If you are feeling like winter has taken a hold of you and refuses to let go, you are not alone. Every year, in January, on the New Year, during resolution season, I would be the first person in line with my list of big goals. I had a bunch: lose 15 pounds (how??), go to the gym everyday, stop eating sugar and drinking alcohol, get more sleep.
All a little vague, a little large, totally unreasonable for where I was in my life, and frankly, all pretty forgettable.
Lose weight, boot camp everyday, sacrifice my beloved sugar – all in winter?? Forget it. And forget it, I did. All about this time of the year.
Winter happened. Too many cold days, snowstorms and sicknesses just made me want to do nothing but eat sugar, drink wine and slog through what I thought was the worst season of the year. Anything, actually to make me feel better.
And poof, like that, the resolutions were a distant memory and I would land on the first nice day in spring wondering, what the hell happened. Still stuck with my extra holiday weight, beating myself up for not being “good enough”, not doing better, or having more willpower. So many women seemed to make it look so easy. Never gaining a pound, actually being “sensible” with food and being in control.
I spent many years feeling out of control and very dependent on food to make me feel better.
I can feel spring coming, and even after all these years, I still get that conditioned twinge of panic. Warm weather means shorts, bathing suits, exposing myself. It’s a habit from all those years that I imagine will rear its ugly head for the rest of my life.
The difference now though is that I have learned so much about being realistic with goals (setting them in January? Forget it!), my relationship with food and using food to build me up rather than drag me down. Food is now a healing source, that energizes me rather than comforts me emotionally (I know that food can never really do that).
Years ago, after years of going up and down with weight, failed resolutions and three very young babies later (twins and then a third very soon after), I decided to get serious about losing the last of my baby weight – for good. As I was trying to juggle a career, three young children, a household and my exhaustion, something had to give.
It was time for a change and a commitment to myself.
One thing was for sure. I had to know exactly why I was going to make this commitment. I had to have a powerful reason in order to keep going. And actually, I had two. I wanted my energy back so I could happily support all I had in my life – my children, husband, home, and career. I also had a father who died when I was very young. I felt very strongly that I didn’t want an extra 25 pounds to be responsible for any weight-related health issues like diabetes, or heart disease.
In the next post, I will detail out what steps I took to slowly and steadily lose the weight and keep it off, for good. But, for now, if you are feeling that end of winter, going into warm weather panic, here are a couple things to remember right now:
Be Easy On Yourself. I used to believe that when it came to my body and my diet, beating myself up would beat me into submission. It never worked. All it did was make me feel worse about myself and wonder why I couldn’t do it “right”. Even now, the cold winter months can be tough for me. I have good days and some bad, and my first thought now is “you’re doing your best”.
Set A Start Date. Ready to get back on track? Make a date, put it on your calendar, post it to your refrigerator. Spring is a great time to start again – lighter foods, warmer weather, improved energy. As I always say, April is the new January.
You’ve Got This. Are you really ready to make a change to your health? Are you tired of how you feel, or have you had a warning from your doctor? You’ve got it in you to start – and finish, I know you do. Start thinking about your own “why” and keep the focus.
Get Support. It’s hard making changes alone, especially when diving into murky waters. Knowing the real deal on weight loss and getting healthy can be so confusing these days. With your busy life, you need a plan that is easy and doable. If you are ready to begin, check out my EatFree Guided Transformation, a 3-month journey to help you lose weight, gain back your energy and help set your health straight. Click HERE for more information.