(Yes, my starting Jan. 18th weight was 172)
I am an athletic build, so even at my heaviest most folks thought I was 150, not 170.. but I am so excited because this is the lightest I have been since 2006!
The truth is, this has been a long journey. By chance, I found a letter that I wrote to myself almost 2 years ago and it reminded me that this has been such a struggle for me. Weight, depression, anxiety, life in general.... and reading this letter made me so proud of where I am right now.
I am looking at depression with a new set of shades, I am staying focused on getting fit, and as far as work goes, I am working towards doing what I love for a living.
Here's what I wrote on July 18th, 2010:
I've had a really hard time pin pointing where the problem lies.. An even harder time finding where the problem started, and don't get me started on how to fix it! The past 2 years I have been trying to dissect the previous 4 years of problems, what caused me to gain 50 lbs, and generally lose interest in most of the things I love? I have been craving getting "myself" back SO much lately, but I haven't even known where to start.
Its incredibly frustrating and sometimes infuriating, but mostly depressing. I have been in denial about this for years now, but I am in fact quite depressed despite my small victories of getting my own apartment, and gaining "salary status" with my job. Those things pale in comparison to what I really want, and that's to find myself again. To have self confidence, to feel like I deserve all the things I want, and I get the feeling this is the first step for me. The 50 pounds I gained while I lived in Chicago represent failed dreams, a bad relationship, and a lack of concern for myself. The weight has been chains, dragging me to the bottom of the ocean.
My goal is to get back to square one, when I was lively, in shape & healthy, I felt attractive and stylish, I didn't hide who I was, I was steaming with creativity, I was confident that I could and WOULD take over the world and be something great. I didn't let my past tie me down, and I knew and believed that I would be successful in everything I attempted, even if the odds were against me.
I realized this week, that the odds aren't against me. The only thing working against me, is myself... and that is over. I am going to stand on my own two feet, gain back my self confidence, and finally shed the extra baggage I have been carrying around (mentally and physically) for the past 4 years. I have 12 weeks to build a solid foundation for a strong body and mind, and a life ahead of me to reach all the goals I have been dreaming about since the day I started dreaming.
I am almost relieved, taking the first step today has really helped me feel grounded. I already feel like a weight has been lifted and the tunnel seems to have a little flickering light at the end. That wasn't there last week. I have a lot to sort through, but the stronger I make my body the more confidence I will have to deal with the heavy stuff..
This is a letter to remind you that when it gets hard, that it will ALL be worth it on September 10th when you look and feel amazing, and the pain you might feel along the way will pale in comparison to the pain you might feel should that day come and you gave up on yourself.
Keep going, you really do deserve to succeed, and you have worked really hard for everything you have achieved so far, but you deserve so much more.. so go and get what you really want. Most importantly. DO NOT give up! You will be SO proud.
So it happened to take me a really long time to get my shit together, but so what. You don't waste time if you learn something, and the past 8 years have been filled with experience.
So here I am now, and I am really proud of myself.
Rob asked me this morning what I thought was different this time and I could only think of one thing.
I learned how to cultivate acceptance through yoga, but it has extended beyond the physical practice. The most important part of learning to accept myself has been that acceptance has kept me on track. When I go on a pasta & cheese binge after not working out all week I realize that as humans sometimes we are weak, and our true strength is revealed to us when we are able to get back on the wagon while it's still moving full speed ahead.
While I am not condoning the destructive behavior of binge eating, or drugs, or alcohol (whatever the vice may be for whomever) it is important to realize that if you stay focused, you can do it, and while I haven't reached all of my goals yet, I know I am the closest I have been to them since I graduated High School in 2005.
I'm not sure where I am going with this post-- but I am just the happiest I have been with myself, possibly ever. I know we all have had some sort of adversity to overcome; some of us had to start young with triumphing over the BS and some of us had an easy start and ended up in a hole-- but what it comes down to is, we are a hell of a lot stronger than we think and it feels really good to recognize that.
I know weight isn't everything, but it is the outward reflection of how we treat our bodies & minds (for most of us anyway) and for me, weight has been a huge barrier between myself and everything I want in life.
I realize I still have a lot of work to do.. I struggle daily with confidence, insecurities, jealousy, staying on track and doing what I need to do to be the kind of person I know I am suppose to be-- but I also thrive every day, and even if I can only manage to get one centimeter closer to my goal each day, that is just enough, and I accept myself exactly as I am.
The good, the bad, the ugly, the beautiful & the video game obsessed..
On a lighter note, check out my Skyrim Face.
Now if that is not a face of determination, I don't know what is!