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Lessons learned from 19.5 pounds of weight loss

December 5, 2012
Emergence

Its been a long time since I have written about my weight loss journey. I have written on these pages about my ups and downs, losing the same ten to twelve pounds over and over.  That was my experience for at least 16 years, three to four of which are on this blog. Its been a year of profound change; I’m eager to share some of it with you. The big news is that this time, I have broken through my previous set points. The Thanksgiving of 2011 saw a sharp decline in my health–many symptoms of infection, pain, from different areas of my body. I also regained weight and reached my highest weight ever, by about a pound. The Monday after Thanksgiving this year, November 26th, I posted that I was celebrating the 19.5 pounds of weight loss (since Mid-May). I received 56 likes, the most I’ve received on anything. People asked me what I did. I do want to write about that (though I encourage people to rifle through this blog for some insights into this long journey) and that will take a bit longer. In starting to write about that, though, this shorter, bulleted list of key lessons emerged.

  • I have stopped using weight as an indicator of how my body is doing.  What I have learned is that weight appears to be the end result of some sort of complex dance the body does to regulate itself and keep itself at equilibrium. I never hope to understand this dance so its much better to focus on the real, underlying symptoms that I can do something about. I have also stopped looking at my health symptoms as disconnected—like a scratchy throat versus acid reflux. For me now, I see my symptoms as connected to the One Body, and to the total environment in my body—when that environment is out of whack, then I will see a decline in health. Now, I look at the more direct ways my body talks to me: the color of my tongue and oral hygiene in general; my entire digestive process—from swallowing to how I feel after eating, especially how calm my gut feels; gassiness, itchiness; congestion and whether its stuck in my head or draining down my throat. I know how to help myself to treat these symptoms and get my body back in balance more quickly—before infections,  before bloat, lethargy and worse can set in. Now, I weigh myself infrequently but monitor my mouth, ear-nose-throat, bladder, bowel, and digestion daily.
  • Its not what you cut out, its what you put in. This was an original premise of the eat less, feed more philosophy on this blog. My understanding of how to feed myself is much deeper now. In terms of what I put in my mouth…it ends up that in addition to eating foods that our bodies can process, it is very important to eat foods that help our body get out toxins, so that our body can heal itself. This is a far cry—I would challenge it’s a 180 degree turn from the usual fretting of calories, cutting fat. In fact, for me at my healthiest, I actually need to eat more than I usually did on my typical ‘weight conscious’ diet. I eat more fat, just the right kinds. I eat three times as many vegetables and fruit. It ends up I don’t really need grains—I just resort to them when I don’t give myself enough time to organize my feeding strategy for the day. In fact, I found alternate flours for the times I just needed that texture and found they taste better to me. I also found I enjoyed substituting squashes like zucchini for pasta. My body really loved the juiciness of the zucchini rather than the thicker, dryer texture of the pasta. I am a creative sort, so once I put my mind to it, it was interesting and fun to find ‘replacements’. I also found my body doesn’t do well with caffeine every day. The times that are toughest are socializing—either eating out, or at others’ homes. Don’t baggage yourself with the mental drama of ‘being without’. You might be surprised at what you find!
  • Money, sex, food, its all connected. This is my favorite learning. People can tell you that everything is connected but it is a tremendously gratifying experience stepping through it. All of these three areas have returned in great abundance in my life. Each year of living more consciously–and written about that here over the past few years as readers of this blog know– made it easier for me to trust my journey, and myself. This year I made choices that were very different from the typical ones I had been making for the last 14 years. After years of preparation as my consciousness increased, these choices became easier to make. At the beginning of the year, I experienced some drama over large sums of money, which I wrote about in Kathryn Yarborough’s Flowing with Change site. I chose to respond to that situation with more calm than I had ever been able to muster before when it came to money. I went from droves of money leaving me to it bouncing back into my life in droves. I said yes to working with an healthy eating coach: first I took the smaller step of working with her on a cleanse and then made the bigger leap into full-on re-jiggering my meals. As I said earlier, I have documented proof of at least a dozen symptoms which either disappeared or reduced significantly so that now, I just monitor. Something I didn’t expect: with all the clearing out of gunk from my belly area I began experiencing an increased libido. Thank You Universe. Several woman have begun discussing this, including Dr. Laurie Steelsmith and Betty Louise (aka Coach Betty). One of the energies I brought into my life this year was the energy of commitment. I simply didn’t want to let myself down. And so now, there is more fire in my belly. (get it? another example of the connectedness at work.) 

These are all important steps for my future dreams.  The most valuable lesson here is that you can choose to establish a different, healthier relationship with ANY part of your life—whether that is weight, money, your job, etc. The reason is that ultimately, these are all just manifestations of the fundamental relationship you have with yourself. A must read in this area is the book, Women Food and God. The same author went on to write about women and money because she realized it was all the same thing—the same journey, the same dance. That is why it is impossible to achieve any goal with a deprivation mentality, as I wrote many years ago (now) about weight loss. The magic happens because once you shift this relationship in one area, it manifests itself with rapid ripple effect across all areas of your life. So as it is within, it is without. I am so WITH THIS that I am committing to figuring out a process by which to help others make this shift and offer that as workshops in 2013 under the banner Listen To Your Inner Ease™.  Stay tuned.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. December 5, 2012 1:01 am

    AWESOME!!!! I’m so happy for the new HEALTHY you! ❤ Thank you for sharing your journey and your revelations 🙂

  2. December 5, 2012 1:13 am

    Yes. It IS all connected. And you can start from any one of the connections and the others follow along. I have come to balance in my psyche, joy, clarity, and now I’m exercising again – I didn’t even have to think about it much, it just sort of happened. You are so right about the deprivation mentaility – great post! THANK YOU!

  3. Liz Draman permalink
    December 5, 2012 11:19 am

    What a inspiring journey! I have some new perspectives on how I relate to wight. Love this “weight appears to be the end result of some sort of complex dance the body does to regulate itself and keep itself at equilibrium.” Its true, the body is so perfectly designed. Keep shining, Monsiha!

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