A lady who works out with our awesome group of super-cool 45&Betters, proudly announced after a recent class that she had broken a barrier… For quite a while, she has been working to get her weight below a certain number on the scale and for the first time in decades, she has done it.
She looks great and most importantly, she feels great…”better than I have in years!”
Her announcement generated a big round of high fives and congratulations for all of the healthful choices she has been making, after which our beaming teammate admitted, “I’m so sick of salads!”
Now, if you have been reading this award-winning blog with any regularity, you know what I was thinking. Of course, I didn’t rain on this woman’s parade, but I wanted to ask, “Then why are you eating salad??!!”
But I know why she is eating huge bowlsful of lettuce every day even though she doesn’t want to…because that’s what people on a diet eat.
I am absolutely in favor of salad…I eat heaps of green stuff everyday. And I LOVE it. If I didn’t, I would eat something else that was tasty-to-me and packed with vitamins and minerals.
Why do I care that this lady hates salad?
Because, statistics are grim for people who lose weight quickly. Radical, quick changes rarely end up being life-long. Even though people who make these big changes usually find themselves feeling energetic and experiencing improved health, most of them will revert to their old way of living within 2 years.
I believe it is because most people who take this approach, are running away.
Running away from mirrors and scales and BMI charts. Running away from insults and judgments. Running away from physical pain, weakness, instability, shortness of breath. Running away from feelings of embarrassment and insecurity as well as frustration with their own perceived lack of discipline, willpower or self-control.
Runaways are lost.
They’ve found the courage to leave one miserable place only to find themselves in another miserable place.
They believe that leaving behind their old lives and former selves guarantees that the next stop will surely be better if not downright perfect.
Instead of running away, we need to be running toward something. In fact, even crawling forward at a snail’s pace is better than sprinting into the great unknown.
If your vision of health and happiness includes piles of salad, then eat piles of salad. But you can’t sustain a lifestyle that involves long stretches of hunger, weird eating habits that require you to deny yourself, exercises that you hate or compromises that leave you feeling resentful.
This is a good time to repeat the always-inspiring, never-tiresome ILLM mission:
Becoming healthy and fit is a process
The journey toward building a healthy mind and body
should be undertaken with the same enthusiasm you would have if you were embarking upon the adventure of a lifetime.
Which of course, you are.