I've been in denial lately.
Over the years, I've become very good at ignoring, masking and denying things. I completely denied I had an eating problem when I was gaining 100 pounds after college, despite the fact that I was eating my loaded cheese fries with extra ranch dressing and a chicken finger salad with honey mustard and hot bacon dressing. I was eating this about 3 times a week. I was eating fast food for lunch nearly every day- super sized with 2 apple pies for dessert. No one wants to ADMIT they ever have done this. Who wants to look themselves in the mirror, and even worse, to family and friends, to acknowledge these issues?
I told myself that I was happy how I was. That appearances don't matter and I didn't care about them either. I was pretty for a big girl. I completely removed any thought about my health and what kind of physical limitations I was putting on myself. Denial.
This weekend, my head has been in all sorts of funky places. Saturday's 8 miles had my brain telling my body I couldn't do it. These are specific thoughts that I had:
- Who am I kidding, this is insane to try something like this at my weight.
- I'm going to look like a big failure when I can't complete the race.
- When I don't complete the race, how am I going to refund the money I raised? It's going to be awful.
- My legs can't handle all of my weight, I'm going to have to quit
- Why the hell am I doing this?
No one needs to tell me how insane these thoughts are – I see it. But in those moments, I can create an entire false environment around me. I completely denied myself of acknowledging anything positive about what I've done. I created this distortion in my head that isn't reality.
Now, 103 pounds later, I still have moments of denial. I've changed my behaviors, but haven't changed my thoughts. I still see myself as this person (not sure if I've ever shared these pictures here):
Today, while at my Running 101 class at the gym, the instructor mentioned to some of the other participants that I'm on this journey and have a blog. In that moment, I completely denied myself of any sense of being proud about my accomplishments. All I could do was tell myself that they were probably all staring at me because I was still so large – how could I have made any significant amount of progress?
When all of this crazy denial disappears from my head, I can see clearly.
I really think that the mental journey is so much harder than the physical. Restrict calories and workout? Sure. Change the way you view yourself and your worth? Oy.