If your BODY has become a physical barrier in your everyday life, I get it. There were certain chairs and couches I would avoid at the homes of friends and family because I knew how ridiculous I would look trying to get back up if I sat in them. There were (and still are) certain restaurants that I will not frequent because I know that they only have booths with fixed benches - most of which are not made for people of my girth. I’ve missed out on entire vacations because I couldn’t walk comfortably for long periods of time without being out of breath and in pain. Shaving my legs, tying my shoes, cleaning my house, walking up the steps at a movie theater, and trips to the grocery store often required specific effort and modifications.
If your MIND has become an emotional barrier to your everyday life, I get that too. When you are in the throws of a deep battle with your weight, it goes so much deeper than numbers on a scale. I can imagine that losing that winter weight so you can fit into your summer clothes can be frustrating, but staring down the throat of the issues that face someone who needs to lose 50, 75, 100, or 200+ pounds to just be considered normal is downright overwhelming: fear of keeling over from a heart attack, depression over body image or limitations, shame for letting things get so out of hand that you are officially in the “morbidly obese“ category, pressure from well-intentioned loved ones, and the guilt…oh, the guilt. It hurts my heart because I know the feeling of drifting off to sleep for nights on end promising myself that tomorrow will be better. I know the pain associated with binges, with starvation, and with the frustration of having to deny yourself things that other people are allowed to enjoy.
Pretty gloomy post so far, I know. But here is a bright spot (kind of) - you really are a terrible judge of your own character and the worst thing you can do is to act solely on what you believe you can do or feel like doing. Listen to the hokey fitness gurus on TV, your best friend who sees your inner Rocky Balboa, or the Apostle Paul who says you can do all things through Jesus. Your weight may always be a battle that you have to fight, but it doesn’t have to be a battle that defeats you. After losing 130 pounds, I still weigh over three hundred pounds. I have been on a stall for almost 2 months now. I understand the struggle. I still have some limitations. But holy smokes, I have changed my mind. There was a time when if you told me I would've taken my kids to the zoo and walked around for eight hours (even choosing steps over an elevator at one point), I may have laughed at you. But two days ago that is exactly what happened. And it wasn't until the day was almost over that the magnitude of the difference between where I was and where I am hit me.
I look at my journey and can cringe and be sad over where I’ve been, but I see light up ahead and feel proud of where I am -EVEN when I have moments of discouragement and fear.
You can change your body. You really can. But you don’t have to wait for your body to be at goal before you give yourself permission to be happy with where you are at currently. Try to ban the negativity from your inner dialogue and replace it with words and thoughts that inspire you to see that you are capable and worth it. Celebrate and let the victories that seem insignificant sink in. Reward yourself for every little thing.
I know you don't want to hear it for the millionth time, but take it from someone who two years ago might have mentally cursed you if you said it to me - You really do need to start by retraining your brain. In this fight against our weight, it really does begin in the mind.
“And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.” Philippians 4:8