Monday, May 20, 2013

Fighting the Biggest Battle...

We enjoyed a full and fun weekend - from date night Friday through our oldest daughter's birthday yesterday, our home has been filled with all the kids we call our own (our literal own and all their group) with nary a quiet moment to be found - which was wonderful. :-) and tiring.

This morning found me dragging my sleepy self to the gym for back/biceps. I am still brutally sore from leg day Friday - you should have seen me Saturday trying to set up my demo table at The Vitamin Shoppe - soooo sore! Anyway - I knocked out my back, did some damage to my biceps then hit the shoulders. Such a struggle. Plus my tennis elbow is so bad right now that I wanna rip it off and beat it on the bench.

I was finishing up, whimpering inside as my shoulder screamed in denial of what I was asking (which seriously, using 3 lb weights for lateral raises, I'm not asking much), when Def Leppard, Undefeated started blasting through my ear buds. I opened my eyes, pushed the pain aside, and saw something very, very exciting in the mirror - progress. I saw striations in my shoulders. I actually got tears in my eyes. I knocked out the rest of my reps to the beat, and felt for the first time in a while that my goals just might still be reachable. 

Then... I hit the stairmaster for my newly allotted 10 minutes of cardio (not counting my 5 minute warmup) and the mind games started back up. 10 minutes of cardio? Seriously? Did you not see the number on the scale yesterday? How are you going to lose this body fat with only 10 minutes three times a week??? WTF is wrong with you?? The scale doesn't lie, babe - you NEED this cardio. 

Yes, my inner voice is mean and nasty. She's quite the bitch, my inner fat girl.

And she's wrong. The scale does lie. It's a lie of omission. It doesn't tell the whole story. The number which represents my whole weight doesn't tell me that I've gained muscle... gained definition... gained confidence. Instead, it takes that confidence and tries to beat it out of me - my weight is up, I am failing. 

But I'm not. I'm succeeding.

I knew when I began this phase of my journey that the mental battle was going to be tough. Reducing my cardio (which started last week) is really hard for me - not only because of the "cardio burns fat" mentality so prevalent (and not entirely accurate), but also because I truly enjoy my cardio sessions. I can do them on autopilot, giving me thinking time - or just zoning out time. Giving that up, even temporarily, messes with my head, and denies me an outlet. It's difficult.  Focusing on increasing my weights - my session lengths - my range of motion... also super hard, physically and mentally, due to my injuries and limitations. But my goal has been to increase lean muscle, and I am doing that. 
And while I'm busting my ass to add muscle, while I'm adding weight (can't wear those jeans these days!), I'm watching friends and colleagues hit their lowest body fat percentages and cross the stage in sparkles and heels - and rocking it. While I get fat. At least that's what she is saying. I know she's wrong. I know damn well that I'm right on track and I'm proud of my progress - especially since I'm doing this completely on my own - no trainer, no coach, but it's freaking difficult to find my fat-girl's mute button. 

For the most part, as I maintain my 80lb weight loss (October 2008, woot!), I've been able to tune her out, keep her from getting too loud. But as I deliberately gain weight, she's gaining volume. The battle against my own mind is the hardest one to keep fighting. Losing weight is tough - no lie. Keeping it off is tougher - because of the mental crap. Disarming the inner fat girl - quieting her, silencing her, evicting her... that's the war to be won. And it's ongoing. 

I'd love to tell you that if you're on a weight loss journey, losing that weight will make you happy, sexy, and able to pick clothes right off a rack... Not the case. I've talked about this before, but felt it was time to address it again. Losing weight doesn't change WHO you are. After the weight comes off, you're still the same person you were when fat. It's still you. It's still me. If you weren't happy before, you won't be happy after. You've got to go beyond what you see in the mirror - discover who you really are and how to love yourself. Respect yourself. Value yourself. And some of you might battle body-dysmorphia, just to make things even more difficult. It took me years to overcome that. 

Oh, and FYI - that whole buy off the rack deal? I still can't just buy something off the rack - for every 20 items I try on, 1 or 2 might hit the mark (Tabitha is the most wonderfully patient and supportive shopping buddy!). 

I'd also love to tell you that I have a battle-plan for you to beat your inner fat girl. I don't. I'm still fighting mine.  But I think that's the most important point... I'm still fighting. Are you?

It's Monday. The start of a fresh new week. Here's our challenge... 1) Don't let the scale lie to you,  and 2) Don't let your inner-fat girl crush you. Fight back.  

Tell her to shut the hell up.


  1. Selena McCulloughMay 29, 2013 at 6:32 AM

    I just want to tell you that I love your site, your menus, your prep info...everything. I come here when I get stuck...lazy, out of ideas...I come for inspiration and motivation. And you deliver every time. Keep it up. I never comment but just wanted to let you know that you are helpful and awesome.

    Thank You!


    1. Hi Selena! Thank you so much!! :-D It always helps to know someone is out there listening/reading, lol!
      Best Wishes!!! :-D