Nothing needed to change. “I’m too old to be exercising”. “It’s genetic, I think I’ve got that fat gene… it’s not my fault.” “I hardly eat anything” (yet your middle continues to expand). “I’ve done exercise and changed my diet.. it doesn’t work”. “It won’t do any harm having a glass (or two) of wine every night”. All this as you slur your words and find yourself crying uncontrollably during ‘The Biggest Loser’ weigh ins. You’ve actually stopped weighing yourself so you don’t have to address what you already know. “I don’t care that I’ve got high blood pressure, I smoke, my cholesterol is high and my BMI is off the chart! My mother had all those things and she lived to be 80 years old.” Doctors don’t know anything anyway!” You continue to play the roulette wheel putting markers down on more and more of the numbers, increasing your odds of your number coming up! You rationalize and blinker out all the signs and advice that has told you a change was needed.
So… you have started to face facts and bitten the bullet to exercise and trying to eat better. Maybe taking a bootcamp, joined a gym or hired a trainer whilst attacking the platinum white gold 28 day guaranteed or your money back, drop-a-dress size (or jackemo wardrobe) fat loss plan. You gripe about every aspect of the workout and how everything hurts and you think you just pulled something tying your shoelaces (good grief..facepalm). You curse your trainers (both under your breath and out loud) and resent the fact that you need to exercise and hate all that you are being put through. You’re an agitated face-ticking sugar fiend dealing with coming off the crack. You jump down the throats of people mocking your new eating regime and chastise loved ones who gloat at eating what was once a standard for you. You don’t feel ready for this change..you want to resist!
“What if I only do three rounds instead of 5 on this workout?” “Maybe I could do all this at home instead?” “I’m gonna eat this chocolate now and train really hard tomorrow.” You attempt to broker deals to make things easier and creep back towards the life you knew. You want some control back as this is all going too fast. Surely it’s not safe to feel like you’re gonna hurl up that family bag of M n M’s you ate 30 minutes before the workout. We will do anything to avoid the pain of habitual change. Your mind longs to stay in the past, in the safety of your unhealthy comfort zone where anything goes!
Now the realities of the present hit home as you see friends still drinking freely whilst you moderate your consumption and watch more X Factor instead… cutting down… on spirits..well..during the week anyway. You wallow as you feel you are missing out as all around you continue to have their unbridled fill of refined carbs, sugar and wine delivered in the morning with the milk. You’re overfocused on the scales and it’s not coming off as fast as you’d like and you swear that waist isn’t getting any narrower. “This lifestyle is making me miserable.” Just maybe..just maybe you are getting ready to leave that old life behind!
The final stage..does it mean you are fine with this new lifestyle. Not necessarily..you will probably long for that old lifestyle and maybe occasionally slip back into it from time to time. Yet you can now accept your new one and all that it has given you. Friends are asking what you have been doing as you look so good and have changed so much. You have swung now to having more good days than bad as all aspects of your life have improved (health, fitness, sleep, stress levels, energy, hormones). Including a new level of randyness and ability to jump off the top of the wardrobes in the bedroom. “Hey and look I didn’t pull a muscle as I untied your gimp mask darling!” It may have meant many changes as you let the old lifestyle die. Old friendships intertwined with excesses may be replaced by new ones that are more in line with the new you. You have evolved and moved forward. For all this to happen though, grief had to have its time. So now you can let the old life rest in peace, while enjoying all the new has to offer and for so much longer.