We are judged on many criteria. Where we live, how big our house is, what we drive, and how we look. Many television and magazine advertisements focus on appearance, and use unrealistic models to portray that image to us. News flash, the average American isn’t supermodel thin.
For those of you that know me, you are aware of my vertical and horizontal challenge. My genes were mixed up at birth. The doctor informed my parents that I would be petite. He neglected to mention that it would be in height only.
As a child, I was thin, but as I grew up, I also grew out. Finish what’s on your plate. That’s my generation. Of course, potato chips and chocolate didn’t help my waistline.
On a recent shopping trip for dress clothes, I had a rude awakening. I needed to update my work wardrobe, so I searched the misses section. After looking through several racks of clothes, I found a number of items that had potential, but none of them in my size.
A sales clerk was arranging items on a table and I went over to ask for help. She informed me that I need to be in the plus size department, and pointed in that direction. I left my items with her and headed that way.
The plus size department was nothing like the misses department. The clothes went from stylish to polyester knit extra long pants with elastic waist bands and unflattering baggy flower tops. The invisible line that separated the departments was my wakeup call. Even though I’m not supermodel thin, I still want to dress that way.
Time for change. A thinner me awaited. So, I started to watch what I ate, cut out junk food, increased my fruits and veggies, and joined a gym. My goal―to fit in regular clothes―to cross that clothing department invisible line.
Barb, my friend and MediFast Take Shape for Life health coach (www.barbholliday.tsfl.com), invited me to take part in the “Meltdown Challenge” and join her team. Like me, she was on a weight loss journey. Initially, I declined her invitation; I didn’t think it was for me. I made it this far on my own, I could go it alone.
After sleeping on it, I decided to join her team in the challenge. The decision to join her team was a good one. There are ten of us on the team, men and women, some friends, some family, some strangers, but all with a common bond, weight loss.
The challenge is proving to be helpful. Everyone on our team is great, and encouraging. We all want the best for each other. The pictures we post, the stories we tell, and recipes we share all have a common theme. Equally important, is the support that we give to one another when we do well, or have a minor setback.
It’s never easy to start something as personal as weight loss with people that we know, and this challenge pairs us with both friends and complete strangers.
The goal of the challenge is to lose weight, but also if you meet the criteria, you have the ability to win money. Barb, our coach, has participated in the challenge before, and has stepped it up and taken a team. She’s a terrific leader, encouraging us, sharing a story or a funny picture.
The scale still isn’t my friend, but it’s closer than before. I’ll never have that supermodel body, but I will look and feel better. The journey to reach my ideal weight continues. Baby steps are the key. Setting milestones that are achievable, and rewarding myself when I reach them (and no, not with food, I prefer shoes) is the key to my success. The most rewarding part in my weight loss journey is crossing that invisible line in the department store, leaving the plus side behind. No more unflattering, poor fitting flower tops, or elastic waist, extra long polyester pants for me.
When you’re writing, what is your characters Achilles heel? Everybody has something that they don’t like about themselves. And our characters need to have that too. Characters that have an affliction or struggle with something are much more believable. What do your characters struggle with? I’d love for you to share it with us.