CEO of Indonesia's most joyful company. Ninja, heart meditation, hippie, coffee snob, campaigner, efficient swimmer, millennial whisperer.
Too Smart for My Own Good (or My Weight Loss Story Without Even Expecting It)
Yes. I overthink and overcomplicate things, way too much! It’s really, actually not that smart! How many times do I have to be reminded that sometimes the most effective way is the simplest way?
It’s Day 12 of my Natural Walking 21-Day Challenge and (ahem) without even trying, my waist size is down another 2 cm. Not that I actually am trying to lose weight these days. I’ve lost over 10 kg in the last 1.5 years. Again, not that I actually tried. That’s the crazy part. Seriously, I know I sounded like an e-mail spam that tries to sell you diet pills, but nope. True story.
I used to measure everything I eat and monitored all of my workouts. I meticulously followed different training programs. I’ve competed in CrossFit competitions and obstacle courses like the Tough Mudder.
While I have always loved the adrenaline rush in competitions, not gonna lie, I also have some “vanity metrics”. Yes, I wanted to look good. Really, who doesn’t?
Disclaimer: I’m not stating that looking good is about your weight or any other number.. it’s certainly not. But yes, I honestly have used that number to measure how I feel about myself.
Only after I learned Natural Walking and open heart meditation, I started to realize that I’ve been putting tremendous pressure on my body. By the way, no, I’m not enlightened yet, I still wanted to look good (even after all that meditation! ha!). But I really have been overcomplicating this whole looking good, being healthy, getting fit thing. I was highly obsessive about it, I was super strict and feel super guilty about eating 99% dark chocolate (true story).
So that you know what I mean, this is my routine back then:
I eat clean very strictly, I cook, and I used to combine the paleo and ketogenic diets, while also doing intermittent fasting. When I “failed”, I feel bad.
I took some supplements, including protein powders, fish oil, vitamin D3
I exercised daily (sometimes twice a day), usually either CrossFit or gymnastics and then yoga in the afternoon, when I feel “lazy”, I feel bad.
I measure every single detail and also wrote down all of my workouts in my journal (including details of heartbreak, emotional breakdown, and whatnots)
I have a gratitude journal
I did some form of mindfulness-based meditation and breathing exercises
Results: yes, I was proud of being able to do amazing feats with my body in the sports I participated in (pro), but have to deal with injuries (con); I have my high days and low days on how I feel about my body; I never felt I achieved the body I wanted; I still feel heavy even when I have abs or when people complimented me
As a comparison, this is my routine today:
I’m a lot more flexible with my diet, I am still gluten-free, and I mostly eat fish and veggies, but I have ice cream with french fries here and there, I eat chocolate without feeling guilty, and I put back rice into my diet
I do 1 hour of natural walking daily (consistently during the 21 day challenge); outside of the challenge, I sometimes get a bit lazy to walk, I still do pilates and swimming once a week
I do open heart meditation daily
I sometimes write my gratitude in my journal, sometimes I just say it outloud
I try to smile more to others (even to strangers and yep, they think I’m weird)
Results: losing my weight over a period of time, frankly.. on its own, maybe I was a bit stressed here and there (story for another day), but back then I was stressed too and didn’t lose the weight; I feel light and happy; my back did not hurt as much; I have better posture; still have high and low days, but I come back to life a bit faster
On my more relaxed, dressy, and happier moments, recent picture with the husband.
Few things I’ve realized are:
I’ve gotten a lot easier on myself, I no longer beat myself up for tiny mistakes I make (because I make them like.. everyday, 99.99% of the time)
As I put less pressure on myself, things sort of happen naturally, including this whole weight-loss thing, it sounded loosey-goosey I know, not really methodical.. but that’s how I feel & what I’ve observed
At least to me, being strict on myself and aiming for perfection have been my usual M.O. Letting go of things did not come naturally to me, but learning to do so through my daily life and meditation practice have been the kindest thing I’ve done for myself
Honestly, the key is to just chill, relax, and enjoy. It’s easier said than done.
Relaxing is not the same with being lazy, Natural Walking and meditation have taught me that.
Doing your best does not mean that you need to push yourself or being hard on yourself. You can certainly still try to do your best, but being relaxed about it.
To be relaxed while also doing your best means that you certainly still put in the effort/take action, but you also realize that the result/outcome is not entirely up to you or dependent on how much effort you put in.
I realize that there are so many things beyond my control. It’s a relief, actually. It’s all okay!
Part of maturing up is to realize that life is not binary, it’s not all or nothing. It’s not right or wrong, bad or good. Also, the goal is not perfection, because really, what is the goal?
Feeling joyful has a lot to do with your attitude towards yourself, life, external circumstances, relationships, etc. At the end it’s about the choices we make. We’re certainly free to choose however we want to perceive our lives. The choice to be grateful, to let go, to relax.. those are possible (and perhaps, the easier) choices.
Wait, when did this thing turn into my own little soapbox, Oprah moment? :) Kidding, I’m allowed to do that, because this post is mine! Hahahaha. Anyway, hope you found something useful in here. Love to you, Friends. And if you’re on the 21-Day Challenge: go you!