Let me share with you what weight lifting has done for me in the last 6 weeks of my life.
I have struggled with body image and accepting and loving myself and my body for about 37yrs. Two years ago we moved to Southern California and I was lucky enough to be able to go to hot power vinyasa flow yoga 3x a week. That changed my life because I was able to improve, grow stronger and challenge myself every practice. Still, my body stayed pretty much the same. But I felt stronger, …felt confident in being me, practiced being still, pausing, accepting. I also learned to do impressive arm balances, got cardio fit beyond my wildest dreams and felt a wonderful sense of exhaustion and calm. As part of my journey I met the wonderful Tricia Ashley, Michelly Casavechia Young who are cool ladies fostering and promoting the power of women and yoga among many other things….and my yoga bitches (you know who you are).
When we had to leave our beloved SoCal for farmland Maryland, I couldn’t find a yoga studio that could compare with what I had at Solfire. Nothing came even close. And I felt pretty bummed. Among all the other bummed-ness there was the lack of physical exercise.
Then I met Emily Sherwood Altshuler and Leah Spencer…my East Coast bitches (sorry girls, I know you’re not really used to me yet….) and they have not only introduced me to the world of lifting like a girl, but to being confident in the weight room, being focused and driven but they’ve introduced me to my new body. In 6 weeks, I’ve lost a pant size plus. I’ve grown strong enough to lift my 4yo up the stairs by his feet when he’s screaming with laughter with no issue. I’ve become…..me in my skin. All without losing a single pound. And I don’t give a fuck. Fuck the scale, you no longer own me. I own me. In six weeks I have these four things that tell me my life is changed. (And prior to to I had never lifted a weight in my entire life). Dead lift 100lbs, bench 80lbs, squat 80lbs, overhead press, 60lbs. And increasing presently at 5lbs a week. I can row a 9minute 2k. I can do 100 sit-ups. I can air squat like a motherfucker and I’m happy with me. Despite my deep, deep sorrow at leaving my beloved Southern California. I’m finally. FINALLY. Truly happy with my me. #liftlikeagirl #barbelle #iloveme #happyinmyskin #nomachines #freeweights
Note as of this posting: Today I just did my first 100lb bench press. I didn’t make my whole work set so I will be back at the bench next Monday trying again. And that is perfectly fine with me.
Today’s weights: Deadlift 125lbs, Bench 95lbs, Squat 100lbs, Overhead Press 70lbs. I’m competing against myself and I’m the only one who can beat me.
This is my message to you (if you feel it applies). I hope YOU get to experience this feeling and instead of focusing on the scale, the perceived “imperfections” and listening to the self-hate talk, learn to let it go. Love yourself for the wonderful, strong, person you are. Be proud of growing children, be proud of your battle scars, be confident in the knowledge that it doesn’t matter one tiny bit what anyone else thinks of you. It only matters what you think of you. xxme