(original post date:April 21, 2010)
So I've been wondering if all of my weight loss progress is all in my head. Maybe I wasn't that big to begin with? Maybe I haven't lost as much weight as I thought? Do I have body dysmorphia? Because I can still see where there's a lot of work to be done, yet other people keep telling me I'm small. I look at pictures and I can definitely see progress, but I still see what I need to work on. Is all the progress I'm seeing in my head too?
My friend was telling me a story about being at a ball game and seeing a girl there with her muffin top on full display. She was wearing jeans that were too tight, and a cropped shirt, literally putting her muffin top on display. The thought of this horrified me. I have never, ever been one to let my stomach show when it shouldn't. Even when you have a shirt that's a little short and your belly pokes out a little bit - that drives me crazy if you're not fit enough to get away with it. My jeans are (were) always strategically placed so as to avoid any muffin toppage. And since I was young - I've sucked my stomach in when in public. Always. It's to the point that I don't even realize I'm doing it. When I try to take true measurements, I have to make an effort to be sure I'm NOT sucking in. Anytime there is fabric touching my stomach, my reflex is to suck my stomach in. I figure that's why I'm so good at doing ab exercises - my life is one big ab-crunch.
So it occurred to me, maybe it's not that I have a lack of progress - it's that I've hidden what my true body looks like for so long - people can't tell the difference! Now - I don't have to strategically place my jeans because my muffin top is no where near as noticeable. I can just let my waistband sit where it may. But you wouldn't know that unless you're me. I hid the muffin top before so you didn't know it was there. Now I'm not hiding, cuz it's not there - but how would you know the difference? It's the same way that people keep telling me I don't need breast implants. That's because what you see daily as a full B cup is really an elaborate set up of me double-padded-bra-ing under every outfit I wear. It would be nice to not have to put on a show in that arena anymore too.
I think because so much of my life is focused on weight loss, it seems strange to me that other people don't seem to notice. But most of these people - I see every day. They may not necessarily notice because they see me day-to-day as opposed to seeing just my start and end results. I think people also get a set picture of you in their head and then believe that that is how you SHOULD look (unless you're morbidly obese). I have people telling me all the time that if I get any smaller, I wouldn't look right. That sounds completely ridiculous to me! It's not like I'm at Lindsay Lohan or Nicole Ritchie status. Being too thin because you don't eat is not the same as being so fit that you have a low body fat percentage. Personally - I think I'd look kick-ass at a size 2, though that is not my goal. I don't care what size I am so long as the body fat issue is under control. I could go on and on about this particular subject, and I will...in another blog.
I think the point is that change is gradual. And for those who see it as it's happening, they tend to forget where you started and only remember what they've seen recently. Unless it's someone whose close to you - like family. They tend to remember only where you started and compare you to that constantly. So, to them you may be "too thin" simply because they're used to you being so fat. I'm glad I know what my goal is. I know what I'm doing, what I'm doing it for and what I want the end result to be. I notice my progress and I appreciate the changes and really - that's all that matters.