My local shoe warehouse had a pair of tall brown boots that fit this afternoon. A simple statement that may not mean much to you but means a whole lot to me. Boots have been in style for several years but I was unable to find a pair that fit my calves until last year. After a 26 pound weight loss. They were black and had a heel and zipped all the way up to the top just below my knee. Months later it still feels great when I zip them up. If you have never been over weight it may be harder for you to understand the tears that streamed down my face at the shoe store that day.
I am 47 years old, 5 foot 2 (and ¾), and weighed 215 at my heaviest. It is hard to own that number and write that number and share that number. But I am trying to be transparent here in hopes that it strikes a chord with other people who struggle with their weight. According to the experts I need to loose around 70 pounds to meet the weight loss goal they have set for my age and height.
In 2015 I started the year with that goal as my target. From January through May I worked hard to eat healthy, lose weight and exercise several times a week. Experiencing what it felt like to be physically fit was one of my highlights in 2015. The last time I was that (notice past tense) healthy was when I was pregnant with my first daughter. The one who graduated this spring. In the intervening 18 years I have been up and down the scale and had forgotten what it felt like to be healthy.
As a result I had more energy & stamina, better moods & immune system, got more done each day, slept better at night and was in a better frame of mind. I pulled out a tub of clothes in smaller sizes that I had kept for “someday.” And someday had finally arrived. I hit mile markers at my weekly weight loss meeting – a 5% loss & then a 10% loss. More tears came the day I weighed in and was under 200 pounds for the first time in many years.
Summer brought less exercise and poor food choices. By fall I was still making poor food choices and was no longer exercising. The end result was gaining back 16 of those 26 pounds by the end of the year. Which also meant a return to less energy, poor sleep, a compromised immune system and a poorer frame of mind.
So what does all this mean as I head in to the New Year? It means that I get to choose where I place my focus and how I choose to move forward. So I am going to choose to celebrate the 10 pounds I kept off instead of looking at the 16 pounds I gained back. And I am going to move forward thanking God for the gift of experiencing what it felt like to live in a healthier body.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20 says: Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with Your bodies.
Precious Father thank you for the gift of my life and this body. Please forgive me when I take it for granted. Forgive me for not taking better care of your temple. Help me Lord to honor you with my body. Too often I turn to food when I should be turning to you. I am sorry Lord. Thank you for helping me to keep 10 pounds off. And thank you for reminding me what it feels like to be healthy. I give my weight loss journey to you Lord. Amen.