Hello friend. Grab a cup of coffee, tea, or a glass of water and sit with me a moment.
Being a personal trainer, and having a small frame, I have a lot of clients make remarks along the lines of:
“You’re tiny, you’ve never had to worry about weight.”
“I’ll never be your size, must be nice to be fit and thin.”
Or my favorite…
“Why do you eat so healthy? It’s not like you have a weight issue.”
Seriously, I get it but what I don’t understand is our lightening speed ability to pass judgements.
I’m Not Naturally This Size
When I get these comments, I’m fast to fire back… “Believe it or not, I haven’t always been this size. In fact, I’ve lost close to 40-pounds.”
It’s that 40-pounds that hangs over me like a ghost. Knowing how it felt to be that size and how much my life has improved since then motivates me to live the life I do. It’s also fear… I’m afraid of gaining it back and becoming just another “lost it and gained it back” story.
It’s easy to lose weight, it’s a lot harder to keep it off…
And that’s where I want to go today.
If I could travel back in time to when my clothes were 4 times larger, to when that A-cup I mentioned the other day was a D-cup, and to when I lacked the ability to run a single mile…
What would I tell my larger self?
10 Things I Would Tell My “Fat” Self
–> No one is judging you.
Yes, you’ve gained a lot of weight, really fast, but no one is judging you. People aren’t sitting talking about you, they have other issues to worry about.
When you realize this, you’ll feel more at ease and more comfortable in your skin. Sure you’ll want to lose the weight still, but it’s okay to hold your head up high and realize that this is your journey, no one else’s.
–> This is not the way you’re “suppose” to look.
Listen, getting older doesn’t justify weight gain. You’re using it as an excuse and I promise that you will not be stuck in this body for ever.
You have so much strength and a great figure underneath all the stress-full eating.
Not at my largest, on the road to success…
–> You don’t need that: Learn to handle stress.
While we’re on the topic of stressful eating, have you stopped to wonder why you ate that chocolate bar? What about that entire container of Ben & Jerry’s? It wasn’t because you were hungry, you’re stressed…
Remember how when you were younger you loved to draw? Loved to swim laps? Loved to just sit and read outside?
Well, perhaps the next time you’re drawn to a sugar-filled stress reliever, you could do one of those things instead?
–> People love you.
I know you think that you’re all alone. You think that no one will want to love you because of your size. Well, here’s spoiler alert: you’re loved very very much. Friends, family, even the guy that will turn out to be your husband fell in love with you prior to being fit.
You’re loved… right now. In a few months, some of those people will sit down with you to help you set your life right.
–> Forget trying to squeeze into clothes clearly too small.
You’ve gained weight, there is no denying it. So, please stop trying to. Looking back on our pictures, I’ve seen far too many with you looking uncomfortable simply because you didn’t want to wear a bigger size.
I promise, you’ll look better in clothes that actually fit your current figure. This isn’t accepting your body, it’s acknowledging where it is while you work to get back to where you want it.
–> Take it day by day.
It might seem as if the weight piled on overnight, but I promise it didn’t. It took you about 6 months to gain 40 pounds, and it’s going to take at least that amount of time to get it off.
I know you’re an “all or nothing” kind of person, but don’t let your a-type personality and lack of patience have you eating nothing but fresh fruit and salads to drop your calories (I really wish I had followed this advice back then). Fruit isn’t a meal, it’s a snack.
The same goes with exercise… you’ve taken months off from being fit. Deal with the consequences. I know you’re going to go out and try to run and run and run, but listen to your body. Stop when it wants and make slow improvements.
If I had followed this advice, I would have avoiding a 500 calorie restriction diet, I would have bypassed obsessing about every morsal I put into my mouth and I would have avoided months of pain from overtraining (fractures and constant sickness being two).
–> Strength train!
You’re going to meet a great guy that will encourage you to strength train to help drop the weight and tone you’re body. You’re going to think he’s crazy and you’re going to want to ignore his advice and continue running (which you should also do because you end up being some what decent at running, but don’t do it for weight loss… do it because you love it).
Don’t. Even better, don’t wait for him to get started. Add strength training into your program right now. And not just ab exercises… those sit-ups you’ve been doing aren’t helping are they?
You’re going to love what strength training can do for your body! Look into the gym and see if they offer a boot camp or training program to help get you started.
You might think I’m crazy, but one day you’re going to be obsessed with boot camps!
–> You don’t need a 6-pack.
Yes, you’re young and you want to go out and have a good time. But do you think that a 6-pack of beer is going to help with that? Don’t act surprised when your weight continues to go up when you continue to choose high calorie foods.
You know that after the beer is gone, you and your friends will order a pizza or even better, walk through the drive-in McDonalds across the street for a Blizzard…
Just think twice about what you want. And yes… this really did happen.
–> Talk to someone.
Remember how much you’re loved? Right now you’re down in the dumps over your body, what you want in life and all the pressures that you’ve put on yourself.
Talk to someone, get it off your chest. Holding it all in, doesn’t make you strong, it makes you unhappy and vulnerable.
You’ll get support, you will receive tons of positive energy and you’ll be motivated to make a change.
Because that’s what it all comes down to… you’ve got a lot going on that needs to change. Not just your eating and lack of exercise. Discover what’s really going on and change your situation for the better.
For example, here’s another spoiler: You’re not going to medschool, so relax a bit. Will it kill you to get a B and not an A? No.
–> One day you will love yourself.
You’re not happy right now. When you lose the weight, you’ll learn that happiness isn’t found in losing 5, 10, or even 40 pounds. But I promise, that happiness will come and it will be the greatest reward. You’re going to grow as a person, discover strength that you never knew you had and be fueled by the journey that lays ahead of you to help others.
You’ll discover new passions and dreams. And then you’ll be happy.
Thanks for allowing me to get this off my chest today. It’s funny that the weight has stayed off for about 7 years now, yet it’s still such a big part of me. Because of my personal journey, I feel stronger, humbled and more motivated than ever to continue my own personal growth (more on the inside than out) while helping so many amazing ladies every day.
If you could go back in time and tell yourself 1 thing, what would it be?