Sorry readers, this post has nothing to do with food and everything to do with girly insecurities. Just feeling the need to get a weighty monkey off my back. Back in what I should really dub the Chronic Cardio era (2007-2011) I used to weigh myself in daily. Said Chronic Cardio era was ticked off by a step onto the scale shortly after my 21st birthday with the number “179” staring back at me.
I swore I would never go as high as 180lbs, so this former Division 1 athlete stopped her yearlong lapse in working out and adopted a gym habit once again. 10lbs went adios by the time spring semester was in full swing. After enjoying my senior year of college, I was no longer undoing the 90+ minutes of cardio I was doing a day with copious amounts of adult beverages and late night slices of pizza just hours later.
Therefore, over the course of the next year or two, another 10-15lbs fell off upon entering the real world and adopting group X as a 5x/week hobby. I discovered Les Mills Body Pump & Combat, Spinning and even began to *gasp* RUN for fun. I was no longer the girl crossing her fingers the largest size of pants on the rack in stores would fit. Oh how magical it was to have a single-digit pants size. It also lasted until I began CrossFit & went on the paleo kick 2 years ago.
LEFT: October 2012, 155lbs – 2 months into CrossFit and 1 month into the super-strict Lurong Living Paleo Challenge.
RIGHT: July 2014, 175lbs – 2 years into CrossFit and experimenting with paleo ideas, getting on track and being knocked off again, riding a metabolic roller coaster and more than half a year of crappy & inconsistent workout habits.
I saw the 2012 CrossFit games on ESPN and wanted in. A year of boot camp training at my company’s gym with the trainers who would eventually become coaches at my eventual gym had kept me in good shape with conditioning and lighter weights, but I found myself looking for more.
Time spent jumping, punching and kicking air, lifting a short hollow ‘barbell’ and spinning my wheels on a bike much more forgiving than an airdyne were drastically reduced. Instead of doing back to back hourlong sessions, shit got heavy and metcons were short. Muscle began to build as I began to learn and increase the loads on olympic lifting. However, the building muscle was cancelled out on the scale by the fat loss I was experiencing from giving STRICT STRICT paleo a try at the same time. Therefore, my pants still fit. Woohoo!
60 days went by and I kicked ass, then December came. When I began to reintroduce more carbs into my life, 10lbs came back and my quads and butt began to grow. For a girl who was hit by the weight gain train in her early teens, It was upsetting. Body image has been a sore spot for me since the 7th grade. Still is. I wouldn’t be writing this right now if it weren’t. Duh.
The scale was tossed into the linen closet because I couldn’t bear to see the number creep upward anymore as I continued CrossFit 5x a week. It stayed there until I had to weigh a suitcase months later before going on a business trip to make sure Delta wasn’t going to say sorry that suitcase is wayyyy too heavy.
Months went by in which I bought new pants, bigger pants to accommodate the ‘gains’ I had made. Thankfully the designer jeans I’d owned in college were too expensive to throw out, because they were no longer too big. They didn’t fall down, they just fit. It was a temporary relief.
Then I made the unfortunate and lazy decision to let work and play get in the way. I’m pretty sure you all know that story by now. I weighed another suitcase (therefore myself) just last month… 175.
*DANGER ZONE!* – Says the scale and the lack of space in my pants.
I’ve spent a lot of time in front of the mirror in the past year, ashamed that pants that used to have extra space in them hardly zip, if now at all. So that’s what a muffin top is like. I’d rather have one for breakfast than HAVE ONE. Guess I have to keep wearing those old jeans from college. Except… now they’re getting tight too.
Ignorance is only bliss for so long. All that stuff about self love and a scale being just a number aided the excuses. “Who cares if I gained 5lbs, I’m still fabulous.” Sure. Maybe. You accept the extra poundage in small increments, because you can’t gain a ton of weight overnight. It seems like a small amount day to day. Then you look back and realize holy shit I’ve gained 20lbs and those pants that I couldn’t really zip? Yeah now I can’t even get them over my ass. Hindsight is a sobering 20/20 view of what shenanigans you’ve really been up to.
I don’t even know what my purpose is with writing this post, aside from admitting that I screwed up and it’s my own damn fault I’m sitting here feeling this way. Spitting all these words out into a blog post has helped me realize a common theme that ties in with a quote written on the wall at the box:
In retrospect, the times in my life that I’ve been happiest with myself have been when I had a plan and didn’t waver. I’d established good habits, and wasn’t blowing off days at the gym because I didn’t feel like waking up at 5a due to Happy Hour plans after work. As I left town on business more often, I felt more left out at the box as everyone else continued to make gains in my absence. Somewhere in early 2014 my mind subconsciously made the switch from dedicated to lazy, which was self-perpetuating.
Nothing worth having ever comes easy. Weight gain came easy, because it’s not worth having. It comes with crappy self esteem. I’m ready to run that demon out of my life. Uphill. Both ways. In the snow. It won’t be fun, but it will be worth it. There are so many better things I could be doing with my time than writing novel-length blog posts about how the unrecognizable girl in the mirror upsets me. I should be out enjoying life. Or at least, sleeping. It’s well past my bedtime now.
However, ignoring a problem does not address it. Next time you see a number you don’t like – whether it be on the scale, the tag of your pants or the WOD board – DO something about it. It doesn’t need to be anything drastic and/or unreasonable, but take a step in the right direction. Do the skill work post-WOD or sub the fries for a salad. Don’t brush off an unsatisfactory result as okay and take another step in the same direction you were heading. Now you’re moving even further away from your goal.
Dedicate yourself to moving closer, one step at a time. Seems easy enough. One simple step.
My brain’s fried. No good way on how to wrap this all up. How about this pretty vista with a block quote laid over it? Who doesn’t love a pretty vista with a motivational block quote laid over it?