Saturday, July 26, 2014

Here Comes (Half?!) The Bride...

Ok, so maybe half is pushing it a little.  But when I decided to take a walk down Memory Lane (or aisle) the other night to see exactly how things had changed in the last (almost) five years, it kind of felt like something was missing.  Like, the rest of me.  The dress literally fell off and I was a bit dumbfounded.

Cute helper, huh?
It's one thing to know you've lost weight.  It's another to step into who you were and actually feel the difference between your past and your present.

Becoming healthier is simple.  And unbelievably hard.  At the most basic level it's all about eating well and moving your body.  Eat your veggies, your fruits, your lean proteins.  Get off the couch, make your muscles burn, sweat a little (or a lot).

The decision to do it isn't even hard.  Millions of people decide to become healthier, to lose weight, to live better, all the time.  The hard comes in the doing.  The doing is damn hard.

I'm speaking from my own personal experience because I don't know what held you back--what stopped you from the doing.  But I can rattle off excuse after lousy excuse for why I always needed one more day; why I'll wait until after this or that; why it was just too hard.

If anyone had a solution, I was ready with a new problem.

I don't have time to work out.  
-Well you should get up earlier.
I get up so early as it is. And sleep is so important.

I was full of them.  And full of it.  Funny, I could get up to go shopping the day after Thanksgiving, but not to make sure my heart was healthy.  Weird.

Every little excuse boiled down to one little truth:  I didn't want to.  All the "can'ts" were really "don't wannas."  And guess what. I still don't want to get up at the crack of dawn to sweat buckets.  But I do it.  Because I want the end result more than I don't want to work for it.

I'm one of the lucky ones that has to work for it.  And has to work hard.

The best excuses I gave were the ones that compared myself to someone else.  I would get upset that someone else could work out less or eat worse and look better.  Well, kid, thems the breaks.  That's life and no one, no one, said it was fair.

Others will have more time.  Others will have more options.  Others will have more availability, money, genetic favor.  Good for them.  I needed to stop focusing on them and start focusing on me.

Yes, there are people that are going to lose weight twice as fast as I do (my husband--men!), but there are people that will lose it twice as slow.  So, by being upset at someone's quicker victory, it's like I'm saying I'm happy for someone's slower success.  And that's just stupid. This isn't a competition.  (unless your office is a doing a Biggest Loser thing--then, by all means!) This is life.  Building a better one.  One where I can walk up a flight of stairs without feeling like my chest is going to explode.  One where my knees don't hurt from the sheer pressure of my own body weight.

And one where my child sees a lady working out and says, "That's like you, Mommy!"  Because Jack seeing me being healthy, is important.  That whole "do as I say, not as I do" thing?  Good luck making that work with a three year old.  And if he's going to try to be like me, I want to give him something to shoot for.  Someone with strong faith, strong morals, strong relationships, a varied taste in music and mastery of the curtsy lunge.

Who eats.

Lord love me, I'm not going to starve.  I don't drink sweet tea anymore.  And I can't tell you the last time I ate a chicken biscuit.  But I eat.  Until I'm full.  Throughout the day.  Stuff I really enjoy.  Even a cookie or cupcake now and then.  But every day, every meal, is a choice to do better.  Because now, I know better. Thanks, Maya Angelou.

I've learned a lot about myself through this process.  I've learned what I will push myself to do.  Hello, 5 am, daily workouts.  Hello, weight training and all things by the Tone It Up Girls.  And I've learned what is best for my body.  Hello, um, spinach?  Lots of it.  And water.  So much water.

That night standing in my wedding dress, with it's still dirty hemline, I did realize something else.  I may love how things have turned out so far (I am a work in progress, after all), but there is nothing that compares to the happy girl in the pictures from the first time I wore that dress.   She was giddy with love that day.

There was more of me. He loved me like that.  Said forever to that girl.  And he loves me like this.  Not loves me more.  Just loves me.  And that feels good at any size.

If excuses are in your way, find a way around them.

You can do it.
You can do it.
You can do it.

I believe in you.  Now, it's your turn.



  1. Thank you for sharing your story!!! You hit the nail on the head and is exactly what I needed to hear/read to get me going..and to stick with it.

  2. Very well written and moving, Jess! So inspiring and so true in every way! <3