Skinny Daily Post

Invincible.

My new health club is not only a nice facility, it’s also situated on a high floor in the building where its located and therefore has lots of sunlight. This week I’ve been able to get out of work early enough so that when I’ve been at the gym, there was still plenty of afternoon sunshine.

In the locker room, where there are lots of mirrors (!) I felt that I looked a little pale and maybe even ‘drawn.’ But once I was out on the main floor of the gym, with the warmer, softer, natural light, I caught a much nicer and more flattering reflection of myself. I was actually pretty amazed. I looked damn good!

As I’ve been writing lately, I got back to goal after a long meandering journey and then almost immediately began having difficulties eating properly to stay at goal. It was a sort of ‘be careful what you wish for’ scenario, and I think my non-productive behavior probably says a lot more about my anxieties than my capabilities.

The thing that was so great about seeing my improved physical shape is that it felt so ‘real’ and so tangible. Sure my clothes fit great and I have more energy when I wake up in the morning. But this newest incentive is something different completely. Its been giving me a lot more motivation, just knowing that every day I have the option of either supporting this new look or not.

On the one hand, it feels somewhat narcissistic for me to be so preoccupied with my reflection. And a lot of societal programming about modesty was not lost on me. So its actually not easy to write this, admitting how happy I am to see my skin tone, my definition … my ABDOMINAL muscles!

On the other hand, one thing I know from years of working with people on weight loss is that something many of us have in common is a failure to believe in the worthiness of our goals. Or put more simply, a lot of us overweight people feel we don’t DESERVE to be thin and look good. Its okay to say we want to be ‘healthy’ or have ‘energy’ but beyond that, our belief system falters.

So I’m going to take my new-found enjoyment of my appearance as a positive sign. The way I see it, if I can look myself over in a full-length mirror and think ‘not bad!’ then I’m beginning to manifest a sense of self-confidence and self-worth that will help me on the journey ahead.

There are many rewards for losing weight and many strategies that we can employ to make ourselves feel good about the process. But this one is new to me, and very compelling. I want to tap into it, channel it, and keep it as a strong positive memory.

And I think I’ll go shopping for a bathing suit this weekend. It couldn’t hurt.

Jonathan.SDP@gmail.com

6 thoughts on “Light of Day

  1. Debbi says:

    Jonathan, this message really resonates with me. I lost a good deal of weight several years ago. I think I was at goal for about five minutes before I started gaining it all back again. It has taken several years of false starts and halfway efforts, but I think hope! I’m on the right track again. Yes, I want good health and more energy, but I do want to look good. And we all deserve that, as well.

  2. Nancy says:

    I try an imagine what it would feel like to be pleased with the way I look in the mirror. I’ve been overweight for 25 years and I’m not sure I remember what it was like to look good. Your post has given me one more reason today to stick with my plan. You wrote about one of the commonalities that we share is a failure to believe in the worthiness of our goals and that we feel we are undeserving. This is so true. I posted last week about my difficulty in believing in myself after so many failures. However, I was thinking about how even sticking with my goals and plans for one day, boosts the belief in myself. So it doesn’t take much. Just a day or too and I feel stronger and more deserving and more worthy. Also, I’m trying to settle these dumb arguments I have with myself over food choices and menu planning. For instance, I went to Costco the other day. I saw a bag of frozen halibut. I looked at the price tag and for about six servings the cost was going to be around $25.00. “Wow”, I said to myself. That’s expensive. That’s not in my budget.” And then, I thought about it. I thought about how much I have spent in the month of February alone on extra food, not just while eating around the dinner table mind you, but while eating in my car after stopping at fast food places nearly every day. Um…I could probably buy four or five bags of that same halibut. My point is that while standing in Costco, I somehow didn’t feel like I was worth the money to eat something healthy that I liked, but in moments of weakness somehow find the money to buy trash food and stuff it down. I’m trying so hard to believe in myself and count myself as “worth it” to spend a little extra money at appopriate times to bring my level of health up and my weight down.

  3. stretchy says:

    I am often “scared straight” by my friends and their yo-yo dieting.
    They lose the first ten, get excited, buy new clothes, then gain twenty.
    then the unworthiness hits. they give up. When I hear them say “My boyfriend doesn’t mind me being fat” I stay silent. I don’t know what to say. They are giving up on themselves.

    When you said it is an OPTION, you are so right, and every day I get up and decide to stick with it. Because I am worth it. I deserve the best nutrition too, as I am aging every day.

    I recently took a dance class. Mirrors everywhere! I saw all of my body flaws… BUT instead of feeling like giving up, I wanted to work harder, firm up areas, while keeping to realistic goals.

    All I can do is opt for fitness and nutrition, and stay focused. It is one day at a time, and not letting bad feelings creep in.

  4. mary jean says:

    When I was in my teens and early 20s I thought I was horrid looking. Looking at pictures of myself then, I see you pretty yourng woman with a curvy cute figure. Now after being morbidly obese for 20 years and on the home stretch of losing the extra weight, I find that most days I love my looks. I am never going to look wonderful naked by any media standards but I have a more accepting nature these days and know I am just fine the way I am. I like looking in the mirror at the gym and seeing my shape and some muscles peeking out. It makes me feel strong and attractive. This is good because my compulsive eating is fueled by poor self regard. This acceptance helps me keep to my goals of healthy eating and moving my body as much as is reasonable. At 50 I feel great and I am looking better and better all the time!! When I started this journey 5 years ago, I never dreamed this was possible for me. Pretty cool!!

  5. SAL says:

    I truly love this site.
    I’ve been wondering how Juju is doing–if you’re reading this, hope you’re taking good care of yourself.

  6. london slimmer says:

    A couple of weeks ago at the gym I saw a young Oriental-looking woman examining herself from all angles in the mirrors in her swimsuit (yes, we have LOTS of mirrors in the changing rooms, too). She was an exquisitely beautiful, delicate-featured, slender-limbed, raven-haired goddess and for a second I thought she was simply admiring her loveliness. She must have weighed 110lbs tops and was beautifully toned. Then I noticed that she was frowning at her reflection and tugging and worrying at some areas on her upper thighs which had the tiniest bit of dimpling. That made me very sad and also gave me a wake-up call. I don’t want to be like that woman, chasing an unattainable ideal of physical perfection, but am going to try to cultivate my native vanity and enjoy and love the body I have!

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