Jess’ Journey

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I’m sitting in my local café, taking very small bites of the fries in front of me and sipping my fizzy drink slowly, really savouring how it tastes. This the last time I will be enjoying these treats in a while. It feels like I’m saying goodbye to an old friend. Tears threaten to fall when I realise this. But then again, I have always been pretty dramatic.

I can’t help it, it’s just who I am as a person. So dramatic, in fact, that I wanted to do this column in the first place.

All my life I have struggled with being overweight. Time and again I have gone over the why.

Is it because I love food too much but move too little? Is it because the word ‘exercise’ itself is usually enough to send me running (no, walking. slowly) in the opposite direction? Is it because I have flat feet that actually get sore when I do any kind of exercise even when I wear the right shoes? Or maybe it’s because of the lifestyle.

I balance three jobs, what I call passion projects, a social life, and time for myself in between all that. Not to mention a lot of what I do actually involves building relationships with people so I’m usually out for coffee or drinks and food. Then there’s the old excuse of just simply not having the time to exercise and put my health first.

Even listing all this right now already makes me feel ashamed. What a bunch of excuses.

Now we can see why I needed this column. There is something about being publicly held accountable for a goal that appeals to me. In fact, at the start of the year when I was feeling inspired (New Year, new me), I made a declaration to my friends that I was going to change my lifestyle this year and finally lose weight!

I even tried to blog about my personal journey to again keep me more accountable.

Then life happened. I got busy, I had other priorities, and all my other excuses. I thought about how extreme this seems – documenting my journey on Fitness Journal for everyone to see. Am I ready for this kind of commitment? For this accountability? To be vulnerable in front of strangers about the thing I struggle with the most?

The answer is no. I am absolutely terrified. I am thinking about the journey ahead, the hard work, the times where I would inevitably want to give up, the learning and the successes. Which is precisely why I am going to do this.
Because I don’t want to keep doing what I’m doing, hoping and wishing I’d lose all the extra weight. I want to see results. I want personal progress. I want to do the work. I want success.

So here’s to the exciting road ahead!

I’m starting with the basics – listing food that I want to cut back on, committing to more planned and home-cooked meals, conditioning myself to prioritise exercise instead of putting it last on my to-do list every day, making sure I have the right gear (and get proper shoes), and keeping a positive outlook throughout all this.

Goal-wise I’d like to change my lifestyle in the long run. To have a healthy relationship with food (I don’t like vegetables and eat minimal fruit). To not feel like I’m depriving myself. To enjoy getting active and exercising.

Then there’s the other side of it too. I’d like to fit clothes better. To be able to go to the mall and know that I can fit the garments. To feel great about myself.

I’ve got a great gym that I can’t wait to spend more time in, some group exercise classes that I will actually go to, and I’m looking at getting a gym buddy and a personal trainer too. The next three months are going to be life-changing. I can feel it already.

And if you see me out and about, please feel free to ask me how the journey is going. I need to be accountable, after all.

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