Why staying fit and healthy is harder than getting there!

So if you haven’t completed your weight loss journey yet or haven’t started you are probably thinking to yourself, this chick is crazy! I know that all those hours of sweat pouring down my face and muscles hurting so bad it hurt to sit, is much harder than just being fit and healthy. Well, physically that very well may be true. But mentally, it really lacks motivation!

My Journey to get fit lasted a whole year! I wasn’t completely satisfied with the way my body looked and felt until I hit that year mark. Now, it may have been a mental trick. I may have been in shape before then but didn’t realize it or accepted it until that point. Bottom line is for me, it took 365 days of sweat, blood, and many many tears to get where I felt I was considered fit! My clothes finally fit better and I felt like I could tackle just about anything physical.

During this year, there were times where I definitely had more motivation than others. In the beginning I was super motivated. I had my family working out with me and I had pants that where way too tight! I was tired of showing off my fat rolls because all my XL shirts were way too tight and I refused to shop in the plus size section.  It was hard. There were days when I first started that it hurt so bad to get up and walk and I needed to use the handicap bars on the restrooms to lower myself down on the toilet. Days where I felt like my body was going to drop from exhaustion because I pushed myself so hard.

Then there were the days I wanted to quit and give up because it seems like the scales weren’t moving.  The hard work never ended and no matter how many people would tell me  they see a change, I just didn’t.  There were also days I just wanted to be lazy and didn’t want to pop that DVD in and press play. There were some days I didn’t and some that I forced myself to do it. I must say when I forced myself to start, I always felt better about it afterwards. The lazy days only added to my feelings of frustration about not getting anywhere.

There were also days that it seemed like life was totally hectic and there was just no time.  On those days I’d force myself to spend at least 10-30 minutes doing calisthenics in my office.  Push ups, sit ups, squats, calf raises, jumping jacks and running in place. I also stretched a lot. It’s amazing how much a good stretch helped the soreness.  Bottom line, there was no good excuse not to be active. Laziness is not an excuse. It was definitely and obstacle but not an excuse.  As hard as it was to overcome these obstacles and get fit and healthy, I’m finding staying that way a struggle.

Yes, I am thin now. I am physically fit and healthy looking.  I always get those people who see my post on Facebook about working out and tell me, “You look great, you don’t have to work that hard!” Maybe they don’t realize how much work I had to put into myself to look this great. Maybe they don’t realize that I’m not a naturally thin person. I’ve been over weight more of my life than I’ve been thin. Well, almost anyway. My whole adult life! Maybe the weight wouldn’t just come right back on right away but over time, I’d find myself right back in my extra-large clothes and lazy as ever. So I have to continue to eat right and exercise daily. Now, why would I find this hard, I’ve been doing it for so long you’d think it was second nature to me?

While losing weight I had many motivators. The number on the scale going down, the notch in my belt that I kept moving in, the pants that would be too big or the pants I couldn’t fit into that fit. The way the tape measure I used to measure myself always measured a number just a tad smaller.  The elation I felt when a family member or friend commented on my weight loss. All those things would keep me going. I’d strive for the next comment or the next lower number or smaller pant size.

Well, now I am in a size 2 pants and small shirt. I have no desire to go any skinnier.  My weight has also hit my rock bottom lowest number as well. I am not looking for it to drop any more. The number on the tape measure doesn’t change except to grow with my muscle growth. My friends and family are now used to my current size and no longer comment on my success. So what is there to keep me going?

It’s really easy to look at that chocolate bar on the shelf and think to yourself. I’m not trying to lose weight. I can afford to eat this. That extra slice of pizza always looks appetizing as well.  I may and actually have decided that one full flavor, non diet soda won’t hurt me. I may be running late so what will it hurt to run through a drive through and grab a burger.

When I don’t have time to work out it’s an easier out because I just tell myself I can afford to keep the excess calories because I am not trying to lose but maintain. When I just don’t feel like it there isn’t that sense of urgency to lose weight so I just don’t do it.

Sadly if I do both of these on the same day I don’t break even on my calorie intake and before you know it the pounds will start creeping on one at a time.  Some people are lucky enough to never have to work out or diet a day in their lives. I’m not one of those people. And if I let too many workouts slide, if I have one too many indulgences, I’m going to find myself back on the weight loss wagon.  At least then I’ll have a goal to work towards, right?

So while physically it may be harder to lose the weight, mentally its much harder to maintain and keep it off.  That is why you will see me working out daily still and eating right.  Will I treat myself, sure I do. I will just make sure it’s the exception and not the rule.

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