanks. It actually hit me in my meeting on Monday. I was sitting there, just gained weight for 2 weeks straight and my CD was acting up. This is about the time I would throw in the towel and say..enough for now. But I noticed that and said…hell no. Eventually, the CD will get better and I will lose the weight again. Sure enough, I feel better and I think next Monday there will be a weight loss.
Great going Jeff-I know that it’s not easy losing weight and fighting any malady but the most important factor (as I did with giving up smoking almost 30 years ago) is to firmly set your mind to do or not do what you are fighting for.
Being a diabetic is not easy as I have to control my diet all the time and as you know every so often I don’t control it as I should, knowing the outcome if I don’t keep a good control!
Thank you for sharing. It IS a struggle and it’s not easy, but if you make a promise to yourself to never quit, then there is no failure. It’s difficult to fafe the unknown and change can be scary. But it WILL change your life and allow you to be the best part of you.
wow, thank you so much for your honesty. that took a lot of courage:) great post!
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