Putting The Cart Back Where It Belongs

I just realized that it’s been slightly more than one year since I started this blog.  Where does the time go?  (Coincidentally, that’s also how I’m feeling about 2016, and about this month.  I can’t believe it’s almost September!)

Looking back at my very first blog post, I ended with these words:

And now, 39 days later, I’ve lost 40 pounds.  Twenty percent of the total I need to lose.  I’m already feeling better, but I’ve got a long way left to go.

But heck, I’m changing my life.  So, technically, I’ve got my whole life left to go.

That’s a good message from a slightly younger version of myself.  I’ve clearly been frustrated with myself, recently.  I don’t feel like I’m making progress, and I don’t feel like I’m putting in the effort I should be putting in.  I’ve started to allow myself to get hung up on arbitrary deadlines and feeling like I should be making some minimum weight loss per week, and I’ve started letting myself slide on the daily tasks I need to accomplish while doing so.  Which, of course, is a fancy way of saying that I’ve put the proverbial cart in front of the horse.

cart-before-the-horse
Really, this doesn’t work as well as you might hope.

Way back when I started this (and it feels way back, even though it’s only been about 13 months since I started my weight loss), I had promised myself that I wouldn’t worry about progress.  It took me decades to put the weight on, and so it was fine if it took some time to get it off.  All I had to worry about, I told myself, was meeting my daily goals.  If I did that, I knew, the weight loss would take care of itself.

I still believe that’s true.  I’ve just gotten… distracted.  So, I’ll let my past self remind myself of what I should be doing:

I’ve worked hard on recasting my motivation.  I’ve put the emphasis on getting healthy, with my actual weight as a scorecard, and I’ve focused my reasons on my wife and my son.

Exactly.  Time to refocus once more.  I’ll still track my weight, obviously, because that’s the scorecard.  But it’s time to remember that the goal is daily walking and exercise, and staying within my calorie budget, and honestly tracking what I eat.  Because the goal isn’t to lose weight.  It’s to change my life.

Losing weight is just a happy side-effect of that.

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