I wasn’t going to write about my recent weight loss because I really didn’t think people noticed. Or cared.
In fact my sentiments were the same when I slowly but surely gained 15 pounds after my mother unexpectedly passed on July 25, 2013.
People gain and lose weight all the time, no big deal right?!
Well almost three years, several comments (negative and positive) and tons of changes (physically and mentally) later I figured I would let you in on how it all went down.
Yes I lost weight, but wait until you hear how much I gained…
The Cons Of Being A Fitness Professional
I am a walking billboard for the brand in which I represent. I get it. So while I knew I was gaining weight after my mother passed it wasn’t a big deal to me because I knew 1) I was going through a lot, and 2) how to lose weight if I so desired.
So I didn’t beat myself up. After all according to the history of Robbie Ann Darby doing so could potentially lead me back to my former relationship with Ed.
However people weren’t as understanding.
I witnessed several experiences within the industry where I felt shamed or less than because of my weight gain. Sad I know. Some comments were subtle however many were direct and distasteful.
But despite the manner in which these cruel observations were communicated all I really heard was, “Man, it’s hard out here for us pro fit folks.”
Yes our bodies are the instruments in which we compose business, however I think what many people fail to remember is that while we are fitness professionals we are also humans.
We don’t always want to exercise, we don’t always eat right and sometimes life happens – as in we lose a loved one and thus have a hard time coping.
However pain aside, I learned a lot from that challenging season. The major take away being…
Be gentle with others…everyone is going through something and are most likely doing the best that they can in the midst of it. It is not our job to judge. Rather it’s our duty to love.
I Desperately Needed To Create A New Normal
So haters aside, this season required me to take a dose of my own medicine for once.
I am constantly telling my clients, “you have to do this for you, not for anybody or anything else…or else it won’t last.”
So while I knew that this need for weight loss was the response to loss, the bigger picture I painted in my head in order to stay motivated was this:
I will never be the same now that my mom is gone. But maybe if I can start to do some of the things I did before…I will feel, look and be something new. I have the power to create a new normal.
I Was Sweaty For My Sanity
So with that said, I invited sweat back into my life.
I mean I was still working out after my mom passed. After all that is how I keep my lights on. But I wasn’t nearly working out at the capacity or frequency that I had before. I skipped several workouts when depression had it’s way in the winter, and when I did teach my classes or work with clients I just did the bare minimum to get by.
So then I took another dose of my own medicine, “work it out while you work out!”
Read: I began to use my workouts as an opportunity to meet myself daily.
I began to treat this daily practice as a form of meditation and was therefore able to set intentions for the day. Often saying to myself in the beginning…
I am not doing this because I want to, I’m doing this because I need to. I believe this moment will flood into my day in a positive way. I just have to commit to not quit.
The next thing I knew, days turned into weeks and weeks turned into months. And before I knew it I didn’t have to motivate myself to start because now I “needed” to workout.
Simply put, I was sweaty for my sanity.
No Diet Here
Just a recommitment to treating food as fuel. Not medicine for my brokenness.
While I was grieving my diet was all over the place. On the days that I couldn’t get out of bed I would go hours without eating only to hit up Seamless and binge by sunset. I drank far too much and ate whatever I wanted when I did go out. Only to wake up to the guilt of it all the next morning. This then would cause me to want to stay in bed all day again, and there you have it, the cycle would continue.
I was so out of touch with the girl who would try new recipes every week and make kale salads for dinner that when 2016 started I knew that I was more than physically deprived. It was worst – I was spiritually starving.
So I did the Daniel Fast. Not as a diet, but as a chance to reconnect with food in a way that was healthy, simple and most importantly, sacrificial.
I instantly felt better and came out on day 21 with a new outlook on food and what it’s function needed to be in my life. The aha moment being…
I eat to feel good, not to look good. The latter is just a side effect.
The Daniel Fast changed my life far more than it changed my body.
And that’s it. That’s how I lost the 15 pounds I gained after my mother passed. It wasn’t easy, but boy was it worth it.
I am so grateful to be who I am today, and can honestly say that I feel light yet strong, dedicated but not consumed, both equally healthy and happy…and most importantly, all the above are independent of what any scale may read.
I pray that my truth motivates you to also have the courage to make a RADical change in your life.
One that will last despite your past…
Let me know your thoughts below.
Fitness fashion courtesy of Onzie. Running shoes courtesy of Mizuno Running.