My personal realizations through the past three months are a bit different than I thought they would be. First, I thought running for an hour three times a week would be the most difficult thing about this challenge to accomplish. In fact, it was my favorite thing about this crazy process and the one thing that I will probably keep doing. I always struggled to run in gym class growing up. I was invariably the last kid to complete our ten laps around the gym. I hated it so much because everyone else would be playing dodge ball or basket ball and I would be running laps for ten minutes longer than anyone else. I would try my hardest, but still felt like I never made any gains, so I dreaded running. This time because I could go at my own snail pace without anyone waiting for me or staring at me, the running became such a stress relief for me. I would come home, put in my earbuds, play pumping music and run. It allowed process everything that I had experienced at work that day. By the end of the run, I was more peaceful and less stressed.
My second realization was that the reason I am not thin is not because I am lazy, eat too much, watch too much TV, or drink too much beer. It’s because of my genetic makeup and metabolism, I would have to work extraordinarily hard at being thin and instead, I prioritize spending time with family and friends. For the first two months when I was only walking 10,000 steps per day, I felt like I could still spend quite a bit of time with the people I loved. An hour walk in the evening isn’t a huge suck on my time, however with walking, eating only 1700 calories and running for an hour three times a week for two months, I lost almost no weight (3 lbs total). For me to lose weight, I had to walk 20,000 steps (ten miles per day) and do the rest. To do that I had to cut out almost all my time with my friends and family and to me, a thin waistline simply isn’t worth it. I felt like I was focusing all my time on my self instead of being able to sit and talk with my family at the dinner table, sit around a bonfire with friends for hours, drink coffee with my family after sleeping in on Saturday morning. Instead, I had to leave people to walk, which felt terrible. I felt like I had no idea what was happening in the people I loved lives and when I did sit for a bit and talk, I felt stressed about my step count. I would much rather be overweight and a good wife, mother, sister, and friend, than skinny and a crappy one.
My third realization was that society’s emphasis on being thin is so strong, that many of my closest friends who read my blog still didn’t understand that my goal wasn’t to lose weight, in fact, it was to prove that it is much harder for some people to lose weight than other’s and society’s emphasis on being thin is wrong. While I try to be clear in my writing, it is something that I constantly struggle with, so part of the fault is probably mine. It was ironic though when people said things like “Are you losing weight” and when I said “No” they said “Don’t worry you’ll get there”, or when people complimented my weight loss by saying “You’ll show her (Hopkins)” or told me to “Do this(weight loss) for yourself not for her”. Don’t feel bad if you were one of those people; it just showed me how strong society’s emphasis on thinness was, even for those people who were rooting for me.
Fourth, this experiment showed me just how wrong Katie Hopkins was. She called overweight people lazy, disgusting, unhealthy, and stated she would never hire one. Here’s where I brag a bit, which is very uncomfortable for me, but I think it is necessary to prove a point.
First, my team at OCS won the Governor’s Denali Peak Award for Excellence in Customer Service. Obviously, just because I am overweight doesn’t mean I am lazy. In fact, I am proud to be part of an incredibly hard working team.
Second, here is a picture of me modeling sleepwear for Susan’s Bath and Body Boutique. I am actually at one of my heaviest weights in this picture, yet I don’t believe if I appeared disgusting, they would have me model for them.
Third, I have no health problems beside an occasional cold. I was able to work up to a full hour run in less than a month and last time I checked, my blood pressure was 120/55.
Fourth, while Hopkins wouldn’t hire me because I am overweight, luckily my new supervisor disagreed. I was promoted to a new position in adoptions and started on June 1, despite being overweight.
While I am not thin, I am a hard worker, healthy, and I feel attractive. Much more important than that, I strive to be a good friend and family member. Now that I am not so focused on walking all the time and counting every calorie, I can go back to that focus, which is what is really important to me.