I weighed 262 pounds in 2014.
I have a lump in my throat and I’m just typing. Why does a number on a scale define us? Its crazy.
I’m writing this on January 4, 2018 and I weighed in at 181 this morning. And, what I would tell my 262 pound self is don’t get too caught up in the number on the scale.
Funny thing is, 262-pound-Jen would slap 181-pound-Jen for saying that, wondering what my skinny-ass knows about being fat. Mumbling about those crazy CrossFit types as I walk away to go get a Big Mac, fries, pie and Diet Coke to eat in my car driving home.
Apparently I’m the dad from A Christmas Story.
So what’s the difference between the two me’s? No clue. I’m still trying to figure out what changed. I do know that some of it has to do with having the wrong goals.
I thought for so many years that if I could “just lose weight” I would be happy. The problem is, that’s not the end goal. I should have asked myself, what do I want to lose weight for? What is it that I can’t do now, that losing weight will enable me to do? And not only that, but what reason is SO exciting that you will choose healthy habits over unhealthy ones?
I never thought of it that way. I just expected weight loss and looking fabulous were my keys to happiness. And when I started this JenX Journey in 2014, my goal was strictly weight loss.
Thin = Happy. WRONG ANSWER, Pendleton. (That’s me).
But somewhere around my 40-pound mark (a barrier I was unable to break through in previous decades weight loss attempts), it hit me like a ton of bricks. This whole thing was about so much more.
I remember the epiphany so clearly when meeting with my weight loss doctor Dr. Christy (you can find her at jenpendleton.com under About: Cool People & Stuff.) I was sharing with her the recent hiking trip that Mike (the hubs) and I took to the Rocky Mountains. We hiked further in the mountains than we thought we could. That’s when it hit me how little “the number” meant.
I realized that one year ago, I couldn’t have hiked that far.
When we “diet,” its all about this restrictive, process of deprivation and all of the things that we can’t have. I can’t enjoy life. I might as well die now if I can’t eat Dunkin. A process of complete misery.
What I’ve come to finally realize is that you can’t set a goal with the idea that restriction and discipline alone will get you there. It won’t work if its all about the things you can’t have. It has to be about the things you will gain or do as a result of the process. What are the things that you can’t do now that at the end of the journey you CAN?
For me, that was 12-mile hikes in the Rocky Mountains, snow skiing for the first time, tubing with my niece Jovie, ice skating at her birthday party and running a 5K for the first time (and encouraging my family to do one with me).
Those things were my goals, not the scale. The scale going down is just the added benefit of the other goals.
And, I know, I know – one of my goals IS to get to that 100 lb. mark this year. But c’mon, 1) its 100 pounds, how can I NOT? 2) My primary goal is doing an unassisted kipping pull up!
So, what do you want to do that you can’t do now? Think on it.
Until next time,