I’ve been on a weight-loss journey. It started 10 weeks ago. And it’s been successful. I’ve lost 20 pounds and 19 inches altogether. I am so thrilled! It’s occurred to me that there are many parallels between the powerful steps you can take on a weight-loss and a dream journey.
Here’s what I mean:
Pay Attention – I call this the neon sign part of the journey. God is behind our dreams and He starts sending us repeated messages – songs, articles, devotionals, people to the point where we just can’t ignore it.
- My weight loss journey started when I was inspired by my sister. She lost weight by changing her habits to incorporate whole foods – fruits, vegetables, lean protein – and avoid processed stuff.
- I was further inspired when I edited not one but two articles in the magazine I work for that told of success stories through The Max Challenge.
Investigate – If we feel God is laying a dream on our heart, a wise next step is to investigate further. We can trust that as we seek Him, He is faithful to guide us and help us decide next steps.
- I Googled, to find out if The Max Challenge program was running anywhere near me. Sure enough there was a Max studio less than a mile from my home.
- I went online to find out what the program was about and how it had impacted others. The success stories motivated and inspired me.
Do Something –
- I reached out to the owner of the Max Fit studio nearby a few times with questions. She couldn’t have been more welcoming…and she followed up immediately.
- I went online and took advantage of a $100 discount for signing up.
Be Brave –
- I was far out of my comfort zone when I discovered that the challenge included nutrition (a weight-loss eating plan), coaching, AND rigorous exercise five days a week.
- I have back and knee issues. How was I going to keep up? Would I look like a fool? Would I hurt myself further?
- I decided I had nothing to lose except a lot of weight. Even if I couldn’t complete the challenge, I had to try. So I showed up for a 7 am class every day (another miracle…I am no early bird! Thanks Crystal Paine and Makeover Your Mornings).
Get Support and Accountability – Dreamers need support. You don’t have to go this alone. Bring a trusted friend, a prayer and accountability partner, along on your journey.
- Though I was embarrassed, I let my trainer know from the beginning that I would have to modify most moves. She was awesome, encouraging me that I was not alone and always taking the time to show me how I could do the exercise safely.
- Within the first two weeks, I found myself crying as I looked in the mirror. Who was this showing up for a 7 am class every weekday and moving her body to the wild and crazy music? Oh…it was me!!
Don’t Give Up – Keep Your Eye on the Prize – There will be many times along the way that you may be tempted to give up on your dreams. Don’t do it unless you feel God is instructing you to lay down the dream.
- Oh there were many times I wanted to give up. Wanted to have that glass of wine. Wanted to eat that cheese, bread, ice cream, cookies…need I go on?
- I was allowed one “Treat Meal” a week and with very little exception, I stuck to it. When faced with the temptation to give up, I reminded myself that every “no” brought me closer to my goal.
- What was the prize? To get healthy so I could enjoy my life, husband, kids, grandkids, friends for many years to come. I repeated this goal to myself often.
Celebrate Along the Way – Too often we don’t acknowledge progress. We wait till we reach the ultimate goal. But there are many successes worth noting in-between.
- At five weeks, halfway through the 10-week challenge, we were measured. I burst into tears when I discovered I had lost 11 inches. Nowhere near my end goal, but so worth celebrating…and not with cake!!
- I am feeling much less pain and physical limitation. It’s not completely gone, but I am definitely moving in the right direction.
Keep Going – Reaching our goals, realizing our dreams, getting “there” may be a lifelong process, not just a 10-week challenge.
- Though I am thrilled with my success so far, I am a long way from being as fit as I want to be. I’m not giving up. I just signed up for another challenge.
- I know the challenge to keep my weight off will continue for the rest of my life. This requires me to change my lifestyle permanently.
Rely on God – There is no greater cheerleader than God Himself.
- I know that I would not have success without God. He has helped me as I’ve cried out. He has given me the will power I do not have. He has been my constant companion. He has whispered to my heart, “Come to me,” when I have felt weak.
I know you’ve got a dream. Maybe it’s a dream to lose weight, to start a ministry, to write a blog, to adopt a child. It doesn’t matter! If God placed that dream on your heart, then it can come true! I hope sharing my journey can help you take the next step along the way.
Go forward! You and God…you’ve got this.
Shared by: Elise Daly Parker