Another Journey in “Lightenment”

7 reflections on losing 50 pounds…again

Weight Goal MetAnyone who has known me for very long also knows that I go up and down the scale (the bathroom scale, that is). And by a lot.

In August, I was up 65 pounds again, and so I set a goal to be down 50 pounds before my birthday—January 15.

As of today (December 30), I have done it! (Through the holidays, mind you.)

And now I shall set a goal to lose 10 more in the next six weeks.

And then I shall set a goal to lose five more.

And then I shall set a goal to keep it off.

In all the many weight-iterations of my human-self, I think I have finally learned the lessons below. They’ll probably seem obvious to you. They weren’t to me. I am moderately embarrassed to even share them, but given that it’s New-Years-Resolutions season, perhaps they’ll help somebody somewhere.

  1. This is my burden. All of us have burdens that we must lug through life. Unfortunately, mine is very literal, and very easy for others to see. But fortunately, it is also easy for me to see, so I need to pay attention to it.
  2. For me, there can be no “break” from mindfulness about my weight. I can gain a pound a day without even trying. One summer, I was privileged-and-blessed to spend 3.5 weeks in the south of France. “I’m going to just eat what I want, and do what I want while I’m here,” I thought to myself. “I deserve it.” The trip was a marvelous gift in the middle of very difficult work in East Africa. And I did deserve a break. And I gained 25 pounds. (There’s a lot to unpack here about why I didn’t feel I deserved to be healthy and balanced instead, but that’s another post.) =) In June of this year, I also decided to “take a break.” I was stressed and tired and just decided to do as I pleased for the month. When I weighed-in at the end of June, 20 pounds were back. Friends, if you have recently lost a lot of weight, please hear this: it comes back on sooooo fast. Set intentions steadfastly and repeatedly.
  3. I CAN eat anything I want—if I also burn it off. It’s not really about sacrifice or moderation or discipline or all those other pesky words. It’s about one, simple, four-letter word: math. The calories can go in as long as similar numbers are burned off. (Side note: My FitBit has made this doable for me.)
  4. I have been blessed with an otherwise healthy body. There is no reason not to burn it off. I have many, many friends whose mobility-reality looks very different than mine. Just move, Nathaniel!
  5. I’ll probably gain weight again.
  6. But I CAN lose weight again.
  7. None of these lessons seems to make any sense to me when I am stressed-or-depressed. So maintaining mindfulness of my wholeness is key to my wellness.

Nathaniel is CEO of AidChild.org. He holds a Master's Degree in Human Development and Psychology from Harvard University where he was a Reynolds Fellow in Social Entrepreneurship, and winner of the 2010 Harvard HDP Marshal Award. He also holds a PhD in Leadership Studies from the University of San Diego where he was the Dammeyer Fellow in Global Education Leadership, and a Cordes Fellow at Opportunity Collaboration. Nathaniel is author of "We Are Not Mahogany: Three stories about the male African life." Prior to his move to Uganda in 2000, Nathaniel was Deputy Director of the Office of the Governor of Arizona, and Director of Education at Leadership, Inc.

Download now our Android App


Direct Download
Just take a photo of the QR code by using an app like Barcode Scanner or visit this website with your smartphone and click on the "Direct Download" link.
Powered By WP App Maker