Let’s be honest here. I am a pretty strong-headed, opinionated, determined gal. I am also one of those people who is a master, seriously skilled, at coming up with a perfectly legitimate excuse that I twist into a reason on why I can’t do something. Getting myself to a healthy weight is one of those things. I’ve never been one to say oh ‘I’m X number of pounds I need to lose weight’ instead I live by the code of ‘weight is just a number’ and as long as I’m healthy it doesn’t really matter what that number is. That is until this winter.
My first weight issues began between my 8th & 9th grade years of school. I began stress eating – though I didn’t realize that’s what I was doing at the time. In that one summer I put on 30-ish pounds and have slowly added to that over time. I just kept saying to myself if I’m healthy and I can keep moving the way I want I’m fine.
At one point around 10 years ago I thought I’d give exercise and losing weight a go. I signed up for a trial membership at a gym to see if it was something I could get into. While in the locker room the first day of my trial I overheard a conversation that has forever kept me out of a gym.
Woman #1 “I hate when the fat people come in. It’s not like they are going to stick around. I mean they join for the trial sign ups and then don’t stick with it – why bother.”
Woman #2 “.Oh I know. And oh my God do they stink or what!”
Woman #1 ” Yes! And I hate how they sweat on everything. It’s so gross.”
This was followed by “make me gag” noises and laughing. I sat quietly in the dressing area until they left. I haven’t stepped foot in a gym to exercise since. Even though I know not everyone is like that, it stung and it was discouraging. It settled in firmly my head the “if I’m healthy the number doesn’t matter” way of thinking.
This brings me to the last year or so. I have found myself healthy, according to my doctor at physical time, but unable to do things that I used to be able to do. In January I was doing a photo shoot and somehow managed to dislocate a disk in my back. It wasn’t like I was hiking or climbing over big boulders I was just kneeling and bending a bit. As the chiropractor was telling me it would take 3 months to completely heal I started thinking if I weighed less than I do would this have even been an injury or would the recovery time be so long. It’s been weighing (no pun intended) on my mind. With this injury I realized I have no patience to be hurt AND I am the only one who can do anything about it.
I remembered a conversation I had with my uncle before Christmas about a class that was starting called Couch to 5k at a new fitness place in town. I gave myself, and to anyone who asked, the usual reasons on why I wouldn’t be able to do something like that. I don’t have time…work til 5, come home to fix dinner, time with my family before my daughter goes to bed and my husband leaves for work. And it’s too dark once dinner is over. In the morning? Nope can’t do that because someone has to be home with my daughter. At lunch time? That won’t work because I often work thru lunch – skipping it half the time. They are all real reasons, all perfectly true reasons, all reasons that make sense. And they are all excuses.
Last month, after a particularly frustrating week where my back seemed to be bothering me more than it did getting better, I decided it was time to stop with the excuses. My family will be okay if I am not there to eat dinner one night a week. The time change happened so it’s lighter longer – can’t use that excuse anymore. Too cold – nope the temps have definitely warmed up – can’t use that one anymore either. I need to make this change. I need to just do it. Get out of my own head and do it. So I took the first step. I signed up for the Couch to 5k class at Sphere Fitness on March 9th. Tonight is the first class.
A Facebook friend Jason (dad to my daughters BFF and future CrossFit gym owner) posted a photo today that said “eat better. move more. keep focus”. I am adopting this as my new mantra.
I thought if I journal about this journey in public (a possible 1,620 sets eyeballs read this blog) it might push me to stick with it – give me some accountability. With that in mind…
My name is Elizabeth. I am 243 pounds, have a 51 in waist line and currently wear sizes between 20-24 depending on the item. Ugh – that’s hard to say out loud. But…..no, And….Today I take the first steps to becoming a healthier me.