Exercise, Life Journey, Mental Wellbeing, Weight Loss

Some Circles are Good

Spirograph. There’s some good circles. Until you used to put you pen through the paper because you were leaning too hard……

I am a person who thinks in circles and cycles, and a lot of this is because of farming. You can never gauge if things are good or bad until you’ve gone full-circle through all the seasons. Lambing might go well, so you think it’s a good year, but then you lose half your crop at harvest because of poor weather.

Why am I banging on about Farming and Spirograph?

Some people say it’s not healthy. Unnatural. The fact I think in cycles. Seasons, years, episodic depression. They are all circles. I have reference points for everything, and I am a strongly goal-driven person. The reality is that although my approach to life is somewhat intense and a little over-bearing, it’s entirely natural, because every aspect of life, the universe and everything is a cycle. The way I think is entirely normal, I just do a little too much of it. It’s getting to that time that’s hit a bit of a raw nerve with the thinking-and-reference-points- in a few weeks it’s my birthday. This time last year I was close to turning thirty, half-marathon fit and more than a stone lighter, and in a really good place mentally. I’m my own worst enemy for over-analysing (thanks, science brain) and very quick to judge myself and be hard on myself.

When I look back at what’s happened in my life in the last 12 months, logically I should be very proud at some of the things I’ve done, and be happy. I’ve run that first half marathon, joined a running club, and my job has taken a turn and led me on to subjects that I’m very interested in and passionate about, and being asked to give my expertise. That’s quite flattering. I’ve turned a corner in my relationship with my father. I’ve helped my beloved Mist rear a litter of beautiful pups, started writing a novel and gone on another adventure round the country.

But I’m not. I’m not proud. And that boils solely down to the scales. Recently I mentioned I was transcribing old journals, and the common theme to unhappiness in those was my weight. That was nearly ten years ago, and I’m still at it- my weight circle is causing me grief, and governs far too large a part of my life.

What I struggle to remember is that also in the last year I’ve been diagnosed with reproductive problems, which can affect weight loss, and has greatly affected my ability to exercise recently. I’ve moved 400 miles with 4 animals more or less single-handedly and dealt with a short but severe bout of depression, and come out the other side. I really should be nicer to myself.

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I think it’s important to look at your ‘circles’. It’s important to analyse things in your life to a degree, because this is what helps us identify problem areas and set a course of action to change things. This is how we learn from our mistakes. However, it’s also important to look at the circles in front, and that’s exactly what I’m doing. All in all, most of my circles are pretty good. (I always think about the Olympic rings) So I’m focusing on improving the ones that aren’t.

I always try and be the best person I can be every day- my mum always used to tell me “All you can do is try your best” – and I do. I know when I shut my eyes at night, nine times out of ten, I’ve done everything I can to be as good a person as possible. (When I haven’t, I go back and fix things)

I’m having to work twice as hard to lose weight now, but I can still do it. The very first time I stepped on the scales just before I turned 21, I promised myself I’d never be that weight again (14st 13.5), and in a decade, I haven’t. I’ve been active regularly for the last ten years, so I’ve definitely learned something. But now it’s time to move that circle on a bit, and let it evolve and develop.

Surgery or not, my weight circle is being fixed this year. It might take me a year, but there is no reason why I can’t get to goal. So I am.

What do your circles look like?

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