I am a big fan of a weight loss TV programmes. One of my all time favourites is My 600lb Life. If you haven’t seen it, the series follows individuals who weigh over 600lbs – 42 stone for us Brits – who are trying to lose their excess weight through bariatric surgery. The programme focuses on extreme individuals. People who cannot work, cannot walk, cannot even take a shower without help. They have often reached the very end of the road and their life is at stake.
It is easy to sit on the sofa and judge. It is easy to believe that nothing like that would ever happen to you – to marvel at how anyone would ever allow themselves to get to that place.
I don’t judge. Because I know how they got there; they got there through the acceptance of small things. Minor inconveniences. Barely noticeable changes. But small things that added up to a terrible, cumulative total.
When I became obese I did so by tolerating small things. You stop wearing high heels because your ankles are sore (because of your weight of course). You stop wearing certain types of clothes (because they are for much thinner people). You never take the stairs, always the lift (because you get a bit too out of breath for comfort). You stop looking in mirrors. You give up certain hobbies and pastimes. And so on.
For some of us, there is the light-bulb moment that makes us stop. Stop eating, stop damaging our body, stop accepting those small things. But for some, this moment never comes. And a few years down the line the next small thing that you are tolerating might be an inability to stand, walk, move without help.
Weight gain is a boiling frog.
Lately, as my weight has edged over what I think is acceptable for me, I noticed that I had tolerated some small things. Nothing much. But as I said in my last post, this is the time to make change, not in another few months or years when the small things are really Very Big Things (or indeed I am a Very Big Thing).
It is zero tolerance time. I’ve done it before and I can do it again.