Saturday, August 3, 2013

i am marvelous

This blog originally started as an outlet for my ongoing struggles with weight, beauty and self-image. Since it has been awhile since my last post on the topic, I thought I would bring everyone up to date.

When I began blogging, my health was definitely at a low point – physically, mentally, emotionally and maybe even spiritually. The highest number I saw on the scale was 148, a lot of weight to carry on my 5’2” frame. It’s a number I never hope to see again – unless I have a little one inside of me {which God-willing won’t be anytime soon}.

The picture on the left is from Chicago Spring Break 2011. Every time I look at those pictures, 
it is motivation to be active or put down that chocolate chip cookie. The picture on my right 
is my engagement picture, and pretty much what I look like now. It's my goal to stay this way.

Fast forward to now, and I’ve adopted several lifestyle changes that have made a world of difference. I hover between 120 and 125 on the scale, and I feel great. I’m about 10 lbs more than I was in high school, but most of that accounts for my new “womanly” figure, which I will gladly take over the skin and bones I was then!

Want to know what I’ve done different?
#1 I have significantly cut my stress levels. Don’t get me wrong, stress is still something I am dealing with, but I can see how through God’s grace I am learning to trust Him more. During my sophomore year I would have never imagined the sense of peace I experience on a daily basis.

#2 I escaped the cafeteria. I always thought it was strange how I lost five pounds when I came home from college every break. Once I gave up my meal plan senior year, I got to determine the what, when, where and how much of my food intake. Even better, I knew exactly what was in the food I was consuming, and fruits, veggies, white meat and whole grains became the staples of my diet.

#3 I slept. Yep, I did—at least eight hours every night. Even if all my girlfriends were down stairs watching episodes of Friends, sharing secrets and having fun, I made myself get in bed because I knew my body needed it. It’s still thanking me.

#4 {Now, listen closely}… I stopped obsessing. I stopped counting calories. I stopped mentally beating myself up when I skipped a day or two at the gym. I ate chocolate and lots of it {I still do}. I was making myself miserable by micromanaging my caloric intake and burn-off - it had to stop!

Now, don’t misunderstand me. I still have days when I feel fat. Don’t we all? And those are the days I push through another mile on the elliptical or I fix myself one of my favorite healthy meals {coming soon!}. I monitor my weight, and if it is consistently on the high end of my range, I make some adjustments to my diet and exercise.

What is most important is that I remember I am God’s creation, and He has declared His creation good. I find that when I am more focused on seeking the presence of God in my life and thanking Him for what He has given me, I am usually happier with what I see in the mirror.

“You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. THANK YOU for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it.”
-Psalm 139:13-14

You are MARVELOUS. How will you celebrate that today?



4 comments:

  1. mmm. so glad to see your journey to health!! i love that :) most importantly i love your healthy attitude :) so proud of you Jenny!

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    1. Thanks, Beth! Not quite ready to take on a Whole 30 diet or anything, but baby steps! Thanks for the encouragement. Have a great weekend!

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  2. Wow, this is such a great post! I love #4... The older I get the more I realize how important it is to take care of myself physically, but I have a tendency to get obsessive. I've had to realize (and constantly remind myself) that if I'm physically healthy but mentally off-kilter from obsessing over my weight I'm really no better off. Thanks for sharing this!

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  3. Thanks Amanda! It took so long for me to figure that out, though. I like to call sophomore year the low point of my existence. I was such a control freak, that I thought I should be able to control my weight, which just made me stress more and make things worse. The mental/spiritual part of it is so important - and it's the part we often neglect. Thanks for the encouragement!

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