I have had body image issues and have been dieting since I was in elementary school. I felt my whole high school life I was fat (even though I was, in reality, a healthy weight). I was soft (not toned but not flabby).
Overall, I wasn’t unathletic, but I had problems pushing myself or getting over those limits we all meet. I couldn’t touch my toes without trying very hard/warming up. My best mile was around 13 minutes. After a car accident, I started suffering from times my back would give up on me.
To be honest, I have never been happy with my body or what I can do.
I spent after school eating from boredom and once I got my driver’s license I sometimes had second dinner (Wendy’s run at 10pm) if I was planning on staying up until 1 AM. For reasons that are hard to talk about, I began binge eating in my adult life.
In other words, my self-image, eating habits, and fitness habits were never great.
The closest I came to being happy with my body recently was in 2015/2016 when I was on a low carb diet, doing yoga, and running. I got down to 160 (wanted to lose more) and could run a 10-11 minute mile. However, the low carb proved unsustainable for me, as denying myself resulted in anger and resentment toward food.
I kept exercising, but I gained back weight. Eventually, on November 4, 2017 I was 189 pounds. And by January 4, 2018, I reached 193. That’s about when my yoga teacher decided to stop teaching. I figured it was time to do something, which is why I contacted Morgan (of Learning With Curves). For the first half of the year, we met once a week via Facebook video chat, and worked out together. I did my own diet thing and there really wasn’t a goal (I wasn’t ready for more than that since I was dealing with a thyroid nodule that thankfully turned out to be noncancerous). But come summer I plateaued at 180 pounds and (post surgery) I asked her to work her magic.
How Morgan/Learning With Curves Helps Me:
I’m not sure what came first. The reviewing of my exercise habits or my diet. But I’ll discuss diet first. She doesn’t shame me when I have a stress eating week. She kinda yells at me when I start being hard on myself and denying myself a milkshake (it’s ok to get a small one). She wants me to aim for fiber and protein and try not to rack up the carbs. Carbs are okay, but everything within reason. But if I go over, that’s ok. She emphasizes that it is ok to not be perfect.
But a number on a scale doesn’t tell the whole story. That’s why she has me focus on non-scale wins. How I can wear a coat I bought back in 1999. Or how I went from a 10 minute mile to a 9:09 mile. And the new definition to muscles I never had stand out before!
She tells me it is okay to walk instead of run and to miss workouts if life happens. When we first started, I was almost over-training. She urged me to pull back and to not overload myself so much. She told me that counting steps helps, but steps don’t reflect the effort in those HIIT workouts. She has adjusted the HIIT routine as I grew bored with parts or found it too easy. And sometimes when I struggled she told me to suck it up (and she was right to).
She helped me come up with a plan based on what I like to do (run) along with the changes I wanted (stronger back) and the things I wanted to do (one day I shall do the splits). Right now I have a 7-day program. I do a small barbell routine to warm up (Monday through Saturday). My main exercise for the day changes based on the day. On Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, I do a HIIT routine she designed for me that focuses on abs and arms. On Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday I run C25k. On Sundays I take it easy and walk 2 or 3 miles. Depending on time either six or seven days a week I cool down with a ten-minute stretch routine (aiming for those splits).
And I do want to point out that lately she hasn’t been doing her best. She has had a few health bumps. Even so, she made time to talk to me. She made time to address my concerns, questions, adjustment requests, and to cheer for those non-scale victories. Morgan cares and wants me to succeed.
Me Right NOW:
I’m still in progress. Since October (2018) I’ve been 170 pounds. And while I am not a fan of that number, I am loving the evolving shape of my body. I have lost at least half an inch from my waist in the past month even though the scale number hasn’t moved! Every week I notice something new, be it something I can do or a body change.
Morgan offers a variety of services through Learning With Curves. I am super lucky that she is not only my friend but charges me a special fee we prearranged. However, services are priced great for people on tight budgets. Anyways, you can’t deny that there have been results. And I wouldn’t have had them without her help!