Who Is Walkerlady?

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I'm the 'Lazy Quilter' who doesn't always take the time to try to achieve perfection. I prefer to enjoy the process of creating instead of agonizing over being perfect. I am 'Walker Lady' who changed my lifestyle and lost over 70 pounds in the process! I wear the hats of a Quilter, Artist, Crafter, Musician, Life Coach, Wife, and Mom, all rolled up into one unique human bean!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Motivation, or Lack-There-Of

For most of this week I have been in a funk, regarding my program. (I hate calling it a 'program' because this is a lifestyle change, not a program!!!) Whatever you call it, I have been in a dark, worrisome frame of mind when thinking about how this is all going to work out. In fact, if I had a suck-o-meter, it would almost be in the red zone.

I am a chronic worrier. According to my husband, I make up 'chit' to worry about! I also suffer bouts of depression, which I think is a normal thing for most humans. My brain will often fill up with such thoughts as:
  • "How long can I keep this up?"
  • "Will I keep doing this 'program' for the rest of my life?"
  • "Will I keep losing weight without changing the way I am eating and exercising right now?"
  • "Will I start gaining weight without changing the way I am eating and exercising right now?"
  • "How will I EVER stay motivated to do this for the rest of my life?"
  • "CAN I do this for the rest of my life?"
  • "Is it ok to eat a bag of rice cakes after 8pm?"
On and on, I can make myself dizzy with worry. To what end? I mean, come on! It will either keep working, or it won't. I AM down over 40 pounds and that is GOOD! If it stops working, I can change things around at THAT time. I don't need to waste so much energy on worrying about the "what-ifs" right now!!!

Why do we beat ourselves up over this stuff? I am so tired of living with a weight problem. It takes up so much time in my life. I obsess over it and then worry about obsessing! If I don't pay attention to it, though, won't I just get fatter again? (What do skinny people obsess about?)

I have a love/hate relationship with the "The Biggest Loser" show on TV. I don't buy into losing 100+ pounds in just a few months. I know I will not workout/exercise for hours and hours a day, for the rest of my life. Their program just seems unrealistic to me. I do watch it though. I watch a lot of shows that talk about weight issues. I also read books about diet, exercise, and motivation. From each, I take nuggets of information. I might find some inspiration or just a simple tip to help me with my quest.

Anyway, this season of "The Biggest Loser" is coming to an end. Last week's episode had the contestants being 'tested' by the trainers. One of the tests had Jillian doing some role playing with the contestants. It really struck a chord with me. Jillian was mimicking all the negative comments the contestants had made to her over past weeks. Some of those comments could have been made by me!
  • I feel like crap.
  • No matter what I do, it isn't good enough.
  • I am always second best.
  • I am selfish for putting SO much time and effort into this.
  • I've lost weight...so what?
The contestants then had to come back with a positive response. They recognized that their past negativity was a form of self-victimization. If you play the victim in all this, it is easy to give up because it is not YOUR fault! It is the fault of your genes. It is the fault of your parents. It is the fault of food companies. It is the fault of your income situation because you don't have enough money to buy yourself a trainer, a gym membership, diet foods, therapy sessions, liposuction, gastric bypass surgery, or whatever you think you cannot have, to make this work!

I've said in a previous post that I knew I would have to do the homework to make things work this time. I hate it! I don't WANT to think about what I am eating every time I put something in my mouth. I don't WANT to think about having to fit in an hour of exercise every day. Until I have that hour done with, I obsess about getting it done. "If I don't get that exercise done now, I might not get it done later!"

Is this what I will become? Forever obsessive about this eating and exercising? How DO skinny folks do it? How DO people who've lost weight and kept it off forever, do it? Are there such people out there, for real? How MANY times do they lose and gain before they conquer fat? I have quit smoking. I have done it several times. I have gone 10 years or more between quitting and starting and quitting again. Is that what I have to look forward to with the weight issues?

Why do we find it SO hard to give ourselves credit for what we HAVE done? In my case, I AM exercising, eating better, and still trying to resolve issues that might have stopped me from success in the past. (whatever that measurement of success ends up to be when I get there) Sometimes we HAVE to be selfish in order to make this work. To take care of ourselves enables us to take care of others. This especially resonates in women who generally are the caretakers of the family. We give and give and give and forget to give to ourselves too!

If you lose motivation, recall WHY you started this all in the first place. ("this all" can be anything you are trying to accomplish) If you lose motivation, write down all the positives you can about what you HAVE done. (easier said than done, but do it!) If you lose motivation, get therapy! ????WHAT!!!!??? Yes, I said therapy. Can't afford it? Neither can I. However, MY therapy is allowing myself to do something I really love doing. I not only allow it, I enjoy it. I wallow in it. I embrace it. I do my fabric therapy and always feel better!

When was the last time you felt exhilarated or happy about something you've done? (It could be something simple like smelling spring flowers or something more elaborate like a ski trip where you zoomed down the mountain on a snowboard.) Now think how you felt when you did this thing in your life that made you smile. Give yourself permission to feel good about something. Feel those positive endorphins rattling through your body. Wrap your arms around these feelings. Look in a mirror and tell that image about whatever this experience was that made you feel so good.

Now notice: What is your body language doing? Are you animated? Are you smiling? Is your body alert? It is hard to be hunched over and all sad when you are talking about a positive experience or feeling! Take this feeling with you as you go about your business. Remember what you have accomplished already! We have to learn to be our own best friend sometimes. The only thing we get from beating ourselves up is bruised and it don't feel good!

I was 'only' down a bit less than a half pound at Saturday's weigh-in. GASP!!! Doesn't that just bite? But you know what? I am giving myself a gold star for hanging in there and as soon as I send this off to blog-land, I am going to do some gardening and plan to go for a short walk later...even though this is my day off. I give myself permission to take Sunday's off and rarely do I just sit and vegetate in the house. See? A lifestyle change really does make changes in my life!


Jaye said...

Perhaps it would be a good idea to go and get a makeover? Haircut, nails, pedicure, facial, so you can see part of the new you? Obviously, this is always you, but treating yourself to some pampering might be the little boost you need to get over the hump.

Sherri said...

You are too sweet Jaye! I am not a hair and nails type of gal, but I DO treat myself to things to keep motivated. Right now I haunt the thrift stores for new and really fun clothes!
Mostly I read and search the web and watch inspirational TV shows to keep motivated. It is a struggle, but I am pleased to say, I am not quitting over it! :)