The Final Fifty

{February 22, 2013}   My motto, and how I stay motivated.

I first heard this quote about a year ago. I’m not sure this picture attributes it to the right person, because this quote has been attributed to so many different people, but at any rate, I have found it to be true in most areas of life, particularly when it comes to getting healthy and losing weight. I know *so many* people who want to lose weight. I’m pretty sure we all know more people who want to lose weight than people who are happy with their bodies. But, as it happens, most people are better at making excuses than they are at losing weight.

It’s no wonder, really. We’re evolutionarily-wired to consume as much as we can, and to expend as little effort as possible. It’s maladaptive now, but imagine how well those tendencies have served the human race during ages when food was hard to come by. And how is it to say “I’ll go to the gym tomorrow”, or “I’ll just have some cheesecake tonight and then work extra hard tomorrow”? I know, because I’ve done those things countless times myself. I wish I knew exactly what changed, because if I could bottle it I’d be a millionaire. Maybe my will is stronger than it used to be, because it’s not easy, I’ve just become more stubborn about it.

Part of it is accepting that there’s no way to get there without hard work. There aren’t any shortcuts, not really. Even with surgery, it’s not an easy process, nor is it one that happens immediately or without any unpleasant changes. For me, keeping the stakes and the goals in mind helps a lot. Writing in this blog helps with that. It forces me to think about the ugly things, like the health risks. Diabetes is worse than diet and exercises. I know, I’ve seen my family members deal with it.

The other thing I’ve had to learn is that, while there’s a specific, end of the road sort of goal in my mind, there are actually benefits at lots of small intervals along the road. Every time I lose a percentage of my body weight, my risk of health problems goes down. Every week I make new progress with dance, and can do things I couldn’t do the week prior. There are inches off the body, sizes going down. Every incremental improvement is worthwhile. And if you pay attention, those improvements are happening *all the time*.


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