I will not pretend like I am a Matrix Trilogy junkie. I have probably seen all 3, but not multiple times. Anyway, the one thing I remember is when Neo began to see what was really going on around him after taking the blue pill. It took awhile, but then he became who he was supposed to be. The last month and a half or so, I am starting to to feel like I am starting to see things how they really are. I have this clarity of mind, solid will, and a forgiving heart for myself. With these in place, I have to admit my journey continues on with less stress or urgency than the one before.
I first became aware of my presence in the Matrix this past Saturday. We were in Sam's Club, and there were about a billion samples being offered. We had just come from Chick Fil A for lunch, so I had already eaten. I was not at all tempted by all the samples being offered, despite the dangerous classification of "free food" that has screwed me quite often. I then started noticing other things. When I looked at the junk food that was packaged up pretty and looking so yummy, I saw it for what it was. It was junk. It was terrible fuel for my body, and it was an obstacle to where I am headed if I gave in and bought that stuff. It held no appeal to me whatsoever. Now I am not saying that it will NEVER hold any appeal, but that day, I didn't feel like I was depriving myself by not buying the junk food we usually stock up on.
I also am getting much better at being able to play it by ear when my work schedule conflicts with my workout schedule, so that I don't wind up missing a day I intended to workout. It isn't as hard as I workout at the gym, but when I had to work through lunch, I am no longer the guy that just crashes after supper and hopes that I can make it up one day this week. I go straight from the table to the bedroom, lace them up, and go walk a couple of miles around the block, but I make sure I am at just shy of jogging speed when I do it.
I have also learned that this journey has to have some flexibility, and the one thing you cannot expect is that you will meet every single goal exactly as you planned it. Sometimes you will exceed your hopes, and sometimes you will fall short. As I stated before, I am shooting for 2,000 NET calories a day. Over the past 9 days, I have actually gone over that amount twice. Prior to being in the Matrix, that would have been full on meltdown, let's analyze this to death, but not before I gave in for the rest of the day and binged on whatever sounded good at the moment. On both of the days I went over the calorie budget, I took the position, "eh, it is what it is, which is one day in thousands to come. I know that most of those thousands of days, I will be successful, so why sweat this one?"
And finally, and probably most importantly, I no longer feel I have to be a member of the clean plate club. I have in the last three days, left one plate with food left on it, and two bowls of oatmeal unfinished. Now I switched to the traditional oatmeal from the quick oats, so that may have been the difference. All I know, I didn't pull out the "starving kids in Africa" rationalization to make myself keep eating despite being full.
Also, I am no longer beating myself up for the re-gain. As my buddy Sean said, it is not a failure, it was a step in the bigger picture, and a necessary one at that. And when I go over on calories, I no longer decide I ama bad person who doesn't love my wife and kids enough to be disciplined and perfect in this journey. Like I said, it was a day in a journey of thousands of days. And as Divad said, the strive for perfection will lead to failure. We are after all human and admittedly broken, or we wouldn't be here in this blogosphere.