Saturday, December 29, 2012

Perfectly imperfect

There is no way to win the weight game. The minute you tell yourself it's about the weight you walk away from you.  You neglect yourself.  You walk into the arms of this elusive pretender.  You know, the one that keeps promising things will get better if you just eliminate carbs, add more cardio, cut back on portions.  But then what? We're like hamsters on a wheel; were running fast and getting nowhere.  Let me tell you something from experience-it's NOT about the weight. It's never about the weight. 

This holiday season something both terrifying & amazing happened to me. I cut back on exercise a bit.  I ate cookies and dammit I enjoyed them.
 It scared the bejesus out of me. Was I "letting myself go?" Would I balloon up? Were people noticing that I had put on a few pounds? All of these questions haunted me and the thoughts kept racing and racing. Im certain I was driving my friends and family crazy by constantly asking if they noticed. And then I was challenged.  Someone asked me, "Nic, let's say you did put on, what 3 lbs? What if this was the weight you were at for the rest of your life? Would it be so terrible?". A lightbulb went off.  No. No, it wouldn't. 

I am far from perfect. Yes I'm a fitness professional and I pride myself on teaching group fitness classes that show people how enjoyable exercise can be.  I live to touch as many lives as I can through my lifestyle. But I struggle. I eat to fill empty spaces. I restrict to gain control. I eat when I'm happy and sometimes when I'm bored. The reason I tell you this is because it is not about perfection. It is about progress. It's about learning to listen to ourselves.  Physically, emotionally, spiritually.  I have my moments where I really want ice cream. My body wants ice cream. But then my mind gets involved and tries to convince my body that it doesn't NEED (forget want) ice cream. I get into mini wars with myself.  Have something else instead-something "healthier." Well 15 healthier things later and guess what? I should have just had the damn ice cream. So now I listen. I listen to what it is I really want.  When I want chocolate, I have a little. When I want a hot bath, I take one. When I need to vent, I turn to those who listen. When I feel sad, I remember it wont last forever; losing weight wont take the sadness away, only prolong it.   When I search for perfection, I remind myself that I am perfect:my imperfections make me so. The little cellulite on the back of my legs reminds me I'm human. My strong muscular legs, that I have spent years trying to shrink, only remind me of just how much I can squat.  

The voice is still there. The annoying one that creeps in every time food is around.  But I have learned to control the volume. Sometimes I find the mute button and its a treat!   But on those occasions that I can't, I no longer beat myself up for it being present. Instead I tell him to pull up a chair and shut up cause Nicole isn't going anywhere.