I’ve been “tweaking” this post for a few days now, but after talking with a friend about her “speed bumps” this week, I figured this was as good as it was going to get.
I’ve been battling with my weight for almost 14 years. When I got pregnant with my first son, I gained 75 pounds. By the time I went back to work when he was 6 weeks old, I had lost all but about 10 pounds of it. So when I started packing on the pounds during my pregnancy with my youngest, I just attributed it to this make believe fact that I was just someone who gained a lot of weight when I was pregnant. It never occurred to me to attribute it to what I was eating or the fact that I wasn’t really moving. I used pregnancy as an excuse to eat whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted, and in whatever quantities I wanted. After I had my youngest, my oldest son and my step-daughter came to visit at the hospital. They were amazed because while the baby was on the outside of my body, there was NO change to my stomach. My youngest was a 10 pound baby and I was so big, that losing 20 pounds the day of his birth made no difference in the way that I looked. When I went back to work 6 weeks later, I weighed in at well over 250 pounds and I was squeezing into a size 24. They had an elastic waist and I had to wriggle myself into them like someone trying to put a very large pillow into a not so large pillow case. I was depressed and miserable.
I started weight watchers and started to lose the weight. For the next 10 years I was a yo-yo. I’ve never gotten back up to that size 24, but I’ve never seen anything through to my goal weight either. Two years ago, I was well on my way. I had lost 40 pounds in about 6 months; I was walking every day and I was feeling great. Then I quit smoking, gained all of the weight back plus some extra, got discouraged and gave up for a while. I still talked about losing weight. I talked about exercising. I can tell you I’m the Queen of England, but it doesn’t make it so. Talking never made anyone’s butt smaller.
I avoided family bike rides because I couldn’t keep up. I’d feel good about myself as long as the number on the scale was going down, but then beat myself up as soon as I hit a week with no change, or a gain. I’d use that as an excuse to give up and go back to my old ways instead of using it as motivation to keep going.
I even joined Planet Fitness. I had ONE incredible workout with friends and felt so good about myself, but then I found out that I had a torn bicep. Discouraged again, I went back to hoping for the magical fix. The right pill, tapeworm or bacterial infection. I wasn’t about to be picky. I just wanted to be skinny. I didn’t even necessarily care about being healthy – I just wanted to look good in my clothes. I even considered the crystal meth diet. Those people are always full of energy and so thin!
I was tired of bailing on different events simply because I was embarrassed of my body, but not tired enough to put in the work. I was looking for the quick fix. I didn’t want to work or be uncomfortable. I was full of excuses of why I couldn’t work out, but the bottom line is that it just feels so overwhelming. It has occurred to me that sitting on the sidelines of my own life is no longer an option I’m willing to choose. It’s time for me to make better use of this gift of life that God has given me!
So, join me as I try a different approach. MY approach. I’m going to try something and if it doesn’t work for me, I’m going to try something else. I’m not going to quit. I walk into a gym and feel overwhelmed because I don’t know what to do or where to start. I contemplate throwing water on myself so I look sweaty and can take a break. BUT, if I walk into a class, where there is an instructor and other people, not only do I know what to do, but I know that if I take a break that I don’t REALLY NEED, everyone will know it. I need that accountability right now. So while I hope to be a gym rat one day, right now, I’ll stick with my baby steps…until I can see my feet. J
And I promise to love myself no matter what. I want the number on the scale to go down (a lot) and I want to feel good about how I look. I want to be healthy and happy with my progress, but I’m not going to wait until I get there to love myself. The number on the scale does NOT define me as a person, friend, daughter, mother or wife. So this time, instead of punishing myself to get skinny and hating myself when I’m not, I’m going to love myself enough to get healthy. If I screw up and eat a king size candy bar after a bad day, I’m not going to give up on myself because Loreal is right, I AM worth it! (That candy bar thing isn’t a confession or anything)
I hope this is a fun place where people can come to exchange ideas and inspiration, and maybe laugh a little at ourselves along the way. I’m using it to be accountable. If I go a few days and don’t complain about anything, please check in to make sure I’m still at it.
Post stuff that makes you feel inspired and could help others feel the same way. We can all get there together! J