Friday, June 5, 2009

Obstacles

I am typing with the hum of 3 large heated fans running in the background, drying out the flooring, ceiling, and wooden beams in between in our 2 bathrooms that were flooded by my lovely daughter a few days ago. The fans are making the house HOT even with the A/C running in 90 degree weather, but I managed to bike for 25 minutes last night and it felt great! I had the resistance turned way down to 4 because I was so hot, but I hung in there and got it done. And while I am not terribly fond of seeing a bike in the living room, my health has to come first. When people come to visit, hopefully they will see the bike as a sign of a healthy lifestyle and not an interior decorating faux pas.

Moving the bike cleared the way for the other project on the burner: setting up the weight machines. I have run into obstacles for every healthy step I try to take. When I started walking again and asked my husband to watch our 3-year-old, I only got halfway down the block and stopped because she was screaming bloody murder out the front window and her distraught crying was echoing throughout our quiet neighborhood, so after listening for 10 minutes, I went back home. When I decided to set up the "home gym" area in the family room, I got resistance because that would mean getting rid of my kids' (old, cheap, huge) air hockey table. When I decided to move the bike upstairs to make biking extra-convenient and to make room downstairs for the weights, my husband told me no, because it would interfere with his TV-watching. When I walked into the kitchen to look for something healthy to eat, I saw what he had bought on his shopping spree: a vat of macaroni salad, a huge block of my favorite binge-cheese, regular mayo, bologna. The asparagus I had chopped and steamed for my omelet was gone, tossed with butter and salt and eaten by the husband.

But I made it work anyway, because obstacles are meant to be overcome. When you see a hurdle in your path, you go around it or jump over it or pick it up and move it out of your way. You don't just stand there staring at the hurdle and give up on getting to your destination.

The difference between a whiny complainy rant and a victorious accounting is the response to the obstacles. The options are:

A) Because of all these things conspiring against me, I ate a bowl of ice cream. I give up! I can't go for walks because my husband won't take care of the toddler. I can't set up my weights because my kids don't want to get rid of the air hockey table and they will be mad if I sell it. I can't bike because he won't let me move the bike upstairs. There is all this tempting food in the kitchen so I can't possibly eat healthy. No one will support me. This is too hard. I am just meant to stay fat. Nothing I do is working. I will never get there. (cue drowning self in vat of macaroni salad).

or...

B) I came home from my half-block walk, comforted my child, hauled out the stroller, and took her with me, walking for a mile. I moved my bike upstairs *anyway* and just moved furniture around to accommodate the husband's TV-watching desires while getting my fitness needs met. When I moved the bike upstairs it made space for the weight machine that has been gathering dust in the garage for 7 or 8 years, so now we can keep the air hockey table AND set up the weights. I looked at the macaroni salad and cheese and other stuff and decided they are poison to me and I won't even consider a taste of them, and I made new steamed vegetables to eat... in very large quantities to accommodate anyone else who would like some.

Which response do you prefer?

Notice that the "A" response is full of can'ts. And can'ts really just translate to wont's. If you think you can't clear the hurdle, you won't even try. You'll go home and whine in your pudding cups. But the "B" response is full of not just "cans," but WILLS. And where you have a will, you have action. And in this case, those actions have led to a healthier me.

I am down a pound, which is at least a step in the right direction. I have more energy and feel more determination that I have in awhile. I know it would be nice to have the full support of my family, but when that isn't happening I have to accept that I am the master of my actions and my life. I can't control everything, but I can certainly control my food intake and exercise. Just had to clear some hurdles.

The bathrooms will get dried out, and things will be back to normal sometime next week, but in the meanwhile, you'll find me biking away in my living room with the ceiling fan on. It can be done.

28 comments:

Lynna said...

This "can-do" spirit is amazingly inspiring and instructive! We can't control others, but we can control our responses. What beautiful choices you made to honor yourself AND to honor your family. (Such grace in the midst of frustration! Wow!)

Anonymous said...

I love your blog, I look forward to everytime you update. Your attitude is so inspiring!

Megan said...

Excellent. Well done! You sound like you've got a bit of a spark going and you're willing to do the work to get it going. Keep it up Lyn!
Megan

Theresa said...

it would be cool to find some skull and cross bones stickers at the dollar store and paste them on the cheese and macaroni in the fridge!! :)

Your success is wonderful. Thanks for sharing and posting how you managed to take a very difficult few days and transform them into a success for yourself.

I forget where you live, but is it an option to put the air hockey stuff in the garage or under a back yard canopy? We have a house rule that if something doesn't get used for six months it either GETS used or goes. THEIR choice. I'm in Canada so we're more lenient when the weather causes the bikes to sit longer ;)
PS. Your blog at my meeting was a BIG HIT!

♥ Dee ♥ said...

Good on ya!!

Ruby Leigh said...

WAY TO GO!!!

Winderdoodle said...

That's great! So glad to see you made the healthy choice and are now down another pound because of it! That certainly makes the hard decsions more worthwhile, right?

Good job!

~ Wendy
wendyweightlossjournal.blogspot.com

Mike579 said...

Good job. Positive=power.

Andi said...

Yay! Great job! **pat on the back**

spunkysuzi said...

Wow you just gave me my focus for today :) That there are choices and only i can decided which one to pick!

rachel421 said...

wow, i needed this post! had a crap morning, now im ready to play ball. thanks :)

the way i solved my minimal space issues was one 20lb kettlebell, and one tabata timer. for a few months, all i could do was few swings on the kettlebell, and a few light jogs on the tabata intervals, but im getting stronger. and staying out of peoples way in the process. a person can sweat in the tightest of spaces. can do, will do !

wonderloveandpraise said...

o man, i hope this doesn't sound cruel or come out sideways, but i have to confess that the stories you tell about your husband's sabotage make me SO THANKFUL for a husband who is my strongest advocate in getting healthy. i can't imagine trying to do it not just alone, but with someone being subversive around every corner. press on, Lyn! You can do this!!!

Min said...

I LOVE THE SCULL AND CROSS BONE STICKER IDEA!!!

I think its great that your being Pro-active and finding a good way around things!
Did you know pushing a stroller while walking increases the amount of calories burned by like 30% (resistance)

Your doing great!

Coley said...

I agree with that frame of mind. I try at this each day - sometimes extremely half-hearted, but I need to try harder. I know it's a major key element of success! Good for you, for making the choice, too!

Erin said...

I can't get over how almost every obstacle was created by your husband. I know that wasn't your intended message in this post - the message was that you overcame the obstacles (subtext: that he created because...).

beerab said...

Great post as always!

I was about to suggest taking your daughter with you :)

You are definitely headed in the right direction- a pound down woo!!

Vickie said...

Even in families where everyone does try to be cooperative - things exactly like this do happen. Things meant to be helpful - AREN'T. Things that seemingly have nothing to do with US - DO. And things get sidetracked, go backwards all the time.

Learning that you have to do it yourself - 100% of the time - even if it means walking over their prone bodies to get it done - is basic truth for most moms. I think that part of this is learning to ignore the addict/devil on the shoulder that LOOKS for these opportunities as excuses or reasons why one can't or doesn't have to. Learning to not only not let the family get in your way - but also not listening to that darned devil/addict - is a very valuable lesson. I am very glad to see/read that you are moving forward 'despite' and not staying stuck 'because'.

Honib1 said...

Ohh yes it can.. and you prove that every day!

Dinah Soar said...

Bravo Lyn!!! You rock!

Jeana said...

Lyn, never forget that you have a huge support system in us readers. When times get rough know that we are cheering you on and sending our good thoughts to you.

Kudos for making sure you take care of yourself. You're doing great!

Betsey C. said...

What a fantastic post, Lyn. Your strength in the face of adversity amazes me! I love how you set forth the two options you could have taken.

I don't know if your husband is trying to sabotage you or not -- but if he is, that's his problem and not yours.

A big BRAVO to you!

Emily said...

I love your blog- you are so honest and I know that you will overcome your struggles. I've just started a blog http://fatgirlthindress.wordpress.com/
feel free to check it out- there's only one entry so far but I'm sure your insights would be invaluable!

cmoursler said...

oh wow, resistance is the word of the day....holy toledo. I was about a week into my current weight loss effort ( I hadn't told my husband but he knew) and he comes bringing home my favorite tortilla chips. He sat down RIGHT NEXT TO ME and opened up the bag and sat it between us. I ate NOTHING. I looked him in the eye that night and told him "don't mess with me, I am not going to fail again." and he hasn't done it since. Do you have a friend who could swap babysitting? That is always a route you could try. Keep up the awesome work.
High fives,
chris

Hanlie said...

What a fantastic attitude! You are so right... When we start concentrating on the things we CAN do, and think up solutions for our problems, we can perform miracles!

Good job!

wannadance4real said...

Lynna said it all I think!!! I'm so grateful for your being real about all this and saying how it is. I absolutely need to revamp my efforts and take that bull by the horns!! Take the boat by the helm! Grab the steering wheel! Ok, I'll chill now. lol You are so so right. When life gives you obstacles.... CONQUER!!!

Anonymous said...

Wish I'd posted this sooner, and haven't read the other posts to see if anyone else asked. Do you have homeowner's insurance? When we had a similar accident (forgetful grandfather instead of adventurous child) the damage was covered. Perhaps yours might be as well.

Marie

Lyn said...

Anonymous~

Yeah, it's covered, after the deductible. Not too bad, just inconvenient having both bathrooms torn up for a week!!

Anonymous said...

Good!
I can well imagine the challenge with a houseful of folk!
Your stories of meeting your challenges continues to inspire me!

Marie