My best friend and I had a true Mean Girls moment today. We stood in front of the mirror and showcased all of our insecure bodily ‘misfortunes’ to one another. I showed her the smile line that I’m pretty sure is forming into a wrinkle, and she rubbed her finger over a “wrinkle” between her eyebrows as if she were in desperate need of erasing something foul. We fought over whose underarm appeared to jiggle more, and then flexed our muscles to reassure each other that they were indeed still somewhere there.
In retrospect, we were a little too hard on ourselves. She is an exercise enthusiast, who runs marathons and competes annually in the Tough Mudder;( a 13.1 1/2 marathon and obstacle course designed by the British Navy). And I consider myself sincerely in shape; working out 4-5 days a week, and trying as hard as I can to eat right!
However, we still managed to bash ourselves a little more even after our own harsh physical “evaluations”. We talked about getting back into shape, how we have fallen off the wagon. How quickly it is for your body to fall back into old habits. For instance, eating petite butter cakes for breakfast; or making sure you remember how to taste the difference between good wine and bad wine everyday (a very, very important thing to keep track of).
She and I often joke about our awkward ‘Big Girl’ days. She shows me a picture of her eating cake on her 25th birthday at 4 in the morning, where her stomach hangs over her pants, and I show her this picture of me where I look like Snooki before she got rich and could afford liposuction.
We laughed about letting ourselves get to that point, and had that talk, “What were we Thinking?!” (I seem to be having a lot of these talks with friends lately. If your up to it, post some funny pics of yourself, and think of how far you’ve come as a person!)
I joked to her that meeting my trainer was a better investment than my tuition to Parsons. And then, I actually contemplated that as a true possibility. I decided that it wasn’t better (obviously), but it was in all honesty, one of the best investments I have made thus far in my life.
When I first met my trainer, a former Marine, he looked at me and said “We’ve got a lot of work to do”. I was shocked when he told me that I looked like I could lose about 20 pounds! (Where did I have 20 pounds to lose!!?) He still to this day points out over weight people and says to me, “Remember when you looked like that?” Thank God I have a good sense of humor, or I’d be on the fast track to chunky, eating my feelings all over again.
He barely spoke to me our first few sessions. He knew when I was lying about the food I ate, and then when I’d finally fess up about last night’s pizza dinner, he would say to me, “I could tell, you look bloated”. (Thanks…Prick).
He later admitted to me that he thought I was weak, and didn’t think I was going to make it. I admitted to him, that he terrified me, and I thought he was an asshole. But for some odd reason, we bonded. His confidence (and/or arrogance) made me feel the need to prove myself to him, and prove myself, to myself.
Our routine became set in stone. He created a diet that literally changed the way I thought about eating and food. And got me hooked on exercising like a bad drug. I literally lost 25 pounds with him over the course of 10 weeks.
I never considered myself a big girl. I mean, I’m literally 5’1″; so the actual idea of me being ‘big’ was close to impossible. However, I was definiately soft and pudgy, and completely in denial of that fact. And also in denial that I was un happy, and thus never feeling beautiful.
And, the irony was that I work in a world that is all about beauty, whether it is conventional or not. And, I’m not saying that to be beautiful you need to lose 25 pounds, but I’m saying that to be beautiful, you have to exude a confidence that stems from within. For me, that feeling of beautiful came when I started taking care of my body, losing the weight, so I finally felt comfortable in my own skin.
Feeling comfortable made me feel more confident. Confident to get ready everyday. Confident to show myself to the world. I was finally confident to wear the clothes from my label, and dress like a lady – instead of dressing like a bum who didn’t give a shit. (Even though I really did). I finally decided to be proud of myself for what I’d accomplished, and I truly think that other people could feel and see that.
This particular blog post, is mainly to remind us to stay healthy, and treat our body right. Exercising and eating right truly changed my life, and more than just physically. Mentally it made me happy and excited to wake up and get out there everyday. It truly inspired me during a time where I wasn’t feeling inspired; and as an artist, that was a truly altering experience.
What do you do everyday to get inspired and feel good? Let us know, so we can all find some more feel good moments!