My therapist and my dietician would tell me that progress in these situations is measured in a circular spiral that trends upward on a graph.
When we as a society try to lose weight we get caught up in the mindset that the only way to measure progress is via the scale. Because of this, the only acceptable measure is a straight line graph that trends upward as more pounds are shed. This is a falsehood and should not hold (pardon the pun) much weight.
So many times, if the scale does not reflect our effort we are completely deflated and discouraged. This can trigger the feelings of inadequacy and cause the cycle of food related anxiety to ramp up and boom you are eating outside of your values again. We need to forgive ourselves and allow some slack in the proverbial blame game.
Over the last eighteen to twenty-four months I have watched just what was described to me happen. I have seen and upward trending circular line that ebbs and flows but overall trends in a positive direction. Does the scale reflect an overwhelming measure of this effort? Probably not by most standards, but that is ok because overall and in the big picture there are many, many more positives happening in my quest to be healthy. Healthy at any weight.
Most of what I have written about up til now has been about the downside of being obese. Really not just obese but living an unhealthy lifestyle outside of my values. The side of the graph that seems to backslide or ebb. But today is different. Today I write about the forward progress, the positive things that are happening in my life.
The last two and half to three weeks have seen me make great strides in my quest to live a fulfilling and healthy lifestyle. I'll start out by saying that over this same period the scale has not moved one inch in either direction. Yet here I am to tell you about the positives that are happening. The small victories that are piling up.
In the past couple of weeks I have found myself really accepting that movement for me on any form is going to come with some aches and pains. Weighing in close to 600 pounds comes with some caveats. What I came to realize is the pain that I used as a reason to not do something isn't really real. That is not to say that I am not sore and don't hurt. All of that is true, I hurt. But I never remember the pain when I set out to do something. If I have to walk any distance I am going to get winded and my foot is going to hurt, there is going to be discomfort. BUT SO FUCKING WHAT!. I am going hurt not doing anything too. So I might as well get out there and just do it. The things I am talking about are the normal things that most people take for granted everyday. When you are encumbered with anxiety and extra physical weight the simplest tasks can seem monumental.
These past weeks have found me moving a lot more and crossing things off my projects list. Oh, and living life, going out for meals and events. Balancing my home responsibilities and the commitments I have made to my wife and others was something that had become very hard for me. I can now see some slack in the tension here.
The proverbial spring in my step and gleam in my eye are starting to return. My energy levels are up and I am eating well and for once feel like my goals are attainable even if they are still not well defined.
All the things that are happening for me are due to all the hard work that I have put into me and the help and support that I am receiving from friends, family, loved ones and support staff.
The scale will never measure these things. It will never measure the small victories that pile up into overall forward progress. The scale will never reflect the smile on your wife's face when she sees you taking on a project around the house, or coming out of your shell and socializing. The scale will never measure the satisfaction and confidence built by living life inside of your values.
But the upward trending spiral line will.....
I've heard it said somewhere "Spiral Out, Keep Going" It's never rang truer for me. Get out there and get after it today. Work on your projects, work on yourself, and forgive yourself the ebbs in your life.
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