So, I went to the doctor yesterday. Ugh. Not to share too much or anything, but I feel like I got caught with my hand in the cookie jar. I haven't had all the test results come back but what I was able to see yesterday said, "You officially suck at 'living healthy' so you better step it up a notch and face the facts."
In short, lose weight and get exercise... or else.
My less than stellar diet and my lack of regular exercise are only two of things that stand in my way of getting healthier, but they are the two most important things. I could go on and on and convince myself that I just CAN'T make these changes, but I know a lie when I hear one, especially if it is my own. I've been doing very well over the last few weeks at getting into a more regular day and night schedule and also being more productive during my good hours so my bad hours aren't such a big deal. I'd like to think I have made good progress in my recovery. However, I really DO need to continue down the path of Living Better. I can't stop at wanting to. I have to make things happen.
Now, when I speak of "diet" I don't mean one of those "Lose 30 pounds in 30 days" diets. I mean Diet, as in the sum total of what I eat and drink every day. I don't need to find another fad to follow. I need to adjust the way I eat every day, from now on, until whenever. Cutting things out means giving them up for good (or at least until I am able to enjoy them in moderation.) Adding things in means replacing something unhealthy with its much healthier counterpart. It also means making shopping list and budget adjustments to make sure I have the right things on hand so I don't revert back. Eating healthy is more expensive than eating junk, though. I'm not sure how to get the better products for me and still make sure there is enough left over to properly feed the rest of the family. This isn't going to be easy. Sticking with junk food would be much easier and cheaper.
My body is a temple, it's true. Right now it is a temple devoted to the worship of soda and refined, white carbs. Continuing on this way will push me down the road to Type II Diabetes before too much longer. It may be inevitable because of my family history, but I would really like to hold it off as long as I can. By taking care of my body the right way, I will be able to control it much more easily if it ever does come to that point. I really can't delay any longer. I'm living in denial. Drinking cokes won't benefit me at all. Not even one a day, which had been my previous compromise with myself. Deals like that are fine and good unless you COMPLETELY IGNORE THEM. I'm weak willed when it comes to my caffeinated, carbonated deliciousness. And with rice. And bread. And anything baked and sweet. I'm losing before I even get started, here.
So, I have done enough research to know what I should and shouldn't eat and drink. I just need to stick with it. It will be tough, but that will probably be the easier part of my two-step plan. I know I haven't been very honest with myself. I have an embarrassing amount of weight to lose and convincing myself that I can somehow do it by diet only is not going to cut it. I am going to have to find some sort of exercise regimen that won't hurt more than it helps.
Yesterday, my doctor suggested swimming. It is supposedly the best form of exercise for FM sufferers. It is by far much easier on the joints than most other forms of exercise and it packs a bigger punch in the calories burned per minute category. It combines resistance training and cardio into one neat little watery package. So why haven't I already signed up for a pool pass? Yeah, that is a bit more complex.
The first thing that pops into my head is that swimming means SWIMSUITS. I have one that fits already, so that isn't an issue, but putting it on in front of people...now THAT is a problem. Even if I wasn't self conscious of flabby arms and thunder thighs, I would still hate the way I look in a swimsuit. I don't tan well (even when I spend a lot of time outside) so I'm the kind of sickly, pale, white that will blind other people on a sunny day. Summertime at a pool is not very fun for me.
Second, I love the water, but I don't swim well. I can sit all day in the shallow end of a pool, but as soon as I get in deeper than my shoulders, I start to panic. I don't dive, or swim with my face in the water, or swim on my back for very long, or even float very well. There are plenty of reasons why I made it to adulthood without becoming comfortable with these very basic skills, but I won't list them all. It basically comes down to fear of drowning. Once again, I let my fear of something rule my mind and prevent me from possibly enjoying something fulfilling.
The other thing that causes me to hesitate is the financial commitment required. Classes cost money. What if I pay for a membership somewhere and then I never attend? I have a bad history of making plans and not sticking with them and adding the loss of money in there would cause so much guilt, I don't know if I could handle it. On top of that, I have already been promising Tiny Dancer lessons in dance or cheer as soon as we can afford it. I feel guilty going out and paying for underwater aerobics for me without finding a school to send her too, as well. If I can't find a way to pay for one, how can I pay for both?
Ok. I see what I am doing here. I am talking myself out of this again, like I have so many times before. I'm assuming that I won't stick with this. Just because I never have before doesn't mean I can't does it?
Ah. There is the key... CAN'T vs WON'T. Can't means unable. Won't means unwilling. Am I really unable to do this for my health and my family or am I just unwilling to do what I need to because it is easier to be lazy? I have been sick and progressively more overweight for the last SIX YEARS. That is half of my entire marriage. More than half of my younger daughters' lives. Do I want my kids to be raised with me like this as their example and role model? Do I want to keep avoiding events with my husband because I can't fit into the outfits that were made for me before I gained this weight? Do I really want to continue this way? No. Strike that. I DON'T WANT to continue this way. I AM able to make these changes, as long as I use my brain to figure out the smartest and most cost effective way to do it.
Now, where to begin?