One Mom’s Journey from Fat to Skinny to Confident

JOURNAL

Weight Loss is Great but This is Better…

26 Comments 1750 views

Yesterday I got this amazing email:

I’ve been reading your site for a few years now, but haven’t ever contacted you before…  I’ve been working on a lifestyle overhaul the last few months, trying to modify some very dysfunctional coping strategies while on the last stage of the tenure track and the unrelenting stress that goes with it. Your site has been very helpful for me in this respect. I’ve gone back to WW and dropped 20 lbs since April, started walking daily and then joined a gym and now workout every day. I’ve stopped postponing “living” until “after tenure”.

The reason I’m writing is to tell you that your ideas and writings had a huge positive impact on my vacation last week. Our hotel had a waterslide, and after sitting on the pool deck for the first day to supervise my 8 year old son, I was thinking of your words about not wanting to miss out on life with your kids. The next day, I was in the water and even went down the waterslide, which thrilled my son to no end. I still have about 60 pounds to lose, but I decided to live and play and have fun, regardless of how I look in a swimsuit.  You’ve role modeled that for me, and I wanted to thank you for it, because you helped give me the courage I needed to do it.

So, thank you! Your courage is contagious!

— Karen

I’m so thankful when people take the time to leave a comment or send me an email. It validates my decision to overshare on the internet and it makes me feel at least a little sane for doing all this.

When I started this blog it was really a personal accountability project for my weight loss, then it turned into a weight maintainer journal and through the years I’ve been sharing myself, my goals and my advice on weight loss based on my experience.

However, I really have no interest in being a trainer or weight loss guru.

It’s taken me some time to realize that.

What I do want to do is inspire people like Karen to swim with their kids, go down that water slide and live an active life NOW instead of waiting for whatever (weight loss/perfection/a certain size/etc.)  I truly believe you can’t achieve any goals until you flip that little switch in your brain from self-hatred and fear based decision making to saying f*ck it.

Sorry, I don’t normally curse on the blog but it’s true!

Apparently I left funkville for sassville.

Here’s the deal — I distinctly remember being so preoccupied with my body that I’d sneak food, cry in dressing rooms and miss out on experiencing life. I was on autopilot, just going through the motions. I continually told myself that once I lost weight I’d be happier. I’d have more friends. I’d do more things. And so on and so forth.

What a bunch of bull cocky!

Having kids was my slap in the face. It took the experience of pregnancy and motherhood for me to appreciate my body and all it can do instead of cursing it and waiting for it to change. Once I started to ignore my inner mean girl and do things despite feeling uncomfortable or out of place, I started to achieve my goals.

Once that switch flipped for me…

  • I stopped looking at dieting as way to fit into a certain size by a certain date so I could be perfect and I started to enjoy learning how to eat lighter, healthier and more balanced because it was fun and I wanted to teach my kids to be good eaters.
  • I stopped looking at exercise as a form of punishment for being fat and just looked for ways to move more. Ways I ENJOYED not things I thought I needed to do.
  • I stopped waiting for life to find me and I started reaching out more, planning more. I connected with people online and off who were supportive and shared my desire to life a happy, drama free life.

So Karen, when I get an email like yours I can’t really put into words how happy it makes me. You help keep me going and I’m  thankful you took the time to share because it makes me feel less alone.

I know not everyone gets it. Some people think this whole body acceptance movement is promoting obesity, but for me it was the key to breaking out of my yo-yo dieting cycle of hell, which was only making me fatter and less healthy.

yo-yo dieting cycle of hell

Weight loss is great but this…

Screen Shot 2014-08-18 at 9.33.30 PM

And this… Screen Shot 2014-08-18 at 9.33.18 PM

is better.

 

~*~*~*~*~



Leave a comment

I’d love to hear your story or thoughts on mine.

However, to prevent the massive amounts of spam I was receiving I have turned off comments on any post older than 5 days old. If you'd like to leave me a note regarding this post or anything really try me on twitter (@RoniNoone,) my Facebook page, or even IG (@RoniNoone) I'm so sorry for the inconvenience. I never thought I'd have to do this but it's gotten way out of hand and comment management has become simply too time consuming to manage.

Discussion

There are 26 comments so far.

    Eileen

    August 19, 2014

    Roni – I think this letter and your post are the best explanation of body acceptance I’ve read. I will admit that some of the other things I’ve read on the internet did seem confusing to me. When fit people encourage everyone to ‘put on that bikini’ it’s like “oh sure, easy for you to say”. If it’s presented as the idea that you are at a point in a continuum and you shouldn’t wait until you are a certain (different) point to “do things” or “experience things”, it’s a completely different mindset. I think it’s completely okay to recognize (and even encourage) people to get further toward the healthy end of the continuum, there are SO many valid reasons to work toward getting there, but not putting life on hold in the meantime is great advice.

    Anyway – I think I’m just rambling, but great job to Karen and thanks for sharing your thoughts here.

      RoniNoone

      August 19, 2014

      Thanks! I liked your ramble. :)

    Mehgann

    August 19, 2014

    I don’t think what you are doing is “body acceptance.” It’s a whole soul approach.

      RoniNoone

      August 19, 2014

      You think? I agree, I did a lot of soul searching but taking a long, hard look at my body and saying, “this is it, this is you!” was a huge part of my growth. I think when people are ashamed of their bodies it really holds them back. There’s a difference between LOVING everything about your self and simply accepting, this is me and I refuse to let how I or others feel about my body stop me from doing things I want to do.

      Mehgann

      August 19, 2014

      I know what you are saying, but I think it was more than just accepting who you are as you are. When I think “body acceptance”, I think of those women who firmly believe that women should never try to lose weight or work out because they’re fine as they are. And for some women, that’s okay, but when it comes to loving your body, obviously, there’s more to it than that. I understand what my body has done for me, and on days when my back isn’t hurting, I’m very grateful for that. I can put on nice clothes and makeup and appreciate how pretty I look, and I’m certainly not afraid to be seen in a swimsuit, even at the size I’m at now. I have accepted that this is my size right now, and I do not apologize for it. That said, I would like to improve. I would like to be healthier. I would like to experience “skinny” just ONCE in my life. And to get there, I have to embrace ME. Not just my body, but my mindset. That it’s okay if I don’t eat perfectly every day. That it’s okay if I miss a day at the gym. That it’s okay if the scale goes up rather than down once in a while. I think you had to do this, too, and it’s a lot more than just accepting your body, although I grant that body acceptance (as you view it) was probably your FIRST step. :)

      RoniNoone

      August 19, 2014

      All makes sense and I think we are on the same page but getting tripped up by what we think everyone else means my “acceptance.”

      You said it best…

      “I have accepted that this is my size right now, and I do not apologize for it.”

      And I’d add to that… I will not apologize for being happy where I am or wanting to improve it either.

      All of this is Body Acceptance. We have it right. There’s no other way to look at it in my opinion.

      Mehgann

      August 19, 2014

      Ah, semantics. :) I know we agree because I read your blog and I almost ALWAYS agree with you!!! Lol!

      Karen

      August 20, 2014

      Yes, this! I can’t say that I fully accept my body, because I’m not happy with it, but I am being kinder to myself about it, and being patient about the transformation while I am still a “work in progress”. But I am tired of putting off fun things because of how I look, or what I imagine people might be thinking as they look at me. Why let what others might think stand in the way of doing something fun, or making some great memories?

      It seems completely obvious that we shouldn’t give such things so much power, but it’s easier said than done. I think that mental switch really does have to flip to get things going. Being angry/sad about your body or health (or Job or whatever) can really create inertia, but once you can get out of that inertia, it’s a lot easier to keep doing fun things and living more meaningfully. The question becomes: how do you flip that switch, or help others flip the switch?

      Roni, you’re helping others (like me) flip the switch by role modelling the great things that can come from living life NOW, regardless. Thanks for that!

    fat

    August 19, 2014

    Amazingly, in this part, you will discover Becky’s 10 Old School New Body Transformation tips to lose fat.

    http://bit.ly/XxyOfm

    Anna

    August 19, 2014

    This post reminds me of a quote I saw the other day that made me so happy. “Fitness isn’t about building a better body. It is about building a better life.” Love your blog!

      RoniNoone

      August 19, 2014

      Love that!!

    toughasnails

    August 19, 2014

    with all the opportunities with sports/career/lifestyle choices out there I am always amazed there are still women out there in 2014 who aren’t living life to it’s fullest…

      Karen

      August 20, 2014

      Actually, there are a lot of things that hold people back, in one or more areas of their life. Financial hardship, single parenting, workload or working multiple jobs, health, stress, access to opportunities…. For some people, just coping and getting by is as much as they can manage – living to the fullest might honestly be out of reach (or it might be perceived to be out of reach, which might have the same outcome).

      I think that there are also people who deny themselves opportunities because of feelings of low self worth – “i don’t deserve this because ….”.

      toughasnails

      August 20, 2014

      I have been financially strapped, am a single mom, have worked multiple jobs to pay the mortgage, had my new born daughter in an ICU for a month, have had a major illness myself (Grave’s disease”), saved money to put my daughter through college, teach special ed kids all day (and put up with angry parents frequently), went through a messy divorce, went back to get a Masters, never asked for a penny from my ex, so yeah I have been through the “ringer” and have had many challenges, but still find/found the joy in every day living and never ever saw myself as a victim or as someone who could not do something because of difficult circumstances…choices choices.

      Karen

      August 20, 2014

      We might well be working from different interpretations of “living life to the fullest.

      RoniNoone

      August 20, 2014

      Don’t feed the fire Karen. ToughAsNails is Cheryl P. and she is literally the only person I ever had to block on any of my sites.

      toughasnails

      August 20, 2014

      My interpretation of ‘living life to it’s fullest’ is hiking/running the Grand Canyon, Mountain biking, swimming from Alcatraz each year, training for my 120th triathlon coming up, teaching special needs kids (my 39th year), having raised a competent daughter not reliant on anyone but herself, doing daily workouts with my husband at 4:30 a.m. and being at work by 7 a.m., taking college credit, reading good books, learning new and difficult poses in yoga (wheel with reach to ankle in the works!) and on and on and on….I have plenty to do and plenty of time to do it. yes I am Cheryl Palen and proud of it- apparently “other” points of view that may differ are not allowed on this site. I like good discussion and conversation. So will go elsewhere. Same old same old here anyway. boring.

      RoniNoone

      August 20, 2014

      Bye. I hope you continue to enjoy your awesome life.

    Tricia Coniglio

    August 21, 2014

    I love this post! So much emphasis is put into looking a certain way when the most important thing is health and being happy in your own skin. And, enjoying all life has to offer!

    bio medcine

    August 25, 2014

    look this it is another formula for weight loss http://www.health-with-naturalidea.com/the-magic-diet-formula-weight-loss/

    Sarah

    August 28, 2014

    This is mostly unrelated to your post but I wanted to share how I use the scale these days. I started reading you when I was actively trying to lose weight a couple of years ago. I’ve kept reading because you’re a lovely, positive stop-in for me during my internet cruisings (and your kids are super-cute). Back to the scale. I haven’t tried to lose weight in a while but I step on the scale both when I’m feeling like I’ve gained a bunch of weight AND when I think I might have lost some and you know what? My weight is always the same. Which I kind of love. It reminds me that so much of this is in my head. Thanks for over-sharing!

      RoniNoone

      August 28, 2014

      You know, that makes me feel better for NOT getting on the scale. Because I feel like most of it is in my head too.

      Thanks for commenting!

    yassine

    September 2, 2014

    thank you for this subject :)
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    Robert Wheeler

    September 24, 2014

    Karen’s email and your post are so inspiring. In fact, I was on the same boat as you 2 years ago – looking at exercise as a sort of punishment. But it’s all good afterwards. I’m just so glad my current job involves a lot of walking, and yes, spending more time with your kids doing all sort of activities is way better than weight loss. Thanks and I look forward to reading more of your posts.

    Rashed

    September 28, 2014

    Thanks to Roni and Karen as well for raising the topic.

    Would like to share an article with you all.

    http://bestwaytolosefatandgainmuscle.blogspot.com/

    suzi neumier

    September 29, 2014

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    I started with a free trail and stuck with it. Here’s the free trial link if anyone wants to try it.

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