Weight and body image have been a constant struggle in my life. Toward the end of our time in Chicago, my unhealthy eating and daily drinking was at its height. Eating out was almost a nightly occurrence and a glass of wine or a cocktail was a guarantee. “It was a long day,” I’d tell myself. But really, I didn’t have anything else to do other than eat and watch Netflix.
When we moved to Colorado, I knew something had to change and luckily I found Fitwall. It’s really given me a sense of community and it’s so nice to have a routine. If you follow me on Instagram you’ll know that I recently crossed a huge milestone weight wise. I’m really happy with where my weight is at now and want to just focus on getting stronger. I’ve told Jacob that my goal is to be able to potentially survive getting abducted. Probably wouldn’t, but seems like a good goal to have.
What I didn’t consider as a factor in my physical fitness journey is the emotional component. I knew I was unhappy and I knew I wasn’t healthy so I thought, “get fit = be happy,” but my journey hasn’t been so linear. While I’m so appreciative of all of the support I’ve gotten along the way, I wanted to talk about a few parts of my journey that I haven’t made so public:
Learning to love myself again: Before I started working out, I wasn’t particularly unhappy with the way I looked. Sure, there were days when I knew my jeans might look a little better minus last night’s pint of ice cream, but overall, I felt pretty good about myself. What I was unhappy with was how I felt. I was tired, irritable and my acid reflux was POPPIN.
When I started losing weight, it was exciting, but then I started to feel uncomfortable in my own skin. It wasn’t what I was used to my body looking this way, it didn’t feel natural and the all well-meaning compliments were somehow making me feel self conscious about my former appearance. I was struggling to figure out the new me and honestly I still am, but it’s getting better.
Your outward appearance does not and should not dictate your happiness.
A numbers game: When I started at Fitwall I was counting calories for the first time in a long time. I knew though that I had to do it at the start, just to re-teach myself what the right portions looked like. I also wanted to make sure I was getting the right amount of protein as I started phasing a lot of meat out of my diet.
However, I was nervous to start counting calories. It’s been a slippery slope for me in the past and I didn’t want to fall into any unhealthy habits. Having that awareness is really important. I stopped counting calories in three months ago and it was great. I was still really conscious about what I was eating, but generally felt more relaxed. I have only have started tracking now again because I want to increase how much protein I’m getting and want to stay on track.
If you know that a practice or habit is unhealthy, stay away. Reach out to a friend or family member who can offer another solution.
Finding a balance & anxiety: I never really anticipated just how much getting active would help with my anxiety. While I still have bad days, I find that I’m much better on days I work out. My anxiety manifests in a few ways, sometimes in a stutter when I’m really feeling overwhelmed, but generally it’s me feeling so overwhelmed that I struggle to accomplish anything at all. On days where I feel unproductive, I like being able to tell myself, “at least you worked out,” which gives me a great sense of pride. I haven’t had any panic attacks lately, and I can’t say whether or not that’s because of my activity levels, but it is something that I’ve noticed.
I’m now at a point though where I’ll feel upset if I don’t work out. So much of my time lately has been spent on working out, meal prepping and trying to sleep. My goal this summer is to strike a better balance, relax and focus on my mental health as much as my physical.
Your mental and physical health are yin and yang.
SO that’s where I’m at. I’ve also been nervous about not posting in so long but I am BACK and excited to post a lot of summer and WEDDING (T-4 months) content!