While I was at the fair, I rode in the parking lots patrolling the grounds and making sure that things were a-ok. It was a lot of saddle time, helping people find their cars, etc. etc. Things can get pretty boring out there and historically that boredom was filled with food. The fence riders (as we're so-called) bring dinner with us in our saddle bags and it's an evening of chit-chat and munching on snacks with our riding buddies as we meander through the lots.
Each night I carefully packed apples, some protein, Melba snacks, and cut up veggies to snack on. I was perfectly happy with my little packs as I roved around the parking areas. On the other hand, my riding partners packed granola bars, licorice, hard candy, chips or goldfish, sandwiches, and perhaps even the kitchen sink just 'cause.
One night I was paired with a guy that had a particularly "bad" dinner packed with him. I mean, this guy had everything a girl would ever want or need to go off plan ... and ... well ... he brought "extras" and really really really wanted to share with me.
Every time he'd reach into his pack and pull out another goody (ohhhhh almond joys! wuhoo, suckers! awwww, black licorice!), he'd offer to share.
I thanked him politely each time with a "no, but thanks".
His offers became more and more insistent and I could feel my resolve wavering. To top it off, the poor guy was getting annoyed with me.
Did I really need to indulge just to get this guy off my back already?
I'm a pretty private person. I know, shocking since I write a public blog and all but it's different when I have to admit face-to-face to someone my history and weight struggles.
When he reached for the corn nuts, poured some into a baggy, and threw them at me (didn't even bother asking this time), I knew it was time to speak up.
In a rush of cascading words that I'm sure came out a bit louder than was actually necessary, I said something like "Hey, seriously, no. I don't want your stinkin' corn nuts, candy, sugar, treats, chocolate, and calories!"
Poor guy. He looked shocked and wounded.
Further explanation was necessary. I explained (in a more casual tone) about my weight loss journey, my goals, and why corn nuts wouldn't be entering my mouth anytime soon.
I tossed the corn nuts back to him and with a big smile he said: "Yeah, you're awesome. You eating these corn nuts would be just plain nuts!"
That statement made my night and I was surprised at how supportive and appreciative he then became.
I always worry that when I tell people about where I was, they'll judge me harshly and think "wow, how did she ever get that big in the first place" and then pass judgement on me for being a weak person. In reality, it's the exact opposite. Each time I've told someone (generally with a bit of pushing on their part) about my weight loss, the response has been support twinged with a touch of amazement.
They see my weight loss as a combination of will power, strength, and resolve which I suppose is all true however I certainly don't rely on those things to be successful. Anyone, at any time, can make up their minds to lose weight and change their lives. And I mean that from the bottom of my soul..... ANYONE CAN DO THIS!
It's about having the right tools and knowledge to start the journey and the courage to ask for help when we stumble.
That and knowing, without a shadow of a doubt, that indulging in chocolate, suckers, licorice, and corn nuts is just plain nuts!
That's my new motto and the latest print out posted next to my computer.