Late 2013 I looked in the mirror. I actually looked at myself. I had been avoiding the mirror ever since having a child. It started out like that because I would look and see how tired I was. So so tired. Then I stopped looking because I was just unhappy with how I looked, and I didn’t want to see myself, and see the person I had become, both physically and emotionally.
I looked in the mirror in November 2013 and I hated myself. I actually really disliked myself as a person, as well as how I looked. Due to some incredibly painful and stressful things happening in my personal life I had started drinking. A lot. I was drinking perhaps a bottle of wine a night, and eating all the time.
I wasn’t eating foods that were too bad for me, having ditched most processed foods in previous years. But I still ate biscuits (my biggest dowfall, scotch finger biscuits are just freaking amazing), and I’m ashamed to say visited the McDonald’s drive thru more frequently than I should have. It wasn’t a huge part of my life, but those hash browns are just so damn addictive. (or were, its been over a year since i ate one).
That day, I decided that I didn’t want to hate myself anymore, and I’d be damned if I didn’t wake up to myself and do something about it. So I walked the 1.3km to the gym pushing my son in the pram, and signed up. Just walking that far was an accomplishment. Think of the laziest person you know, and then double their laziness. That’s how lazy I was.
I threw myself into working out and dieting. It was pretty brutal. I worked out 6 days a week and restricted my diet to 1200 calories or thereabouts a day. Best of all though, I pretty much stopped drinking. Well I stopped drinking every day.
It was surprisingly difficult to go from lots of drinks, to nearly no drinks. I had thought that alcohol really had no hold over me, but by the end of the day I’d be itching for a glass of wine. It was such a crutch, and I’d think about how good it was going to be when i could drink my (cheap cask wine) at a socially acceptable hour.
After a few weeks of near killing myself at the gym while starving myself, not drinking became pretty easy. If i drank and then got up at 6am and went to the gym, it made my workout harder. It was hard enough without being hungover, so drinks got sent to fri / sat nights only. Now they’re for the most part, once a week and never really more than 2 – 3 glasses. Occasionally I have a blow out, but alcohol is no longer a crutch for me. Yes I like to drink, but I recognise it for what it is, I generally feel pretty shit afterwards, and i’m still hopeless at working out if I do it. it slows me down, which is NOT compatible with my competitive nature.
Something wonderful began to happen to me when I looked in the mirror and made the decision to change myself; I followed through on it. Yes I lost weight. But I also gained so much more.
I gained in no particular order:
- More patience
- More Confidence
- More love
- More excitement
- More joy
- More life
By Christmas 2013 I had lost 3kg. I then put it back on with some xmas feasting and the most incredible wedding spread you’ve ever seen at a mate’s festivities, but I was on my way. I was looking at my life and habits with new eyes and I knew that I had to change. It wasn’t just about vanity anymore and how I looked on the outside to myself and to other people, it was about being who i always wanted to be and was always too afraid, or too lazy to become.