After a bit of sleeping in this morning, I watched some Kitchen Nightmares and some MasterChef. (Apparently, I'm a big Gordon Ramsay fan. Who would have thunk it?) Anyhow, after spontaneously baking and devouring a few Curry Cherry Sugar Cookies that were surprisingly edible, and maybe even delicious. I knew it was time to turn off the food shows and get out of the house. One catch. My knee is still feeling a bit vengeful after my bright idea of taking 5-6 Zumba classes in a 24hr period last week. I ignored it yesterday; that turned out being a bad idea. Today, the gym was out of the question.
Instead, I fluffed my BIG hair, put on my BIG funky earrings, and finished my otherwise plain outfit (green T and denim skirt) with my beloved BIG "London Bag" and set out to run errands; after a quick photo shoot with my cell phone. I couldn't help it. Geez. It felt good. It felt good to be me, BIG, fluffy haired, funky yet shy, and zany me. I didn't hold a grudge with myself for eating those weirdo cookie...okay, cookieS. Neither did I weigh myself to see what damage I may have done as of late. I gave myself the permission to smile and live, which eventually led me to Barnes and Nobles.
Is that the bookstore that's closing? Oh I hope not.
Anyhow, I walked directly to the health and fitness section. LightPages being primarily a fitness related journal, I felt pretty official as I decided that this was market research. It felt better to realize that I truly want to start something, something BIG. Therefore, this was true, not an excuse for spending hours doing anything to do something.
Anyhow, I even took out my little purple notepad, appropriately adorned with the word "LOVE" on the cover. I made note of the covers there in that section. For the most part, I hated what I saw. Yup. I said it. HATED it.
Most of the covers, had these absolutely unrealistic looking thin and/or muscular people on the cover. The subliminal title on them was, "C'mon. Buy this book, so you can look like me." The problem is that we won't. No matter how much weight we lose. Jillian Michaels is Jillian Michaels. Bob Harper is Bob Harper. Jennifer Hudson is Jennifer Hudson. You are YOU. I am me. Not only do we all have different body types, we also have different lifestyles. We have different obligations and different schedules. Okay, okay. Here also is my disclaimer. None of the above is an excuse to remain inactive and unhealthy. It's not an excuse to eat curry cherry sugar cookies all day every day. ;) Point taken? I hopes so.
I also noticed that recipes and diet plans are EVERYWHERE. I mean EVERYWHERE. They were all over the health and fitness section. They even had another section specifically labeled "Diet". In case you needed more, there were two walls of cookbooks. It's amazing to me that cookbooks even sell anymore considering there are blogs (like this one) with recipes, recipe mags at the grocery store, and heck, Google even has a recipe search engine. Yikes. I made note of all of this too.
Somewhere between that section of the bookstore and the business section. (Got to get my marketing fix) it smacked me in the face like a banana cream pie. Seth Godin, modern day marketing genius, says that you should be remarkable and outrageous, so here it goes. I am becoming more and more convinced that the missing ingredient in America's weight loss is simply love. Now let's all hold hands and sing, "Kumbaya". Haha...let's not.
Truthfully though, I dare to believe that my declaration is true. Scare tactics aren't working. The gazillion recipes and diet plans that surround us aren't helping. The peer pressure book covers aren't helping either. I saw a Facebook post the other day about how watching X amount of TV everyday cuts X amount of time off of your life. True story. I read it with my own eyes. Then there was a post about what the inside of your body looks like when you are obese. Eew. Honestly, I didn't even want to see the outsides of my body when I was obese, much less the insides. The pic is circulating quite quickly among fitness bloggers that are working on losing weight.
I don't get it. Call me a rebel, but I don't want to get it. I downright refuse.
Please, oh PLEASE allow me to stand on my soapbox and SCREAM, "Your scare tactics do not work!". If scare tactics worked, we would have been a fit country a long time ago. Stories of our loved ones dying prematurely due to weight related issues would have done it. And when I say "done it", I'm not referring to the lose 20lbs now, gain 25lbs later that I am oh-so guilty of. I'm referring to gaining a whole new lifestyle, a healthy sustainable lifestyle guided by love. There goes that word again. Love makes a difference.
I know that to be true. Love was my first step. Love for God motivates me to do my best to take care of what He has entrusted to me. Love for my husband and the children that we will someday had a lot to do with it. The love for others inspires me to be an example, not of perfection but of possibility. The love of my style empowers me to seek out healthy habits that fits me, and is therefore more sustainable. The love of my body moves me to appreciation even while surrounded by pics of supermodels and fitness buffs. There is so much consequence in that thought, but I'm going to tie everything in by saying this. Remember the mention of my BIG earrings and BIG hair? It's about more than my frizzy curls and retro earrings from my beloved thrift store. It's about appreciating who I am for the woman that God created, appreciating who I am for me. It's appreciating it all, celebrating it all, as I better it. Weight loss is not about changing who you are. You are who God created you to be. He can change us, but that's not what I'm referring to. I'm referring to the fact that you are not going to transform to Jillian Michaels after losing 75lbs. However, you can better yourself by being a 75lb lighter version of yourself. You can have a voice that speaks with the accent of your unique background and experiences.
Maybe that's what God was trying to teach me today. As I seek to start something BIG, along with keeping Christ first in all things, I need to embrace and celebrate the unique voice that He has given me. How's that for remarkable and outrageous?
At the moment I'm sitting in our home office blogging and wondering what's next for me. I quit my job almost 2 weeks ago, but that's probably not a surprise. You may be wondering what's next. In a lot of ways, I am too.
However, this I know. Whether I ever make money off of this or not, I have the passion and thus responsibility to share this with others. Fitness doesn't have to be about the Sargent like commands of boot camps or the isolation of the Biggest Loser. It can be about love. It can be about living, living now, not seeking to live later once the excess weight is gone. I believe reaching and maintaining that healthy weight range is possible. And yes, I still believe Matthew 5:16 is possible. I believe we can be light. This is the message that I hope to share with LightPages, but whether or not I make a sale, I will continue to try to innovate ways to love, encourage, and empower us to keep reaching for our health and fitness goals. I am crazy enough to be fully convinced that we are strong enough, beautiful, and oh-so deserving to live these goals into life.