My Ex Says I Can't Do It

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

I have to vent. I know you'll understand.

My ex (with whom I share my daughter, so of course I have to see her often) has always been very strong, and has worked in construction most of her adult life. She is also former military, and you know those folks are strong! Anyway, for the past 15 years or so, she's been steadily gaining weight, so although she continues to have great upper body strength, she's carrying about 70 lbs of extra weight and may even be into the "obese" category on the BMI.

Last year, she did a "Tough Mudder" obstacle course race. I know she finished it, and is proud of her achievement. In fact, she's always been very proud of her physical strength, being as she is a woman in a traditionally male field of work. Our daughter and I talked at the time about how awesome it was that my ex did the race. It was exciting for our daughter.

So I've decided that this year, to culminate my weight loss process, I'm going to do a 5K obstacle course race. I'm planning to compete in the "Spartan Sprint" in Malibu this December. I mentioned this to my ex by email, inviting her to do it with me and letting her know I'm committed for that weekend.

Yesterday, when we were together in person, my ex launched into telling me all the things that I should be "scared" about with regard to an obstacle course race. She went into how hard it is, how many obstacles there are, how I have to have a lot of upper body strength, I'll have to carry weights while running uphill ("that's really hard, you know"), and how her back hurt after the race, etc. She was full of reasons why I'm choosing a challenge that is too difficult for me.

I looked at her (tried to keep a smile on my face), and said, "Are you saying I can't do it? You think I can't do it!" She backed off a little, but then launched into more reasons why it's "too much" for me. I know she's threatened that I'm losing weight and getting strong. Somehow, she feels diminished. She doesn't want me in her territory (endurance, strength). She's trying to get me to back off.

I guess she's forgotten who I am. Tell me I can't do something and I'll double down to get it done. I'm stubborn that way. But I'm not doing this to take anything away from her. I'm doing this for me. I'm going to prove to myself that I can do it.

She got to me, but I'm just going to turn it into more determination to train hard and be ready to do my best on race day.

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
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    Thank you all so much for your supportive comments!
    2560 days ago
    Sorry you didn't receive the support you deserved. You deserve that and you are doing it! Since I made the decision to do my first mud run, I have received mixed reviews. Along with the wonderful support I have had less than supportive responses. It stung when it came from people I care about. I don't get how people are unable to be positive:( What I am finding is it brings out people's insecurities at times. Maybe your ex, as strong as she is, has some insecurities about the weight gain. Also it was her "thing", kind of one of the things that defined her (even in the relationship in her head) and she has to share it, making it feel less special to her...and there you are moving forward and doing amazing things for you! Hopefully she can suck it up and find it in herself to cheer you on. My boyfriend has been pretty darn supportive, but occasionally he throws a little remark in. All I do is try and brush it off and know that a part of him wishes he could do it. Maybe one day:)

    You are doing this race and that is wonderful! WOOHOO!
    2561 days ago

    Comment edited on: 8/9/2013 4:23:56 PM
  • LETHA_
    You are on the right track. Show her what you are made of.
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    2562 days ago
    Now you HAVE to do it, and tell us about it!
    Rooting for you! Just leave the ex to babysit at home!
    2562 days ago
    You can TOTALLY do it! And think how great it will be when you finish and get to be having that excited conversation with your daughter and it is YOU that finished it this time! Do it for YOU and do it to show her that ANYONE can do it! It will be a great example for your daughter and she will remember that when she's in a tough spot!

    GO FOR IT!! ALL IN! emoticon emoticon emoticon
    2562 days ago
  • no profile photo CD10934741
    You know what? Obstacle races and Mud Runs ARE challenging. They DO require strength and endurance. But you know what else? Anyone can do them. For real. If you make it a goal and you train, you can do it! Also, there is no requirement that you scale every wall and cross every set of money bars. A lot of times the success is in the journey and the courage to show up on game day. I'm doing the Tough Mudder in November and I KNOW there will be obstacles I don't complete. I know I'm not going to run the whole time. But I'm relishing the health and fitness gains I'm making while preparing for it and that in itself is worthy of that orange sweatband. I'm glad you're ex's comments have only fueled your motivation bc you are going to KICK BUTT in December! And we'll all be here cheering you on.
    2563 days ago
    Use it and prove her wrong! Like you said you're doing this for you and not for anyone else. An ex is an ex for a reason, even if you maintain a relationship because of your daughter. You can do it!

    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    2563 days ago
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