Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Empowered for Living

Well, it's been about 3 weeks since my last post, and it's time for an update.

I don't want this to be about "dieting" or "weight loss" or any of those things, because in my heart I know that each of us can use this as a "fill in the blank" sort of post. It works for "not raising your voice to the kids", "not nagging your husband", and "not spending as much money" just as well as it does "take control of your health". Hmmmm....I guess it's safe to say that all of those aforementioned subjects are things that God has asked me to deal with.

I can happily and gratefully say that what I'm doing is not a "diet" but a lifestyle change and overhaul. And since what I'm dealing with right now is in the "food and what you eat" category, let's just call it what it is, but you feel free to insert your own particular "subject matter". If it was a "diet" I think that I may have fallen by the wayside by now, but it's not. It's a bonafide slapped upside the head sort of "epiphany".

I'm a believer that God's timing can be the make it or break it part of the story. He has His own timing, that I for one, always have trouble with. Call me stubborn, thick headed...whatever...I usually cannot see that His timing is "perfect" until it's in my rear view mirror. Good grief, I've been struggling with my weight for the last 10 years; ever since those pesky heart attacks. Up and down, happy and encouraged; then defeated by medication and a box of Russell Stover chocolates. I'm sure God became a little annoyed at my daily prayer of "please help me lose this weight".

It's often said that "God helps those that help themselves" is a quote from the Bible, but actually it's not. Benjamin Franklin penned that phrase in Poor Richard's Almanac in 1757. Even though it's not a scripture verse, it does have some truth to it. Not in the sense of our salvation, but in our everyday life. God does expect us to work with Him in most areas. I would have liked to wake up some morning after praying my socks off and find that I'd miraculously shed 25 pounds, but in reality I didn't really think that would happen. Guess what...it didn't. God expected me to get myself into the place where I was willing to work with Him. That's when He turns on the "anointing". That "only God can do it" power that He puts on us to accomplish something. In my case I needed His anointing to commit to this change...and stick to it. To just say no to those french fries, chips, and trips to Braum's as an after dinner treat with my husband. All it takes is one "treat" a day to completely mess up the best of intentions. This is not to say that I've been a saint, actually I had a few french fries the other day, but in the middle of my "happy place" I realized that I didn't want to fall off the proverbial wagon. It's just not worth it to me. To look in the mirror and see myself in a positive frame of mind instead of feeling unhappy and defeated...I'll take that over a french fry or chocolate truffle any old day.

I had to make a life decision that I was going to do everything that I could to be healthy, and then trust God that he will do the rest. God sort of gave me the analogy of someone having diabetes and asking God to make them well while the whole time they were eating 3 candy bars a day. He doesn't work that way. God wants to help us, but He asks us to do our own part.

So, what am I doing you ask. Nothing earth shattering. I know there are a lot of great programs out there. Many ask that you order their food, or eat a restricted regimen, but I knew that for me to do this it had to be somewhat flexible and not a bunch of "rules". I'm doing a "shake" meal replacement twice a day and then for dinner eating only a small portion of meat, veggies, or a salad. Basically it's "The Zone" diet but with two shakes a day that are low carbs and high protein, and a snack or two that are also low carbohydrate. (no sugar, no boxed or packaged or processed food except kosher crackers, no starches, just a little fresh or frozen fruit)

It's working, I'm feeling better, mentally and physically and one of the best things is that my chest pain is much better. I know that I might not be able to turn the clock back 10 years with my heart problems, but I DO believe that I can minimize any further issues with heart disease and stop what might have been diabetes that has been crawling around on my family tree. I'm a work in progress and if it takes me the rest of the year to get to my goal weight, well then that's how long it takes. But I know one thing...I'm not going back.

If I can do it, you can do it. Just ask God to lead the way.