Monday, March 24, 2008

Peace or Drama?

Getting started on The Best Life program was fairly easy. "Get a grip on emotional eating, eat breakfast, have an eating cutoff time, drink plenty of water and abstain from alcohol." Check.

Next, I got warmed up to the idea of becoming more active, simply by moving more - which for me translated into doing an extra "lap" around the living room-dining room-kitchen circuit of the house each time I went for another cup of coffee during working hours. (I office at home.)

Ten weeks into the program, I'm officially in Phase 3 of Bob Greene's exercise plan - which involves a minimum of five days aerobic exercise (150-249.9 minutes) and two days of strength training
(6 exercises each day). But once I found out that building muscle turns you into a fat-burning incinerator, strength training became appealing enough that I now do three sessions a week. And the payoff has been a loss of nearly 25 inches!

One thing that has sort of caught me off guard is how losing weight can leave you feeling exposed, vulnerable. This journey eclipses a mathematical formula of burning more calories than you eat. The real transformation happens inside, where you peel back layer after layer of stuff - most of which is a mask for what's really been hiding underneath a cocoon of fat.

Sarah Ban Breathnach declares it takes tenacity and daring to travel to the darkest interior of one's self:

"Our dragons are our fears: our day stalkers, our night sweats. Fear of the unknown. Fear of failing. Fear of starting something new and not finishing. Again. Or the real rear, the one that sends shivers up our spines: the fear of succeeding, of becoming our authentic selves and facing the changes that will inevitably bring. We might not be happy with the way we are living now, but at least it's safely familiar."

If you're following Oprah's "A New Earth" webinar with Eckhart Tolle, you're familiar with the illusory identity of the ego.

"Can you feel that there is something in you that is at war, something that feels threatened and wants to survive at all cost, that needs drama in order to assert its identity as the victorious character within your theatrical production? Can you feel there is something in you that would rather be right than at peace?" (Insert the nagging negative voice in your head.)

Dear friends, we are doing far more than losing physical weight. We are losing the trappings of what was not really "us" at all. By taking up the swords of Love and Light on behalf of our true selves, we are revealing the "what-I-AM-is-wonderful" us. And that makes it all worth the effort.

Quotes from Simple Abundance: A Daybook of Comfort and Joy
and A NEW EARTH by Eckhart Tolle


Holly said...

You are doing amazing!! And, I've never been able to keep up with Oprah's book club stuff but you're making me want to check out that book.

Trisha said...

I really needed this today. Thanks!

dietbook said...

Amen! I have referred to my fat as my "squishy armor" through which the world could not see to reach the core of vulnerable part. As I eliminate the armor...some days it's like walking around without skin, with all your nerve endings exposed.

Change is always frightening. It means you have to have to learn something new, and what if you can't? What if it's beyond you? (It really rarely is, but that doesn't change the fear.)

I also have to say AMEN to the part about strength training. I am stunned at how much difference it has made for me. I do it four times a week as part of my circuit training with Jillian's program (she's one of the trainers from the Biggest Loser, but don't hold that against her! She's amazing.) and it has completely reshaped my body. I don't know how I ever lived without it...

Um, anyway. Great post, and I'll shut up now. :-)

Grumpy Chair said...

Wow, congratulations on losing 25 inches! I have been putting off weight training until I had lost more weight but decided two weeks ago to start doing it again 3 times a week. I have always seen results after 6 weeks.

Getting to the root of the problem (fat) has to be the key to keeping the weight off.

"Feeling exposed, vulnerable" is exactly how I felt when I lost 30 pounds by the end of 2006 - it was noticeable and I got tons of comments from people. Comments about my body. It really bothered me and I think had a lot to do with me putting back on 15 pounds.

Manuela said...

Wow that's a lot of inches! I think I need to get into the strength training but HATE to go to the gym where I have access to more equipment. Along with the running I know that would take care of a lot!

I've been sick but will try to squeeze in some of Week 3 for the Couch to 5K (but, there is increased run time this week--AAAGGHH!!!!)

Have a great week.

Dr. George Monta said...

How to tell you how proud I am of your getting into the “IN CHARGE OF YOU” place is just as hard at to tell you how precious you are to me and how very much I love you. Of course I want to include Myron in this love talk so you can bask in my love in the way that we bask in God’s love. You are ‘doing nutrition’ the way you ‘do’ your cello, or compose a picture, or write a wonderful account of what you perceive. The wonder of all this takes my breath away!

Stacy said...

25 inches?!?! good for you!

i love a new earth - i read it a couple of years ago and it changed my life.

ThickChick said...

Hi there, i came across your blog. You have some good information in here. I'll definitely be checking back. Thanks for sharing and good luck on your weight loss journey.

Feel free to check out my blog (although its not up to date) at

Nicole said...

Thanks for reminding me of Tolle. I suspended my reading of A New Earth until after I got back from the conference. I need to catch up now!!

And the strength training. I really, REALLY need to do that. Grrrr. I get frustrated with myself sometimes.