Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Wednesday Update

Well here I am halfway through the 3rd week. I've stumbled a few days with the exercise but am finding this week easier. Actually I think I'm starting to enjoy it a bit more. Monday was pretty muggy so I switched it up and exercised in the pool for my 1/2 hour. That made a nice change.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

My choice is no choice

Last week was pretty hard. I forced myself to exercise Monday thru Wednesday. By Thursday I convinced myself that it would be one of my days off and I'd workout Saturday Instead. Well we all know where that went.

I prayed, I read, I asked God to show me where I was going wrong. I did my bible study on change and how to make Godly choices. But I still didn't know how to overcome my weakness in choosing unhealthy foods. I was strong one day then completely caved the next. I understand that change comes from a thousand little decisions all in the same direction, but I want victory in my choices.

Then yesterday God answered. My focus was wrong. I was focussing on choosing between different foods or whether to exercise when my choice needed to be no choice. I needed to realize that all choices have already been made. Exercising is NOT optional; eating right is NOT optional. God has blessed me with another day of life and a body that works and I need to honor that by using them to their fullest. Each day I need to strive to be my best and the choice has been made. I made one BIG choice that supersedes the little ones.

So Monday I reveled in the fact I can once again garden and Tuesday night I pushed past my stiff muscles and did my 30 mins on the treadmill. As for my food choices, focussing on my big choice will keep me in line day to day and each day I do that will make the next one easier and more natural.

Thank you Lord for answering my calls and showing me your truth! Be with me and give me strength for today. In Jesus name I pray. Amen.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Monday May 14

I don't really have a title. It's Monday and I want to say its the start of my new life but I'm scared to say that. I've been here before. I know this place. I've prayed before and asked for God's help. So I guess I have to ask myself what's different this time?
What's different is that for the first time I'm thinking different. I realize I've been rejecting God's gifts. He's given me back my health and I need to celebrate that. I need to take care and honor the gifts he's given me.
Thank you Lord. I called out to you with my fears and you gave me understanding. Not only CAN I do this, I WILL do this!!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Chapter 1 Questions - Never Say Diet
What do you want to change and why?

  1. Beyond losing weight, what do you most want to change about your life? I really want to be more self-disciplined. I want to be able to  reflect on each day and know that I strived to be the best I could be
  2. Are you willing to do whatever it takes to see certain areas of your life undergo radical change? If you're not yet willing, what is holding you back? This is a scary question and truthfully I'm afraid I will fail, but I know that this is where God is leading me and I have faith that he will help me through. So my answer has to be YES.
  3.  When in your life have you felt the most hopeless? Are you now ready to move past those scars and never look back? I felt the most hopeless before I accepted Christ. Since then I've had my ups and downs but have never felt like there was no hope the way I did before Christ. For me the question is more am I willing to now take the next step in my growth as a Christian and never look back. Again, my answer has to be YES,
  4. When you gained weight in the past, what factors caused you to lose your focus on health? I think if I am truthful it really comes down to a pattern of laziness and self-indulgence, combined with a sense of  fatality.
  5. Identify 3 reasons or influences from the past that convinced you that you couldn't achieve permanent life change. After considering these reasons, can you now admit that they were merely excuses? I like the wrong type of foods too much, I feel I can't live without them forever. It's easier to just eat what I feel like, we're busy and its hard to cook good meals every night. I deserve to have nights off and that leads to eating the wrong foods. I've always had issues with food, to be slim would mean starving and depriving myself. My weight gain was due to medications and beyond my control. I'm hopeless and just can't permanently lose weight. Yes these are all excuses although the thought of giving up the foods I love is hard. I know I need to get healthy to live the life I want to live,.
  6. Think about the necessity of changing your mind before you change your body. Do you agree that lasting change begins on the inside? As you consider being the best you can be, are you ready to work from the inside out? YES and YES.
  7. A total life change involves your body, mind and spirit. Do you accept the role  that faith plays in the process of changing your life for good? Yes, that is something I have no doubt about and God has brought me to this point so he will not quit until he has perfected the good work that he has started. This is probably the only thought that makes me really hopeful that I can finally change and that this book can help me.
  8. When have you been held back by a fear of failure? Write down your biggest fears in this regard. As you face your fears, can you decide to let them go and give your all to permanent life change? I basically fear failure, that this is just too good to be true and like all the other times, it may be successful for a time but eventually I'll just end up back in the same place I am now. I am fearful of letting myself down again, of feeling like a visible failure to my family, friends and colleagues. I am afraid I can't do it. I remember when I first accepted Christ I had similar fears, that it wouldn't last and I'd fail yet again,. With Christ my faith has never waivered and I recognize the changes he's  brought about in other areas of my life. I know that it's God bringing me to this place and time, and that gives me the courage to stand up to my fears and push past them. Oh, and I'm petrified of the exercise that will be part of the program, but I know I have to just suck it up and strive to be the best I can be. Please Lord, make this work!

Friday, May 11, 2012

The Winds of Change

Yes, the winds of change are blowing through and I have the feeling a storm is brewing.

For a while now, maybe even a year, I've felt that God is leading and preparing me for a period of challenge and growth. Actually as I reflect, it goes back to 2010 and my 50th birthday. Not long after I turned 50 it was like my body fell apart. I had constant pain in one area or another. As time went on it got so bad I could barely walk or turn over in bed. I had difficulty getting out of bed and doing the things I loved. For a while it was my arms & shoulders, then my foot, and finally it hit my right wrist to the point I could barely use my hand.

Around the same time, I got my new Kindle. When exploring what it could do, I went to Amazon to look for books to buy. It had one suggestion - Made to Crave by Lysa Terkurst. Now I had never purchased anything on nor had I ever heard of this author. It was a book promoting a godly approach to weight loss. Well I knew I needed to lose weight and I also knew that it was God's way of telling me that book was for me.

Well I bought the book and sort of read it, it made sense to me but I never really made any attempt at serious weight loss. But what it did to was to point me to Proverbs 31, a Christian woman's web site. From there I joined an online prayer group for women 50+. God's answer to my prayer for feminine fellowship and prayer partners. I have been a part of that group for almost a year now.

While dealing with my ongoing health issues, I was pleading with God to understand what was going on. What was it that I was missing. Then the answer came. God showed me that he had made all these provisions and had provided blessings that I was rejecting. I have all kinds of medical insurance through work but rather than reach out for help, I was scorning God's blessings. So I started off going for massage therapy. That helped one are but the pain just moved somewhere else..

Derek suggested that I try seeing a chiropractor. I'd heard some horror stories and where would I even start. Through a series of events God directed me to a doctor and broke through my skepticism to make it clear that this was where he was guiding me. After about 6 months,, the damage in my neck has reversed itself, I am pain free in my shoulders, arms and pretty much pain free in my neck and lower back. My headaches have decreased dramatically. Then the pain moved to my hand. Okay Lord, where are you leading me now?

The next step on the journey was to a naturopath. Again he led me to the right one. And she found all kinds of issues. Somehow I think we've just touched on the surface. And all the solutions so far revolve around my diet. Great - one of my most challenging areas so far I haven't made much progress except to convince myself that this is what needs to change.

A month or so ago, Derek and I decided to start a bible study by James McDonald on Godly change. So that's where this finds me - almost half way through that study. God is calling me to address the following areas:
  • my lack of self-discipline
  • my lack of self-restraint
  • my tendency to self-indulgence
There are 3 areas he's made it clear I have to address - my laziness around the house, my spending habits and my lack of discipline and self-indulgence when it comes to food. Ouch. I know he's calling me to clean up my diet and get serious about  exercising more. I know that the only way I can change is if God changes me. He starts on the inside when I ask for help and I have to partner with him if I want the change to be permanent. This is what I've learned so far in the change bible study.

So I know what I have to work on but where do I start? I remember Lysa's book Made to Crave and figure that's a good start. The problem is her book is a support to whatever diet plan you choose to follow, but I don't have a diet plan. I know I need some sort of plan. Counting calories doesn't work; Weight Watchers doesn't work, so what should be my plan. I've prayed about it, I've asked Derek about it, but until today there was no answer except to point out what doesn't work.

Today, I get to work early to get a parking spot in the good lot, and have time to spare so I decide to start re-reading Lysa's book. I read the first chapter and decide to see if she has a podcast. She doesn't but itunes suggests this book called Never Say Diet by some woman who was 350 lbs and now runs marathons. Well it was pretty strange how this just suddenly came up and in my gut I knew it was God. But I don't weight that much and I certainly have no interest in running marathons. The other kicker was that the brief reviews I saw seemed to emphasize exercise. Yuck!! But in my heart I knew God had pointed me here. Okay, I'll investigate more. And then I found it - her approach is to change your brain, change from the inside and that will lead to the change in diet and fitness, and she is a Christian emphasizing the need to partner with God.  The winds are  howling...

Tonight after work I bought the book, stopped at Chapters on the way home and read the introduction and first chapter. In the first chapter, Chantel talks about how God told her "You're not being the best you can be". Well God told me that tonight too. I was in tears driving home because I know that I'm also not being the best I can be, and I want to be. I don't want to be anything less.

Mom is coming over tomorrow for Mother's Day weekend and the house is a mess. I know Derek has been stressed about it, plus the pool guys are coming to open the pool. I had promised him that I would help him clean Friday night. Normally I promise with the best intentions but if I'm honest cleaning is a big chore and generally I do only what I have to. Tonight I knew I had to do the best I could do. I realized that I owe it to Derek, I owe it to Jesus and I owe it to myself. I have to say I amazed myself and it is obvious God gave me the strength I needed. I cleaned the whole kitchen including the small appliances, I reorganized 2 of the cupboards, unloaded and loaded the dishwasher, cleaned both bathrooms, all before 10 pm. Derek was pretty amazed and commented several times what a relief it was for him. He says he's feeling much less stressed about tomorrow. I feel great and have a true sense of accomplishment. My foot and lower back is sore, I'm tired and there were several times when I was really aware of my weight hindering my progress, but I really feel despite all that I actually consciously strived to be the best I could be at the tasks I set before myself.

Bring on tomorrow, I have a few errands and plan to pick up a sports bra because I know I'm about to start exercising and I have to commit to striving to give it my best.

If Christ was willing to die for me, I owe it to him to try to do the very best I can., I want to start aiming to be the best I can be.