My original goal was to lose weight so I would feel better. Within a month of following my food plan, I started to feel better, so now I have to keep remembering my original motivation.
It's easy to forget the amount of pain I was experiencing before I started the plan. I must keep remembering the pain and restrictions I dealt with for many months before my decision to stick to a food plan. My mobility had deteriorated to the point that I used my mother's old cane to help me get around the house, especially in the morning when I needed to hobble to the bathroom or take the dog out to the deck.
Some days I didn’t walk my dog at all, making him pee and poop on the deck. I could much more easily clean off the deck than I could walk down my steep driveway to take the dog for a walk. When I walked downhill like that, I not only felt pain with every step, but I also feared my knees would go out of joint and I'd fall. I could feel my knee joints slipping and popping.
When I felt a little better, I put the dog in the car and drove down to the end of the driveway, took him out, and walked him a little bit on the flat part of the street. Within weeks, though, I could leave the car in the garage and walk down the sheer cement walk with the dog.
Since losing more than thirty-five pounds, I take long strolls down the driveway, down the street, down the hill, around the corner, and back up, all the way, as far as I want, without fear or pain. No more pain: that’s why I have to stick to my plan. It works.
We all know what we should be eating, but cutting down drastically on starchy and sugary foods can be tough. I absolutely had to; I had no choice. My goal has nothing to do with my looks; it has everything to do with my health. If I come out looking better, that's a bonus, not a goal, but I have to admit I’m enjoying the compliments coming my way these days.
For a long time I fought depression, because I knew my enjoyment of life had decreased immensely. The term "quality of life" kept running through my head. I thought of the dogs and cats I’d euthanized when their quality of life went down. I did not want to be euthanized, though. I wanted to be youth-inized, and losing weight did it. I feel young, spry, and healthy again. Hooray!
If I want to stay motivated and stick to the plan, though, I must remember that earlier pain, stiffness, fear, and immobility. Writing about what I experienced keeps me motivated. The memory of feeling limited, seeing my quality of life diminishing, keeps me moving in the right direction, the healthy-eating direction.