Learning the hard way

The challenge? Thirty health-related posts in 30 days, using prompts prepared by the folks at WEGO Health.

Day Seventeen: Learned the Hard Way. What’s a lesson you learned the hard way? Write about it for 15 today.

What lesson haven’t I learned the hard way? It seems as if I’m constantly re-learning the basics of weight loss. Time and again, I conveniently “forget” what works and have to rediscover it — sometimes months later.

Some examples:

Tracking or food journaling. I did this religiously when I started Atkins the first time … and lost weight. Same thing happened when I started Weight Watchers. Still, I go through periods where I fight against the need to write down every bite — even though I know it works.

The joy of exercise. Pre-Atkins, I didn’t do a whole heck of a lot of exercise. A few months in, I started riding an exercise bike and working out to Denise Austin’s early-morning Lifetime show. A few months after that, I joined a gym and started taking all kinds of classes — step aerobics, spinning, weight training, yoga. You name it, I probably took a class for it. Sometimes I went to the gym more than once a day. (Egads!) Then I had to let my gym membership go for financial reasons and started to spend every spare minute writing. Exercise fell by the wayside, except for the occasional walk … until a few weeks ago, when I signed up for Best Body Bootcamp and rediscovered exercise makes me feel good.

I think the reason I rage against what I know works is that I’m still hoping for a quick fix … that magic pill. How many people wouldn’t love to have a great body without work?

But that’s never going to happen for me. As much as I wish it were otherwise, I have to watch my diet and I have to exercise.

I suspect it’s the same for everyone — even the folks I look at and find myself wishing to be more like them. It’s hard to remember that even seemingly “perfect” people may have struggled with their weight at one time.

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