Sunday, March 24, 2013

Before and After: How to Lose and How to Maintain

Who knew that setting an actual goal when it came to fitness that it would make a difference in your life? Seven months later and 65 pounds later, I know that now.

What did it take? A lot of prayer to stay on the right track, exercising even when I did not have a companion to go with me or when I was feeling lazy or tired and sacrificing foods that were my favorites that were not the best foods to put in my mouth. 

Who said I don’t eat?  I eat a balanced diet. I eat a lot but I do not eat everything.  It is crazy to know that food can be a killer of a person.  So what is stopping a person from controlling their eating habits to keep oneself healthy and free from having to be forced to take medicines?  We have all the power in us to decide that I do not need that extra cookie or I can let go of the extra-large soda and drink extra-large water instead.

Am I on a diet?  A diet is any of the foods that you decide to put on your plate. If it is pork chops with potato au gratin every day,  that is your diet. I have a lifestyle that I am maintaining and have been able to keep.  It works for me and that is how I flow through the food business. It is all about portion control, limiting and knowing how to really read those nutritional labels. Habits can easily be broken and where there is the will, there is the way.  In order to change your life you need to change your ways. I did that and hopefully will never go back. It is still a process that requires prayer, as when I started this whole thing. 

Have I reached my goal? My first goal was to keep my body from getting sick which it was and I met that goal.  MY next goal was to try to maintain a workout regime and I actually do workout at least five days a week; maybe even more sometimes.  After I did that, I looked in my draw and saw that I had a shirt in it with tags that I had been keeping for about six years that I have been dying to wear but after gaining all my weight back the last time, it never fit.  I met that goal just recently. Now, I want to maintain and maybe if possible, lose about another 10-15 pounds and I will be exactly where I need to be.  I am in a good place already and very motivated so I think I can do it.  If you think you can, you do. 

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

The Benefits of Choosing Plan B

Ever since my accident, I’ve been seeing things in a slightly different light.

For one, I have come to realize that in everything there is a lesson learned. Even when the situation leaves a person physically drained or to the point of tears, there is a reason why that particular occurrence came and altered our world. I realize now that there should always be a plan B. If I had considered plan B then, what happened could have been prevented. But what can one do after plan A fails? The important thing though is to get your groove back, no matter what.

I can honestly say that confusion hurled at me in every direction. My accident actually started pruning the branches of my sanity a little bit and tears would creep in overtaking the beauty of the smile that God gave me. All the almosts and could haves that could have happened that night pointed me opposite of the direction of the sun. But hey; my life was spared which is the important thing and I’m here another day to celebrate that fact alone.

I am thankful! Family and friends shared with me love that intoxicated my spirit; more helpful than I could have ever imagined.  But it was one comment in particular that left me with a moment of thought.  I was asked about traveling around the city and I explained that I no longer had a car, so would be taking public transportation or walking and the response was, “walking is good for you.” That statement alone created a lasting impression that has changed my life forever.

Not a rain cloud in the sky could have stopped me from deciding at that moment to walk. That was when I took the walking path of the Brooklyn Bridge from Manhattan to Brooklyn and walked about four miles in.  I had always wanted to walk over the bridge and finally, I accomplished it and got time to release all the energy that was baffling me and even got a storm of lyrics that came to my mind from my one-on-one walk with God. I can say that the initial walk helped me to stop showing my hurt over my experience like a display of trophies and instead grasp the Lord’s love and wear it like a royal crown. For what is the profit of crying when a smile can help brighten someone else’s day?  Something learned.

Who knew that walking the Brooklyn Bridge would become my new obsession? In one week, I’ve walked it three times. The last time was a plan B.

See, I was supposed to go to the gym and had packed all my gym things before I'd left for work with the intention of going after work. When I was all set and ready, I realized that I forgot my lock for my locker.  I am not one to carry around bags with me to each machine and settle them down wherever someone is not working out. Good thing I had an alternate plan. 

I still needed to get my workout in. Ever since I started my fitness quest, working out has become a major part of my life and so I try to get some in every day if I am able. I decided to walk and again took the path of the Brooklyn Bridge like the two prior times but this time with the intention of making it to the front door of my house. After seven miles of walking at a nice, steady pace, I made it home safely and beat the rain. How great is that!  

If I had followed through on plan A, it would have been good.  I would have did 20 minutes on the treadmill, 20 minutes on the elliptical machine, 20 minutes on the stationary bike and then I would have walked on the treadmill for about 10, burning about 850 calories or so. But because the alternate plan had to be taken instead, I got to travel and inhale God’s fresh air, walk all-terrain over all the natural inclines the earth has to offer, capture some great images of the beautiful scenery that NYC has to offer and still burn over 600 calories from my 140 minutes of walking. Who could beat that? 

Walking really is good for you and what many do not realize is that not only can it help to bring down that hard to loose belly but just thirty minutes a day of walking can improve your health status. Another thing that people do not realize is that you cannot tell me anything because my energy has increased so much that I am ready to act at every motivational item that is hammered at me. Maybe I’ll do it again soon because it was great.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

At the mouth of death (A Poem)

At the mouth of death
These intoxicating thoughts
Just hit you like a car cruising head-on
Straight into the crushing metals of a truck
All you feel is your percussions rapidly pump
Your eyes opened wide now and reality smashes into you
Maybe the jaws of death weren’t watering for you
And then you consider the head and the tale of the matter
Your mind hurled away and in every direction thoughts scatter
And through it the rain just keeps pouring down faster
So confused you don’t even know how to mix into the next moment’s batter
And you feel numb to the world like frost bit your fingers
while walking gloveless over the Brooklyn Bridge as free as a soul singer
You reached to your destination and are alive knowing you’ve been kept
So blessed and yet still feeling so numb that from life you seem absent
The grip of despair and doubt got a hold of your spirit trying to yank it away
You can let go of God’s unchanging hand or use faith as a weapon to scale his new day
For despite the metals of your heart crushed and left in mountains that pile on
God pulled you out so put on your armor and shield of faith that is stronger than iron
For even though gripped emotionally, you are here in the land of the living
Continue to love, heal, grow and in all you do, be thankful for your blessings