267.9 pounds. F*ck.
I had to dust off my scale to take that picture – a clear indication of the denial I’ve been living in. As the numbers flashed on the screen I knew this was a necessary step in my journey. Both literally and figuratively. I’ve been asked a lot over the years (through my many diets) what my goal weight is. I’ve continued to tell people that I really don’t care – I just want to feel healthy. But for me, one just can’t happen without the other. Sure, I don’t know what my ideal weight is because I’m not there yet. But I do know it isn’t 267.9 pounds.
Side note – I want to be very clear that this is not about fat shaming or suggesting that those promoting body positivity should lose weight. I’m inspired by so many women of all sizes. But this is my personal journey and for me to be happy it means shedding these pounds. It’s not purely about the scale but without the scale, it’s only half of the equation of my unhappiness. This weight is literally weighing down every aspect of my life. Physical and emotional. I wish I was happy in this body. It’d be a lot easier if I was.
>>Insert the sound of a VCR rewinding. If you are too young to know what a VCR is you are probably too young to be reading this blog. >>
I went on my first diet when I was only 11 years old. At 11 years old I knew I was different, I was bigger, I was “fat.” This was long before the days of “fat girl” body creams, waist training belts and all the other crazy options available to today’s youth trying to lose weight. Long before the pressures of Instagram, Facebook and the age of pictures ending up online.
I remember convincing my parents to allow me to follow Weight Watchers. I’m sure I wrote them a letter about why I should be able to do it, I often used writing as a means of persuading them into things. (Some things never change) And even though they told me over and over again that I was beautiful the way I was, they began their own lifelong journey of supporting me to lose weight. My dad understood what I was going through – he too has struggled with his weight. We’ve lost together, gained together and repeated both several times over.
It honestly wasn’t the worst of diets I’ve tried and I went back to their Points program several times well into adulthood. Weight Watchers was never fast enough for me though. It’s designed to help you lose 1-2 lbs/week (a healthy cadence) but for the world’s most impatient of people, I wanted faster. For me, quick loss equaled noticeable results which equaled motivation to keep going.
And so I resorted to other methods of losing weight. Unhealthiest was purging which thankfully I only did a couple of times. I just loved eating too much. After that came low carb, low sugar, low everything it seemed.
And then I did LA Weight Loss. At 21 years old I got down to 133 pounds and felt incredible. Not because I was skinny, not because I could finally wear a bikini or the clothes I’d always dreamed of but because I felt good in my skin. Because I could hop out of bed in the morning with so much energy, ready to seize the day. Because unlike any other point in my life I didn’t have to worry about my weight holding me back from doing the things I loved.
After a short-lived year at my “goal weight” (let’s just say I don’t expect to be 133 pounds again, nor do I feel I need to) I graduated university, got my first real job, moved in with my boyfriend (now husband) and became “too busy” to take care of myself.
I wasn’t necessarily eating poorly, that’s a lie, I was eating whatever I damn well felt like. And I certainly was no longer following the strict regimen of my successful diet. LA Weight Loss was my quick fix. I lost 60 pounds in 3 months. Amazing? Yes. Sustainable? No.
Current day. Day zero. Or actually, if we start from 11 this is day 6935 (approximately, of course, I’ve never been great at math). The reality is I’ve been at this “diet” game for 19 years, more than half of my life. I’m hopeful though that I’ve learned enough to do this right. And so I’m learning. Learning how to fuel my body with healthy foods. Learning how to move my body in its current state (so as to avoid injury as I’m prone to hurting myself) and learning how to make this a lifestyle change more than a diet. This is the last time you’ll ever see that awful word, diet, in this blog. Diets and I have called it quits.
No longer will I let my weight hold me captive. No longer will I settle for feeling tired and uncomfortable all the time. No longer will I follow some ridiculous low anything plan. F*ck you 267.9lbs. You better watch it, I’m coming for you and you are going DOWN.
Title Lyrics – “Pretty Hurts” by Beyoncé