Another fight with myself

I must preface this post: I don’t want any “poor Emmie” sentiments or anything. This is just me being honest with myself, and with you all, as I try to figure out how to succeed in this journey. No intention of a pity party here, whatsoever.

Lyrics from "Optimistic" by Radiohead. From Music Philosophy, http://musicphilosophy.co.uk/

I have to be honest. Today has been pretty frustrating for me, and as always, it’s all in my head. You think being morbidly obese that my body would be the one resisting, not my mind.

I was tired when I woke up. I strongly considered going back to sleep instead of going to the gym, but something pulled me out of my slumber and I got up. I got on the scale, hoping to see a big number, and I got the 2.5. I felt pretty “meh” about it considering that was a 2 week total and I restricted my food last week and thought it would be more. <brain mistake #1: should have been happy with a loss>

Went to the gym. I did medium intensity, which was hard for me today. Both of my favorite treadmills (Woodway’s- they’re amazing) were occupied the entire time, so I did the arc trainer and then the bike. I hate bikes, but was proud of myself for pushing myself on it. When I was on the arc trainer, a lovely woman came up to me and stared in amazement and asked me how much I’ve lost. She has given me encouragement before, but I haven’t seen her in several weeks. I was so appreciative of her and her kind words and high fives. She made me feel great, and it fueled me for the rest of the workout. <brain did right this time>

Posted about my weight loss this week, and put up progress pictures, which have me in a sports bra and shorts. I was scared to post these. What if no one could tell a difference? What if I disgusted everyone? What if I finally get some random trolls posting hateful comments. This is when my brain went on to make mistakes #2-50 for the rest of the day.

#3 It’s not enough of a change for people to notice
#9 People are grossed out by me
#10 I look disgusting
#22 Now people will see that 71.5 pounds isn’t a big deal
#30 I still have 28.5 to go to hit 100 pounds
#31 Even when I’m 100 pounds I’m still not halfway
#34 I wonder if I can run home at lunch and delete the pictures?
#39 I don’t know what else I can do to make the scale move faster
#41 My shirt I have on today is too tight, this doesn’t look good
#44 What makes me so special to think I can succeed at this?
#46 I hope I am not letting anyone down with how slow this is all going
#49 I don’t deserve a week off of my training routine for my cruise

I was on the verge of tears for a good part of the day. Seriously, I have no idea where it’s all coming from. Really, it’s these feelings of inadequacy that have pushed me to try to accomplish great things throughout my life. I should write more about this at another time. Whenever I accomplish something though, it’s hard to enjoy it. Maybe I didn’t do it fast enough, or someone didn’t compliment me on it. But then if I do get any praise or accolade, I shrug it off as “no big deal” when really, it IS A HUGE EFFING DEAL!

Today should NOT be one of these days where I have feelings of inadequacy. Today I should be celebrating. I am doing good.

I am healthy.
I am strong.
I am making progress.
There are no roadblocks.
I have everything I need to succeed.

So dear mind, stop screwing with me. For real. These feelings of inadequacy have got to stop. There is not a single person in my life right now that is making me feel inadequate. I’ve got more cheerleaders than ever. My support team is strong. I have to figure out a way to embrace it, enjoy it, and feel great.

Is there any advice you could share that has helped pull you out negative self talk?

  • http://www.eatmovewrite.com Jasmine @ Eatmovewrite

    You know, I used to weigh 343 pounds. Now, I’m about 150, and yet I still have bouts of negative self talk.

    I remind myself of all the things that my body does for me. I can walk to the bookstore, I can breath, I can cook good food, I can run if I want to, I can jump and swim and make love. Someday, I can have a baby. It might not be the perfect body, but I am so lucky to be able to do (almost) whatever I want with this body. It’s a gift. Who cares if it’s not quite perfect? :)

  • http://twitter.com/sara_davidson sara davidson

    Wow, I just want to say, your before and after pictures are amazing. The 71 pounds make a HUGE difference, and they are totally obvious. You are awesome!

  • http://kclanderson.com/before-and-after KCLAnderson (Karen)

    I will share something I learned from a woman named Dale Allen, who wrote a one-woman play called “In Our Right Minds” and who is getting more and more successful by the day. It’s about THE VOICE. The biggest lesson for me was in listening Dale tell the story of how she came to write and produce her play in the first place.

    Early one morning, after a big party in a shoreline town, she walked through the wet grass in her bare feet and sat down on a dock. She described feeling like she was 11 years old. And it came to her that she wanted to write a play, and just like any 11-year-old would, went ahead and did it because 11 year olds do what they want, right? There’s no voice that tells them not to, that it would be stupid, or that it would be a miserable failure. When we’re 11, if we want to draw a picture, we draw one! If we want to sing a song, we sing it! If we want to turn cartwheels, we turn them!

    Once the play was written, she contacted a local theater about performing it. Everything started to come together. And when opening night was just a week or so away a voice inside her head said, “STOP! Who do you think you are? You can’t do this! You will fail! It will be horrible!”

    She said that she understood that the voice was trying to protect her. But at the same time she realized that the voice didn’t understand how important putting this play on was to her. And so she began to think of that voice as a little child who needed constant reassurance. She took the voice by the hand and coaxed it along, telling it that they could do this together. They took little steps together, took deep breaths together, and the play went on! And when the voice realized that Dale hadn’t failed or been killed outright, it was able to relax a little and Dale was able to continue on doing her thing…until she decided to take it to the next level. And the voice came back! STOP!!!! And Dale explained that she had to do it all over again. It was a little easier the next time because the voice trusted Dale more than it did the first time. But it was still difficult. And Dale said that each and every time she decides to take things to the next level, the voice is there.

    And here’s the thing: no matter what you think you see on the outside of anyone else’s successes or achievements, inside is that voice. Everyone has it. No one is immune.

    And so what I see is that a big difference between success and failure is being able to take care of that voice. I am not going to say “conquering” that voice, or even “silencing” it. You just need to take care of it, nurture it and make sure that it feels safe.

  • http://www.fillupyourmug.blogspot.com Sarah7500

    I’m sort of in the same spot today, Emmie. After doing well all day, I binged tonight. So disappointed in myself. And I won’t even be able to make it to the gym tomorrow, because I have a dentist appointment.

  • http://www.authenticallyemmie.com skinnyemmie

    Thank you for this, Karen. I am sitting here tearing up over this because for one, it’s good to hear that everyone has these voices, and for two, when I was 11, my voice was already too loud and stopped me from doing what I wanted to. I think my gift of child-like abandon went away around age 7 or 8. Every year, the voice pushes me, and then tries to yank me back. I am going to have to think about this concept some more, because I think if I can figure it out even just a little bit better, I can grow even more.
    Thank you again. Sincerely :)

  • Tobakett

    Honestly, as cheesy as this is going to sound, I look at the blogs of people who have lost a decent chunk of weight, like yours, I realize they have felt the same way and pushed through it and look how far they have come, which inspires me that I can get over it too and do it myself.

    Yeah, I know, really kind of cheesy, but true.

    On a different note, I actually just started up my own blog, would be be alright if I put your blog in my list of ‘blogs I follow”?

  • http://www.authenticallyemmie.com skinnyemmie

    Thank you Sara, for the encouragement and kind words.

  • http://www.authenticallyemmie.com skinnyemmie

    Jasmine- this is a fantastic way to look at it. Look at things that CAN be done. Focus on the victories, not the imperfections. Thank you for sharing your perspective.

  • http://www.authenticallyemmie.com skinnyemmie

    Looking at the positive side of things- binging was one choice. Next time you have a choice, there is the possibility of redeeming yourself!

  • http://www.authenticallyemmie.com skinnyemmie

    Really, it isn’t cheesy. We all look for people who are like us so that we can have confidence in ourselves to accomplish similar things. Everyone does it, whether they admit it or not. And absolutely, feel free to list this blog! If you want to share your link here, I’ll be happy to put yours on my links page as well.

  • http://cookathome2010.blogspot.com Michelle

    Nope. Not a shred of advice, because I have a lot of the same feelings. But WOW woman, I can definitely see a major difference, so way to go!

  • Tobakett

    my blog is at http://tobakett.blogspot.com/

    Still rather new to this whole blogging thing….though I think I’ve finally figured out how to edit and adjust things :D

  • Alice

    I completely agree with Karen. I’ve been following your blog for a few weeks and just haven’t posted to say hello. I used to work with an amazing career coach who referred to it as “brain chatter.” It’s just a matter of shifting the brain chatter to a positive context and then living it. We all have that chatter, but if we can learn to not listen to the negative chatter, we’ll get farther and achieve things we never thought possible. My career coach used to say to me: “How good can you stand it?” And then she would challenge me to take it there instead of breaking it down by listening to the brain chatter and buying into it. She would advise me to listen to the chatter, get it out, then shift it to something else – a positive context. Basically: “Thank you for playing. Next contestant please!” :-)

  • Marcie T

    My voice kicked in way too early as well, Emmie. I like this concept. I’ll be exploring it too, so thanks Karen!

  • http://www.runrantrealize.wordpress.com Maissa

    I think you are incredibly brave. Two years ago I embarked upon my own journey to lose about 50lbs, I remember thinking about that number and thinking it was massive and an impossible obstacle. What you are doing is phenomenal. You are doing it on your own with your own strength and courage. I really admire that.

    Of course there will be days where you doubt yourself, but you have come such a long way already. Reading through your blog I have full faith that you can succeed. Not because you are special or unique (though you certainly appear to be a wonderful, intelligent and kind person), but because your determination, drive, and desire to succeed are obvious. Stay with that drive and you’ll make it.

    For me, pulling out of negative self talk comes from overcoming the things I am afraid of. If I want to quit while on a run, or if I’m scared I can’t accomplish something and then I push through and do it then I feel like I’ve really accomplished something and I can tell myself to stop with the negativity and recognize my own strength.

    As a final side-note, I just wanted to say I looked at your progress pictures and I’m insanely impressed. There is most certainly a difference.

    Keep up the wonderful work lady! You’re an inspiration (and I do mean that).

  • Fluffy girl

    it is a BIG EFFING DEAL! Losing 70 pounds is so freaking awesome! Good for you. I haven’t lost a pound in 2 months and I’m really losing it but I’m still maintaining at 197. I know I think I am ‘failing’ but in reality I’m working hard enough each week to keep at 197. I just gotta work harder and I know I can. Keep up the good work girl :)

  • http://twitter.com/FitTwitEmily Emily Rose

    Oh, Emmie, I think the same way about myself! I call them “fat thoughts.” It’s so silly and stupid how we let our minds control how we view our successes.

  • Maggie

    I’ve been there. 317 times. Being positive about progress, when it’s only a fraction of your goal, is really hard. But I actually think you’re really good at it. That’s part of why it’s so fun to read your blog!
    I finished the Couch to 5k program and then ran two 5ks at the beginning of July. And even though I couldn’t run at all two months before, I could not be proud of myself for doing it, ’cause I just felt so crap for being so ridiculously slow. I wish I could be easier on myself – I think it would make things much easier. And I have often thought of how good you are at this – at recognizing and being proud of your successes.
    So, you get a crap day now and then. Yeah. Sigh.
    May it pass over you quickly!

  • http://www.mayorofthebux.com Danielle

    I’m right there with you. I was in bootcamp the other day and did most of the stuff without any modifications. I was doing burpees and mountain climbers and everything… then I had to do a modification and it pissed me off. I wanted to play with the big kids. I was there on the sidelines again.
    my coach came over and he was able to see me about in tears. He asked what was wrong and I told him. he then told me that I was doing great and that i was way beyond improved and that it was going to take time. Didn’t take me 6 weeks to get here and is not going to be fixed in 6 weeks.
    It IS all a mind game.
    once I’m able to name it though and really say whats honestly bothering me… It’s a release that I need.

  • http://kelliamanda.wordpress.com KelliAmanda

    My experience with my weight loss journey has been that it’s 99% psychological and only 1% other stuff. I’ve had three weird weeks recently (I do Weight Watchers) where I’ve had a big gain, a big loss, and a big gain. After week three’s big gain, I was in tears. Honestly, I had expected a *little* gain that week, but not a big one. I seriously considered just eating whatever I wanted and not exercising and saying “to hell with it, this is enough.” But, I’m less than 15 lbs from goal and I guess the lifestyle’s become ingrained enough in my psyche that I was able to shut down the negative self-talk and focus on how far I’ve come. I looked at your pictures, and I can see a big difference between “then” and “now.” You should be proud of how far you’ve come. As for how far you have to go – one day, one hour, one minute at a time. That’s the best any of us can do.

  • http://www.authenticallyemmie.com skinnyemmie

    Alice, thank you for commenting. I love that term- “brain chatter” I’m going to have to remember this from now on. Need to figure out a way to flip the chatter!

  • Baln2001

    Way to go! I started reading your blog today and I am addicted..:) I love your photos…not gross at all….you are a beautiful girl..

  • Nicole

    I just found your blog the other day, and I wanted to tell you that because of you, I’ve re-started my own weight loss journey. I’ve struggled with my weight for some time now (I currently weigh 235; I’d like to get down to around 170), but I’ve found it hard to stay motivated. After reading some of your entries, I’ve decided to give it another go– I even exercised this morning! I hope that reading about your own struggles and triumphs will help keep me on the right path. So thank you!

  • Impguin

    Go, Emmie! I looked at your posted pics and can really see a difference. You’re beautiful in every way. I’m working to lose 69 lbs. and often fight the same self-critical talk you described. Keep on being our inspiration.

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  • Christie

    Honey, you and I must share a brain because mine tells me the same type of crap all the time. LOL!!! For some reason it’s a lot easier for me to sit here and tell YOU – a woman I have never even met – that you are strong, beautiful, and worth the effort, than it is to tell myself the same thing. I think part of the journey is learning to turn that ENcouraging voice inward so that the DIScouraging voice can shrivel up and die. Keep on keepin’ on, Emmie. You’re not just changing your own life for the better, you’re inspiring whole bunches of us out here to do the same.

  • Noelle

    I see a big difference in the progress photos! Keep on going.

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