Tuesday, February 15, 2011


I'm beginning my second year of keeping track of my food and exercise. The photos are a random selection from the last twelve months. I celebrated, I also grieved, holidayed in Christchurch, visiting the Giant's House with it's Mosaic Sculpture Garden, I walked, fed monarch butterfly caterpillars, fed ourselves and generally enjoyed life. Our kittens are grown up and I often feel like sleeping just as they do much of the time.

My records are kept here. It's an addition to this journal. On Sunday I completed my first year. It's been good for me and I'm cross with myself for not writing this up yesterday. I wrote nothing anywhere. That's a pity because it would have been nice to at least begin my 2nd year of tracking with a post on the first day.

My year of tracking was far from perfect. There are only 243 posts so there were many days I didn't keep my date with my on-line tracker.

It was Sean Anderson who inspired me to keep track of the days. I didn't start keeping this record at the very beginning, which was somewhere around January 15th, although my weight loss efforts go back a long way.

I've been working at controlling/managing my weight for as long as I can remember. That's not quite true. I think I was 18 the first time I determined to lose weight although I was in my healthy weight range at the time and remained so for the next 6 or 7 years. It wasn't until after I had children my weight began to spiral out of control. This became a problem after our second child was born and I was prescribed antidepressants for a time.These had the side effect of weight gain. If only my doctor had warned me.

I remained overweight and yo-yo dieting for years. A combination of circumstances finally overwhelmed me in the early 1990s and here I am today, morbidly obese, in spite of many successful attempts to lose weight.

It's comparatively recent that my mind-set changed. The 'old me,' would go on a 'diet to lose weight.' Now I know "I need to make permanent lifestyle changes." I attribute this change to joining the on-line weight loss community. Here I've found friends. I've found the most amazing support and inspiration. I found people who embrace the low-carb lifestyle. I no longer feel alone. I've found compassion, understanding, intelligence, humour and more. In fact everything I need to make this work for me.

The one thing that keeps catching me out and surprising me is how difficult I find it to manage days when I'm tired or stressed or emotional. I have less resilience, less energy lower resistance than I once had. Maybe this has always been true but I do wish I had the mental and physical energy I once had, say twenty or even ten years ago.

I'd love to just give up. But giving up is not an option and I couldn't live with myself if I gave up.

I refuse to entertain the seemingly easy wa out and negative thoughts. My mother is only 3.5 months from her 96th birthday, (May 5th). I have her genes. I have no desire to live another 20 + years growing fatter and weaker. Mum would not have lived so long except she has been generally healthy and active and merely overweight. I will never be as consistently active as she was and then yet again maybe I am in my own way. We do things differently and I certainly lead a healthier life than Mum ever did, when I am doing things according to my healthy plan. I've never been consistent for long enough to make a real difference.

On reflection I will continue to follow my healthy plan most of the time. I accept that I'm imperfect and I will not always do things right. Better to do something not so well than do nothing.

That's a hard concept for me to accept. I am an absolutist. I dislike doing anything I cannot do perfectly. I'm trying to find a new catchphrase to express this idea. First I need to learn to admire those who do not wait until all their ducks are in a row before they get to work.

I'm at the beginning of another year's adventure, learning to live a healthy lifestyle and maybe I'll grow up a little.


Hippygal said...

We are not perfect but that does not mean we can not succeed :-)

heyduke50 said...

take care of yourself and you will outlive your mum...

Chris H said...

I am sure you will get your head around the healthy eating and exercise and be here for a good many years yet!

Stephanie said...

No one is perfect, but I think you've done a fantastic job, Margieanne. You should give yourself a pat on the back.

Rettakat said...

It took me a long time to really get comfortable with my new motto: Progress, not perfection.

But it's made all the difference in the world. I approached this whole journey in stages, and didn't worry about the later stages, just reminding myself I am making progress. And it has helped tremendously to do it that way.

It's celebrating our progress, not the stuff we still have to work on. Little by little, we will get there!