My biggest struggle in losing the 50 pounds that I’ve wanted to lose since beginning this here blog four years ago isn’t a lack of knowledge about how to do it. It isn’t because I have no resources or that I think that tracking or eating right is too hard. It isn’t because I battle a medical condition that makes losing weight tougher or because I have a food addiction or because I have an unsupportive family or anything like that. I usually end up loosening my grip because my life just isn’t hugely affected by my extra fifty pounds. I mean, I can run and jump and swim (and wear a bikini) and keep up with my kids and shop in just about any store I want to (sideyeing
Asinine Abercrombie and Fitch) and about 90% of the time I feel pretty hot. I’m confident. I don’t avoid cameras. I weigh myself regularly and am never really surprised by the number, because my weight really doesn’t change. And I get to sweaty dance for a living. I’m happy.
So usually it doesn’t take long for my food-journaling-calorie-counting-say-no-to-cocktails-or-dessert mojo to wane because for me, sometimes it’s just much ado about nothing. I love to exercise and I love having lots of energy and I love playing with my kids and I love being at the beach. And also? I love to cook big family meals, I love burgers and beers during football (basketball/hockey/whatever) season and I love seconds. So, yeah. I lose diet steam.
Every now and again, though, something will happen that will make me start to wonder about the people in the world that don’t see me the same way I see myself. Sometimes it’s something quick – like seeing myself in a not-so-flattering photo – and I’ll shudder and move on. Sometimes it’s something unspoken, that I’ll think maybe I imagined it – like when Thing One said he didn’t want me to wear a bathing suit in the backyard when his friends were playing basketball in the driveway. Sometimes it’s innocent, like when Thing Two explained that she needed a potty seat because her bum was little and mine was big.
But sometimes it is something that, when it happens, stays with me in the back of my mind for a long time.
I was honored to be asked to be part of the Fitbloggin fashion show. I even volunteered to be a sports bra model, because why not? Have you seen me? What did I have to feel insecure about, wearing nothing but by bra in front of a couple hundred of my closest friends? I mean, I wear less fabric to the beach, right?
I was nervous. But I was more nervous about like, tripping up the steps than I was about wearing the bra and capris. It was a little nerve-wracking to think of going up there and being ME, without a bunch of glitter and some Latin music to support me, but whatever. I did it and it was an absolute blast.
And throughout the day I (along with everyone else involved) received a lot of hugs and high fives from friends who said how much they enjoyed the show, and how cool it was that there were real women as the models. And a bunch of people even said they were moved to tears at the level of self-confidence and the representation of REAL women in these bras and clothes. They said we were BRAVE.
Moved to tears.
Blink. Blink blink.
Okay so I know it isn’t necessarily what they SAID, but what I began to HEAR was “Wow I just cried at that fashion show. To think your fat ass was courageous enough to get up on that runway wearing next to nothing! I’d never be able to do that! I’d be too embarrassed! How cool that YOU weren’t!”
It was kind of a running joke that evening with my roommates. And I laughed until I cried.
And then when I got home I kind of cried.
But whatever. I moved on and put my fat ass in a bikini and carried on with the summer. Opened the studio and kept moving forward. Occasionally that same feeling would come back, that thing where someone would say “Wow, I really admire your confidence” and my brain would add the backhand. Even during the Zumba convention. Never mind that I slipped on my first pair of ballet slippers when I was about four and I danced all the way through college, whenever I received a compliment on my dancing, I always heard “not bad for a big girl.”
Well, throughout the summer I worked on a few habits with some of my students. One of our instructors encourages us not to eat past 7PM, and I’ve actually gotten pretty good at that one. Thing One wanted to work out a lot this summer to be ready for basketball season, so I committed to keeping fast food to once a week – a difficult feat for the lazy days of summer, but we gave it a go. I cut down on diet soda. These are things I have no interest in eliminating totally, but the schedule-free, come what may life we lead when school is out makes it easy for this kind of consumption to increase.
And then a week ago I kind of quietly decided to start food journaling again. I fired up my My Fitness Pal app and entered all my information, and after the first day I successfully closed out my diary and then this came up:
If every day was like today? What, like you mean if I can manage to not eat like a horse and can get my fat ass up off the couch to move, this time I may be able to actually lose some weight? You’re an asshole, My Fitness Pal. A total asshole.
Anywho. I’ve kept it up for a week, and this stupid jerk app has kept me honest more than once. I am again reminded how many times I reach for something to eat when I’m not really hungry. And there are times when I AM hungry, but am out of calories. I don’t think it’s possible to try to lose weight and NEVER be hungry, but to some degree this week I think sometimes what presented as hunger was sometimes just that, but other times it was probably really just stress or boredom. So, we’ll see how it goes.
If you are frenemies with this app too, send TheMrsFatass a friend request. We can get together and talk about the app behind it’s back.