Fat Day

I had a fat day yesterday.

Not the good kind of fat day, where you think of it that way because of all the delicious, indulgent, decadent, rich foods you ate. (I’ve had more than my fair share of those kinds of fat days too, naturally.) No, it was the kind of day where I felt fat. I know, I know, this is going to be one of those kinds of posts, and you’ll just have to bear with me. I can’t help it. For whatever reason, in spite of the fact that I ate pretty well, exercised, and had a wonderful evening catching up with my dear friend Sarah, I just felt fat.

We all have those days, I know. It’s just been tough for me as I struggle with the fact that I’ve basically lapsed into maintenance at this point, my weight loss is slow. Weight loss is a long play, I know. If you want to do it in a healthy, sustainable way, there really are no quick-fixes, no shortcuts. But I need to own up to the fact that I’m neither on nor off the weight loss wagon right now. It’s more like my leg is caught in a loop of rope and I’m dragging behind it. I keep declaring my intentions for ongoing progress. “Onward and downward!”, I say. But I’m not really doing much to follow through. Sure, I’m still watching what I eat (mostly), I’m actually exercising fairly regularly (shocking!), and I’m even counting the occasional day’s worth of calories still. But while I’m barely hitting half-pound losses every two weeks, all it’s really doing is keeping me from ballooning back up. And that might be fine, if I didn’t keep reminding myself that my original goal was — is — to reach 165 pounds, not 188.4 pounds.

So yesterday, I got down about it. And all my self-doubt crept back into my brain and started whittling away at the modicum of confidence that I’ve gained in this new body of mine. “Still fat,” it said to me. “You’re still overweight. You’re soft, squishy, and don’t even think about trying to cover it up with words like ‘curvy’ or ‘voluptuous’ or ‘big boned’. Fat, fatty, fat.”

So I broke down (just a little bit). And then I remembered that I might not be a size 6 yet, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t made progress. And if my own mind is warped enough to be telling me that I’m fat now, what was it trying to tell me back then? So I took to Facebook circa 2009 and reminded myself of exactly what it is that I’ve been fighting for (or is it against?) this whole time. Yep, that’s right folks. It’s time for another installment of Gretchen’s Weight Loss Photo Retrospectiveâ„¢!

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The Befores

Oh yeah, we’re gettin’ fancy with the photo layouts up in hurr!

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The Nows

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Going Out: Then & Now

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Christmas: Then & Now

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Harry Potter Fanaticism: Then & Now

Okay, I do feel better. I’ve come a long way! And yes, for a while now my weight loss progress has… slowed, that much I do admit. But I know what I’m capable of when I’m focused, motivated, and on track. I need to reevaluate my current lifestyle a little bit to get myself back into progress-making mode: crack down, get back to my calorie-counting roots, etc. The bottom line is that I am going to get there, eventually. Progress is as progress does, you know? And I’m staying the course, continuing on this journey, cliche saying, cliche saying. 😉

Care to come along for the rest of the ride?

Reflection

First, and foremost:

Thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you. You have no idea how much your kind words of support and encouragement in response to my bare all (literally!) progress pics page mean to me. You guys really are the best, and I am so grateful to have your continued enthusiasm and support as I continue this journey (and hello? So wouldn’t have made it this far without you!)

Secondly, you shall observe:

A little Mulan love, please? I promise that this will be relevant…ish. Yesterday was a big day of self-reflection for me, for obvious reasons. Celebrating my blogiversary was (is?) a really exciting thing, and a milestone I’m thrilled to achieve, but I spent most of the day freaking out about the other page that went up in conjunction and didn’t really get to enjoy it.

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Guess it really is a good thing we had a preemptive family celebration on Sunday, eh?

I mean, it’s understandable, right? I did post pictures of myself at my most vulnerable. I was 246 lbs, forcing myself to take a photo of myself in a bikini for posterity. You probably can’t tell in the picture itself, but I was bawling mere moments before taking it. And probably for several hours after.

Don’t get me wrong! I am glad I took the photos, and have this physical record of the changes that I’ve made over the past year. Even though I know I look different — I see pictures, and I do hear what people say, sometimes it’s still hard to see. Living in my body, seeing myself in the mirror every day, it’s not as easy for me to accept that I don’t look like that anymore. That I’m not really even that person anymore. But I have changed. I am changed.

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December 2009

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The family with my cousin Christine this past Saturday

Logically, I know this: I see the numbers on the scale and I am cognizant of the fact that they are lower than they used to be. This is a fact.

Mentally, I know this: I feel the fit of my pants. I witness the piles of clothes stacking up outside my bedroom door that are too big to wear. I see the number on the tag and I realize it is lower than it used to be. These are facts.

But emotionally? It’s still hard to really see myself. As I am. All that I am. Here, now. To see my new reflection: as the girl I’ve always been inside, hiding behind the wall and under the fat.

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Oh, Caribbean cruise… so wise. I think I need to go back. Stat.

See? I told you it’d end up being relevant, hehe. You gotta have a little faith in me, folks — I always bring it full circle!

So yes, Mulan is obviously my favorite Disney princess because, uh, duh? She’s A…wesome. C’mon, what did you think I was gonna say? Bahaha.

Okay, seriously. Disney movies will always be loved and adored because they remind us of the things we most want to see in ourselves. The ability to stand up for what’s right. To stand up for ourselves. For good to always, always conquer evil.

So taking a tip from my homegirl from my homeland (well, half of it anyway), I’m going to try harder to really see myself. As vain as that may sound, heh.

Before I let you go, can we please just acknowledge that the best song in that movie is obviously this one:

As you’ve gone along in your weight loss or fitness journey, have you ever found it hard to accept or recognize the progress you’ve made for yourself?

Don’t worry if you have, Mister. I’ll make a man out of you.

A Year in Review

That’s right, friends.

It’s finally here.

1 full year of blood, sweat, and tears (okay, mostly tears.)

365 days of blogging my heart, soul, and weight almost every day.

Happy blogiversary to me!

Those of you who aren’t related to me, did you ever get a chance to read the first post? If not, you should take a gander. In case you hadn’t heard, I’ve kinda made some progress.

I was 246 pounds and counting, on the wrong kind of path. I have never considered myself to be a strong person, but somehow, some way I pressed publish in tears, not really believing that this would last any longer than the last failed diet attempt.

And yet here I stand (er, sit? Type?) 56 pounds lighter and more committed than ever.

I think I'll keep it.

It’s a good day.

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And even though the journey hasn’t always been roses and multi-pound weigh-ins, even though it isn’t over yet, I am so, so grateful for undertaking this, and so proud of myself for coming this far.

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And to show myself exactly how far I have come not only physically, but emotionally as well, I have done the unthinkable. The unimaginable. I have posted my “real” progress pictures on the blog to horrify and astound. Please be aware, these are pictures of me in a bikini at various weights, so they may be potentially NSFW. For that, and for other (obvious) reasons, don’t say I didn’t warn you. Click here to throw up observe.

No, seriously though. I can’t even imagine having the hutzpah to post what I’ve posted today a year ago. Hell, I couldn’t have posted it five years ago! Had I not come down this road, I don’t think I’d ever have had the nerve to post anything close to it. But if there’s one thing that this past year has taught me, it is how to be brave.

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I guess I really am growing up. Heh.

And I guess life really does come full-circle. Because one year ago, I was in tears as I pressed the publish button. And now… well, c’mon. Are you really surprised?

Thank you. I really couldn’t have done this without you.