Digging up Roots + Working on the Surface


When thinking about myself, I go deep. I’m not afraid to explore the deepest depths and darkest corners of my heart and mind mostly because I’ve already done all that work. I know what’s there. That’s what I did last year. I dug up the roots. I examined the foundational issues of why I overeat, why I feel the way I do about food, and why I just can’t seem to break and eradicate old habits.

I overeat because I genuinely enjoy food. To me, food isn’t fuel, but an activity (a social activity and something enjoyed in isolation). It keeps me entertained and gives me something to look forward to.

I overeat because I see food as a reward. A huge meal with carb heavy food is a first place prize for a job-well-done and consolation prize for when I fail. It’s both.

I overeat because I see food as a celebration of my culture. I can hear my grandmother asking, “did you get enough to eat? Let me fix you another plate.” I can see rows and rows of tables full of Southern comfort food at the annual church Homecoming. I can smell the prime rib and all it’s goodness on Christmas Eve.

I overeat because gluttony / over-indulgence is one of my major personal weaknesses. I’m inclined to believe that every single person has one or two major weaknesses that they constantly battle.  They  manifest in different ways for each person. For me, it manifests in overeating and laziness. My bent towards over-indulgence stems from the root thought of “you aren’t worthy to be taken care of, so you better stock up on ______, _______, and _______.”

I overeat because up until this point, I’m not willing to break habits and make lasting changes. I think this is the saddest one of all. I know what’s wrong. I know where I can make real changes, but I’ve been clenching my fists and refusing to do things differently.

It’s driving me insane. For too long I’ve refused to think long, always “living in the moment.”

So. There’s all the issues and my feelings about the issues. Like I said in the beginning, I’ve done this work before. It’s not new to me. The roots are dug up and now it’s time to work on the surface. It’s time to move from good intentions and knowledge to action and implementation.

I’ve finally come around to the “real lifestyle change” or “maintainers mindset” way of thinking. A plan, program, or person isn’t going to do the work for me. It’s me.

It’s me appreciating the journey I’ve been on. Appreciating and understanding the underlying issues and not getting bogged down, but making the real attempt to change.

Let’s change – JJ


Creating Routines


The idea of creating a routine is something new to me. In the past I’ve just fallen into a routine, never really thinking through it or working to create one.

How do you create a routine? First, figure out the purpose of the routine? Is it to start the day in a healthy way? Is it to set healthy boundaries and guidelines? For me, it’s both! The first routine I want to set is “relaxed weekend morning.” Has a nice ring to it right?

Because Luke and I both work at our church, we have the same schedule. We’re off on Fridays as well as Saturdays and we religiously guard our weekend downtime. We go through busy seasons, but sometimes there are weekends where we have absolutely nothing planned. Those are the days that I want to focus on.

I’m thinking my Relaxed Weekend Morning routine will include coffee with Luke, a light breakfast, and extra Bible reading / journaling time. Maybe spending an hour and a half or 2 hours reading, writing, sipping coffee, making lists, etc. I want my routines to set me up for success, even if that success means resting and relaxing well.

I’d also like to include a breakfast date out once a month. I think that would be just lovely! Some of my favorite breakfast spots are the Gathering at Livingston, Broadstreet Bakery and Cafe, and Chick-fil-a. 946275_10200489912352171_426901272_n

Waffles always win.

My next routine to set will be Weekday Working Mornings. Do you have any routines you’d like to create?

Podcast Love

I love to listen to a podcast. I prefer it over listening to music. I enjoy people talking to me, or at me since I can’t actually talk back.

Anyway, I love Podcasts and I’ve been listening to two different Weight Loss related podcasts religiously. Months ago, I wrote about my love of the Half Size Me podcast. I still love it! Listening to Heather interview people who lost the weight and are keeping it off is absolutely inspiring. Heather has an incredible story and a wealth of knowledge and experience herself. I love listening to her. Heather, if you’re reading this, I feel like I know you and I appreciate you!

Alongside the Half Size Me show, I’ve recently started listening to a podcast called Primal Potential. It’s truly fascinating. I’m just getting to know Elizabeth and I’m hanging on every word. She’s also got years of experience and a wealth of knowledge on nutrition, how food and hormones work, and excellent strategies to put into place.

If you’re in the market for encouraging and helpful weight loss related podcasts, I definitley recommend these two. They are different in content (one is interview based and the other is informational based), but share the same message — habit change over time for lifelong sustainability and maintenance.

Honestly, I need other people to listen to these podcasts like I do so we can talk about it. Happy listening! -JJ


Springing Back

Here in Mississippi we get a short tease of spring. The spring tease is happening right now and it’s perfect. There’s a lot of pressure that comes with spring time: spring cleaning, beach season is just around the corner, shorts, re-organization, more time outside, etc. None of those are bad things, they’re just different from the winter hibernation of blankets, layering clothes, and soup/stew for every meal.

Feeling the spring pressure, it’s time to spring back into working towards good things and goals that I started this blog to document.

I’ve really missed blogging. I like knowing that I’ve missed it. That not only means that I enjoyed doing it, but that it was good for me. The accountability, the connection with other people, and the informational and emotional processing I was able to do through writing has been deeply missed.

So where have I been? Let’s see. I’ve been at Chick-fil-a, the Dairy Queen drive through, lingering in the junk food aisles at the grocery store, and at home in my recliner with my hand in the Cheez-It box, just to name a few examples.

I can admit it. I quit.

I quit putting forth effort to make healthy choices. I quit listening to my body. I quit trying. Things got hard and I bailed.

I can also admit, even though I’m cringing even typing it, that I gained back almost all of the weight I previously lost.  Because of that feelings of shame and regret flood my mind and spirit every day. Sometimes every hour.

So, here I am now. I’m back. I’m choosing to spring back. I’m choosing to try!

The prideful part of me doesn’t want to showcase my coming back, but only show the end results. Show that I could do it on my own! TBH, that’s a terrible plan.

I’m coming back in a posture of humbleness admitting that I quit, that I feel deep regret, and that I can’t do this by myself. I need the vulnerability of blogging as well as a salad.

Am I going to be perfect? Of course not. Am I going to try, make small changes, and be smarter? Yes!

Here’s to everyone who’s started something and then quit.

Here’s to everyone who has (at some point) knowingly ignored and not dealt with something just because it’s hard.

And here’s to everyone who has experienced failure (in anything. For me, it’s gaining the weight back), but is ready to try again!

Here’s to us. Let’s find joy in rebuilding and facing hard challenges. Here we go!

By the way — the terrible pun on spring time in the title was indeed intended.