Well here we are. Here I am taking on this project of putting my life in a public space and here you are taking a gander at the person shinning a spotlight on themselves. What could possibly go wrong? Let me introduce myself: Hello, my name is Jos. I’m a girl who is going through change. I’m currently on a mission to lose weight, a lot of weight. This blog is a means for me to chronicle my ongoing weight loss journey.
Why a blog?
That was a big question I had to take some time to answer. I’m generally a private person, not secretive but aside from close friends and family I’m not the type to share many aspects of my life. So why chose to present something that can be so personal and emotional as weight loss in a public space? Especially the internet where anything I post is public domain available to anyone in virtual perpetuity. Through a public forum I’m almost guaranteed criticism and judgment which may or may not be voiced and who among us hasn’t dreaded, feared, the sting of judgment, even when simply perceived?
After thinking about it for a few days and doing some research I came up with a few answers that proved persuasive enough for me to undertake this venture.
Outreach: Who doesn’t like a success story? I’ve browse the Huffingtom Post weight loss success stories whenever they come across my feed. I’ve read practically every story they’ve posted. I find them motivational in their own way but after a time I found that I didn’t completely relate to any story because there were few Hispanic women around my age. I found that strange, obesity amongst Hispanic Americans is right up there with all the other demographic groups. Could it be that less Hispanic women have succeeded in loosing large amounts of weight? Could I be the only Hispanic that reads the Huffington Post? Or am I just looking in the wrong place? Upon further research of other weight loss blogs and websites I found this to be a recurring trend, or lack thereof. So I decided maybe I can be a story to follow. I’m hoping there are other people out there who I can relate to my story on multiple levels and can feel motivated themselves. Don’t get me wrong, I can relate to all weight loss struggles, we all seem to follow a similar arc in one way or another, but I believe there are cultural elements that affect each person. With that said let me make this clear: this is not the Hispanic Woman’s Guide to Weight Loss, it’s just an answer to a motivation behind this project.
Motivation: Part of what’s helped me maintain the momentum of weight loss so far is actively looking for ways to motivate myself to keep working. Weight loss is a lifestyle change, replacing the unhealthy routine with a healthy one and having the discipline to maintain it. But just writing about routines and discipline I begin to feel bored; I have to find ways to add variety and excitement while still retaining the discipline of a routine. I think writing could be a way of maintaining a routine while challenging myself to try new things and record them.
Chronicling: I currently have a fitness and personal journal that I update. Part of why I have them is so I can take look back on my progress and setbacks. I love remembering where I was and how far I’ve come in the 10 months since I started. There are a few setbacks to written journals, mostly it’s that I’m more of a typer than a writer, faster that is, and so much of my browsing and research is done online I figured keeping a collection of my personal experiences and research in one easily accessible place increases my chances of long term success.
Find a community: I believe with certainty that a huge element to my weight loss so far has been finding a community of people to support me. This community came from different places including the workout buddies I’ve found throughout my adventures, who I’ll be happy to highlight in future posts. It hasn’t just been weight loss or workout buddies; I’ve come this far with the support of the people in my life. Taking on this mission has asked for a lifestyle adjustment not only for me but for my family and friends who came to understand that the life I want to have has a different dynamic than the one we were used to and for that I’m very thankful to them. Lastly there is the community online. This one is different in that it’s not actively involved in my personal experience but I’ve found them in my own searching and perusing. I’d like to contribute to that bank of information and experience with this blog. Hopefully other people will find it helpful. If no one does, then having two out of three still ain’t bad.
Going back to the original concern, why put myself out in public open to potential scrutiny. This was a legitimate concern of mine for a long time. Even when deciding to share anything relating to weight loss with my family in person or with friends on Facebook. Facebooking, it took a while to bring myself up to doing that. Being overweight hurts, physically and emotionally; most people don’t like talking about their struggles with weight mainly out of a sense of shame to some degree. Like many other touchy subjects it’s tough to have an honest conversation without some discomfort, but to affect real change those conversations have to happen, whether it’s with another person or oneself. I have that internal conversation pretty regularly; I figure if I share it out loud it can prompt others to do the same, maybe even with me. There’s also some pride behind my motivation. I’m very proud of the weight I’ve lost so far, and although I know there is so much more road ahead of me I’ve found a level of confidence that makes me willing to share. I feel like I’m a pretty well rounded person, I’ve got a level head and to a certain degree skin thick enough to take any potential hits with an objective mind. That being said I don’t really anticipate issues, hopefully conversation. I’ve found that most people have been incredibly supportive in their words and actions and I’m deeply appreciative of that.
So there you have it. Not exactly in a nutshell but I answer the ‘Why’ behind this blog. I’ve got my eyes set on the long term journey for my life and health, I’m using this as a tool to help me along the way. Speaking to a potential reader; I hope you find this blog informational, motivating or perhaps even casually entertaining. If you are at all curious to know more about me then I hope I project through this medium a voice you find honest and transparent, at least that’s the goal. Speaking to myself; this whole blog thing is for you to have a record of your successes and failures to provide a perspective on your journey. I’m doing this for you because I care and I want to live as long and as much as possible.
Care to read on?