Where Acting Like a Three-Year-Old Gets You

Perhaps I should have really thought this whole blog thing through a little more.  I mean, come on, a post every single day?!  Ugh, it’s day one and I’m already exhausted.  On top of that, I don’t know that starting on a “Weigh-in Wednesday” was the best idea ever.  This is probably going to be my least favorite day of the week and I decided to start here.  But alas, I must not disappoint my fans, opps! Correction, fan.

If you have ever spent any time around toddlers, you are probably familiar with their, “I can do it / let me do it” phase.  This usually happens around three years old and tends to follow the “no” phase.  This is a time when children start to become more self aware and realize that they can do things on their own and take a huge amount of pride in doing things on their own.  As an adult you are usually forced to sit back uncomfortably and then clean up all of their messes (usually juice that never makes it into the cup, even though they INSIST that they can do it) because, let’s be honest, they’re three!!  How much can they really do on their own?!  Nevertheless, this is an important developmental time for children as they learn to assert themselves, test their limits, and give their parents a glimpse of hope that they will not be dependent on them until the ends of time.  For me, this phase started around three and lasted oh, I don’t know, 27 years!

Once I discovered that I could do things on my own, I didn’t see much need in allowing anyone to do anything for me.  I have become a bit of a control freak and I am usually pretty certain that my way is the most logical way; at the very least it is usually the most colorful way.  I even have a tape recording of me, at four-years-old, telling my parents that I can’t feed our dog because, “I’m busy doing something”!  Really?!  Was I in the middle of a heart transplant on the kitchen table?  Was I splitting atoms which would somehow lead to the end of world hunger?  Nope.  I was putting stickers on something and I was, indeed, busy.  I tell you all of this to illustrate to you that I have been a bossy, set in my ways, control freak since I was a child and that is a very difficult mold to break out of.  However, in the last few months I have managed to make the tiniest of cracks in that mold.

My stance on weight loss has been pretty similar; I can do it, let me do it, I don’t need your help.  I have come to discover though that there is a difference between being a “failure” and being someone who knows when it is time to call in the cavalry.  Wars are not won alone, so it was silly of me to think that I could ever win this war alone.  I joined a gym two years ago and went, four times?  It just wasn’t “clicking” for me.  But then I turned 30 and had a serious conversation with myself that went a little like this:

Me: Hey, so do you think you’re ready to lose some weight?

Self:  Meh!

Me:  Right, well I just thought that now would be a good time to figure that out.  I mean, you’re not getting any younger.

Self: So?

Me:  So?!  So?!  Are you serious?  So you’re dad died of a massive heart attack when he was 40.  Three of your grandparents all died of massive heart attacks.  Your two uncles have had heart attacks.  And you’re only living grandparent has had so much heart surgery that they actually consulted the Public Transit Authority to figure out how else they could re-route her arteries to keep her heart going.  So do you think that maybe it’s time that you take this seriously?

Self: Meh!

Trust me, I know how frustrating I can be.  But then one day I was doing what I do best, which is socializing, when I started talking about going to the gym.  One girlfriend, C. mentioned that she had just joined the same gym as me and another girlfriend, D. mentioned that she was thinking about joining that gym.  So….. we concocted a plan where we would all work out together two days a week.

The first day that we went we were filled with excitement and the tiniest bit of trepidation.  We started out slowly by doing some cardio.  We then worked our way up to doing some cardio and hitting their circuit training room.  The first day that we lifted weights, I was fairly certain that we weren’t going to walk out alive.  Who knew that 10 pounds  could be so ridiculously heavy?!  But we did it!  And twice a week, we went back for more.

I started to get discouraged after a few weeks though because I hadn’t lost any weight. I mean, not even half a pound.  Not even water weight.  That is right about the same time though that I took a step back and looked at the situation from a different angle.  Perhaps I had not lost weight but now when the incline on the treadmill drastically increased on it’s own, to keep me in my target heart rate, I stopped yelling, “Help!  Help!  Oh my God, it’s trying to kill me!!!!” I paid attention to how quickly I went from 10 pound weights to 70 and 90 pound weights.  I acknowledged that when a leisurely stroll on the treadmill could get me to my target heart rate in the beginning, I am now forced to walk at a brisk clip on a high incline to reach my target.  So, maybe I haven’t noticed any changes on the outside, but I sure have noticed changes on the inside and I’m sure that’s more important.  After all, last time I checked, my arteries aren’t on the outside.

My overall point is that, where I have failed in the past on my own, I have been successful in the present with help.  I realize that asking for help and support from my friends is doing just as much to increase my inner strength as lifting weights is doing to increase my outer strength.  They are the additional motivation that I have needed.  If I don’t feel like going to the gym, they are the ones texting me with a guilt trip (no where near as good as the ones I give, mind you).  When I was terrified of the ab section of the gym (and my body), they were the ones who encouraged me that it would be “fun-sies”.  They totally lied about that one by the way!  They have made me feel that I shouldn’t be ashamed about needing to lose some pounds, or a lot of pounds for that matter.  They have made me feel that, more than anything else, I am worthy and deserving of a healthy body.  And, while you won’t see me in a bikini anytime soon, at least I am on the right track.

Thank you to the two beautiful ladies who have inspired me to find my own beauty!

In closing: where does acting like a three-year-old get you?  It gets you to 30 years old and overweight with a tendency to miss the cup entirely as you spill your juice on the counter.

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Jamie
    Aug 02, 2012 @ 14:14:58

    Way to take charge of your health, friend.


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