WHY Are You Doing This?
I have been questioned a lot during this process. From the moment I told friends my decision to just today. Why? Why are you trying to get a six pack? What are you trying to prove?
I was kind of taken aback from people who were almost surprised I didn’t have one. I mean, really? I have NEVER had one. Thanks for the confidence in me, but just because I work out and live a pretty healthy lifestyle, doesn’t mean you have a six pack. Actually, most people aren’t just walking around with a six pack all the time.
You see, I was given a body I had to work for. I am actually thankful for this. By this I mean, I wasn’t EVER thin. I CAN’T eat whatever I want. But, this taught me to eat healthy. This body needs to move to feel good. This taught me to be active every day. When I decided that having a body I had to work for was a good thing, my life changed.
Growing up usually one of the biggest kids in my class wasn’t easy. I was chubby. I wore Size 16 PRETTY PLUS in 3rd grade. I wore women’s size 12 jeans in 6th grade. I was active, but I LOVED food! I overate at every meal so I could get dessert. I snacked alot…mostly on sugar filled treats. I drank sugary drinks. I was teased (I still remember the kids that teased me) about my size and weight. I was uncomfortable in my body and longed to be SKINNY!
Then things changed and I fell in love with working out during 7th grade. Almost to the point where it became an obsession. An obsession to be SKINNY. I barely ate. Food became something I feared. Throughout the rest of my school age years, I ate just enough to get by. I was skinny. I was tired and often run down. I was anything but strong. I can’t help but think if I ate as much as I do now, how much more energy I would have had in high school and how much better I could have performed in all my studies and sports.
Fast forward to college. I started out well – pre-season training with the college basketball team. Then I got injured (stress fracture in my back) and ended up quitting before the season started. I started living the college lifestyle then…drinking, eating pizza at 2am before going to bed and then sleeping in. I worked out sporadically. I ate what I could afford & was easy, which pretty much consisted of processed and greasy foods.
After getting married and opening a local gym, I returned to my healthy lifestyle. I worked out regularly and ate pretty healthy. Then the kids came. My pregnancies were a whole new world of emotional body image. I don’t do well being pregnant. I have a hard time postpartum like many women. Just add the stress I put on myself to lose weight because I am a “gym owner”. I once had a relative tell me, “you sure don’t look like you own gym” – about 4 weeks postpartum. The pressure was always on until I felt fit enough to be a “gym owner”. Even on the hottest days in the summer, I wore sweatshirts so nobody could tell I still had baby weight to lose.
In the last couple years, I got tired of hating my body – too fat, too thin. You will always be too something for somebody. Unfortunately you are usually your biggest critic. We all have different body shapes and carry our fat differently. Embrace it, we are all unique. We all have different obstacles to overcome. You need to be the happiest, healthiest version of YOU. And, don’t be ashamed of your story…it may inspire others.
From the start of my six pack goal, I knew I wanted to do this to show that having a six pack is not as normal as the media portrays. It was never about being superficial and looking a certain way. It was about the process. It was about the goal setting. It was about showing the sacrifices. It was about doing it the right way – working out and eating clean. But, during this process, I never wanted to lose anyone to thinking that being healthy and living an active lifestyle isn’t enough. It’s enough.
I wanted to show my sacrifices. The loss of social life, my kids’ disappointment that I can’t eat their food creations, hours in the gym and the kitchen prepping. Not drinking a drop of anything but water and protein shakes for the last two months. I haven’t had pizza or bread either. Heck, I haven’t had a carb in over a week. Living this lifestyle is very time consuming and requires a high level of strength to walk away from the things you love.
But if you really want it, you have to make time and be stronger than the moments that test you. And honestly, if I can do it, so can you! I am a mom of three. I am business owner including two Papa Murphy’s Take-N-Bake pizza locations (which I haven’t been able to eat any). We also run four gyms. With our supplement stores, we have 12 business locations and nearly 100 employees. I am a blogger. I am a fitness instructor at our gyms & teach 3-4 classes per week. I am the wife of a baseball coach (and it’s baseball season). I am a daughter. I am a sister. I am a friend. I am many things…but through it all I find my strength. I surround myself with people who not only support me, but encourage and inspire me.
I am not ashamed of my journey. I have been on both ends of the weight issues. I have heard the hurtful comments, many which are hard to forget. My body has taken on many shapes in my life. But, I am proud of the person it has made me today. Without my struggles, I may not have found my strength! This journey has been empowering for me not only physically but mentally as well. YOU are the only one who can answer the WHY.
Stay Tuned —— The BIG REVEAL is next week!
Mary’s 6-PACK AT THIRTY-6 Blog Series:
Blog #1 ABSolutely Committed
Blog #2 Starting to die…it!
Blog #3 All About That Diet
Blog #4 Did Someone Say Cheat Meal?
Blog #5 How Much Longer Mom?
Blog #6 Fearless Progress
Blog #7 Prepping For Success
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