Thursday, February 3, 2011

The f word

Lately a lot of things has got me thinking about weight loss and the f word (fat). Thinking about race photos/outfits coming up for one. Also, two of my favorite blogs got into a fight about weight loss. I won't post it because neither really expressed my personal opinions clearly, but basically it was over the issue of whether or not being skinny brings happiness/if weight should be a basis for happiness. I REALLY don't want to start another debate over that issue, but it did get me thinking about my own weight.

I have always strived, although somewhat poorly at times, to love my body the way it is. I have a great guy who has always been supportive of me no matter what shape I am, and I love that. As an asthmatic that frequently has to take steroids and other medications that reek havoc on your waistline, I try very hard to avoid scales and do the best I can in terms of weight. I just kinda went with the "if I pretend it's not happening, maybe it's not" attitude. For a while this worked for me. I managed to stay in a healthy weight range even if I was chubbier than I would've liked. But as my asthma started progressively getting worse, so did my weight. I will admit I recently edged out of the healthy range, and while I'm sure that muscle mass and blah blah blah are somewhat factors too, it was a wake-up call. 

For me, my weight does have a large impact on my quality of life. There are MANY factors that impact asthma, but weight is definitely one of them. I read a study the other day about how gaining just 5 pounds over a year can cause you to be 22% more likely to have poorly controlled asthma. While losing weight isn't the magic cure for wheezers, it definitely can help with maintenance (if you have extra pounds to lose). I've always thought about weight loss in a purely shallow way; fitting into old jeans feels great. But, now that I'm more conscious of my body and how weight can affect many other things I love (running and breathing) I have decided that it might be time to become more aware of what I'm eating and try to shed a few excess pounds so that I am at a healthier place.

In the midst of the blogger drama the other day, one commenter posted something that I really liked (and the original poster even noticed it too). Basically she said: Getting healthy is hard, but staying unhealthy is hard physically and emotionally.  Choose your hard. I really liked that idea. It's very true. By being unhealthy, I'm adding stress to my lungs, stress to my legs while running, and stress to my self-esteem. When trying to be healthy it's hard to make the right choices, make sacrifices, and be "good". But it's up to me which hard to choose. I hope to start choosing the healthy hard more often. 

What are your thoughts on this? 


  1. I love that "choose your hard" and I totally know what you mean about getting to a point where you love where you are at cause I am so not there. I wonder if anyone is every truly happy with being where they are at? If so, I'd love to be in that place! *hugs* Sorry about the steroids. It's like you are fighting a hard battle against your meds. :0(

  2. I, too, struggle with this issue. In a recent appointment with my asthma doctor he stressed that "weight does affect lung function." I agree, and have noticed that when I feel lighter, I breathe easier.

    I also like your perspective of weight control that is focused on lung health rather than appearance (although, of course, looking good is a great motivator).

    Thanks for opening this discussion.

  3. thanks guys! Karen you're gorgeous inside and out! I think being at a happy place is a balance of healthy choices and self acceptance, because if it's just about looks I'm not sure its possible without surgery! haha. Drew, I'm glad someone else notices a difference in asthma with weight. I try really hard to think about breathing easier when I see chocolate lying around, but it definitely isn't easy!

  4. Hi sweetheart, mom here- have I told you lately how much you inspire me? I am so proud always of your perspective on life in general but this particular blog really opened my mind to a new way to think about weight. I think I've been picking the wrong "hard" all my life! Cheers.... And hugs to you for helping your mom see something new! Ps- hope my reading your blog doesn't border on being a creeper parent..... I promise to comment only when the inspiration is too great to just silently smile. Ok?

  5. Awww your mom's comment is too cute! How sweet! :0)

    Guess what? You've been nominated for an award!
    Sorry if you were already nominated! I went back and checked but couldn't tell! :0)

  6. Hey there. I just found your blog and I can really relate to you in a way. I have always had trouble breathing (slight asthma). I was born with my lungs not fully developed, so over my life I have really had to train my lungs! Keep up the fight. You are doing GREAT! I love what that other blogger said about Choosing the Hard! That is so true! I am just now getting to where I am happy with my weight, but it is still taking time.

  7. Mom- thank you so much! I'm so glad you read my blog and it doesn't bug me it all. It makes me proud to make you proud! :) And hopefully we can help each other pick the right hard more haha

    Karen- thank you sooo much! I'm working on my post right now! I haven't been nominated before so this is awesome!!!

    Kayla- I'm so glad you found my blog! There aren't many of us out there with asthma/lung issues who are insane enough to run but it's really nice to meet others with similar problems. Congrats on getting to your happy place!