This is not a before and after kind of post, as I don’t feel comfortable sharing these kind of photos on the Internet, but I want to talk a bit about my experience with losing weight and adopting a healthy lifestyle, how my body image changed along the way and how others react to the this change.
My body weight is something that I’ve struggled with for many years in my life. As a teenager I wasn’t happy at all with the way I looked. I had gained some more weight due to a knee injury that didn’t allow me to participate in any athletic activities for a quite long time and pairing that with some not so great meal choices (hello chocolate bar!) didn’t help at all. When I was 16 I decided to try a crazy diet that counted calories. Looking back, I did it all so wrong and ruined my metabolism along the way. I reached an unhealthy low weight, but I could not maintain that for longer than a few months and then gained back all the weight and some more. All these years I wasn’t very comfortable with a body that was so difficult to dress and made me feel insecure. I didn’t really try to change it though (so scared after my first attempt), until I moved to Norway in 2012 with a record high weight. That move changed my life in many ways and one of them was my eating habits and my attitude regarding exercising.
The whole process was quite easy, as I didn’t fixate myself to see anything on the scale or my clothes. I just did it and expected nothing more than feeling better: no more back and knee pain, having a stable energy level through the day etc. I did weight myself from time to time (maybe every month or so) and, guess what, for the first 9 months I didn’t lose ANY weight. However, I went down from an american size 10 to size 8. Then I went to Greece for the summer and something changed, probably my metabolism, I started loosing weight. I didn’t go very fast (it’s never good to go fast with weight loss anyway), but I kept loosing weight for the next year until I reached my goal weight few weeks ago. Right now I am an american size 4 (depending on the brand obviously) and I have the best body I’ve ever had.
That being said I still don’t feel like this body is mine. It is so strange-looking at the mirror. It’s even stranger going shopping and find that most clothes fit me and look good on me. Some days I focus on what I find wrong with my body or what I used to find wrong with it, but overall I try not to overthink it and just let my body be. Afterall a body can and will change and it’s not something that should define a person. However, I notice a difference in how men, even them who know me for many years, talk to me and this doesn’t feel good. It’s alarming.
“Hey, thin girl!”
Seriously dude, this is just as insulting as saying “Hey, fat girl!”, which I’d heard on many occasions in the past, mostly behind my back. It is insulting on so many levels, I can’t even begin to explain. You could have said “Hey, sunshine!”, I would have given you my biggest smiled and we would have been able to carry our conversation in peace.
“I would like to date you. Your personality is so different now!”
Hm… Okkkkk… I am raising an eyebrow now! I doubt that you saw the tiniest difference in my personality, unless you’re judging it from the size of my ass. What if I gained some weight back? Back to my old personality? Meh…
“Do you do squats?”
I get that question remarkably often. No, I don’t. What you see here is the result of consistently practicing yoga and running for a year.
“Imagine if you did squats!”
Hm… I didn’t ask for any suggestions, but anyway, I won’t! I like my routine. I do it for my soul, not for my ass.
Was it always like that? Is it a matter of confidence or men (at least the ones I know) are just that shallow? Also, are you happy with your body? Have you ever experienced a big body change? Just some thoughts, on a strangely warm Saturday…
ps. Image of Tara Lynn, who seems so happy and comfortable with her awesome curvy body.