Tag Archives: choices

Weight Loss, Walking, and Wondering

Tonight I’m wondering about this blog. I knew my journey was inside out weight loss. Not just pounds, but inner stuff, too.

weight loss beginning and endBut the early days focused on the journey to fit back into my skin on the outside, even as you and I had some pretty honest dialogue about how the inside junk fought against the outside journey.

Many of you have hung in there with me in recent posts, which are becoming more and more about those interior places. The questions of the soul, not so much the body. That inside weight loss.

But the reality is we are body, mind, soul, and spirit.

I don’t want to let go of the forward motion of the body even as the focus has lessened as I met my weight loss goals.

The crappy truth is caring for the body isn’t a one-time success story. It’s still that every day journey I knew it would be, those every day choices I knew I’d have to make. I knew it in my head. Now that I’m a year and a half into this gig, I’m walking out the hard reality. Sometimes successfully. Sometimes not.

The thing is, I still need you.

I need the accountability of talking with you about this journey. I need your words spurring me on to stay on the path and not give up my hard-earned ground.

Maybe you need me, too?

Today I almost went back to the Fitness Pal app. I’d allowed myself a five pound range where I felt comfortable so I didn’t freak about every single pound, but I’ve let a few pounds creep on beyond that safe zone.

If I don’t pay attention it will ALL creep back: the old habits, the choices not to walk, the extra slices of pizza and chocolate cake, the hours with books and computers and movies and chats at a coffee shop without the balance of fresh air, sunshine, crunches, leg lifts, and movement.

Today when the novel I’m working on didn’t go so well I grabbed a tiny handful of Rasinets (you know20140715_213922 I’ve got a weakness for those!) but stopped myself and grabbed an apple instead of the rest of the box. It’s a small victory, but it is a victory, and great victories are won that way, one small choice after one small choice.

At lunch I put peaches into a BENew shake instead of giving into all the high calorie left-overs in the refrigerator.

The last two days I also chose to walk when I could have driven and chatted with a best friend while hitting the pavement instead of curling up with the phone in my comfy recliner. Another 6 miles or so of good choices.

Choices that have to continue if I’m going to be healthy and strong. I hope these choices will soon show on the scale. It’s crazy how much easier it is for the number to climb than decrease.

So my friends, even as I know this blog is so many other things, I don’t want to stop talking about the needs of the body as we did at the beginning. God made all of me, not just the parts within where a writer can lose herself. That’s too easy for me to forget.

So here’s my commitment to myself and to you. My goal is to write Weigh-In Wednesdays – a consistent once a week reminder that the journey of health is still important.

Please pray for me, that I won’t lose any more ground, that I can return to and stay in that comfort zone where I promised myself I’d live. That empty nest grief and hospital stays and family pizza nights will not derail me. That I’ll walk, breathe deep, and stay strong.

How about you? Do you need it too? This weekly reminder?

We’ve been in this together for over a year now. Let’s stay the course! I’d love your feedback. What are you doing to keep your body strong? To focus on the goals you continue to strive for? How can we encourage each other on our BENew Journey?

Let’s talk about it,

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On the Outside, Too (Weight Loss Journey Day 72)

It wasn’t the best part . . . great, yes, but the not best.

Today someone who’d seen the picture on my blog of the three stages of Paula asked what I thought was best was about losing weight. He said, “I’m sure your clothes fit better and it’s easier to look in the mirror.”

My mind went immediately to when Sarah told the Facebook world I was working to lose weight. She wrote that she’d watched me take care of my inner Paula but commented that never in her 21 years had she seen me give attention to the outer me.

Talk about convicted! God made me to be a whole person, not just a soul. And while it’s true that “People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” (I Samuel 16:7), it’s also true that I am “fearfully and wonderfully made” on the outside, too. And this weight loss experience, this wandering through the neighborhood in an attempt to shed pounds has given me a new way to connect with God.

walking 1

At the park

I love walking, the sunshine on my face, the blue sky above. I love staring up into the trees. Here I connect with him. I have rambling conversations. I am quiet in my soul, away from distraction, seeking to be attuned to His leading.

walking 2 - Copy

And I sense He is making me strong for a reason. He needs my body lighter, more functional, more energetic for where we are going next. Right after my car accident I was angry because it was so hard for me to read or write in my journal. I’d mostly connected with God that way, the reading of Scripture, the writing of prayers, the listening for His response and recording it. But now I’m grateful He’s revealed Himself in a new way, a way that is connecting the dots between body and soul.

Real Time Update:

January of this year was a continuous picking up of the balls I dropped after the car accident. I felt it was time to return to real life, even though I wasn’t fully functional. It’s now March, and I’m pushing hard, trying to get everything done and still cleaning up messes from things neglected for six months (oh, and then there’s the wedding).

Every day I fight the very real battle for what I wrote about above–the nurturing of my body and spirit. Schedules are demanding. I lose sight of the joy the exercise and the communion of walking brings. Last week I walked about 7 miles, but was only out there twice. This week I’m trying to get outside even if I only have brief time spans to utilize. In two days I walked about 3 and a half miles, not 7, but I didn’t skip my time. My spirit seems to need closer to 3 or 4 miles to truly unwind and commune, but even a mile helps my body and attitude. I need to get out there no matter the time available, but I also need to find those longer, rambling times for my soul.

I’m not perfect at all this. Sometimes taking care of my physical and spiritual self seems overwhelming. I know it’s all about choice. And I’m tryin’.

What About You?

How do you prioritize nurturing your physical and spiritual self?

Weight Loss Journey Day 38

Lord of the rings - CopyAlong with my weight loss journey, I battle to regain my health from the accidents. Today I had another bout with head stuff while I tried to work on a proposal for a new book. Infuriating!!

(if you’re interested in the books I already have out, you can read about them on my author website.)

Still, I must be grateful for the healing I have experienced. There is much to be proud of, hopeful for, thankful about.

This journey to lose weight inside and out is not a one time push. It is a lifestyle change. It’s being willing to care about my health, to look life straight in the face. To prioritize choices that make me stronger.

I will not return to the darkness.

I’m reminded of one afternoon while I laid on my bed listening to an audio book. (It was all I could do for long hours last summer.) I immersed myself in the Lord of the Rings Trilogy. In one scene (which isn’t in the movie) the good guys have just won the great battle. Aragorn waits outside the city gates. He doesn’t want to enter as King until all is done properly. But there are wounded inside, in the healing rooms, who need him. He decides slips into the city under the cover of darkness, cloaked in a plain robe to hide his identity.

He goes to heal, not to rule.

Once there he calls for healing herbs, then lays hands on a wounded friend, drawing out the poison of the darkness. Those who have been closest to the enemy in the battle have the deepest wounds, and only the Healer can bring them back from despair.

I laid there and prayed to Jesus, “Draw out the darkness.”

He has.

Real Time Update:

The deep darkness is gone, but of course life still throws curve balls. The question is what do we do with the sucker punches? Drown them in calories? Climb in bed and pull the covers over our head?

Don’t get me wrong. I think there are times we HAVE to take a break, rest, refuel, heal. But in the normal curve balls of life, what choices heal instead of exacerbate the problem? How is caring for the physical self connected to the healing of the whole?

What Say You?

PS. I had a few people new the to blog the last few days. In case you’re confused, the main section of the blog is a revealing of my weight loss dairy, written about two months ago. The real time update is my commentary from today. (And the pictures on my blog yesterday show a weight loss of between 30 and 35 pounds, not the 20 I talked about in the main part of the blog.)