Posts Tagged ‘never lose hope’

What Will It Take?

Wednesday, March 9th, 2016

What will it take to get to where you want?A while back, the Wall Street Journal had an article that caught my eye, entitled “Second Acts – What do you do for an encore?”

The article profiled four people aged 50 to 65, all of whom completely reinvented themselves at midlife.

One particular woman piqued my attention. Lisa Fisco.

Lisa is a 50 year old woman who spent the first half of her life as a television producer. She’s a single mother who worked hard to make ends meet. Eventually the struggle and stress took its toll on her health.

Her constant exhaustion and pressure triggered her to overeat, and she ended up gaining 100 extra pounds.

Lisa was a former athlete, who used to play soccer and rugby in college. And now her life and her body were almost unrecognizable to her.

So what did she do?

She didn’t join a health club.

She didn’t get a personal trainer.

Or go on a diet.

She decided to train for the Olympic weight-lifting team.

Yes, the Olympics.

As a young girl Lisa loved lifting weights with her dad, and watching the events with him during the Olympic Games.

She researched, found a coach and decided that she would do whatever it took to be in the 2012 Olympics games.

Whatever it took.

She quit her job and took a less demanding job, allowing her time to train five hours a day, five to six days a week.

To say she is committed is such an understatement.

In the process of ongoing training, Lisa lost 100 pounds, and is in the process of losing more to qualify for a lower weight class.

She must win several preliminary competitions to reach her goal of making the Olympic team. If she does, she will be the oldest Olympic weight lifter in the history of the Olympics.

And here are her words: “It’s not that life is so short; it’s just we wait so long to begin.”

And there you have it.

What are you waiting for? What do you dream about?

What have you told yourself is just too hard?

Dreams don’t die, but efforts fade and focus changes.

What will it take for you to be the person you dream of?

To finally lose the extra weight you are carrying around?

To make peace with exactly who you are?

To take steps to create the daily life you long for?

If anyone has ever done what you want to do, then you can too.

But maybe we should take some lessons from Lisa.

  1. It’s never too late to have a second act. Or a third. Or a fourth.
  2. Instead of focusing on how hard things will be, simply say, “What will it take?” and start with baby steps.
  3. Don’t keep putting off what you really want.

All we know for sure is what our reality is right now.

We don’t know what the future holds.

But you can bet that Lisa Fisco looked straight at her reality, and knew that she didn’t want more of the same in her future.

So she simply started with: What will it take?

P.S. This picture is NOT Lisa Fisco. But you get the idea.

Ask Cookie: ‘How Can I Get Myself Back On Track After The Holidays?’

Thursday, January 5th, 2012

Dear Cookie,

Woman writing after the holidays to Ask CookieThe holidays have come and gone and now I’m in the place I’m in every January: trying to lose weight!

I really want to do this, but I’ve learned that making a resolution hasn’t worked for me. At least, not in any lasting way.

I still have hope that I CAN do this, but I don’t know how to begin so that this year, I might actually be successful.

Any ideas?

Dear B.G.,

First, I’m so glad you wrote and asked your question, because so many women are wondering the same after the holidays thing.

Also, congratulations on not giving up on yourself. If anyone in the world has permanently lost excess weight, then you know it’s possible for you. So, let’s figure out the “how” part.

After the Holidays: How and Why

Instead of jumping right in to an eating or exercise plan, I’d like you to spend this next week becoming super-aware of what you are doing now.


Because you can’t make a lasting change in your life if you don’t know your starting point.

I can hear you saying, “But I know my starting point! I weigh _____.  And I’m not comfortable at this weight.”

Well B.G., it’s not enough to look at your number and try to get your body to move to a different number.

The first thing we need to do is figure out how you got here.

Why you weigh _____.

What created this extra weight?

Then, and only then, can we move on to making changes in how you think, how you feel, what you do and how you do it.

If you don’t take the time to discover why you gained weight in the first place, jumping in and losing will get you a very temporary result.

So, I want you to look at three things:

1) As you go through your day and week, notice and WRITE DOWN every little habit you have that is taking you further away from your weight loss goal.

No judgments allowed.

Just notice.

2) Also notice and list any positive habits you have that you’d like to do more of. (I know you have some!) What are you doing that if you increased and expanded, would take you in the right direction?

3) And last, what are some positive habits you currently aren’t doing at all, but know that if you added them into your life, change would happen?

Start here.

Don’t just think about this.

Go through a week and write it down.

Our next steps will help you take action on what you’ve discovered.

More to come.



What My Dog Henry Taught Me About Weight Loss

Thursday, February 17th, 2011

weight lossSome time ago, my family and I drove a couple of hours to Kokomo, Indiana to an animal shelter. We were looking for a dog to adopt.

Now, let me give you some background information. We were not exactly new pet owners. Henry, who we adopted that day, was to be our fifth dog.

Through the past 17 years, we had been family to four other dogs. For various reasons, these dogs ‘didn’t work out.’

For years, I thought there was something wrong with us. Why couldn’t we be like so many other American families and accomplish something as simple as having a dog be a part of our family?

I felt actual shame.

First, there was the giant Shepherd, Kojack. Kojack came from a rural area, where he was used to chasing small animals. Unfortunately, now in the city of Chicago, Kojack still chased small animals. I remember being pregnant and running desperately through the streets chasing after Kojack, who was chasing anything that moved. This happened too many times. It was dangerous for him to run through the traffic-filled streets and equally dangerous for me to run after him. Kojack was moved to another family, in the country.

Next came Bella. Bella was another large Shepherd. By the time we got Bella, we had two small children and a house in the suburbs. Bella was a bit high strung. One day, while the girls were watching television, she came up behind my youngest daughter and bit her on the shoulder. I later learned that she was letting her know who the alpha dog was, but oops, this just wouldn’t work. I could no longer leave the dog and the girls alone, even for a minute. Bella had to go. We found her another home.

Fast forward a few years. Still hopeful that we could be a dog family, we found a little Shelty. We now lived in our current house in suburban Fort Wayne, Indiana. Rusty was cute, but again, nipped and seriously growled at my youngest, Sophia.

Since my commitment to Sophia was for life, unfortunately Rusty was toast. We gave him back to the shelter. To say they weren’t happy with us was a major understatement.

Again, I felt like a failure.

No more dogs, I vowed. I guess we’re just not cut out to be dog owners.

Somehow, I never gave up the dream totally. In the back of my mind, I always wondered what was different about those other successful dog owners. And how about the ones who had several pets? What did they know that I didn’t?

A couple of years passed, and my kids were begging for a dog again. Wanting to please them and secretly please myself too, I looked in the paper and found a family with yellow Lab puppies for sale. ‘Let’s just look’, I said. But in my heart, I was hoping something had changed. That maybe this time it would work.

Sunny was a gorgeous puppy. Who did all the normal, trying puppy things that drive you crazy. Ok, I can deal with this (I said this to myself on a daily basis). Sunny dug up our garden, ate rocks, and needed several surgeries for eating rocks, underwear, and ANYTHING lying on the floor. She threw up daily. I couldn’t handle it.

By now I was beaten down. I truly believed there was something wrong with me. I was the only person in this country who couldn’t have a dog and still have a normal life.

We gave Sunny to our vet who gave her a home with a friend of his, where else? In the country.

So when we drove to Kokomo last July, it was with a lot of trepidation. I was a four time failure. I couldn’t do what most ‘normal’ people do without even thinking.

And then we found Henry. Henry isn’t a purebred. He’s a funny little dachshund-terrier mix. He barks at strangers. He jumps about three feet high to get food. But he is a perfect fit for our family.

Thank goodness I didn’t let my past ‘failures’ prevent me from meeting Henry. He has brought a lot of joy to my life.

So, finally, how can this little funny-looking furry boy possibly relate to weight loss?

  • I never gave up hope.
  • I knew if other people had made it work, then so could I.
  • There wasn’t anything wrong with me… I had the wrong dogs for our family.

So… if you have tried weight loss in the past, and have not had the success you wish for, if you have lost weight only to regain it, don’t give up hope.

It’s very possible that you just tried the wrong methods for weight loss.

Like diets.

It’s not you, it’s the diets.

And it’s important to know, that for you, for your health, and for your spirit, you should never give up.

You just need to find what works for YOUR weight loss.