Getting My Ass Kicked By Half-Assed.

by Amber on June 20, 2011

How many diets have you been on in your lifetime? Two? Twenty? 200?

I’ve been on so many that I’ve lost count. Some have lasted two days, some have lasted two years, but none have resulted in permanent weight loss.

I go down and then I go up. I go way, way down and then ballooning up into the stratosphere. That’s just how it’s always been.

Half Assed A Weight Loss Memoir Cover

The source of my epiphany.

But this weekend, I had an epiphany of sorts. It doesn’t have to be that way. I could spend my life not dieting—and lose weight anyway.

The source of this epiphany was one you might not expect—a book called Half Assed: A Weight Loss Memoir. I mean, come on. It’s a book about weight loss. You’d assume that means it’s all about dieting, right?

Well, it’s not. The author did, in fact, lose something like 200 pounds. But in the book she never tells you how she did it. You know what she did say?

Something to the effect of, “I refused to do anything I wasn’t prepared to do for the rest of my life.”

She didn’t count calories. She didn’t get pre-portioned meals delivered to her freezer. She didn’t go under the knife. She just focused on getting healthy.

Reading that, I started thinking. What would I do if I wasn’t perpetually spinning my wheels, giving up all that I love in order to reach a magic number? What changes would I make if I simply focused on being healthy—forever?

I would certainly give up fully-leaded soda. And eat more salad (I actually love salad). I would stop reaching for the cookies when I’m upset (most of the time). I would just focus on eating right instead of worrying about what I had eaten that was wrong.

But most importantly, I would focus on exercise. The author (Jennette Fulda), goes on and on about how good exercising makes her  feel—how powerful and alive she feels when she’s moving. And I? Feel the same way.

There’s something about running that makes every cell in my body sing. I turn beet red, I gasp for breath, and every muscle I have begs for mercy, but it feels good. It feels right. And the rest of my life seems a little easier to manage when I’m done.

So I’m not dieting anymore. I’m not.

I’m just going to try to be a healthier person. And hopefully? The scale will reward me.

Think I’ve got a shot?

Disclaimer: Nobody gave me anything to do this review. Amazon was practically giving the book away (it was only 99 cents on Kindle), but I did indeed shell out my dollar. But if I were you? I’d go buy it—even if they’re charging $10. Or, you know. I could loan you mine.

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{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Rebecca June 20, 2011 at 10:36 pm

I could never give up soda. I need all the sugar and caffeine that soda has to offer. I’m more of a ‘eat whatever it is you want as long as you do it in moderation’ type of person. Well, that’s what I did before kids and it worked very well for me. I also walked the treadmill at college. I’d pound out about 4 miles per week, which isn’t a whole lot but it worked. I’d rather have a 1 inch by 1 inch square of brownie washed down with either a glass of whole milk or a can of Pepsi. And then eat a sensible dinner…..or eat a creamy, white sauce pasta with garlic cheese bread and no brownie at all.

One of these days the baby fat will fall off, right?

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Amber June 21, 2011 at 9:03 am

I sure hope it’ll all just disappear some day! I’m drooling thinking about that pasta…

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Ashley June 20, 2011 at 11:57 pm

Sounds like a great place to start. It’s about being commited. You can do it. Just commit(I need to do this as well)!

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Amber June 21, 2011 at 9:03 am

Yes. Commit, commit, commit! I must commit! You’re totally right – and I’m going to try. You can do it too!

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Rachel @ The Lazy Christian June 21, 2011 at 8:50 am

Amen to that! I’ve been up and down the same way. My husband and I did a very restrictive fast during Lent (essentially just fruits, veggies, and whole grains, with no sweeteners or yeast), and while it was hard, by the end of it, we both felt so much better. We’ve decided to takes parts of that fast and make it a lifestyle, just because we felt better. Totally worth it!

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Amber June 21, 2011 at 9:02 am

You are brave to do a fast – that’s one thing that scares me silly. But I know what you mean – when I take care of myself, I feel eleventy billion times better than when I’m eating junk food and sitting on the couch.

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Kate June 21, 2011 at 8:54 am

I love this post. It agrees with everything I feel to be true in life.

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Amber June 21, 2011 at 9:01 am

I’m glad I’m not the only one who feels that way! Well obviously I’m not since she wrote a whole book about it, but you know what I mean.

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Jen June 21, 2011 at 9:38 am

I read a book once called ‘Secrets of a Former Fat Girl’ by Lisa Delaney and she had a similar story. Her success basically came from exercise. She didn’t change her eating for a long time– actually, not until after she had lost a ton of weight by just committing to exercise every day. The odd thing is, though, where most books recommend that you get a workout partner or support from the fam, she says to keep your quest a secret. (In short, when you try to lose weight, it makes people around you into the food police. Then, when anyone says ‘is THAT on your diet?’, you want to eat it just to prove you’re the one making the decisions for your body.)

You can do it! :)

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Amber June 23, 2011 at 8:35 am

I think I read that one too! Of course, I don’t just tell my family, I tell the whole damn world. But, you know. Some of us are oversharers…

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Kiran (Masala Chica) June 21, 2011 at 8:43 pm

I am an avid believer that health is not about a number on a scale. Its about so much more – not just the size of your muscles or your waist but how you feel and whether your mind is in synch with what your body needs. Sometimes, it takes us all to find our groove and we fall out of it from time to time – but I agree that diets are hard to make a commitment to for life. Believing in yourself, your strength and that feeling when “every cell in your body sings.”

I hope they keep singing. You have more than a shot.
Kiran

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Amber June 23, 2011 at 8:34 am

Thank you. I think so too! Although I really would love to see a smaller number on the scale, too…

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Missy @ Wonder, Friend June 21, 2011 at 11:03 pm

I really love the idea of focusing on health. If it makes you feel fat or unhealthy or guilty, there’s probably good reason that’s the case. And conversely, if it makes your soul sing, there’s probably good reason for that.

I haven’t read this, but I’m going to download it now. I wish you the best on your journey – and it’s just that, a journey. I’m right there with you, trying to find my way back to the healthy, happy girl I was. I know she’s still in there!

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Amber June 23, 2011 at 8:34 am

She’s probably closer to the surface than you think! Mine got buried under another layer of peach cobbler last night…but oh well.

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