Week One of going without sugar is complete. Man, what a week that was. I experienced constant hunger; weakness; I was light headed many times and had an over all lack of energy. This has been one of the most challenging weeks I have had nutritionally, since.. I don’t remember when. I had a hard time trying to figure out what to eat in order to keep me energy level up. I went several hours without eating just because I did not know what to eat that would not have sugar in it. I ate a lot of chicken, eggs, salad, a lot of Granny Smith apples, and more mixed nuts than I ever have. I have to admit, there were days where I just wanted to give up and start eating “normal” again. But something inside of me would not let me give up. And honestly, I did not want to be a quitter. I have gone down that road way too many times in the past and I wanted this time to be different. I did keep my Change4Life daily journal to track my meals and how my body felt throughout the day so that I could go back and use that information to make the changes needed to be more successful in the weeks to come.
I learned a great deal about myself from week one. I will be sharing them all with you in the coming days, but today I want to focus on one aspect of this learning experience. The other day, I was reflecting back on my week and I realized just how frustrated I was with not knowing what to do. So frustrated in fact, that I wanted to quit several times. For years I have been counseling people on how to eat and when to eat and to make sure they get adequate amounts of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. I felt very confident in the information I was giving. But this was so different for me. I had to figure out what “I” could eat that did not include sugar. So, that limited my choices of carbohydrates to, basically, just veggies. I already knew that veggies were not a food item that I just loved to eat. Granted, I will eat veggies, but they are not my first choice. (Which is probably why I always turned to the not-so-healthy alternatives). The “not knowing what to do” is what really made me start thinking: this must be how millions of people feel everyday. I started to think about people that have been “dieting” for years without any results. How so many people get to the point of hopelessness and start turning to pills and “lose weight fast” schemes and this diet and that diet and eventually turn to more drastic measures like surgery or even end up hitting rock bottom and want to give up on life. I went through this for one week. There are people that go through this for months or years and for some, it lasts a whole lifetime. Knowing what I know now, will help me be more attentive to their needs, but I will never understand the depth of frustration they go through on a daily basis. This only makes me want to help people even more. Eating healthy should not be something that we can’t learn to do without being overwhelmed. We have to be able to work together in order to see what works for you. I am committed to helping anyone that wants to be helped. I know it is not easy, but it is necessary for us to have the opportunity to live the lives we want, and deserve, to live.
Everyday, someone, somewhere, is either thinking about starting, or actually starting, some sort of plan to lose weight. They will be inundated with commercials and advertisements that will tell them that if they use this product, their lives will change forever. And, because they are at that point in their lives that they have to do something, they will jump at the opportunity. Unfortunately, there will never be a quick fix to losing weight and getting healthy. It takes work. It takes being willing to figure out what works for you, and what doesn’t. It takes patience and perseverance. I am here to tell you, as one going through the changes with you, we can do this. We can make the changes we need to make, and we will be stronger for it. Don’t give into the quick fix schemes. They are only there to make money. They are not there to help you get the results that will last a lifetime. Stay strong; stay committed; get a partner. Do what ever it takes to make the changes you know need to make. The rewards will always, far outweigh the challenges!