So, being a woman, we all know that fun time that comes around every year when we have to go do our routine physical. It’s always “so pleasant,” yet so necessary for us all to take a hot minute and practice preventative medicine. I’m kinda big on that (full-body mole check comin up in 3 weeks, people!).
Anyhoo…so a month ago I went for my routine exam and got a chance to hang out with my really awesome gyno who just so happened to point out that I’d gained a whopping 13 pounds in the past year. SAY WHAT?!?! First off…she didn’t do it in such a way that was patronizing, acting like I was suddenly obese, but was actually happy with where my weight is now. A year ago I weighed in at 114 lbs. This year I was 126.5 (yes, I just told the entire world on the internetz what my weight is).
I’ve never hidden my battle against my brain when it comes to my weight on here. I’ve been in therapy for over a year now touching on the fact that I struggle with a distorted body image and have actually been clinically diagnosed with an unspecified eating disorder. While you would have thought that seeing the number 126.5 on the scale would have made someone like me lose their ever-lovin marbles, I calmly explained to my physician that I had made a choice this year to be STRONG instead of wafer-thin, weak, and constantly in pain.
Last year I was a hot mess of injury. I see pictures of myself and I’m the tiniest I ever was in life last October. I was pulling on pairs of jeans that were a size 4 and calling that “victory” considering just a few years ago I was insanely unhappy in my size 12s. Being healthy, last year at this time, meant having stick legs, a smaller jeans size, and “compliments” being thrown my way of how “tiny” of a woman I am. Running was all about keeping off the weight and staying small no matter how hard I tried to deny to people that it wasn’t.
Boy was I a moron. Food wasn’t fuel. It was avoided.
I FINALLY realized that my personal body type isn’t meant to be stick-thin if I want to be able to continue running; my biggest personal passion in life. I had to make the choice, no matter how hard it was, to start seeing food in a different light, to start gaining muscle in my legs and core, and to STOP hyper-focusing on the scale. I didn’t feel good. To the outside world, I looked good, but my lifestyle wasn’t allowing me to feel good on the inside.
I choose to be strong. I choose to get my act together and bulk up my thighs. I choose to have a big old butt if it means I will outrun your’s. If someone looks at me and thinks I’ve got a monster butt and thunder thighs, well then that’s their problem. I’ll see them out on the road.
The progress I’ve come to make in this past year is ASTOUNDING. 2 weeks ago I put all my size 4 fashion jeans in a garbage bag and donated them to the Salvation Army. If I can’t get them up my thighs, so be it. I don’t ever want to feel like I need to look back and use that as a standard to how I measure my success as an athlete. See ya, jeans. I’m cool with my 6′s now way more than I was ever cool with the 4′s.