Here’s a confession, I love food, I’m an emotional eater and I’ve struggled with my weight for as long as I can remember. Before I was married I always had said, ‘when I get married, I don’t want to be one of those people who gain weight and just let myself go!’ I wanted my wedding dress to still fit on our one year anniversary but within four months of being married, Matt and I had both gained 10lbs. When I discovered this in early January I decided that this couldn’t go on any longer, I needed to do something to change before it became 20lbs, so I joined Weight Watchers! The $50 a month to join was a stretch on our newly wed budget but we found ways to make it work. Now, looking back, it was a great three month investment on my health and still continues to be today. Within six weeks I made my goal and then for six weeks I had to maintain my goal, weighing in every week for three months. Now, almost three years later, as a ‘Weight Watchers Lifetime Member’, I weigh in every month for accountability and only once have not been in my goal range (which means I had to pay $19 and go back the following week for another weigh in, which frustrated me enough to never let that happen again!). My wedding dress fit on our first anniversary and I’m confident it would even still fit today!
I’m a big believer in knowing who you are, feeling good in your skin and being healthy. What do I mean by that? I mean that often in life we get way over busy, stuck in a rut, depressed, frustrated, over worked and just don’t have time… Completely losing time for our wellbeing and then we ‘let ourselves go’. Circumstances may happen on the short term but when it becomes a long term thing, I believe our wellbeing begins to suffer, our health suffers and ultimately how we feel suffers. I don’t believe that what the scale says defines who we are whatsoever, but I do think it’s important to take care of ourselves and do our best to maintain good health. From experience, I also believe that feeling good about yourself and maintaining good health/a healthy weight deeply effects our wellbeing.
If this is something you struggle with, here are a few things you can do.
- Recognize it! It’s ok, you’re not alone. According to Forbes, Canada ranks 35 on a 2007 list of fattest countries, with 61.1% of people being overweight or obese. This is a real struggle in our world and big health risk for many today. If you’re not sure if you’re overweight or not, you can check your BMI here.
- Set some SMART goals for yourself:
- Specific – target a specific area for improvement. For example, how you eat, how often you exercise, etc.
- Measurable – quantify or at least suggest an indicator of progress. I need to lose 10lbs, 20lbs, 50lbs (my mom just lost 50lbs and feels great- you can too!)
- Assignable – specify who will do it. You! When?
- Realistic – state what results can realistically be achieved.
- Time-related – specify when the result(s) can be achieved.
- Get accountability: For me, I joined Weight Watchers, which could also work for you or could not. Maybe you need a health coach, a personal trainer or a friend/family member to help you. Accountability for me has been a great way to meet my goals and stay on track… for years now!
My mom has always said, “Daria, if you don’t take care of yourself, no one else will!”. That statement has bugged me a little because I do believe in many ways my friends, family and Matt ‘take care of me’… But reality is if I’m not taking care of myself in making healthy choices, no one else can do it for me. It’s like telling a smoker to quit smoking who doesn’t want to. Some days I need to push myself to go for a run, hit the gym or say no to a meal that isn’t good for me in ways that no one else could influence. After a long, hard day, no one can push me to go for a run on my treadmill, not even Matt. So what I think my mom means is that if I’m not making the choice to take care of my health/myself, no one else can make it for me… and same goes for you!