What is a thing? Well a thing can be anything. My thing is my wonky spine, dodgy wrists (they are a new addition to my collection), my poor old brain and my tummy/arms/legs. For others it could be their weight, a bad back, balance, sight, breathing, MS, or a hundred other things.
There was a bit of a discussion in one of the classes about things, and probably for the first I admitted my tummy thing. It’s a sore spot for me. I’ve never had a six pack (nearly but not quite!) and at one stage was a tiny size 8. And then I got sick, my pesky tumour (don’t worry it was always benign) decided to come back, and to top it off I got pregnant at the same time. Doh!
The excess cortisol made my body store fat around my middle, face, neck and upper back. I could have eaten cucumbers all day and my body would still find a way to put the fat on. This sky rocketed after about 3 months after having Seth.
I remember coming back to teach in the gyms and feeling horrid, like everyone was judging me because I wasn’t a stereotypical size 8. I had people asking me when the baby was due and then kept having to explain he was born 7 months ago! I hated it, I hated my body but instead tried my best to stand in front of people, confident and strong.
Even now I struggle, My tumours have left me with deep stretch marks, and thin skin. I am honestly almost see through! Often what I see and what I feel about my body can be very different (also known as body dysmorphia).
It didn’t matter how much exercise I did or what I ate, I wouldn’t lose weight. Even after the tumour was removed it’s only been in the last 6 months I’ve been able to lose weight. That’s bloody hormones for you!
So why am I telling you this? Well because someone pointed out to me that they don’t need a stick thin, ex-athlete teaching them. They would rather a real life human being who can set achievable expectations. I do hope that’s me!
I understand what it’s like to not be able to be able to rely on your body. It feels like it’s fighting you, you get frustrated and no matter what you do, nothing seems to change. I’ve been there. Am I on the other side? No. Probably not, and probably never will be. What I have learnt, and very slowly at that, is acceptance. Acceptance, that some things I won’t be able to change, I can always improve but maybe not aesthetically. Once my goal was driven by numbers and measurements, now it’s driven what I can do. Can I do full push ups? Can I do pull ups? Body to floor burpees? Sprint?
Sometimes the scales and the measurements can be a useful guide, to get us started or to keep track. For some it can be motivational. But when it comes down to it, it really doesn’t matter. What matters is that your body is doing the best it can. If your ankles are a little weak then just being on tip toes against the wall is enough. Does it matter if you can’t do a full roll up? No. But you can work on it.
Our bodies don’t always play ball, and sometimes we have to make compromises with it. But that’s ok. It’s ok to not be Instagram perfect.
Know that I understand, and for every small gain you make, I am proud of your progress.