Before and After

Do you ever look in the mirror at yourself and just go ew?  That is me today.  I’m growing a zit large enough to be a third eyeball in the middle of my forehead, my hair desperately needs a trim, and I’m extremely bloated from the cheese I ate on my pizza.  It’s just not a good mirror day for me.  I don’t look anything like the fit human I want to be.


Fitness. That thing that everyone seems to want but also dreads at the same time.  I think everyone is on their own fitness journey.  Whether that journey is “Fit-n-this entire donut in my mouth without choking” or “Fit-n-this entire rock solid gluteus maximus in these jeans, hopefully without splitting them”, everyone is on one.

I’m personally in the middle ground.  I’ve been an athlete my whole life – soccer player turned recreational runner turned half-marathoner.  I would never say I’m anywhere near that ideal “fit” but I’m working on it with every run I go on, every YouTube workout video I complete, and every yoga class I breathe through – I’m getting there.

Earlier this week I shared a “Before and Now” photo (unlabeled) with one of my loved ones.  I was proud of what I had progressed from in under a year’s time.  Slimmer, stronger, slightly more definition in my baby muscles– I could see the progress.

It was during their long hesitation that I started to doubt myself, and then when they said I looked better, “more fit”, in the Before… I won’t lie to you, I was a little disappointed.

Disappointed. Not Discouraged.

The fact that I can see the difference is what matters.  I notice how my body works differently, how I feel different.  I know I can do things now that I couldn’t do a year ago. (run a half marathon, hold Crow pose without falling on my face, etc.)  You can’t depend on others for validation, love your body for your body.


A couple of months ago, I went on a few dates with a young man that I met at on one of my CLT adventures.  He was handsome, had a job (not just a job – a GOOD job), a great future ahead of him.  On paper, this guy was marriage material.

Too good to be true, right? Right.

Not too long into our “relationship” (I only saw this guy for maybe 5 weeks), our young man asked how much I weighed (for future reference, never ask a woman how much she weighs. But okay…?). Upon telling him that I am 145 pounds of muscle and pizza he promptly informed me that I weighed more than he did.  (No doubt it was because I 100% ate more than he did.  Rail thin and willowy tall, I’m surprised he didn’t blow away with the wind.)  He then proceeded to tell me that if I got any “curvier” we would have to “re-evaluate our relationship.”

At first, I thought maybe he had every right to be attracted to the person he is dating.  Sure.  I also had every right to walk away at that very moment.  (I didn’t at that point.  Don’t worry, there were other things down the line that sent me on my way.)


I don’t care who it is, whether it is a loved one or some slightly-significant other –

Your value comes from you.

Let me say it again for the people in the back –

Your value comes from you.


You decide if you look good, if you feel good.  You decide if you’re the perfect amount of curvy or strong or fit.  Maybe you think you still need work, that’s fine! I think I still need work, but I’m getting there.  I’ll get there one day.  For the current moment, I’m the most perfect work-in-progress that I can be.

If you are happy and you love yourself, you’re perfect and wonderful enough for me.


Be strong, curvy, fit, bold, shy, introverted, extroverted.  Be you this week, and love it.


Until next week-



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