Friday, March 29, 2013

Why Do I Keep Getting Back In the Car?

Sometimes I wonder why it is that I keep getting in the car to continue my road trip. If I haven’t left yet, then I sometimes dread the long road ahead. If I am only a quarter of the way down the road, then I know I’m closer to my destination, but I’ve still got a long way to go. At the half way point, I realize that there really is no reason to turn around now, because I’ve come this far, midas whale keep going! (OK, obscure reference to a duo that was on The Voice this week, sorry!) But then, something magical happens when I’m about 3/4 through the road trip...I realize that I have put many miles behind me and I have spent hours on the road to get where I am and my final destination is right around the bend. Something else happens, too. It seems like the mileage gods are playing tricks on me by making the miles longer as I get closer to the end. Does anyone else feel that way?

So, here I am, at the crossroads, so to speak, where I am thisclose to my destination, but it seems that someone has put a governor on my car and it is taking me twice as long to go the same distance, than earlier in the journey. I understand that the nearer I am to my goal, the slower the weight comes off. After all, as I understand it, the last 25 lbs. are a bear to take off! And that’s where I stand today, at the last leg of the journey that is the most challenging. So why shouldn’t I just stop here— 122 pounds is a pretty good accomplishment, right? Well, yes it is, but I am not a quitter and I set a goal and I am going to get there! I just have to understand that while I may have been able to drive 90 at the beginning of the trip, I am now limited to drive about 30; but that’s OK, I’m still moving forward.

So, why do I keep getting in the car? Because I’m not through with the road trip yet. I know there are a lot of exciting things awaiting my arrival, so I just have to keep going.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Road Trip Buddies

As I mentioned last time, I had just gotten back from my annual trip up to Atlanta, a trip in which I normally have a traveling companion. Unfortunately, this time, she couldn’t go and I had to go it alone. While I had fun once I made it to Hot’lanta (as always), getting there wasn’t quite as much fun without my car buddy! Now, I’m not writing this to make her feel guilty (because she does read these posts), all I am trying to say is that when you are taking a long journey, it’s best to have someone along for the ride!

I have found that when I tried to do this weight-loss thing on other occasions, my head just wasn’t in it and I really had no one with me that was willing to jump in the car and go! And I feel that is one of the reasons I haven’t been successful until now. When I started this road trip in 2011, I had one person going along with me, however, I’ve noticed that as time has gone on, I have added more people to my passenger list. There are the usual suspects such as my family and life-long friends, but there are also the new friends whom I have met in the WW meetings and also people who have randomly come up to me on the street to tell me they have started their own journey because of me! Wow, that is just overwhelming! I feel like I started this trip by driving a motorcycle and now I have chartered my own personal Greyhound!

Sometimes, it’s hard to think about the pressure that is on me to keep all my passengers happy, but then I remember, that people are doing this for themselves and I am merely the spark that lit their flame. What everyone doesn’t understand— because I don’t really talk about it— is that for all of you who have told me that I have inspired you to join WW or simply get fit and healthy, I use your stories and energy as my own inspiration to continue on. I encourage you to share your stories (with me or with anyone who will listen) because your story of struggle and/or success may just be that spark of inspiration that someone you don’t even know needs to start their own journey. As long as we continue to inspire and be inspired, we will never travel by ourselves again.

Friday, March 8, 2013

The Right Vehicle for Your Road Trip

I know, I know...I’ve been away for awhile! Funny enough, I've been on a few road trips over the last couple of weeks! No, really! First it was a trip to Wisconsin (I don’t suggest visiting in February, unless you like the cold white stuff that falls from the sky!) and then it was on to my annual road trip to Atlanta (wherein I saw more of that white stuff that falls from the sky).

Anyway, I learned a few things on these trips: in order to have fun and stay on track, it is important to have the right tools for the journey. I certainly didn’t pack shorts, flip flops and bathing suits when I was headed to the frozen tundra of Milwaukee, I made sure that I had long pants and a parka (which is something I didn’t even realized I owned). I made the mistake by not taking said parka to Atlanta this year, but it was a lesson learned in that I should be prepared for anything. On the other hand, nothing is a mistake as long as you learn from it, right?

On these two trips, I expected to act like the shark in chummy waters that I mentioned in my last post. But, what I realized about myself, is that while I can let go and have fun, I have also taught myself some good habits along the way and making healthier decisions is based on a feeling of want rather than should (“I want the grilled salmon” instead of “I should have the grilled salmon, but I’d rather have the fried stuff”). Now of course, some decisions were not quite as healthy, but once again, on this program, nothing is off limits! The right tools have helped me make the right decisions.

On the Atlanta leg of my travels, I saw a lot of people who I haven’t seen in a while. And of course, they were all excited for how far I have come on this pilgrimage and I spent a lot of time answering questions and talking about how I’ve been successful. It was while I was having one of these conversations with my friend (I will call her “Crysta”), that I got the inspiration for this post. We were discussing the program and I told her that one of the most important things to do is surround yourself with tools for success. In the road trip of life, you can do everything right, but if you don’t have some sort of vehicle, you aren’t going to get very far! This adventure is no different.

I’ve made no secret as to which vehicle I have chosen to drive, but not everyone shares my taste in transportation, so look around and see what is out there that will help you thrive and be successful in reaching your goal. There are many forms of transportation, and the one that is best is the one at which you succeed. If you try the Ferrari and it doesn’t work, maybe you are a Lamborghini person! Or, maybe you are not a car person at all, maybe your style is more suited to a motorcycle. Just remember that old adage, “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.” The only time you really fail is when you give up. As long as you are moving forward, even at a snail’s pace, you are making progress.