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The Endless Internal War With Myself

Friday, April 05, 2013

Ever read the right words at the right time? I did. Yesterday. Thanks to Yoovie, I started following Nerd Fitness (love this guy and blogs with Lego figures are *always* cooooool plus he totally appeals to my Geek side with constant reference to Star Wars and the like). He put out the most amazing blog yesterday and one that I have a couple times:


I think I can identify with about 95% of the women of the world when I fully admit I tend to compare myself to others. I did it just the other day (a particularly bad day, mind you -- one that you beg to press the restart button on more than once). I was at the store having barely gotten the kids to school on time, finally able to calm my heartrate to a normal rhythm. I was pushing my sweet little guy in the cart and looked up and standing there holding her double shot latte from Starbucks, jewelry flashing (I don't dare wear jewelry btw, I am dreadfully afraid of having it ripped out of my ears or off of my neck by my inquisitive little guy emoticon ), talking on her phone, toting her skinny jeans and perfect hair and make up (I had barely had time that morning to get in a shower much less the luxury of applying make up and fixing my hair the way I like it -- total messy ponytail day) with a baby about the same age of my little man. My heart sunk! I did that instantaneous comparison with her and her perfect... well, everything and me standing there with my.... well, my imperfect everything. I felt about 2 inches high.

The stupid thing about it is that only I can make myself feel that way. I don't know that lady any more than she knew me. But yet, here I stood feeling completely crappy and unhappy. emoticon Envious of the fact that some moms get to look like that so soon after having a baby. And then there's me...

But that has been the story of me for the last almost two years. Ever since I had my little man and have not been able to budge a damn thing with the scale. I am not gaining, mind you, but I am not losing either. It sucks and it makes me want to cry more often than not. Last night my husband asked me why I always seem so sad. I was honest with him and told him how I have been feeling and my feelings of inadequacy when it comes to my outward appearance. He, being the wonderful man that he is, told me that I am waaaaaay too hard on myself (never heard that one before..... emoticon ) for one and for another he told me something that I had never considered -- he said that I spend so much time focusing on everything I do wrong and everything I don't like about myself instead of changing my mindset to think more positive. As he put it, the mind is a powerful, powerful thing. He suggested I start thinking like I would if I was at my goal. How would I see myself differently? How would I talk to myself differently? How would I go through daily life differently? The funny thing is is that he is like *always* complementing me on how I look. I love that man so much. He does so much to try to make me feel better, but like he also said, he can say it a hundred times and it won't matter until I believe it from within.

I had found a peace and happiness with myself not too long before I got pregnant. I had maintained my goal weight for about four years and had a deep appreciation for fitness, healthy foods and how they worked with my body. I have that same appreciation now, but for whatever reason, my body just seems to not want to cooperate. I guess I am still working to figure it all out and am just tired of feeling at war with myself constantly. I want to look good. I will admit it. It is vanity pure and simple. I don't want to go into the store and fit nicely into a size 12, I want to fit into a size 8 again. I want to feel good in a pair of shorts and not feel so extremely embarrassed and self conscious. I want to wear shirts the shirts that I used to, shirts that I could wear without having oozy stuff hanging out.

I guess the part that completely sucks is that I put in a hell of a lot of effort. 5am workouts every morning, 6 days a week and typically an afternoon workout when little guy goes to bed. My eating, I do feel has needed a bit of tweaking (thus the higher calories and upping the protein) but has been good. I don't buy junk food. I don't frequent the fast food places (Chic-Fil-A was the only exception the other day and that was an isolated event), I buy organic as much as I can with our single income budget. I just feel so disgusted and irritated most of the time and it ALL stems from this. I don't want to get to the point that this start impacting more areas of my life, like I fear that it is beginning to. I don't want to feel so grumpy and irritable toward my family and toward myself. I don't want to feel so ashamed at my outward appearance. I am tired of it.

Is my weight unhealthy? No. Am I overweight? No. Like I said, it is pure vanity. Something that I think we all have or else we wouldn't be here blogging about stuff like this. Am I right? I mean, really.

I guess what I want is to find that place in myself that I can be happy with myself without finding complacency. Be more accepting of myself but still be able to work hard to be that better version of myself. Does that make sense? I seem to shift from one end of the spectrum to the other. Either I am full blown into the weight loss thing or I get frustrated and turn back to intuitive eating. I have done that quite a bit over the last two years and here I sit with the same amount of frustration. I would love to find that healthy balance that can combine the two. LIke I said above, be happy with who I am accepting of all of my flaws but still work on improving.

Fact of the matter is this: I love eating healthy foods and I absolutely LOVE working out. Somehow, something has got to budge and I have got to start shifting things around. My goal is to be able to join a gym come fall. I don't want to do it now since the kids are just a few weeks shy of summer vacation and I know it will be something that won't get used as often as I could justify with paying a monthly fee.

So I guess I am to a point that I really need to start working on some of my inner demons. Take my husband's advice and work on improving my thoughts. Maybe taking some quiet time each evening and write three things (or something) in my Fitbook that I did good at or feel good about. Make yet another paradigm shift into liking who I am. Not wanting to hide from my reflection or be so critical and judgmental about what looks back at me. I know for a fact that I am not the only one who feels this way. I just think I tend to be a bit harsher with myself than others maybe?

One thing I am contemplating for this next week is taking a rest week. One thing that is stressed highly in the NRoL is rest time. As it is put: you don't get stronger from exercising, you get stronger recovering from exercising. Interesting concept. I can't think of the last time I really took a good, solid rest week. I have been doing Turbo Fire, ChaLEAN and the like then jumped into the NRoL so I do think that a good week of time off may be key. I am only a week into the NRoL for Life but I did do two weeks of NRoL for Women before and then twelve weeks of ChaLEAN before that so, yeah, I would say I am due.

Rest weeks are hard for me. I don't like feeling like I am not doing something. But taking a week to sleep in a bit (if possible and if little dude will let me emoticon ) and focusing on some yoga and light cardio may be key for me right now. Epiphany? Possibly.

Either way, yet another thing I need to work on. I guess the mind might be the good place to focus since the body just isn't doing what it should be based off of my food and activity. Mind over matter. Fake it until I make it kind of thing. We'll see...
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • MRSP90X
    Great Blog! It made me think about some things. Ultimately though for me, the athletic look I am after is a symbol of health to me. I have been obese for so long and as a result have type 2 diabetes and PCOS. I have also seen my normal weight friends get gestational diabetes. I want to be far from the line that crosses over into diabetes land, and only lowing body fat and gaining muscle will restore insulin sensitivity for me. I guess I am more disguested by the disease than anything else. I am getting my joy back knowing I am now finally buckling down and taking care of it. I have been mad at myself for not taking care of buisness like I should have.

    Doing all this at the expense of robbing your joy is actualy more destructive, and doing it for pure vanity sake, well in my opinion, is probably not the best reason. If we do that we will end up hating ourselves and the work necessary to get there, we will be miserable.

    Listen to your husband! And whatever your goals, your Spark friends will be here for you!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon
    2389 days ago
  • no profile photo CINDYTW
    emoticon One thing I thought of as I read this is do you have a YMCA? Ours has tons to do for the kids while you work out. It is a great thing that a lot of people here with kids join more for the kids than themselves. They have summer programs too that might give Mama a break! Something to look into anyway...
    2389 days ago
  • JUSTME29
    I bet that other lady with the baby and the jewelry was also jealous of someone. Maybe you for your laid back manner and comfort in your own skin (I bet from the outside that's what it looks like. Natural beauty that doesn't need make-up and hair done to shine), and a comfort and naturalness with your child that her jewelry and Starbucks swilling can't match.

    Taking a rest week isn't a bad idea. The weather is warming up so maybe some nice walks with the baby, but otherwise a rest. I bet that will do wonders for your muscles and the extra sleep will be good for your state of mind.
    2389 days ago
    Sorry, didn't mean to write a book. :-)
    Also sorry that I missed it that the other gal had a baby your age.
    OK, update my scenario.........she's on the phone talking with her lawyer about divorce proceedings because her husband is cheating on her.

    2389 days ago

    Comment edited on: 4/6/2013 1:18:30 PM
    I definitely can relate to vanity and jealousy as well as being hard on myself.
    It does help to realize that the person you are jealous of may really be jealous of you. Maybe she is desperately going to fertility doctors or maybe she drinks herself blind in the evening because she is so lonely. Or maybe not, but you get my point.
    In any event, she has her own issues, struggles, frustrations.

    Also suggest that you read Indie's blog.....Happiness is not a weight.

    It does help to count your blessings and be grateful for them. It does help to try to find good things in yourself and to try to fix what you can that you feel is lacking.

    It does help to seek deeper into your heart to figure out why you really want to look so good. Obviously your kids don't care and your husband already thinks you look good, so it's not for them. I found that I felt that way because of a great love of beauty....which is not a bad thing. So I really do work on having as much beauty and style, as I define it, in my surroundings and life. I also found that I am a sensual person, so I make sure that include a good dose of physically pleasurable sensations (scents, hot shower, comfy clothes, wind on skin).

    Sometimes it helps to figure out just what you are jealous of and try to get that specific thing into your life. Pretty clothes? Leisure time? Spending money? Grooming? Travel? A sense of mission in the world? A sense of purpose beyond your every day life? A beautiful home? This is not really the faking it until you make it strategy. It is really the strategy of including in your life all that you will truly find satisfying.

    One thought that I'll share that is a little silly, but maybe you can get something out of it...... Good thing Hillary Clinton didn't obsess about her cankles and let that stop her in her career! Haven't always been a Hillary fan, but have grown to really admire her. She may have her other issues, but obsessing about her appearance hasn't been one of them and hasn't held her back for a moment.

    Yes, in my humble opinion, you need a rest. You are wearing me out just hearing all that you have done. Since what you have been doing is not working to make you feel better, try R & R. What could it hurt and it may be just what your mind and body needs right now.
    2389 days ago
    The thing that jumped out for me was your statement "he does so much to try to make me feel better"

    NO HE DOESN"T! He says it because, from where he stands, that's reality!!! Does your little man notice your weight? No he doesn't, just his lovely cuddly mummy. Does your husband worry about your weight? No, he loves you for what you are. So, Stop it!!!

    Stop worrying about your appearance, you will never be satisfied. You can always find something to be negative about. Is that woman happy? Perhaps her husband is a control freak, or a serial womaniser. Don't waste your 'now', trying to be something you're not. Accept yourself, you are beautiful to the people that mean the most to you, love your little man, and your husband, and enjoy this time with them.

    Sorry this turned into a rant, but I wasted so much of my life, trying to become thin and desirable, and I missed the fact that I was beautiful and desirable to my husband and children, as I was!
    2390 days ago

    Comment edited on: 4/5/2013 5:27:30 PM
    I'm jealous of those girls, but I am not jealous of spending all that time on my hair, makeup, clothes, and spending all that money on double shot whatevers from Starbucks. I think another NF article said something like, if you're going to be jealous of someone's stuff, you need to be jealous of ALL their stuff. So sometimes I am jealous of my husband's ex, because she's effortlessly thin and pretty. My I am not jealous of her being bat-sh*t-effing crazy, or of her being basically alone, or of her not having any contact with her kid since 2004, or that she smokes, etc... Anyway, thinking like that keeps me from getting too down on myself for very long.

    I also like to say to myself 'you can wish in one hand and sh*t in the other and see which fills up first" (a la Bad Santa), and "Get the F*ck Over It" (a NF article). I actually have a Get the F*ck Over It list on my closet door, and I add stuff to it when I'm feeling anxious or bad about something. So yesterday I wrote "My measurements didn't go down" on the list and said to myself "Get the f*ck over it!" and I feel a lot better. The change in pictures also helped though. ;)
    2390 days ago
    When I was reading your blog, the first thing that jumped out at me is how hard you are working out! As you read on my blog, I see most of my gains the day after my rest day. I do think we need time to rest and repair, or we keep cortisol elevated. Compounded with the other internal stress you feel, it may be what is holding up your goals. Worth a shot, no?

    I achieved healthy weight, and all my blood work is in the excellent range. I think I spent so much time on weight loss that I never considered what to do next because I secretly thought I'd never get there. Now I'm here, and it still isn't quite what I wanted. I don't think it is entirely vanity, though, because I am working to physically improve my body's capabilities.

    Sometimes I still really miss the convenience of sandwiches! But I look at the deli varieties and I realize they are all mostly bread, which is a very cheap ingredient and very calorie dense. I really like quinoa and chickpea salad.
    2390 days ago

    Comment edited on: 4/5/2013 4:16:58 PM
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