When I was a small child having dinner at my Grandma’s house, my Grandpa would tell me “clean your plate so your grandma doesn’t have to wash it”. I loved my grandma so I ate every morsel. When I was a teenager, my dad would always tell me “you’re a fishing pole with ears, finish your dinner”. Not that the situation I find myself in years later is anyone’s fault but my own, it’s just sometimes, when you look up to someone, what they say matters.
Considering the “Final Frontier”
Writing about this isn’t an easy task. Going back to a place you don’t want to go is hard, even if it’s only been a year. January 2014 let’s start there. That New Year’s Eve brought frustration. I didn’t bother to make another resolution since every other year I made the promise to lose weight and get healthy… And I just got heavier and felt worse. I remember having a conversation at one of our office get-togethers about weight–I ended up becoming so depressed, I called my doctor the next day and asked how I could qualify for weight loss surgery (The Final Frontier). I saw doctors, took tests, met with a Psychiatrist, attended OA, and spoke with other women who had been through bariatric surgery. I learned that, as with everything in life, this too would come with a price. That price would remove 90% of my stomach. Sign me up.
I was approved for surgery on June 16, 2014. My last obstacle was to lose 25 pounds. After that, I was home free. So the “fat girl” in my head made a deal with me–after the 4th of July I would really get serious about taking off the lbs.
Enter, Little Bracelet
As fate would have it, our company was exploring employee wellness initiatives around the same time. At our monthly all-company meeting, we were introduced to JAWBONE. (For those, unfamiliar, as I was at the time, Jawbone bracelets are essentially snazzy activity and sleep trackers that sync data over Bluetooth to your mobile device.) July 23rd, 2014, I received my own Jawbone bracelet and a new path. I wrote on my office calendar, “Let’s give it a try, put on Jawbone.”
My “Ah-Hah” Moment
Have you ever experienced a split second in time in which everything changed? The “A-Ha” moment when the proverbial light bulb appears? Mine happened during one of my first Jawbone-inspired lunchtime walks, just days after receiving it. As I walked my way around this beautiful city by the bay (San Francisco, that is), I realized I had all the tools I needed to take control of my life. I had my Jawbone, my IPod, a comfortable pair of sneakers, and my new found UP App formula (see rule #3). It was at that moment I knew, I was on my way to a better me. And it felt good!
There is no secret to it. Just three easy rules to live by;
- Wear my Jawbone 24/7.
- If you can take even one extra step, do it every time.
- Eat 500 less calories than you burn in a day.
6 months, 42 pounds, and over 1.5 million steps later…
I feel energized at the start of this new year.
I haven’t really changed the way I do things. It’s the doing things that has changed the way I think. Take today for an example the recent MLK Holiday– the Bart parking garage was almost empty. I finally had the chance to park in a “prime” space, snagged usually by those who catch the first morning train. But living by “the rules”, I still parked in the most distant stall possible and walked past empty stall after empty stall. (Rule #2 in effect.)
The eating part started getting easier, and I was pleasantly surprised to realize there was a perk to being active throughout the day. My cravings were actually decreasing and overall appetite was decreasing. I realized that whatever my body was telling my brain seemed to work. I crave activity more than food. Who’d a thunk it?
I took my name off the “pending weight loss surgery” list after losing the 25 pounds. It is the second best life-changing decision I have ever made. (The first is a complete other story.)
I realize this is a journey. I feel that I’m clearly taking steps, yes literally, in the right direction. But I have to keep in mind, it’s a continuous journey. My story doesn’t end here… I’m excited to think of the possibilities 6 months, 1 year, 5 years from now. I’ll keep you posted! In the meantime, since I’ve shared my story with you…what’s your story? We can learn from each other.