Saturday, May 28, 2011

Where Is Your Starting Point On This Journey of Change?

When you start on a journey, it helps to identify your starting point. This serves as a measure of your progress. The same is true in losing weight and turning your life around. This is not a time to judge ourselves and say how bad things are. This is just a look. There is no condemnation. It is just a snapshot that tells you were you are at this moment.

This snapshot will be three dimensional. We will look at the physical, mental and environment.  In other words, your weight, your thought patterns and words as well as your physical surroundings (where you live)

1. Physical means getting on the scale and looking at what it is telling us. It is not pleasant to  see how much we have gained; however, consider the end of the journey and the pleasure you will feel when you have released all that weight. Notice I said released, that means that you are going to let it go and not find it again. How many of us have lost the pounds and found them again, and again, and again.
2. Mental means  looking at our words and thoughts. They also form a picture of us. What is our self-talk? Do we continually berate or belittle ourselves? Do we ignore the problem and hope it will go away.  Do you make jokes about your weight? Are you that funny fat person who is really crying on the inside? Or can you look at yourself objectively? If you can, then that is what you need to do now. Just listen to your words and your thought patterns for a day or two. Take notes to keep at a record of where you are now.
3. Environmental  means seeing  our surroundings. Do you live in an ordered world where everything is in its place, or is it full of stuff that fills your space?  Just as we put weight on as a protective barrier, we also tend to clutter up our lives with stuff. The question is do we need to let go of some of that stuff. Are you a hoarder? You may not know if you need something, but you want it there, just in case you do. Do you have food in your kitchen cabinets that is outdated, that is unhealthy for you, that is there to sabotage you in those weak moments?  Take a look. If there anything in your home that you have not used in a year or two, that is outdated, broken, no longer a part of your life (even if you were suddenly to get thin again)?  In life, we go through changes. We do not need to continue carrying those things of the past that have no value for us at this stage of the game.  I think you get the picture.
What does your snapshot look like? Mine is not a pretty picture at this new beginning of my life. My weight is 241 pounds, my one-bedroom apartment is crammed with books, computers and boxes. We have five cabinets (three enclosed to hide the stuff), and that is just in the living room-dining room. While I am fairly practical, I find that it is easy to come down hard on myself, I have learned a lot on the first year of this journey to lose weight. I have to simplify my life, to get rid of the clutter, to get rid of the fat, and the bad habits that got me here again. I am writing this blog because I feel that I have turned the corner and that from here on out, I will be letting go of those things no longer necessary in my life. Letting go of my cross stitching was hard, but it needed to be done. I can do this and so can you. We are not in a race, we are on a journey that progresses each day as we take back control of our lives.

What does your picture look like? I would love to hear from you. Remember we are not judging, we are just identifying our starting point. Now that we have identified our starting point, the next step is to look at some of our choices that we make daily. But that is the subject of another blog. I hope to talk to you again next time.

If you have any comments, please share them in the comments section below. Thank you.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Getting Started Again

I am a tax professional and I really love my job. Since last July, I've lost 30 pounds.
Every year from January to April 15, my life is devoted to taxes.  During that time my eating habits go down hill. This year I only gained back six pounds. Not bad after gaining 20 pounds the previous year. So now I'm getting started on my weight loss journey... again. I can do this. It may take longer, it may be slower, but I can do it. Like the moral of the Hare and the Tortoise, "Slow and Steady Wins The Race."
I also learned some things about how to stay on the path.

1. Exercise is important. Before I started my journey, I was a couch potato. I did not get enough exercise. Now I work with a wonderful trainer, Amanda Espinoza twice a week. What a difference it has made in my life.
2. Portion control is essential. I find that I must measure my food. It is really easy to get carried away if I don't.
3. The body, mind and spirit are connected.  I also have excess baggage (mentally and physically) that I need to let go of and I do not intend to find it again.
4. Quality vs Quantity. I'm trying to eat more fruits and vegetables to my diet.

My journey is one of exercise, portion control, and cleaning up the mess. I find that I tent to start things slowly, but gain momentum as I go along. I watch the Biggest Loser Show and while  I want to lose pounds as quickly as many of the contestants do, I am not on the show and I have a life. I am going to dance to my own tune. I will be my own pace setter. I will celebrate my accomplishments and be kind to myself should I falter.

I hope you will join me on your own journey to turn your life around after 60. If you are under 60 more power to you. The sooner you get started the sooner you will finish. Let's Go!

Friday, May 6, 2011

The Way of The Tortoise

The Way of The Tortoise is my way of sharing the struggles and challenges of losing weight, getting organized, downsizing your life and turning your life around after 60.
I'm a semi-retired tax professional and resource consultant.
We're on this journey together, feel free to share your personal challenges via the comments on my blog. 
Looking forward to helping you get your life turned around.