We all struggle with body image. Here's my journey.
I have a lot of respect for ladies who are happily in love with their bodies, unconditionally. Right now, this is something that I'm working on. I love the body positive movement and I think that it's super important for us to celebrate all bodies. Yet, I am on a journey of my own and currently, I'm not in love with my outside body shape.
Since moving to BC almost 2 years ago, I've gained about 10-15 lb. I don't really know as I threw out my scale. This might not have been the best decision for me as the scale was a helpful check in every couple of months or so. These pictures are the before photos I never wanted to take. I WISH I could see my body as my amazing husband does. He doesn't see the extra rolls and tummy, he loves my body unconditionally.
We live in a time where women are showing their authentic selves on social media. Mel Robbins had a super popular post recently about how she feels about her own body. The thing is? I'm not comfortable about how my body looks right now. And yet, I'm still happy. I would love to figure out a way to release the extra weight. The strategies I used a decade ago to release 20 lb aren't working. What I find even more difficult is that weight loss became part of my identity and my story.
Before I started in my nutrition business, I had completed 2 full Ironman Triathlons and never lost any weight. I loved my body as it was because I knew how fit I was and that I was healthy - even though I was overweight. When I learned about low glycemic eating, the way I ate changed and in 12 weeks, I released 20 lb. About a year later, I started training for my 3rd full Ironman triathlon. I completed the race, carrying 20 lb less on my back and knees. I stayed at that weight until I had my daughter.
After my daughter was born, I really struggled with my weight. It was not easy to lose the weight I had gained during my pregnancy. About a year after she was born, I returned to the weight I was before I got pregnant. I was no longer in Ironman or even triathlon shape at this point. Post-Ironman I am no longer able to run due to a foot/toe injury.
Fast forward to 2012, my daughter was two and I wanted to get back into shape. That's the year I founded the 30 Day Whole Body Detox and by simply removing gluten and dairy from my diet for 30 days, I lost 9 lb. It was shocking to release so much weight actually. I did learn that I was gluten-intolerant which has really helped my digestion over these last 8 years. Every year, I would continue to do the detox in the spring with my clients. And every year, I would release the 3-4 lb I had gained over the course of the 11 months in between.
Except for the past two years. That is when we moved across the country. No only did I not release any weight, I know that I have gained more. It's not easy to run a program you LOVE and yet no longer see the results you had come to expect.
I would love to be more fit however I've had a shoulder and back injury for several year which means that most types of activity are out. I love to walk and hike, and do yoga with modifications.
The strategies I used to use for releasing weight don't seem to work either. This ISN'T an invite to sell me your weight loss program either. Maybe there is some truth to perimenopause and weight gain? Will have to learn more about this. Many friends posted some great suggestions on my social media feeds when I first posted this post (in a brief version). This is definitely a step in the right direction.
I love what Karen shared with me:
Drop the war.
End the Me Project. Stop trying to get rid of, improve, resist, or otherwise fix yourself. With kindness, turn toward—not away from—what you believe you have to get rid of. In that turn, you will discover that demons become angels and the scary snakes of your life become harmless strands of rope.❤️❤️❤️❤️ Excerpt from: "This Messy Magnificent Life: A Field Guide" by Geneen Roth. Scribd.
You might suggest that I've got to learn to love my body as it is, right in this moment. You're probably right. I realize it's going to take a #mindsetshift and not a #5dayreset to release any weight at all. Also, what I've realized by sharing my story is that stress and possibly PTSD from what we went through last year has made it even harder to release weight. Looks like this is much more than a weight loss journey, it's going to have to be a healing journey at the same time.
This is where I'm at right now. Not loving how I look in a bathing suit and loving my life all the same. And that's the reality - I absolutely love my life here on Vancouver Island. I have so many incredible things to be grateful for every single day I wake up. I want you to know that you can be grateful AND be working on self-love and acceptance AT THE SAME TIME. We are all perfectly imperfect, myself included.