Well kiddos, it’s been a rough start to winter. In spite of my best wellness intentions and healthy choices I have been sick for almost a month. Lola and I have had a flu like situation that seemed to keep evolving rather than improving over time. When wellness planning for winter I overlooked the fact that I have a small child basically attached to me most hours of most days who puts things and probably other children in her mouth when I’m not around. During what seems to be an unusually sick winter (lots of “that’s going around hard”) having a toddler does not help keep germs at bay.
So I’ve taken more rest days in the last month than I have in almost 2 years. Not being able to workout is really hard for me. It has become a very important part of my mental health and I look forward to it (almost) everyday.It makes me feel strong, refreshed, clear-headed, calm and powerful. I did not feel those things lying on the couch with a box of kleenex.
Holidays happened. I ate well. And by well I mean prime rib and mashed potatoes. I had every intention of eating the amazing holiday food, just not all the mediocre stuff before. And that I did.
My stomach has also been jacked up in this mess so I wasn’t able to rest and eat lots of fresh produce. I don’t know about you, but when my stomach is churning a big leafy spinach pile doesn’t sound like a good idea.
So I gained weight. Not a lot. My measurements have changed. Not a lot. But I am bigger than I was at the beginning of last month. Here’s the kicker.
I don’t give a shit.
Isn’t that amazing? I think it’s amazing.
For my entire life I have been acutely aware of my size. All the time. I can’t remember a social occasion/school dance/ college party that I walked into and didn’t immediately think “I’m the fattest one here.” Man, that’s sad. Sometimes I don’t even realize the extent of my own former demons until I post them for the world to see. But we are only as healthy as our secrets, and being fearful of admitting my own doesn’t help anyone.
Though I took a very gradual healthy approach to weight loss, eventually watching the number on the scale go down became addictive. I always felt so huge, watching the number on the scale shrink felt amazing. But I had to constantly remind myself of all the reasons I wanted to be healthy that WEREN’T about size to stay on track.
Then there was a period after having lost the weight that I was terrified of gaining it back. I’d reached the promised land right? 90 frickin pounds, gone! But when you still feel them in your shadow and look for them in every mirror they aren’t gone yet.
So we’re back in good shape. Lola and I have survived a multitude of symptoms and restlessness that comes with being cooped up and we’re both happy to be back in the gym. I am resuming my regular cooking and focused on health goals (for myself and my clients). 2011 is going to be a great year!
But I’m super excited about kicking it off with having gained a few pounds. Because for the first time in my life I really don’t care. I don’t feel badly. I don’t feel like I failed. There is no negative emotional battle for me about this weight. It just is. I’m sure resuming my training and cooking will knock it off. With my 2011 fitness goals I fully expect to lose it and more– but I’m not concerned about it at all. And that may be the best feeling I’ve ever had.
It reminds me of breaking up with someone. I’ve always had sort of a mourning process over break ups. I’m nostalgic, optimistic and have a hard time letting go. It’s always freeing to me when I hear “Ex Factor” by Lauren Hill or a song that reminded me of my recent love-lost and I don’t have any feelings about it. There is immense freedom in really letting go of old baggage. This little illness-weight-gain-moment was my goodbye to the baggage left of a lifetime of issues around my weight, a big screw you to the notion it should concern me and a very positive step toward myself.
I am not my thighs. If I choose to, I can always change them. But either way they don’t define me and will not determine how I feel about me. Because what’s really happened here? Does a few extra pounds on my body somehow hinder world peace? Will my modeling contract be terminated? (ha.) Do my friends love me less? Is my husband suddenly less attracted to me? Big fat ‘no’ on all fronts. In fact I’m sure my husband actually enjoys the little extra booty in my licious.
So peace out “fat Erin” and all your sad self loathing and self destruction. Duces. I could gain 100lbs and never go back to being that broad. And where ever you are at in your journey, I wish you the same.