Baby steps...

The Chinese have a saying"The journey of a thousand miles begins with a step". I can remember my choice to start walking on March 17th 1996. I was racked with mental torment about 300 pounds I was extremely self conscious about my weight. I thought that people were thinking "As if she thinks walking will help her shed that massive weight" or "Wow is she ever huge". So in this tormented stated of mind deciding to walk that first block was monumental. I had to in spite of my intense fear of what I thought others were thinking of me get myself out the door. You know the acronym for FEAR F=false E=events A=appear R=real. That first door is the toughest to push yourself through...but what an amazing adventure awaited me on the other side of that door. One block became two,three, four,...ten... and then miles. I came to know that I had every right to be out in public exercising and more importantly I worked on myself mentally saying that everyone I passed were cheering me on not leering at me.

Exercise...the key to vitality!

Physical benefits:
· Lowers blood pressure
· Reduces your risk for diabetes, osteoporosis
· Strengthens your heart, lungs
· Boosts your immune system
· Relieves stress
· Helps your circulation
· Burns fat
· Curbs your appetite
· Gives you more energy
· Reduces your risk for a heart attack
· Helps with the digestion and elimination system
· Can prevent some cancers or reduce risk
· Promotes sleep
· Reduces depression and anxiety
· Enhances your love life

Mental benefits:
· Enables us to think better, to focus
· Cleans out the cobwebs in our minds

Emotional benefits:
· Releases serotonin the feel good chemical our body produces
· Creates an overall feeling of wellness - endorphins

Spiritual benefits of walking in nature:
· It connects us to our Creator and the beauty of this Earth
· I believe that we absorb spiritual and physical energy from nature

I am not talking about doing the Disney stroll. Start with a 5-7 minute warm up and then pick up the pace and start swinging your arms. You should start to sweat in a few minutes. This is a good thing. Keep this going for 20-40 minutes and then end with a 5-10 minute cool down walk and a few stretches. Awesome!! Remember to log your exercise sessions -I put a star on the calender for each day I exercise and end my exercise session by saying "Awesome" out loud.

“The Power is within me to lead a Healthy and Vibrant Life”

Recovering Sugarholic

I think of myself as a recovering sugarholic. Probably not in the dictionary but none the less this is my truth. I was driven to eat sugar based products in spite of the devastating effect on my body and the tormented emotional state that it caused. This is addiction. Like the alcoholic, drug addict, smoker etc... we are driven by our addiction. When we deny that we are addicted to a substance, we continue in our addiction. It is by opening up our eyes to the devastation that our additions have caused that we can begin to start the process of recovery. I can't count the days that I lost to my addiction because of the physical and mental torment it caused me. This is so sad...time is is precious

I remember a few years ago Oprah said "I finally got it" referring to that her lifestyle was fixed in a way that she was connected with. As a recovering sugar addict, I have come to know that you never get it!! That's because I am always in a state of recovery and daily renewal. I must keep in my mind that today I am keeping my addiction at bay.That's it TODAY only.

I have a good friend Armand a recovering alcoholic who shared this wise statement with me "One drink is too much and a thousand is never enough". I adapted this to my sugar addition "One bite is too much and a thousand is never enough".

Definition of an addict: addiction - an abnormally strong craving
addiction - (Roman law) a formal award by a magistrate of a thing or person to another person (as the award of a debtor to his creditor); a surrender to a master; "under Roman law addiction was the justification for slavery"

I was a slave to my addiction! Now I am Sugar Free and Loving It!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Literally falling apart

This is me in 1995. The building behind me is a log cabin suffering from neglect. How ironic that I too in this picture am suffering from neglect. Daily renewal would of prevented this building from the fallen state that it is in. Like wise, daily renewal will keep me from falling apart and derailed from my healthy lifestyle.
I had been taught how important it was to look after our possessions by my parents. My mother was a very meticulous housekeeper. The nut doesn't fall from the tree. I enjoy an organized and attractive home. I look after our possessions because I value the work that bought them and I want them to last.
One day it occurred to me that I valued my possessions more than I valued my health. I pondered that even when I was morbidly obese, I cleaned the house every day. However in the same state I didn't have the energy to look after myself. How come?
I had to learn to value myself. In the beginning of my transformation way back in 1996, I knew that I had to value myself right 300 pounds. How, could I do this when for years I berated myself for being so fat. That's all I thought about when I thought of myself. Fat equaled failure...that's all. I learnt about affirmations and created my own "I am a person of value regardless of what I weigh...I make a difference! I still keep this in my heart to this day. We are here by design and we are here to make a difference.

Check out the effects of sugar on our bodies!

I am always searching for ways to renew and support my commitment to be sugar free. This is an interesting article to read.

Giving up Diet pop

I hydrate myself primarily with water which is really liquid gold for our bodies. On March 1st 2005 I gave up my addiction to diet Pepsi. At that time I was probably drinking up to 5 -6 cans a day. In fact I would drink a can of pop early in the morning. The reason was not caloric as there are no calories to speak of in diet Pepsi. My choice was a result of nagging stomach problems. I reviewed my diet and thought that the pop with all its additives including sugar substitute might be the cause. As well, the caffeine in the pop was probably dehydrating me. This was a toughie to for me give up as a I have drank pop for over 25 years but when you leverage that benefits of not drinking pop against effects on the body of the toxins and became a no brainer. Last year when there was nothing else to drink,I took a sip and was worried that I might like it enough to go back to drinking it, not so I hated it and didn't know how I was so addicted to it before.
There are articles to suggest that even when we reach for a sugary substitute product we still set ourselves up for real sugar cravings. I had read that I would lose weight by giving up the diet pop...this didn't happen for me. I am satisfied in knowing that by eliminating as many chemicals from my diet as possible that I am honouring the health of my body...this is reason enough for me. Live the word!

Are you Sugar Sensitive?

Do you have any of these symptoms? You might be sugar sensitive.
  • Fatigue
  • Antisocial behaviour
  • drowsiness
  • forgetfulness
  • overemotional and sensitive
  • headaches
  • depression
  • nervousness
  • unbearable cravings for sugary starchy foods
  • obesity
I jokingly say I am allergic to sugar instead of breaking out in hives I break out in fat! But it is the truth for me nonetheless.

Taking charge and being responsible

This is me probably not even at my heaviest since moving here to the Maritimes. I was desperately trying to diet and of course the more I tried to diet the more weight I gained. I truly believe that when we diet we set ourselves up for weight gain. For me choosing to be responsible for my health and choosing not to cede this responsibility to a program is what I needed. I know how to make healthy choices...I don't need to pay someone to tell me what I know. I need to be responsible and respect the gift of this body. I give my thanks each day for the gift of having this body by nurturing and nourishing this body in a way that creates joy and peace in my life.
I remember putting on the jacket I am wearing in this picture and fully realizing that it was way too small. This jacket is now way too big.
Google the effects that sugar has on your body and be convinced for yourself!
I am often asked about my "diet" I want to say that I DO NOT DIET. I Choose to make healthy choices each day that support my desire to be vital, energized, joyful and at peace. At peace is the blessing I receive for choosing to be healthy. I have spent years tormented because I was either on a diet or thinking about going a diet or beating myself up because I didn't follow the diet or feeling like a total failure because I couldn't stick to a diet....Dieting is very destructive to the spirit and body. I did choose to eliminate refined sugar because this is my trigger, my addiction when I am eating sugar It is in control of me. In the New Testament Jesus talks of cutting off the arm,or plucking out the eye if it offends us. My interpretation is to cut off those things that separate me from the peace of mind that the Savior offers us. Because the hand for example can not doing anything without direction from our brain, so I cut off the choice for my hand to reach for sugar and thereby eliminate the torment from the addiction and the ensuing turmoil that follows. I also renew my spiritual covenant with God daily pledging that day to be the best that I can be and that I will live it sugar free and happy. An ancient Greek philosopher said "Do not attempt to heal the body without first healing the spirit". Take care.
I want to continue to share my journey with those who are struggling with a sugar addiction. The first step to your sobriety is to recognize the destructive and addictive side effects of bingeing on sugar. First off for me was the daily torment of berating myself for being out of control and the shallow promise of today is the day I will diet and get this under control. I say shallow for dieting is usually good till 3 pm of that same day (usually Monday) when I would find myself in the flurry of addiction desperately needing a sugar fix. Then in despair to be numbed we succumb to the lure of sugar and acquiesce to its call. The fix is only temporary and after the numbing comes the intense pain of giving in at which point we call it a day and say what the heck-bring in on ...tomorrow,tomorrow will be the day. So goes the week till Friday when recognizing we have been out of control we fool our selves and say "What the heck it's the weekend and I am going to have one last free for all of sugar because this Monday...this Monday it is really going to work. Does this sound familiar to you...let me know.

This is the sugar free me!

On March 26th 2008 I hit bottom. It seemed like everything around me was falling apart. I felt defeated and deflated. I felt so helpless and I didn't know how to get out of the crushing funk I was in. It is so hard to believe that I could feel this way and yet be aware of the blessings which are mine at the same time. Maybe this was my faith showing me nothing is ever has dismal as it seems. With both mental and physical anguish I approached the Lord in prayer or should I say initially in anger...why...why ..why me ...why us...why now?

After the anger abated I asked can I get through can I can I help those I love who are suffering...This was the right question to ask! Heavenly Father helped me by letting me know that I could make a difference by looking after myself. It was then that I recalled that saying "God grant me the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference". Most of the anguish was not of my doing nor could it me of my undoing. However I knew that over the time period since moving here I had gotten off track. This meaning Sonia lost her wellnes groove. In making the decision to move out east, I never anticipated that it would be my undoing and remaking.
I had lost my footing and my routine during the move. As well my identity.

I slowly and resistedly turned to eating to comfort this disconcerting time for myself. When I found the pounds piling up I fell into the trap of the Popeye solution. I was looking for that one thing that would take off the pounds that I didn't want. Out east we have SFL program...expensive...yep I signed up. Paid the big bucks -thinking this is it and of course because I am a frugal person this will work because I am paying the big bucks. Nope,it didn't work. Okay how about Weight Watchers, Tops, Low Carb.... Through all this my weight piled on and my self-esteem plummetted.

So on this day March 26 in despair it came very clearly to me that sugar was my enemy. That like David who decisively slew Goliath, I needed to slay my Goliath -Sugar. I then got on my knees and thanked God for clearly showing me the way. I covenanted with him that I would no longer partake of sugar bingeing. This action of deciding to be sugar free lifted a humongous mental weight off me. The initial days ahead tested me and had me on my knees often asking for strength to be true to my convenant. Slowly the addiction abated and now have no desire at all for sugar bingeing. What a blessing this has been.
I just have to share my amazing discovery!