Will I Ever Get to the Point–

(Trigger alert)

* Where I don’t have to talk myself out of sudden, random hopes that my set point will reset to 200 pounds less than my current weight?

* Where I don’t wonder, out of the blue, if I would have weight loss surgery if money wasn’t an obstacle?

* Where I can eat without analyzing every bite?

* Where movement truly has nothing to do with wanting be skinny and everything to do with how good it feels and how it improves my health?

* Where I don’t feel an occasional  spark of jealousy when I see pictures of people who used to be fat?

* Where I fully understand that it isn’t my fat that’s holding me back from the things I want to do?

These thoughts aren’t constant. They sneak up on me and bite me in the ass sometimes. I know the answers. I do. I wish I could shut off the questions.

I walked outside yesterday for two miles. It hurt. My heart and lungs were all for more, for going faster, for reaching–I wasn’t panting or feeling like I might be having a heart attack. But my legs. My left hip had a sharp pain. My right calf was so tight and then achy that I was actual limping. I had to keep slowing down and it was so frustrating.

I didn’t understand why it hurt to walk outside, but not on the treadmill. The answer was obvious when I got home: I was going faster. On the treadmill, I have more control over my speed. As soon as I feel a twinge, I slow down. Walking outside is different.

Also, I walked a mile out and a mile back from my house. My house is in the bottom of a depression–it’s uphill for at least a mile in every direction. So I walked straight up hill for the first mile–and I went faster than on the treadmill. The second mile was considerably easier, coming down hill with the wind at my back.

But it hurt. I don’t want it to hurt! And I had a really hard time yesterday during my walk turning off the idea that if I just lost weight, this would be easier.

And then I remembered: I can trust my body. If I ask it to do something, it will if its able. And since I’m asking it to be an athlete, it’s responding. Painfully, sometimes. But, sill, responding.

Guess what? It’s taking time to be the athlete I want to be, because my body isn’t used to the work required. Not because it’s fat. If I was skinny, or skinnier, but hadn’t run in 25 years, it would hurt then, too.

This isn’t about losing weight. Even if I have to remind myself of that 1000 times a day.

I’m off to the gym with a lot on my mind.

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5 Comments

Filed under mind, spirit

5 responses to “Will I Ever Get to the Point–

  1. I’ve been wondering this same thing a lot lately. Stress and unhappiness have been making me super critical of my body and it’s ALL centered around my weight. It doesn’t help that I HAVE been achier and more sluggish lately, partly because of too little sleep (not really my fault, as I have a pretty busy life!) and partly because I haven’t been moving enough…but then moving makes me feel fat and out of shape and and and

    You’re not alone and I wish I had an answer. :hugs:

  2. schmemily

    I hear you, sister. And I think it’s important (and completely awesome) to be honest about where you are. Personally, I’m doing well on many levels, but do I still want to be thin? Sure. Do I have a random number in my head, above which I think I’m just not quite attractive? Yep.

    My strategy for dealing with this stuff is: 1. Pause, observe the thought, and “sit with it” for a minute. Perhaps I will also remind myself that I may well feel differently one day. 2. Recall my progress thus far. For example, I think I am enjoying food more now than I have since I was in elementary school, and walking is more fun, and I’ve found new resources (like this blog).

    (Aside: Walking outside is also more difficult than walking on the treadmill, because regardless of speed, you have to balance a lot more outside.)

    • Great ideas for dealing with the negativity.

      Also–so true about the treadmill/outdoor walking thing. I have wonky balance as it is, due to lots of childhood ear infections. For instance, if I close my eyes while walking I come close to just toppling right over. Someone told me once that a way to test your equilibrium is to close your eyes and march in place. If your equilibrium is good, you stay in place, facing front. Me? When I tried it I opened my eyes and saw that I was three feet to the right and facing the opposite direction.

  3. Actually, those thoughts will probably continue to pop up from time to time more or less the rest of your life. We’ve been programmed to think that way, and it’s hard to completely break an old pattern forever, especially when it’s reinforced every day in all sorts of ways, both subtle and obvious.

    Now for the good news: those thoughts will become less and less frequent until you hardly ever get hit with them. Schmemily’s tips for dealing with them when they come along do usually work. Another that I love is to go re-read Kate Harding’s groundbreaking essay on The Fantasy of Being Thin. It helps remind me how much piffle is involved in most of those dreams.

    So yes, the thoughts will come… but they will decrease over time and you’ll learn all sorts of ways of getting yourself through them. I’m betting a lot of them will drop off sharply as your body is more and more capable of doing what you want it to do, even if it doesn’t change at all in shape. After all, we’re taught that if our bodies don’t do what we want them to, it’s because of the size and shape of them rather than the amount of exercise we’ve gotten or whether we have an injury.

    It does get better with time. It does get better with practice. You’ll be okay.

  4. Just discovered your blog and I like it alot!

    Yes, I too have these thoughts and have to fight them. I find it really helpful to read sane blogs such as yours. I’ve found a few others, but not enough. It’s really easy to fall into the myth of thinness, no matter how hard you try. We’re surrounded with it.

    Soldier on, I say. And do yoga. It’s wonderful!

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