"Slow & steady wins the race, right? Years & years (since I was a preteen!) of being on the weight loss/weight gain yo-yo ride has been discouraging & terrible for my overall health & well-being.
I've determined that I don't want to try any sort of weight loss methods that aren't going to have lasting results. I truly, truly want to change the way I think about food, act around food, the way I live. When I look at all the changes I can and/or should make for a healthier lifestyle it is so overwhelming.
My past method has been to jump all in, be really gung ho for a couple weeks (or in my best efforts, a few months) and then not be able to keep it up, make a few mistakes & throw in the towel completely. I've been an all or nothing kind of gal. The problem is, all or nothing doesn't work for me. I can't live that way. I need to ease into things a bit.
So, I've decided I'm going to start slow. I'm going to tackle one goal at a time. And, hopefully I can make some real, lasting changes. My first goal? To stop my night-time snacking. This is by far one of my biggest weaknesses...and honestly I think a lot of my weight gain recently has been because of this area.
And, I've been trying to keep this verse in mind when those night-time cravings hit (and they sure do hit hard!)..."For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love, and of self-discipline." (2 Timothy 1:7). Combining that knowledge & promise along with thinking about how much better I feel when I wake up in the morning without the bloat of night-time eating, I can usually hang on through those cravings. Continuing to pray for the strength in this area!"
This was a post I made on Facebook this week. And, I wanted to record it here so that I'd be able to come back & look at it when I needed to remind myself of my goals.
I actually started with another goal that I didn't mention in this particular post. That first goal was to make it a daily habit to spend time with God...in prayer, in reading His word, in worship. This, has been a really, really hard thing for me over the years. I'm not sure why. But, I go through seasons of hungering for His Word, and then longer seasons of spiritual dryness and spiritual apathy.
I had been in another rather long dry season. Oh, I was still going to church & feeling the presence of God & knowing I wanted more of Him. But, during the week I'd get so caught up in everything that needed done, or distracted by 'more interesting' things...like tv, the internet, etc that I really didn't spend time with God other than to throw out quick prayers now & then or occasionally listen to the Christian radio station. But, it wasn't enough.
I'm not sure what signaled a change in me recently. I guess it began around the time that I joined a group of women who were watching the video series that accompanied the book 'Made to Crave'. I had read about half of the book well over a year ago and came away somewhat discouraged actually. But, I thought maybe I wasn't reading the author's intent properly...and maybe seeing her speak would bring clarity.
The whole premise of the book & the video series is that we have a spiritual yearning & need for God. But, oftentimes we try to fill that spiritual need with other things....in this case, food specifically. I knew this to be true. And, I really felt like my first step at making any changes whatsoever HAD to be making time for God. Before I jumped into any other aspect of lifestyle changes related to healthier eating I HAD to tackle this issue first.
The first thing I did was write down 4 immediate goals...the idea was to tackle one a week. Those were...
1. Time with God each day. Even though the same time of day doesn't always work each day, I wanted to find a portion of time each day where I could read the Word & pray. I also didn't give myself a specific amount of time. I wanted to set easy, simple goals. The fewer parameters I put on myself, the less likely I was to fail. So, some days I've really gotten into my quiet time and have gone half and hour...even up to an hour. Other days it's been less...maybe 10 minutes or so. And, that's ok. I just try to find a time when no-one is around because I like to read the Bible out loud & I like to pray out loud. I find I'm able to concentrate & focus better that way & I find it feels more like I'm really communicating with God instead of it all just being in my head.
2. Night-time snacking. That's the main one I addressed in my Facebook post. But, I didn't feel like I could even begin to start that one until I had #1 under my belt. And, you know what, it hasn't been as difficult as I thought it might be. The first couple nights were rough. Man those cravings hit me hard! But, when I thought about how good I would feel the next morning if I didn't snack I was able to hold on. Also, I've found that having a good book to read instead of just passively watching tv has helped me keep my mind off food.
3. Water. I'm pretty good about drinking water throughout the day. I always have a glass of water sitting on the kitchen counter. But, I want to be more conscious of drinking even more.
4. Movement. I want to do something each day to get my body moving more...whether it be taking a walk, sledding with my boys, playing Wii boxing, dancing. I want to do something to get my heart rate up a bit. Notice I did NOT call it exercise. Exercise sounds so formal and...well, intimidating. But, movement I can do.
So, I'm on items 1 & 2 right now. And, I'm pleased with how it's going. I'm not seeing a change in my weight yet. But, I FEEL better. And, I'm going with that. I'm keeping in mind that the ultimate goal is lasting changes. And to get there, it has to feel natural. For it to feel natural, it will take time.