I took a little break from blogging last week because I was struggling so much with staying on track. I didn’t feel like I could sit here and write about what I was doing if I wasn’t actually doing it. Besides, I felt horrible about myself for being weak enough to stop focusing on what I was eating and skipping the gym at the slightest provocation.
Most frustrating for me is that I continued to break promises I’ve made to myself. I wasn’t spending 210 minutes a week at the gym. I wasn’t writing down what I was eating. I wasn’t taking time out to enjoy my meals. I was making my regular rounds of the region’s fast food establishments. Basically, I was right back to where I had started — unhappy and unhealthy and at the end of my rope.
I am the kind of person who goes out of her way to keep promises to others. I hate breaking my word. I have kept plans with friends even when I can’t exactly afford to do so. I have stayed late at work to complete work I promised to my boss.
When it comes to keeping my word to myself, I can rationalize any bad decision. I’ll go to the gym tomorrow. I’ll eat better next week. This is the last time I will eat a triple cheeseburger from Wendy’s.
Here’s the thing: It’s never the last time. Tomorrow will never come. And I have to come to terms with the fact that I am an addict.
I’m not trying to be all dramatic here. And I don’t mean to belittle alcoholics and drug addicts. But I’m addicted to food. I’m addicted to being unhealthy.
It’s killing me, and I don’t care.
But unlike an addiction to alcohol or drugs, how do you avoid food? Even if I can walk right on past the candy aisle at the grocery store, the vending machine at work is calling to me. I buy a bag of almond M&Ms and think … I’ll just eat a couple. I can handle this.
Clearly, I cannot handle it. Even the spectre of kidney dialysis and a possible heart attack hasn’t slowed me down. It’s given me pause. It’s inspired me to eat a little better for a week or two, to make a show of hitting the gym. And then I’m right back to giving in to my addiction.
Apparently, I don’t value myself or my health enough to get serious about getting better. The worst part is that I feel lost and fat and ugly for not doing what seems to come so easily to everyone else. I feel out of control when I have a cabinet full of junk food.
So Tuesday, after another disappointing morning on the Weight Watchers scale, I decided that I need to get serious. I am stronger than food. I value myself enough to want to make the changes I need to make.
I have committed to writing everything I eat down, to sticking to my eating plans and burning some calories at the gym every day. I have committed to focusing on the promised I made myself in January and earlier this month.
It’s too soon to tell whether my work over the past week has paid off. And I can’t guarantee that I won’t head back to all the bad decisions that have gotten me here.
However, I’m trying hard to remember that I need to value myself as much as I value my work and my friends. Otherwise, I won’t be around to keep any promises to anyone.