If you asked me to describe how 2017 has been for me so far, in just one word, that word would be “funny.” The months have simply flown by. There have been some periods of intense learning and growth. During these times, I felt on top of the world. Training and nutrition were dialed in. Work was challenging and busy, but not difficult. On the flip side, there have also been periods, like the one I find myself in right now, which were the complete opposite.
During these times, nutrition is a daily battle, when I manage to train everything feels hard and heavy. Just getting through the day at work seems to sap all my energy and creativity. It’s enough to make me feel like giving up entirely. But you know what, sometimes it’s okay to do just that!
The last few weeks in particular have been very strange. Nothing catastrophic has happened as such, but there has been just enough upheaval and lack of routine, to completely throw me off my game. There has been lots of eating out and sleeping in. Plenty of missed gym sessions, and very little getting done to help me to achieve my long term goals. I have put on weight, and I am pretty sure my FitBit thinks I am dead. In short, there has been a definite back slide.
I can’t tell you how strong the urge is to beat myself up about this. Words like “stupid,” “pathetic” and “failure” come to my mind unbidden and it takes so much effort to repress them. My rational mind knows that progress is always non-linear. It’s normal to take two steps forward and one backwards. Sometimes we hit that snake and slide all the way back to where we started! But, even that, when it happens is not is not a tragedy. We bring all the knowledge and tools we have acquired back to square one with us.
I have given these back slide periods a lot of thought over the past while, and I have come to the conclusion that they might just be necessary. We all know that a healthy body means a healthy mind. However, I can’t help wondering if the opposite can be true sometimes. Maybe the thing the mind and soul occasionally needs, is to let go of all of it. Perhaps it yearns to stop worrying about every calorie and stressing about missed workouts. Maybe if we truly want to nurture the soul, we should give the body what it wants, instead of what it needs, from time to time.
Another question I have pondered, is what brings on these phases. Could it be that the change in seasons has prompted a sort of mini-hibernation? Maybe it is that I know the next few months are going to get crazy again, so I am trying to build myself up? Who knows! What I do know, is that they come, and when they do, there is very little I can do to guard against them.
So, here I am, on another Monday, starting from scratch AGAIN! Anyone who has been in this position, knows how difficult it is to start over. Easier by far, to continue the self destructive behaviours. The one thing that makes it easier, is knowing that I haven’t slid all the way back to square one. Even if I put back on every pound I have lost, I still wouldn’t be back to where I started. I have learned so much, and grown so much as a person since this journey began. I have confidence now, that the sad, miserable and frightened girl I was then, is gone forever.
I really didn’t want to write this article. It comes so much easier, when everything is going well. I want to be able to sit here and tell you all about my successes and the progress I have made, but that wouldn’t be real. I made a commitment to bring you guys with me on this journey, so that means showing you the lows as well as the highs. The goods news is that I think I have slid as far down the board as I am going to, for now. Here’s hoping I roll a 6 and find a ladder or two. Be well xxx