When I created this blog in January 2011, I didn’t intend for it to focus so much on fitness. I did plan on writing about things going on in my life though. And coincidentally, January 2011 is when I decided to get off my ass and start losing weight. Two and a half years and 80 pounds later, my lifestyle has completely changed and exercise is obviously a huge part of that.
I’m pretty open about my weight loss journey, as chronicled in the fitness category of this blog. I’m not an expert of course, but I write about what I know: my experience losing 75 pounds in the first year, training for my first half marathon, taking things to a new level with crossfit (cultfit), etc. Because I’m open about it, I get a lot of questions about my weight loss – mainly about what motivates me to keep going.
The answer is pretty simple: Fat Melanie. If you haven’t met her, or if it’s been so long you forgot, here’s Fat Melanie in late 2010:
For perspective, here I am more recently:
Looking at pictures of Fat Melanie makes me incredibly sad. I don’t know how I got there but I know I don’t ever want to go back. Every day I make conscious decisions that put a little more distance between me and her. I workout a lot because I know how easy it could be to let go and end up back there. And I tweet/post about my workouts a lot because it keeps me accountable. I realize it’s probably annoying and my friends love to give me crap about it but I can take it. Losing 80 pounds requires a complete change in your lifestyle, so naturally the things you do and talk about will focus on that. It helps to surround yourself with people who share your goals, like the awesome community at Crossfit Naptown that’s been super supportive.
There are days I wake up and still see Fat Melanie in the mirror. I realize that won’t make sense to most people but there is a mental/psychological component to losing that much weight. Your brain doesn’t always catch up with your body, even after keeping the weight off for more than a year and a half. It’s hard to explain but if you’ve gone through a similar journey, you may know what I’m talking about.
So that’s what motivates me. I hesitated to post this but the question kept coming up and I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I didn’t write this to fish for compliments about how I look now versus then. And I didn’t write this to come across as some expert, because I’m certainly not. I’m just someone trying to remember how far I’ve come and what it will take to keep this going as a permanent change.
I put it all out there so now it’s your turn. What goals are you working toward, fitness or otherwise? What motivates you to keep going? Share in the comments below!