Monday, 18 April 2005
The Fork in the Road
Topic: Keeping On Going
We often talk about weight loss as a journey. That’s to remind ourselves that we’re not dieting, we’re making lifelong changes to the way we eat and exercise, and that reaching our goal weight is a milestone, not the destination.
I started to picture our journey as a walk along a road. Our weight loss began when we came to that fork in the road marked "Good Health, this way." It’s not an easy road. There are lots of bumpy patches, detours, and turn-outs along the way. Sometimes it seems like it’s all uphill, though occasionally you come to an easy stretch where you can coast along for a while. But something always comes along to make it challenging again. Sometimes the road winds around tortuously, until you’re sure you’re lost. But there are milestone markers along the way that let you know you’re still making progress.
This road has a lot of forks in it. We know which is the way to Good Health, but sometimes we can’t resist taking the other fork. The ones marked "Comfort" and "Familiar" are especially hard to resist. If we only go a little way down the other road, it’s pretty easy to turn back and get on the right track. But the longer we continue down that easy highway, the harder it is to get back to the road to Good Health. A lot of people give up and just keep going along the well-worn, easy path instead of making the extra effort to get back to the right road.
One thing that makes it easier to travel on the road to Good Health is that you don’t have to keep moving forward all the time. You can take little breaks and time-outs along the way. Actually, the people who try to race down the road seldom make it all the way to Good Health; they usually get burned out. Or when they come to the "goal weight" milestone, they turn around and go back the way they came.
The beginning of this road is pretty heavily trafficked, but as you go along, more and more people turn off on one of the forks. The thing that really makes the journey more enjoyable is the people you meet along the way, especially the friends who stay beside you for the long haul. They’re the ones that give you a hand over the rough spots, and try to ease the weight when your burdens seem too heavy for you keep going, and dust you off when you trip up.
I’m glad you’re beside me on this road.
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