October 29, 2010

My Progress and My Past

To give a bit of authority to my posts on weight loss, I have decided to let you know a bit more about myself.

When I was really little, I didn’t have a weight issue, I was a normal size, had lovely blonde hair and loved to swim and play outside. Things started changing in grade four (when I was 9 or 10); I remember grade four as being a horrible year, it was the year that I got my first pair of glasses, my hair started to darken to an ugly “ash-blond” aka mousy-brown, and I started putting on weight, I was now chubby. The worst part was the becoming chubby, there was this one girl who would always pick on me, calling me fat, punching me for “being fat,” getting up during class to sharpen her pencil so that she could poke my “fat-a$$” with it and many, many other mean pranks and jokes. It was horrible, sometimes she would encourage my friends to tease me, they never really teased along with her but there were two of them that would sometimes laugh at what she was doing to me, which was just as hurtful. I became really depressed by this and slowly gained more and more weight over the years, often crying myself to sleep at night. Sometimes I would dread going to friend’s houses because a few of my friend’s parents would make rude comments, not necessarily on purpose but more of things like “did you see that actress? She looks disgusting in this movie, she’s gained some weight, and people who look like that are gross/lazy” (the actress would always be much, much thinner than I even dreamt of being). I would try really hard in gym class and bike for hours thinking that I could become thin again but nothing worked. I now know that it was my eating preventing this, it’s not that I would pig out on junk food really (once and awhile I would but no more than any of my thin friends), it was really the portions that I was eating. I would take a huge plate of potatoes or pasta, always encouraged by my parents because it wasn’t junk food, it was just part of their regular dinner, they didn’t know any better and neither did I. Now that I’m older I look back and can see where I went wrong with my eating, and I now cook completely differently than my parents (their food is healthier than most but still not what many would call “healthy”). Back to the teasing, eventually this girl changed schools and I found out years later that it was because she was bullied by a lot of the older children and she couldn’t take it anymore and that she had considered me to be one of her only friends, she never apologized though so I have never felt that I could really forgive her, the scars run really deep. When she left I did become a bit less depressed and it was really only the school dances that I dreaded (junior high dances). I have been turned down more than one dance by boys who don’t want to dance “with a fatty”, luckily I did have some very, very kind male friends (or boyfriends of my best friends) who would swoop in to rescue me, it was still upsetting though, none of my thinner friends were ever turned away, and it’s not like I was ever going after Mr. popular. The turndowns would also lead to me crying myself to sleep once again.

In junior high I started to compete in synchronized swimming, I had many practices but it wasn’t until early high school (most likely when I was hitting puberty) that I started losing weight from all the workouts. Looking back at pictures of me in grade 10, 11 and 12, I realize that I was thin; in fact, many of my friends would tell me that I was very thin and had a tiny waist. Did I ever listen to them? No, I was still convinced that I was huge, too large to ever wear a bikini. I guess my self confidence was still really low, the years and years of being teased had turned me into a very shy person, with a remaining mental image of someone four times my size, in reality I weighted less in grade 12 than I did in grade 8 and I was quite a bit taller. After high school I quit swimming, I was going into university and wasn’t sure that I would have the time since I would then be swimming five days a week with four hour practices and I was too young to join the recreational masters club, I started going to the bar and partying with friends and the weight slowly crept back. I also entered a relationship that was a bit of a downer. Each year I would gain just a bit more and as I became more and more out of shape there was less that I felt I could do about it. I really just should have stopped making excuses and joined a gym and learnt how to eat better.

As you may have read before, once I became a bit too close to the 200 mark I finally smartened up. My lifestyle changes have resulted in some great things, I am now 146 pounds, which is in the normal BMI range for my height (though on the higher end of normal), can run 5km, I have more energy, I feel great, and my self-confidence is better than ever, I still have a ways to go but I am confident for the future and vow to never go back to my old ways. I have set new fitness and weight goals for myself and am determined to reach them. I want to reach 140 by Christmas and am going to bike part of the Iron Horse Trail next summer and be able to do an unassisted pull-up.

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