Tuesday, December 6, 2011

I'm Moving!!

Well, my blog is anyways.

Check it out: elizabethbenton.com

I don't really have a name for the blog yet but I'm open to suggestions.

There's a new post over there waiting for you!!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead

Happy December, guys!! I know, I know, I was MIA again. But not for nearly as long as the last time, so I'm getting better! 

The bad news: November was a crazy, crazy month! Work was crazy, home was crazy, the holidays were definitely crazy.
The good news: Despite all the crazy, I lost 9 lbs in November. I'm pretty proud of that.

I'm curious - have any of you seen the documentary "Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead"? I watched it last night. It definitely gives you something to think about! While I can't say that I agree with everything in there, it was definitely shocking to see/hear what "average" Americans have to say about their diet and lifestyle. It's a very inspiring story about the radical changes that come about when you adopt a more wholesome lifestyle. Specifically, it focuses on the health benefits of "juicing". If you haven't seen it, check it out. If you have, what did you think?

I got a juicer a couple of years ago as a gift from my mom and while I love it, I don't use it often because its such a pain in the a** to clean. However, when I did use it, the juice was great and I never wanted to throw away the pulp so I'd incorporate it into meatloaf or veggie soups. After watching the documentary I think I'm going to try to incorporate "juicing" into my routine at least a couple of times a week. I have a few other goals for the last month of 2011 - even though we're a few days in, I figured I'd share them with you guys for the sake of accountability:
December 2011 Goals (progress, not perfection)
  • Make time for exercise - at least twice each week
  • Fresh juice from the juicer - at least twice each week
  • Journaling - at least once each week
  • Move this blog to my new platform - husband is on me about this one
  • Send out Christmas cards
  • Drink more water
December is a totally crazy month with travel, holiday parties, shopping, etc - have you set goals for the month? I'd love to hear them! Good luck!!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Missing in Action (inaction, really)

*Sheepishly* Hi guys.
It's been a while. Way too long, actually. Sorry 'bout that.
Why did I fall off the face of the earth? Well......it wasn't really off the face of the earth, it was really more like off the wagon. Yup, it's true.
We all  have reasons for falling off the wagon and the same is certainly true for me. In my mind, they're pretty good ones, but that's neither here nor there. Maybe I'll get into them at some point, but today's not that day.

At the risk of setting myself for ridicule and criticism, here's the deal - I'm heavier than ever and feel worse about myself than ever. Other than that, life is better than ever. Ha! Sounds sarcastic but it's actually true. Work is good, marriage is good, life is good. My weight and self esteem are not. Really, really, really not.

I don't really have a plan. Right now I don't even feel really hopeful. I feel desperate. But I'm telling myself just to put one foot in front of the other so this seemed like a doable first step. A major thanks to Marge and James for encouraging me to get back at it.

Sorry I've been gone so long - (most sorry for disappointing myself).
Stay tuned - the journey begins again today (even though I don't know what that means yet)

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Take Captive Every Thought

Thanks to my dear friend Michelle, I've been thinking a lot lately about my thoughts and words and their power in my life. I think we are all familiar with the phrase "You become what you think about all day long" (which might imply that I should be a bowl of ice cream.....) And though I'm not said bowl of ice cream, I am a person largely (no pun intended) controlled by food.

My life is consumed with thoughts driven by shame, anger and frustration about my weight. Thoughts, words and fears of failure and defeat. Where has that gotten me....?

A month or so ago I said I was going to stop all negative self talk for 90 days. I'm gonna go ahead and say that venture didn't turn out so well. I didn't decide to give up, I just sort of forgot about the challenge and went about thinking and talking as I normally do. But I"m really interested to see just how things might change if I change the way I think about myself. So I'm going to put a note to myself on my desk at work and in my car as a reminder to "take captive every thought". It won't be easy to completely re-wire my brain but I'm going to make it a very intentional focus.

What is the tape you play in your head about yourself, your life, your marriage or your job? Do you think its impacting your life? Maybe you'll join me in seeing what happens when we switch out the tape.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Today's Choices

What you do today dictates who you are tomorrow. I saw that on twitter today and it kinda made me freak out a bit. It made me think of how my grandmother used to warn me that if I made funny faces my face would freeze that way. It used to make me stop in my tracks and wonder what life would be like if I permanently had my tongue sticking out and my eyes crossed (I'm thinkin' that wouldn't be a great look...)

But what if today's habits were frozen in time as our habits for the rest of our earthly lives? Well, if it was based on today, I can tell you I wouldn't be very happy. I'd oversleep every day and go without eye makeup. I'd not get things accomplished at work because I'd spend the day cleaning and organizing my office. I'd never eat breakfast. I'd never eat any fruits and vegetables (I hope Lydia doesn't read this - I had absolutely no fresh fruits or veggies today). I wouldn't read my Bible. I wouldn't make it to the gym. I'd eat dinner while standing at the counter.

Just as I breathe a sigh of relief because I know my habits aren't frozen in time I remember that they kinda are. That little twitter post I read today is so true: What you do today dictates who you are tomorrow. Sure, I can (and will) have a better day tomorrow. I'll wake up on time. I'll workout. I'll eat breakfast. I'll have balanced meals. I'll read my Bible. But I'll still wake up with the consequences of who I am today. I didn't make forward progress today. I didn't get closer to my goal today. My choices today create someone I don't want to be.

And I think that reminding myself that each choice I make reinforces either the woman I want to be or the woman I don't want to be. *sigh* I'm increasingly grateful that every new day bring a new opportunity to be better and stronger. Thank God!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Lack of Discipline

Hey guys! I hope if you're reading this you are in a sunnier part of the country! It is dreary and raining here for like the millionth day in a row! Bring on the sunshine please!!!

So I wanted to write really honestly here for a minute. I've probably said this before, but it's on my heart again tonight - this journey really isn't about weight loss. Do I need to lose weight? Um, yeah. Big time. But that isn't my primary goal. It always has been, but its not anymore. Everyday my goal is to be a more whole, more balanced, more Christian, God-loving, God-fearing woman. Right now, one of my biggest struggles on that journey is discipline. I have a selective, but broad, lack of discipline. It is on my heart to be more disciplined in my words, my actions and my thoughts. Obviously, a big way in which my lack of discipline manifests is over-eating.

In the past 10 years or so, I've tried to attack this lack of discipline a million different ways: starvation diets, purging, compulsive exercise, the list goes on and on. But recently, when feeling really overwhelmed so many areas of my life that I feel need improvement, I had a moment of clarity. A moment where I realized that if I just focused on one thing, all of these pieces could fall in to place. That I didn't need to constantly feel so fragmented - like nothing ever got 100% of my effort and I was always failing. I realized that if I focus my heart, mind and energy on wildly pursuing Jesus, that all these other facets of life would likely fall in to step.

The past couple weeks have been emotionally challenging for me. There is a lot going on and I'm faced with uncertainty and straight-up fear. Tonight, with the pouring rain making me feel even more down, I decided to turn off the TV and open my bible. I've been reading through the New Testament and I felt drawn to open to the book of Hebrews. After reading for a few minutes I was struck by this passage: "No discipline feels pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it. Therefore, strengthen your feeble arms and weak knees. Make level paths for your feet so that the lame may not be disabled, but rather healed" (Hebrews 12: 11-13).

Um - speaking to me much??? That was exactly where my mind was when I opened up my Bible tonight. Between that passage and Hebrews 2:18 "Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted", I just feel so encourage, inspired and renewed tonight.

Maybe you feel torn. Maybe you feel like there isn't enough of yourself to give to all that requires your attention. You cannot walk forwards, backwards and to the side at the same time. Identify your most basic objective and walk confidently in that direction. Everything else will fall in to place.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

UnProcrastination Day

Hi guys!

So I was reading a blog the other day that talked about having an unprocrastination day. What's that, you ask? Well - I don't know about you but I have a good long list of things that always get bumped for more important things. The things I should do but never seem to get done. They are important but not critical. So I am going to make this Saturday my "UnProcrastination Day". I'm going to do all those things that I keep putting off. I definitely need to have one of those days at work, too. We'll see how Saturday goes and maybe I'll have an UnProcrastination Day at work next week. Here's what Saturday's UnProcrastination Day list looks like:
  • Vacuum my car
  • Clean out the cabinets in the master bathroom
  • Get some decorative, yet organizational boxes or baskets for the top of my vanity
  • Finish clearing out the boxes in at least one of our two vacant bedrooms (I'm ashamed to admit that this means putting up the Christmas tree that was moved to one of these rooms instead of taken down properly)
  • Buy a binder to organize coupons (I'm going to give couponing a try - why not?)
If you had an "UnProcrastination Day" - what would it look like?