Diets and Budgets

When the holidays were over, I began to work on losing the weight I had gradually picked up over the last few years.  I thought I only had about 15 pounds to shed, which didn’t sound daunting.  That was until I stepped on the scale after New Year’s and found that 6 more had crept up on me.  I began to watch my portions and opt for fruit or veggies instead of the cookies or extra helpings I usually chose.  I also had in mind to get back in the saddle again, along with re-starting my yoga program.

I did get back in the saddle, on January 3, heading out on a trail ride, on a friend’s horse with her daughter on her own horse.  The ride did not go well and Skippy, normally a laid back, been-there-done-that sort, wasn’t having anything to do with the lingering scent of wild pigs in the area or the gunshots off in the distance.  She wasn’t having me calm her down either and finally had enough of my gentle suggestions.  She reared straight up and I went off backwards landing on my back and right shoulder.  I broke four ribs and spent several weeks recuperating, but seem to be all healed now, except for some mild muscle pain.

The good thing about all this is that it jump-started my diet.  The medications made all food taste icky, even the things I liked, so I ate less.  Pretty soon I couldn’t even eat the full portions I usually served myself and at this time, I have lost the originally planned 15 and only have the other 6 to go.

Because dieting is (or should be) a behavior pattern change, I know that it takes time to get into the habit of eating less and healthier.  After 2-1/2 months, I am not having to work as hard at making better eating choices.

This leads me to my topic, of diets and budgets.  The company where I work recently made it possible for interested employees to take Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University course.  I can always use help with my finances so I signed up.  Right off the bat, I was reminded that living on a budget is hard.  It’s certainly not hard to come up with one, tho this course teaches it a little differently.  I even have a budget, have had one for several years now.  The way I use it tho is at the end of the month I look to see how I’ve done.

That’s like eating the way I want and then getting on the scale to see if I’ve lost weight.

Living on a budget means I have to commit to making changes in my spending habits, the same as committing to losing weight means I have to change my eating habits.  None of this is easy and the results may be weeks or months (or in the case of the budget, years) away.  When a member of my church asked about the FPU program, he was shocked that the course would be 13 weeks long.  When I explained that this was to ensure that the “students” committed to trying the program, that we didn’t just do a couple of the things and decide they didn’t work and quit.

So I am 13 weeks closer to my weight goal and 5 weeks closer to financial peace, and, well, I am feeling pretty darn good about both!

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