As time passes by I reflect back at the person I've become over the past two years. I think about the fears that I felt when I hired a fitness coach to help me reach my goal of getting control of my health and wellness.
Experience and time has taught me so much about who I can be and if there were words of advice I can give myself two years ago this is what I would say:
Dear 2013 Joanne,
You're tired. It hurts so much I know. Your heart grieves in a way that no one else feels and you're so tired of carrying the pain. I see what no one else arounds you see: the anger, the frustration, the sheer disappointment you feel each time you've regained the courage to focus on health and fitness and fail. This time will be different you'll see.
I know you're scared. You're not sure what will happen, you won't know if you can stick to the commitment you made, and that's perfectly OKAY. But guess what you WILL! I know you feel entirely alone in making this lifestyle change. None of your friends are committing to a 12 week fitness plan, none of your friends are learning how to meal prep, and everything about lifting weights and cardio just sounds like a chore! Everything is new to you and I know you're not sure about your own abilities, but just keep going.
You're going to surpass the first goals you set and it's going to be incredible you'll see! After you make the first step, after running out of all the excuses you're going to make, just remember why you're doing this. Remember that you're tired of hating yourself, you're tired of being depressed, and you just want to be happy in your own skin. Your husband deserves a happy wife. Your daughters deserve a happy mother. Most importantly you deserve to be happy with yourself. Just hang on to ONE more week, one more month, and you'll see. The things you're worried about losing, you will gain 10 fold. I promise you that in a year things will be different and the year after that you'll still be keep moving forward. The road ahead of you will be rough at first. You will have moments you'll want to give up and that's okay. But in those moments that you want to give up, DON'T! KEEP GOING! YOU GOT THIS!
You're not alone. You're not the only one struggling with the same self image issues. You'll learn that sharing your story empowers so many women around you, you'll change your world. You'll gain friendships that go past any depths you've had in the past. They will help push you through when you need the motivation.
You'll achieve greatness! You'll prove to yourself that nothing is impossible. I believe in you.