I’ve been trying not to turn this into a place where I only talk about my whole weight loss/getting healthy thing, but that’s not really working for me. This is the place where I talk about things that are important to me and right now, this is a huge part of what’s important to me. I briefly toyed with starting a separate blog for the weight thing, but quickly dismissed that idea. There will still be various other discussions and the occassional letter to Trent Reznor, but there will probably be a lot of discussions on the whole what-I’m-eating and how-my-workout-kicked-my-ass for now.
With that said, a short history of my fat girl status (forgive me if I’m repeating myself. I’ve been blogging for 5 years – it’s bound to happen). I don’t remember every being thin – I think I was averaged sized until I hit puberty, then the pounds packed on. I ate decently at home, but there was also a lot of snacking on unhealthy things – my mom was a chocoholic, so there was always chocolate & candy around. It’s a trait I’ve inherited to an extent. I remember cutting a deal with my parents at 14 that if I lost 10 pounds, I could go to a concert. I remember spending time in a gym at that age (probably to lose said 10 pounds) and hating every minute of it. I remember just being the fat girl.
By high school, I identified myself as the fat girl & had the self-esteem to go with it. I hated gym class, I didn’t want to exercise, & I took the easy way out because I had “weak ankles” (I was also the super-clumsy girl who sprained her ankle more than once by tripping on a pocked of air). The only athletic thing I liked was tennis, and I wasn’t good at it, I just played for fun every once in a while. I even quit that by my Sophomore year.
I never had the drive or the desire to change, though. I identified with the fat, I had become one with the fat, I was insulated from the world and myself by the fat. I had friends, I had a family who accepted me as I was (except for my grandma, but she was mean). I didn’t date, blaming my fat girl status for that, although I don’t think that was why. I was shy, I had a wall up, & nobody saw enough to break through it. So, I went to college, I studied, I graduated. I went to graduate school, I studied, I changed schools, I graduated. During that time, I never exercised, I didn’t think about what I ate, I didn’t want to commit to making a change in my life.
And then a weird thing happened. A couple years after I finished my Masters, I started working in public health. It was a field so far off my radar that I had no idea what I’d be doing, but I did it. Just by doing my job, I learned about the cancer fighting benefits of eating better, I learned so much about the causes of things like cancer, stroke, heart disease, hypertension, and how one major risk factor for everything was not only a poor diet, but being overweight. While I was learning, though, I was coping with the death of my mom & deciding to go back to graduate school for my MPH. It was a weird year. So I learned, but I didn’t implement anything into my own life until recently. I made that decision that if I can actively do something to fight off disease and have a better quality of life, I am going to do it.
Which brings us to today. I went to the gym, my personal trainer kicked my ass, I left sweat behind on the floor. When I came home, I had a sweet potato for dinner. I am, as of this moment, down 22 pounds from my starting weight. I’m not always making the right food choices, but I am still making better ones. Fast food has been nearly eliminated from my diet (I still have my “safe” places where I can grab a quick bite without going overboard), Dr. Pepper doesn’t taste the same anymore, high fructose corn syrup is gone (although I do miss the Fig Newtons), instead of a full sized Twix for an afternoon snack today I had a clementine. Earlier in the week I still made some poor food choices (I ate my weight in pretzels), but the important thing is that when I fall off the horse I get right back on. Every time. No matter what. So that I will never weigh 238* pounds again.
*My starting weight. I am 2 pounds away from weighing 10% less than that. Wow.