Fit, Fresh, and Farewell?

I started this blog on a whim after returning from our honeymoon. While we were walking around a museum in Ireland, looking at all the amazing artifacts, I was distracted by the tighter-than-normal feel of my pants. I started checking myself in every display case to see if I “looked fat” or not. My deep seated fear of “looking fat” was ruining my experience. I sat down on a bench, thought long and hard about why I was letting it get the best of me, turned my thoughts around, and enjoyed the day. i wanted to explore why I think the way I do, how I choose to communicate with people, and join the blogger community.

The blogging community was a blessing and a curse. I loved reading the training posts from fellow runners, the voyeuristic phenomenon that was “What I ate Wednesday”, and finding like minded individuals who were exploring a life involving fitness. But over time, I’ve come to realize that one of my faults is falling into the comparison trap. I started using other peoples meals & workouts as a barometer. I needed to run as far as X, eat as healthy as Y, and have the presence of mind to photo document everything in the course of my days. I was competing with people who had no idea they were in the game.

After my half marathon one year ago Sunday, I felt a little lost. I had been training for a half marathon all Spring and once it was over I didn’t know where to direct my running. i kept on running about 30 miles a week maintenance from May through late August, when I was unable to ignore a few aches and pains and was diagnosed with stress fractures in my shin. i managed to keep up my fitness level with the cardio machines at the gym until I had a bad stretch of luck for really the last 6 months. 2 months with viral encephalitis, then a corneal infection, then a series of migraines and finally a long bout with bronchitis. My gym time has been limited and I’ve gained about 5-10 pounds.

I’ve been a big supporter of the recent movement to love yourself regardless of any external factors you may find “less than”. ‘Fitspiration” is under fire, bloggers are shining a light on what’s behind the veil, and more and more people are realizing that most images presented to us by the media are staged, airbrushed, and enhanced to a point of perceived perfection. As a society, we’re moving towards acceptance for everyone and I think it’s fantastic.

I enthusiastically try to compliment my friends, keep in touch, and do everything I can to make my friends and family aware of how much I love them and would continue to do so no matter what they went through. The other day Jeff mentioned that he felt a little out of shape and would like to start walking with me. It made me stop and think-he says he’s gained weight since we’ve been together, and i don’t see it because I love him. i’d love him if he gained 50 pounds and I’d love him if he had 5% body fat. And he’d do the same for me-but I don’t afford myself that luxury. It’s been kind of eye opening to realize that for the most part, I’m a better friend to others than i am to myself. I think it’s partially because I was unable to grasp that you can be happy and still want to improve. i automatically thought that if you wanted more, then you couldn’t be happy with what you have. And that’s not true.

I’m heavier than I was a year ago, but I’m the only person who can see it. I’ve had Jeff hide my scale and haven’t weighed in for at least a month. I’m trying to reclaim exercise as something to make me feel good instead of punishment for eating an extra slice of pizza. I may lose some of this excess weight, and i may not. But at the end of the day, I’ve realized that if I died today, my headstone wouldn’t say “Here lies Laura, she maintained a healthy weight”. The things people will remember about me are not quantifiable. They’ll remember my love for dogs. They’ll remember that I checked in on them when they had a bad day. That I made them laugh. That i’m always quick with a joke or a helping hand-or both. And that’s what is important.

I looked at my blog drafts the other day and saw that I have several that are really all saying the same thing. Maybe I don’t have anything new to offer on the subjects I care most about. So for now, i’m shedding my “healthy living blogger” persona and just being Sassy, Classy, and a bit Smart Assy in life. We’re working hard on our garden at home. I’m spending my work day more excited about learning new things than reading RunGirl123’s weekly miles tally. I started doing subversive cross stitch-see below for my next project.

Pooping Unicorn - Cross Stitch Embroidery Hoop Art - Made to order - 6"

i’m spending less time talking and more time doing, because the original reason for the blog has been filled. i wanted to learn how to enjoy life-even on the days my pants didn’t fit like I wanted them to. And it’s been a twisty, turny road but I think I’m there.

Pretty much every closing line I could think of here was horribly cliche, so I’ll leave you for now much in the way I met you: hilarious internet memes. You can find me being sarcastically optomistic at https://www.facebook.com/llkastens — keep in touch, guys!

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3 thoughts on “Fit, Fresh, and Farewell?

  1. Always a classic ending to make me smile 🙂

    It is funny, I think, for those of us who never really saw a path to ‘blogging for cash’ to get to this point and look back. Did it meet our needs? What would it have meant to continue? What will we take away?

    I hope that you do keep self-reinforcing the ‘I am enough’ m,essage … it has definitely been a journey for me that I finally feel in a good place about.

    Hope that your health issues (WHEW! what a 6 months!) are behind you and that all continues to be good, so you and Jeff can just enjoy each other … it is funny, as our kids are 17 & 18 and much busier and more independent, lately as Lisa started a new job we’ve been on a well-synchronized schedule, so we’ve ended up with dinner for just the two of us more than a few times, and once sdecided w=to catch up on a couple of shows on Hulu – and shee remarked that it was just how we started off so many years ago, two of us eating dinner in front of the TV. But, I noted, Star Trek Next Generation isn’t on anymore 😉

    Thanks for sharing your life!

  2. But it is on Netflix… And so is the original series. We always have the disconnecting conversation and the spending time living conversation. It’s time for us to live our lives and love it.

    Love you, babe.

  3. I definitely don’t think of myself as a healthy living blogger at all. I talk about the gym and what I eat but I also ramble on about my disappointment in situations and talk about life in general. But I think it’s important to keep in real in blogs. If you blog for you, I think you stop feeling like you need to live up to other blogs. But I hope you start making this all about you and stop the comparison game!

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