A friend of mine says that sometimes when you’re in the picture, it’s hard to see the frame. Well, forget the frame—I couldn’t even see my toes. At that time, One On One Personal Fitness was in its infancy. By day, my husband Doug and I worked with clients helping them to get fitter. Yet, I could hardly make time for myself. Harder on my ego was the fact that I was a fitness trainer and I wasn’t even fit.Why did I stop making time for myself?
I felt guilty—guilty taking time away from my family. Somehow, I thought, “Now that you’re a mom, your needs take a back seat.” That mind set helped me to stay overweight for many years. Like a velvet coffin, I was comfortable. I was comfortable and dead, emotionally. At night, after I put my son to bed, I sat on the couch and I ate to deal with my emotions. We had a struggling business and we were new parents. There was a lot of stress.No one consciously says, “Let me lay on my couch and eat myself into oblivion.” But I used food to medicate or blunt my feelings. Food became my comfort. Maybe it has become your comfort, too?
After I overate, I would beat up on myself, and it became a vicious cycle. If you are struggling, I understand what it’s like to feel defeated and frustrated.Giving up, especially when it comes to losing weight, eating healthily, or making time for working out, becomes an easier and easier thing to do. We get used to letting ourselves down. Eventually, we reach a place where we’ve failed so many times that we really don’t believe that we can ever achieve our goals.
A few tips and questions for you:
1) First, stop beating up on yourself. It keeps the cycle of feeling bad about ourselves, needing to comfort ourselves, eating poorly, feeling bad about what we ate, beating up on ourselves going on and on and on. Get up and try again: You have an opportunity to change—right now. But, it means that you stop running from your truth and that you stop sabotaging you efforts.
2) Why do we self-sabotage despite what we say we want?
A) Maybe you sabotage yourself to keep weight on because then you never have to feel responsible for the choices you’ve made There’s a victim mentality at play. “See it’s not my fault that I’m overweight—it’s my diet that let me down. I’m not responsible.”
B) Is it possible that if you succeeded in truly looking the way you wanted to that people might expect more from you? Perhaps you might expect more from yourself, and what would that mean? I once had a woman look me dead in the eye and say, “If I lost weight, I would leave my husband.”
C) Are you selling yourself a story about what would happen? I’ve had clients share with me that they’re afraid to take weight off because they fear that keeping it off would be too much work. Remember, living a physically active life is the key predictor for keeping weight off.
D) Perhaps you’ve unknowingly chosen to stay overweight because it makes you feel less vulnerable. Have you been using your weight as a shield to keep people or relationships out of your life?
E) Over the years, I’ve learned that many of us sabotage our weight-loss goals because, on some level, we feel we aren’t worthy or good enough. We believe that we don’t deserve it. That line of thinking is another comfortable line of BS (and you know what I really want to say). This line of sabotage is another way we keep ourselves living below our full potential. It’s a way of thinking that keeps us from living our lives, and I’m calling you out on it.
Be brutally honest as you reflect: If you want to lose weight, what are those choices or thoughts that are making it easier for you to keep the weight on? What I know to be true is that when you do reach the goal you’ve set, it’s ten times sweeter than you ever imagined.