Throwback Thursday –
I thought I would throw it back and talk a little about my journey. If you decide not to read this entire post, KNOW THIS – there is no miracle drug, no magical pill, and no quick fix.
We are ALL dealing with our own daily struggles, yet we ARE NOT ALONE.
I want to repeat that, YOU ARE NOT ALONE.
You can stop reading now if you want, but I encourage you to stay and continue reading.
After being incredibly active and fit through high school, I never fully grasped health and fitness. This led to weight gain that I didn’t even notice until I was about 23. I didn’t fit into any clothing, I constantly wore clothing that covered up everything, and one day I was told I was “big boned” – that comment was made by someone who loves me and I love with all my heart, and was honestly said with the intention of helping me not feel bad about my weight.
But it did.
It made me accept that the college lifestyle that continued into my adult life created this incredibly unhealthy cycle.
I was unhappy. I didn’t want to be touched. I didn’t want to be loved. I was so ashamed of myself.
After gentle encouragement, I joined a gym and hired a personal trainer. It was AMAZING! My body started to take shape again, and my confidence grew. However, once those sessions ended, mainly because I couldn’t afford to pay anymore, I started to slip away again.
Meanwhile, I was working in a profession that I truly enjoyed, but aside from family I hadn’t made any real connections with people. My days consisted of watching TV and being by myself. Cue eating all the bad foods.
Next came my second round of personal training. Again, I thrived. I loved being pushed out of my comfort zone. I loved that I could start seeing the muscles, and seeing my strength.
I remember feeling my best and then having people tell me that I was too skinny. People telling me I needed to eat. People telling me I wasn’t healthy. [Mind you, I was still about 135 lbs, but I was pretty solid and very lean].
I stayed in pretty good shape until my career changed. The career change in itself was a challenge. I knew I needed to move on, but the way it went down left a lot to be desired. Once I changed my career path, I began to feel this sense of freedom and possibility. It was scary, but I was looking forward to what was next.
In the meantime, I had suffered a high ankle sprain that left me in a boot for two months. After little physical activity, partially due to not knowing how to stay in shape during an injury, and feeling isolated, I gained weight and felt like I had lost control again.
I still remember standing in my bedroom, looking at myself in the mirror and feeling disgusted. How could I have gained weight again? How could someone love this? [I also want to point out, that I have STRUGGLED with self-acceptance for a long time. Again, not sure why – I’ve always been surrounded by encouragement and love.]
My next step was to try Blogilates. I followed her on Instagram and I fell in love with her personality. I stuck with it for a couple of weeks, but really felt lost and unmotivated.
I then found BBG guides and the Kayla Movement. I LOVED the community it created on social media and thought I had found my place. Again, it didn’t stick.
FINALLY, I reached out to a friend about what she was doing and how she was able to share her story. What I received was more than I could have ever hoped for. Sure, there was an easy workout program to follow and the food wasn’t too challenging – though I don’t enjoy cooking. But more than any of that, I found support. I found a safe place. I found people who encouraged my every move, and who supported me when I admitted a mistake or a failure.
Don’t get me wrong, I still struggle. I still have my days where I look in the mirror and pick apart my every flaw. My husband will gently smile, and then pull me away from my self-destruction.
I look at other women and wonder how they can be so fit. But I’m getting better at it. I’m focusing on pushing so much positivity out into the world, that there’s no way of avoiding it even when I’m in my darkest moments.
It doesn’t always mean things are easier. But I’m becoming better at accepting that I’m human. I’m finally connecting with people and making real friends again. I’m focusing on love and kindness daily, and making an effort to avoid negative comments and energy.
And so I wanted to remind you, whoever it is that has actually made it to the end of this post, that we all have difficulties. But there are people out there who will support you. It is so important to find that community – to find those people and let them love you.
PS. My “journey” is coming up on 10 years. It doesn’t happen overnight.