Today, I went and did Body Jam - it was awesome! Do you know what was so awesome about it? The music was funky and I could pretend to be a gangsta, but the best part, was that when I looked at myself in the long gym mirror, I didn't have to quickly look away or think "gosh...i'm so fat!". I used to do Body Jam when we first moved to Shepparton in 2008, when I tipped the scales at a massive 122kg. I was so unhappy, but couldn't get out of the habit of using food as a crutch. I'd put on a lot of weight after Alex was born due to Post Natal Depression, and feeding my feelings was a lot easier than dealing with them. My feelings, they sucked. They sucked a lot.
So - today's class got me musing on what else is different in my life these days. I've been going to Weight Watchers for nearly 11 months now, and I've lost 21.7kg so far. I'd already started losing some of the bulk in 2009 - with a change of medication, I didn't retain as much fluid, and I started WW at a still hefty 116kg. Bigger than I'd ever been in my life. When I first started to lose weight, I'd be discouraged, and think "why should I celebrate losing weight when I shouldn't even BE this weight to begin with!??!?". But I rewarded myself and set goals, I really really wanted to do it - I was so sick of being tired all the time and having no energy for Alex or anything much. So, even though I've had days or weeks where I've got off track, just keeping on going has ensured that the days have turned into weeks and the weeks have turned into months, and here I am nearly a year later (hmmm.....that reminds me of something else I did with my life, can anyone guess?)
The things that are different now are:
I can fit into a size 16 or 14, instead of a size 20 (gah!)
I have energy - I no longer want to sit on the lounge and do nothing
I eat lots and lots of salad and fruit and love it!
I have gone almost vegetarian and I love that as well...chickpeas and tofu are my friends
I am still a sugar addict and frequently snack on meringues mmmmmmmmmmmm sugar!
I go for long walks with Alex
I play with Alex a lot more, run around and chase him
I feel more confident in social situations
I can now buy clothes based on whether I like them, not just grabbing something that will fit and cover bulges!
I don't have to keep adjusting my clothes because my tummy pushes on them, that sinking feeling when you realise your pants are rolling down because your sizeable gut is pushing on it is NO MORE!
I am proud of myself because I wanted to do this and I am doing it!
I feel proud that I have inspired other people to want to be healthy
I feel like I respect myself more. With the odd wobbly paranoid moment here and there, I want to be healthy so I can do more, as well as look nice in a pair of jeans :)
I feel younger. Fat makes you look old. I'll never forget being a large teenager in a borrowed pair of my mum's jeans on a School excursion to Newcastle. My skinnier friends jogged past a group of cute surfies and I shuffled by uncomfortably. One of the surfies looked at me with derision and said "are you the teacher?". Ugh. Not nice.
I am no longer asked if Alex is getting a brother or sister. I lost count of the number of times someone looked at my plentiful tummy and said "sooo........???" and I had to say "NO I"M NOT PREGNANT". bleah.
I can shop at the following: Cotton On, Sportsgirl, Jeans West and Just Jeans. No more City Chic or Big is Beautiful for me. Fashion for smaller people is so much cheaper. Yay!
One of the things that has kept me motivated is the idea of being in the WW magazine....and I really really want to do that. WW says that I have about 13 more kg to lose....and I really want to make this a reality. I want to have a healthy BMI for the first time in my adult life. I put weight on in adolescence, when I hit puberty. Hurricane Deb errupted and I was horrendous. I was miserable and feeling alone. Food was my friend and comforter. The same thing happened when I hit PND. But now, I don't need to be unhealthy like that. I can be free from the shackles and uncomfortability that being obese and overweight brings. The shame and sense of failure. I no longer hate myself, and I don't think it's all about willpower. I love WW because you can eat whatever you like, within reason. Smaller portions, pick your binge, do some exercise to earn more points. I realised that if I put down the cake and went for a walk, my life would improve. And it so did.
I love Ajay Rochester's books, they're totally inspiring because she has walked the walk and is totally open about it. At various stages throughout this journey I've cracked open her books again and again. I'll finish on this - today I read in a WW book, this quote
"Eating healthily and exercising is Hard. Being overweight is Hard. Pick your Hard".
I love it. Because no matter how I struggle to stay on the moderate eating wagon, I know I never want to go back to the sheer torment of being obese. This is not a battle I'll ever have full victory over, I'll always have a tendency to comfort eat and to be a bigger girl. But with WW, I believe I have learnt a way of being that is truly sustainable for life. And I'll be around for my little boy longer, and model good habits for him. Which is why Ajay did it, and that's what it's all about.
Love and light