Sunday, December 22, 2013

Eat the Food

Oh boy....it has been a while.  I started this blog so I could be totally open in sharing with you the ups/downs/triumphs/trials of aiming for healthier living.  Most of you know that.  Then, over the spring/summer/fall, I ended up with a lot more Facebook friends.  Don't get me wrong, friends are awesome and all that....but, well, do I want to share all this crap with all of them?  

I wasn't sure.

I get personal here.  For me, it is so much easier to share stuff with people I don't know in real life (unless they are my true friends who know me), which is probably why I did so well with SparkPeople.  Honestly....a lot of my Facebook friends know me now...they don't know the chick who weighed 270+ pounds, they don't know how hard it is to deal with being the biggest chick in the room; to be invisible and all too visible at the same time.  (Let me expound on that.  When you're a fat girl....like seriously, truly fat, people ignore you.  But stare at you.  The best example I have of this is walking down the street, and someone is coming in the opposite direction.  Complete strangers will stare you down the entire time they are approaching you, and the second you get to the point where you would say "hi", they divert their eyes and ignore you.  Once I lost a bunch of weight, people have been much more engaging.)

Anyways, that was a lot of verbiage for me to simply say, I wasn't sure if I wanted all my Facebook friends reading this.  Judging me.  Whatever.

But you know what?  Fuck it.  People don't have to read this.  They can ignore it.  And if they want to read this, and make fun of me, and look down on me, well fuck them.

Some of you know that my focus in exercise has shifted from running to weightlifting (ha....but I have Ragnar rapidly approaching, so I gotta start getting my run on). And that my philosophy towards eating has changed rather dramatically.  I no longer count calories (which became obsessive).  I eat what I want.  When I want.  I mostly choose healthy foods.  But, there are no foods off limits.  The goal here is to not have "good" or "bad" foods....just food.  If I want pizza, I'll have pizza.  And not feel guilty about eating it, sending me into a spiral of self-hatred, which leads to eating junk all day because I fucked up.  And not have to over-exercise to compensate for it.  

I've learned that yes, although I've lost a bunch of weight, my methods in doing so definitely caused some disordered eating habits.  I would work out 2x a day and subsist on a diet of 1600-1800 calories.  No wonder I was dizzy all the time.  Going out to eat was a chore.  I had to check out menus beforehand, have a plan, and was pissed if someone wanted to share an appetizer....extra calories!  I'd have to workout harder the next day to make up for my sins. 

And what was I working towards?  I don't even really know.  I wanted to weigh less. I was certain that when I got to where I'd be happy, I'd know. I just wanted to lose more, and more, and more.

Now...since weightlifting (and the support of some awesome online friends), I've realized how truly fucked up that way of thinking was.  Why can't I just aim to be the best version of me that I can be?  Not a version defined by a number on the scale, or the size of my pants, but a version that can be both physically and mentally strong and happy.  I know, shocking!  This goes against the theory of most of my friends, which is probably why I've been in hiding.  Everyone wants to lose weight.  They're not happy until they lose "x" amount of pounds, or until they hit whatever arbitrary number it is that makes them happy.

Well, I'm over it.  I just want to be happy.  And saying I have to weigh "x" amount of pounds just doesn't do it for me.....it tells me that until I hit that number, I'm not good enough.  And you know what?  I am good enough.  Right now.  As I am.

I'll leave you all with a little snippet of what happened to me at the gym this morning:
I did a little elliptical warm-up, lifted some weights, and ended up on a treadmill next to a friend I hadn't seen in several months.  Our convo went something like this:

Friend: You're looking good!
Me: Ummm, thanks.
Friend:  No, really.  You look great!  You look toned....I need to get back into that.
Me:  Really?!  Well, thank you!  I've actually gained like 20lbs.
Friend: I would have guessed that you lost some weight.
Me: I like to lift a lot.