Smutty Fitness: Be healthy, not perfect
Last year I was diagnosed with Hashimoto's hypothyroidism. What followed was a year focused on getting the right medication levels and dealing with the idea that my body is attacking itself. As part of the medication, I've been gaining weight much more easily and it's a heck of a lot harder to lose. I'm starting to feel like it's hopeless. I've scoured the internet, but there seems to be no real agreement on proper diet - in fact, many sites directly contradict each other.
I know I need a change, and I'm hoping you can help. At the moment, I'm moderately active; I try to attend fitness classes based on toning and cardio a few times a week. My diet is fairly healthy with lots of vegetables and water, but I've never been one to sacrifice too much and I've been known to cave fairly easily when offered pasta or chocolate. I guess the problem is that what I was doing before is no longer working. I'm not looking for a 'perfect' body, just a healthier one that's not being held back by thyroid problems.
Any advice, guidance or even encouragement would be great!
It's not hopeless but you need to change your attitude about what is happening with your body. You have a disease that you are going to have to learn to live with forever and your life is now going to be full of things that you can not control. Medications, doctor's appointments, unwanted weight gain, muscle weakness, fatigue, aches and pains are now a part of your life and you will have difficulty trying to control those things.
Here is my advice. You need to let go of what you cannot control and embrace the things you can -- the first being your attitude. Look at this as something that is now forcing you to take better care of yourself which means every once in a while you have to pass on the chocolate and opt for fruit and choose salad instead of pasta. On the days you decide not to make the right choice do not beat yourself up for it and instead accept the consequences of that choice.
You can also control how you approach your fitness. You are most likely going to experience varying energy levels from day to day but as long as you are doing the best that you can do you can walk away knowing you tried. On the days you feel better you can push harder and the days where you may feel weaker accept what is occurring in your body and be kind to it, both physically and emotionally.
Stop beating yourself up for things you cannot control and start embracing your power over things you can. Continue to eat well and exercise because it is good for your health, not because you want to be skinny.
Keep a daily log of your food intake and your exercise, recording how your body feels and go over it with your doctor every now and again to make sure you are still in good health. Take things day by day, ensuring that you are not expecting perfection.