I can give you a dozen reasons why I ran my first marathon. They would all be true but the real reason, the main reason was because I thought to myself, “If Oprah can do it so can I.” Okay, so it isn’t a mature reason but it is true. I became competitive with Oprah Winfrey.
So earlier this month when I saw the story on newsstands this week about Oprah and her weigh gain I thought, “Whoa, if Oprah can do it then so can I.” And to be honest with you that almost scared me right into the pantry and into a bag of Oreos. But it didn’t. I will admit, I bought the magazine and looked at the pictures and even skimmed the article on how she managed to go from looking fit and healthy to weighing over two hundred pounds. I was looking for answers.
Since I have recently gone through a health and lifestyle transformation I took a real interest in this information. Having lost fifteen pounds after more than ten years of trying to lose that last ten, I can’t stand the idea of gaining it back. To be honest I had stuck my head in the sand a bit about the possibility of that happening. But when Oprah puts the proof into pictures and sticks it on the front of her magazine for everybody to see I think it is time for me to face it. My transformation will not be over until I have all of the plans in place for keeping that weight off and continuing a healthy lifestyle.
As if in answer to this anxiety, Christmas snuck up on me. You know Christmas? That time of the year when we should be focused on the spirit of Christmas but instead we are busy stuffing our faces with all the goodies given to us by friends? In our house it is the time of year that I pull out the mixer and the begin baking. Ask anyone who knows me and they will tell you I am obsessed with two things. First, fitness and second, cooking. Maybe not a logical combination but so far it has worked for me.
So this year as I pulled out the flour and sugar and chocolate chips and sat them on one end of the counter I had that image of Oprah burned into my brain. Except somehow it wasn’t Oprah anymore. Somehow my face had been superimposed on Oprah’s body. Not the skinny, fit body but the one in the purple sweatsuit she was brave enough to share with the world. Suddenly the cookies had to take a back seat to my health and fitness. I needed a plan.
Of course, it is just a plan so I don’t know how it will work but I do know it starts with that picture. It also involves remembering to keep www.fitday.com on my computer and keep track of what I am eating. That chocolate chip cookie has one hundred and fifty calories. If I have to put that in the computer along with all of my other food I won’t be able to deny that I am eating poorly and going over my calorie needs. This might be alright for a night but fitday will show me when I am doing it night after night after night. Hopefully, that will keep me honest.
As I said earlier I did skim over the article about how she let it happen to her and I can see how it is possible. She leads a different life than I do for about one hundred million obvious reasons but the same thing can happen to me. She says that she stopped taking care of herself. Stopped putting herself first and that is where she lost the plot. I can see how that happens. One morning you wake up and the heat in the house is out so you have to wait around for the furnace guy all day long. A couple of days later one of the kids is sick so you have skip the gym again. The next week there are dentist appointments. You see where I am going with this? All of these things were happening when I was in the midst of losing the weight and getting fit but losing the weight was my priority so I would schedule the furnace guy after my time at the gym or I would work out at home while my child napped or I would run while they were at the dentist’s office. I would make it a priority. Since I have lost the weight I have noticed that it is much easier to let other things take precedence.
One question I had for Oprah was how the weight snuck up on her this time. How did she not see it? The only thing I can figure is she didn’t want to see it. She didn’t step on the scale or wasn’t honest with herself as she bought new sizes to match her expanding bottom. So step number three has to be honesty. I am there. At least I hope I am. I know that if it can happen to Oprah it can happen to me. Oprah is on television everyday. She can see herself every day and if she can deny it is happening I am capable of that too. So to help on the honesty front I am planning on stepping on the scale every week. Just once a week because I really am happy with my weight right now. There is no reason to worry myself sick about it. But it is important for me to pay attention to what is happening there. To always be honest with myself about my weight.
So maybe it all comes down to honesty. Honesty about what I am putting in my body, Honesty about how much I am exercising and finally honesty about what is happening to my body today. Luckily Oprah has the honest thing down. Luckily she wasn’t just honest with herself but with the rest of us as well. Now I just need to remember “If Oprah can do it so can I.”