Half empty or Half full? Neither, actually

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halfway 200x300 Half empty or Half full? Neither, actually

55 pounds gone, 55 more to go!

Somehow, in the last not-quite-seven months, I’ve managed to shed 55 pounds of extra weight. I’ve also lost three medications related to my Type 2 diabetes that I didn’t need once I started eating better and exercising every day. (I’m on the cusp of losing one more, too, which will leave me only taking a single prescription.) I’ve also lost the ability to wear virtually every single item of clothing in my closet and chest of drawers. (I’ve developed a much closer relationship with my tailor, too.)

More important (to me) than what I’ve lost is what I’ve gained since February 1st:

  • Better health
  • More energy
  • A daily workout habit that I don’t just enjoy, I actually look forward to*
  • A closer relationship with my husband (we’re creating a healthier lifestyle together)
  • Enhanced ability to cope with my depression (it’s still there but I recognize it faster and seem more able to push through even in the worst of it)
  • Dedicated, pre-scheduled time for me (my weekday mornings are for working out, Saturday at 7:00 am is my Weight Watchers meeting – followed by an hour at the gym, and Sunday at 8:00 am is my loved/dreaded Pilates Reformer class)

* OK, I don’t look forward to the required training workouts for the duathlon I signed up for in October – they stink! – but when it’s just a single workout that I choose, I love it!

Things are not perfect, however. I still struggle with my almost pathological fear of allowing myself to be vulnerable (or anything less than 100% perfect at all times) and that worries me a lot. Last week I was all set to take a Pure Barre Lite class at the center near my house before I saw the girls heading into class and chickened out. They were all in great shape physically and very petite, so I convinced myself that I couldn’t bear the humiliation of being the only obese person in class.

Interestingly, I’m in the middle of reading Dr. Brene Brown’s The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are, [affiliate link] where she spends many, many pages extolling the virtues of releasing the need to be perfect in order to fit in (or even trying to “fit in” at all). I’ve also recently started following Jia Jiang‘s blog where he not only talks about living life without letting fear of rejection get in your way but actually goes out and courts rejection whenever possible. Once I stopped mentally berating myself for being weak, I started thinking about what these two people – both of whom came into my life, albeit only virtually, at the same time – would tell me about my Pure Barre (non) experience.

I’m pretty sure Dr. Brown would tell me to stop feeling shame about my fat self and how I got this way and also that if the class is for me then no one there will expect me to be anything that I’m not and, in fact, they’ll actually love me as I am for who I am and what I bring to class. Jia Jiang talks a lot about viewing rejection as an important milestone on the journey to eventual success, and that the rejection itself says as much about the other person as it does about the person or concept being rejected. In light of this, I’m guessing that he would tell me to give Pure Barre a try because even if it ends up as badly as I’m afraid it will then I’ll be one step closer to finding a strength & flexibility class that I will love. So, I’m going to class on Wednesday morning and we’ll see how it goes.

I’m learning that this “building a healthier, happier life” thing isn’t for wusses, and the physical discomfort involved is the very least challenging part of what’s required.

Comments

  1. Denise, I’ve read your blog for many years now and I am so thrilled to see you making so many wonderful changes in your life! Because your focus isn’t on the scale but on making a better life, I believe you will achieve last success. Have a great day! :-)

    • I truly am focused on living a healthier life rather than the scale now. Not that the smaller, lighter body isn’t easier to deal with, too, but if I had never lost a pound but still managed to get my blood sugar, cholesterol, and triglycerides under tight control, I would still be OK with that. I so appreciate that you’ve stuck with me all this time and through thick and thin – thank you.

      Regards,
      Denise

  2. WOOOOHOOOO!!! Go girl! Go girl! Go girl!

  3. excellent stuff – and good on you fr going back to the pure barre class – I’m very guilty of talking myself out of stuff (and so many people would say I’m confident to the point of being annoying – amazing how we can deceive others isn’t it!) …

    • People in real life keep telling me how inspirational I am because I’m so much smaller than I used to be (i guess – I don’t see it myself), and I feel like such a fraud. If they only knew how many things I set out to do and then chicken out at the last minute. Or that I can only run on the treadmill because my pace is so slow that it’s impossible to replicate without the belt moving underneath my feet. Or that I’m doing most of my bike training for my event in the gym because I’m too much of a wuss to deal with the hills on the roads near my house. Still, I’m going to give the Pure Barre another go and we’ll see how it is. (Perhaps I’ll turn over a new leaf for trying things that scare me and letting myself be OK with being less than perfect at an activity even when everyone else masters it easily & quickly?)

      Thanks for the lovely comment and for your visit!
      Denise

  4. That list of things you’ve gained is inspirational. I know how you feel about that class. I was the biggest person in my first pilates class but I figured that meant I needed it more than the others. Six months later, I am still the biggest person in the class most days, but I don’t thin about it because I love the class and it’s done so much for me.

    • Kay Lynn, oh yes, I am most definitely the biggest person in my Pilates class and I’m the only one who can’t keep my head & shoulders elevated for the whole core workout on the Reformer & can’t plank on my hands and toes. But you know, I don’t feel bad about it any more and I think the instructor (Gretchen) has a ton to do with that because she’s just so supportive and helpful with modifications and encouragement. I wish every class and instructor was just like that!

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  1. [...] I processed the experience, I realized that it was another perfect example of my fear of being vulnerable rearing its ugly head. Again. I resolved to go back to class this week and every week until it [...]

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