Sean and I love it here because every season of the year in Monterey is perfect for playing outdoors (click here to see my summer Monterey blog--My Flabulous Vacation). In the summer, we can escape the 100 degree Murrieta weather, because Monterey seems to consistently have temperatures in the 50-80 degree range. In the winter, it is cool, but warm enough to go for a run or bike ride around the bay.
The other great thing about Monterey are the continuous bike/running paths that go around the entire bay. This morning I set off for a early morning run, and Sean took his bike out for a spin as well. The paths are safe, challenging (hilly), and the view can't be beat. I love running into the sunrise on my morning runs at home, but if you add the sparkling water, and waves crashing in the background, there is nothing like it. Sean was actually able to ride his bike to the teacher conference today, which gave him some extra exercise miles and saved him the aggravation of finding a parking space as well as a few dollars in parking fees.
We also love the delicious but healthy food choices in Monterey. The restaurant at our hotel, along with a spectacular view of the bay, has many good food items on their menu, including the veggie egg white omelet with fresh fruit and sliced tomatoes I had for breakfast. It was filled with artichokes, mushrooms, eggplant, spinach, and cheese, so I did not feel I was missing out at all. For dinner we went down to the wharf for some seafood. Sean and I both had grilled seafood and vegetable plates--delicious! I love when we don't really have to choose between what is healthy and what tastes good. And when you get to eat delicious, healthy food while watching sea otters frolic in the ocean, you are truly living the good life.
However, sometimes even in this wonderful place and despite the progress I have made, my old negative tendencies can come back to intrude, trying to spoil a great experience. This happened tonight while we were eating our healthy seafood dinner. At the booth behind us was a mother and father with their college-aged daughter. I was trying not to listen, but as they were catching up, something they said caught my attention. The parents asked her about her weight and she was sharing how she had gotten so heavy at college that she had actually reached 145 pounds and was wearing size 8 clothes. I was amazed at the coincidence that her exact heaviest weight was my final healthy goal weight, but I was more amazed at the fact that it really bothered me for a minute that they thought 145 was heavy. However, when I turned around and saw she was about 5 feet tall, I realized I had again been tricked by the whole numbers game. When I shared this with Sean, he pointed out I had done the same thing to him the previous night. I was stating that it was sometimes frustrating having the same 20-25 pounds to lose, and there he stood before me having a good 50-70 pounds left on his journey.
So even in a place that my family sees as a paradise, even after having exercised and made amazingly good food choices, my neurotic focus on the numbers still found a way into my brain. I have come a long way both physically and mentally, but everyday it becomes clearer to me why I need to remember that it is not solely about the specific weight. It is about making a life-long change that has me focusing on being healthy, making sure my family grows up with healthy habits, and that I am around to see my kids do the same for their families.