Three years ago, I lost my first love-my dad. He would wake up early in the morning to take me to school (I missed the bus again!) before working 12 hours a day. He and my mom worked side by side in a barber shop just so they could provide for their six kids. During the wake process, my father’s extended family fed us reeeeeeeeel good. I’m from the south so when I say fed, I mean it! They offered their condolences with a box of fried chicken, collard greens, potato salad, fried fish, cornbread, biscuits, homemade cakes, banana pudding, and the infamous macaroni and cheese. I never thought that I would have an appetite during this tragedy-but I did.
There were two things that comforted me in my grief: (1) my faith in the Lord and (2) potato chips! When I finally settled back home I had developed a slight junk food addiction and 6lbs. I’ve always been fit but I finally understood that food will satisfy you-temporarily. It’s the perfect vice. It’s legal, there is no age limit, and you can eat as much as you want whenever you want (unless Mayor Bloomberg cracks down on your soda consumption). Food was masking my pain and satisfying my appetite. Two months later, I picked up a Muscle and Fitness Hers magazine and I took the “Transform Your Life Challenge.” I decided enough was enough and I wanted my abs back! I followed the work out plan of lifting weights for 4-5 days a week and meal plan of 1500-1900 “good calories” daily. I lost the fat, the chips, and gained my confidence. My body looks better today than it ever did in my fast metabolizing junk food twenties.
I still miss my dad. Father’s Day is very difficult for me but I have decided to continue his legacy of faithfulness and generosity to others. You cannot fulfill your purpose if you are unhealthy. I challenge you to examine the role of food in your life. Are you abusing it out of pain, boredom, disappointment, busyness, or fear? If so, it’s time to tame the tummy and “train that body!”