When I decided to spend an extended period of time in New York City I knew that it was going to be a challenge to maintain my healthy eating and consistent workouts. The city has so many temptations, so many opportunities to over indulge and I took plenty. I have a handful of friends who live in the city and we spent plenty of time going out to eat and imbibing in food and drinks that were not part of a healthy eating plan.
I stayed in the city for about six weeks, and about five of those weeks I wasn’t focused on my health. I chose happy hours over workouts and late nights to early mornings. I was cognizant of what I was eating and watched my portion control and I walked a lot, up stairs, down stairs, across avenues, down streets, through Mid-Town and Downtown, across the Brooklyn Bridge and Central Park. It was the walking that saved me. I didn’t gain a single pound in New York, in fact I lost a pound. Yes, a pound. Hey I will take what I can get. It was a lesson in how important movement is in life.
This blog has been a wonderful way to share my experiences and challenges but it also is incredibly stressful. I took off on this epic journey telling everyone that I was taking time from my daily life routine to explore the country while trying to become healthier physically and emotionally. Overall, I have succeeded. I have lost over forty pounds, not exactly the number I was hoping for by this time in the trip but still something to be very proud of. One of my dear friends reminded me during his visit to New York that I should be proud of my accomplishments, that weight loss isn’t easy and it has never been easy for me, I shouldn’t discount the weight I have lost even if it falls below where I had hoped to be. He is right, I know he is however, one of my biggest fears as I prepare to head home for the holidays is that everyone I left behind is going to judge my progress when they see me in person. I play reels in my head where I meet up with friends and they can’t even notice a change in my body. I run into ex co-workers who wonder what I have been doing with the last few months, why was it I gave up the security of a job to go travel and lose weight if I haven’t lost much weight.
In reality I know that anyone who cares for me would never judge me in this way and all the others shouldn’t be my concern. I can tell a change in my health, energy and physicality and I am the only one who truly matters. This negative self talk needs to end in order for me to continue my success. And what does success look like for me on this trip? To be honest this trip has become so much more than losing weight, that is still a focus and definitely a goal of mine but there are so many other things to attend to.
New York was an incredible experience, I got a taste of living in the big city, spent time with many friends who I love and adore and was able to visit many cultural and city landmarks. Would I ever consider living in New York? Perhaps, if I had millions of dollars, it is not the best city to be cash poor, then again what city is? My friend Amanda told me that I spoke of Seattle so much while we were together it was as if I hadn’t gotten over an ex and couldn’t stop talking about them. Funny analogy, the thing is I am not ready to break up with Seattle. I will visit New York as often as possible but my heart belongs in Seattle. That said, I am eager to return, until then I have many fond memories to sustain me!