Obviously you get smaller. Thinner. In my case, curvier. Or, well, real curves come out of hiding. Bones pop out of hiding, too. With yoga I've become more flexible and I move faster. Not just with running, but walking. Movement of any kind. No longer carrying an extra 130 pounds (as of this morning), my body is naturally lighter and more buoyant. Swift and quick. Instead of taking me twenty minutes to walk the mile to yoga class, I can get there in just over ten.
But those aren't the changes I'm talking about.
I'm talking about thick pockets hanging from my under arms. I'm talking about a pooch over my abdomen and stomach that I utilize shape wear to smooth out. Back fat a few inches below my bra line that causes shirts to pucker.
Loose skin. Excess fat. This is the side of substantial weight loss that nobody talks about. The side that may or may not require plastic surgery to get rid of. The side that still makes you questions your self-esteem 120+ pounds later: on Saturday I went to a hot yoga class a friend was co-teaching as part of her Yoga Teacher Training. The studio had a wall of mirrors and instead of focusing entirely on my practice, I confess I spent a whole lot of time focusing on the loose flesh under my arms and the way my belly was hanging out over the top of my yoga pants.
It's frustrating to be at this point in my journey and still not be happy when I look in the mirror. Especially considering what leaves me unhappy isn't the excess weight, but what's left after that weight is gone. As in, I'm complaining about the results of my hard work and the past two years. It's ridiculous. I'm trying to do more lifting as a means of hopefully toning some of it up, but at this point it might be too late in the game to have any real benefit. (Of course, even if it doesn't help it certainly can't hurt.)
This is the last stretch. The final haul. With every passing week I get closer and closer to goal and I have to stay on my toes because it's going to only get more difficult from here on out. Luckily I have an amazing support system that give me love and encouragement every single day. Now, though, is when I have to dig down deep and turn that love and encouragement on myself. And that means I need to stop seeing the loose skin and fleshy parts of my new body as flaws and, instead, see them as the badges of honor, hard work, determination, and dedication that they are.
Today is the last day to vote in the Reduced Fat Girl Giveaway! Voting ends at 11:59 PST/2:59 EST and it's a free-for-all, meaning you can vote as often as you like. So take advantage of that refresh button! I plan on buying a Polar Heart Rate Monitor if I win, so all of your help and support in voting is greatly appreciated.
Love from the ashes,