Kathleen’s Year-Long Journey, Part VI: “Who Are You Doing This for Anyway?”

I’m at a weird point where I am noticing differences in my body, energy levels, and general happiness, but those around me don’t see it yet. While it is humbling that people see it as “normal Kathleen,” it just reaffirms that I am making these changes for myself. If someone notices, it is a fringe benefit… but deep down, I still want them to say, “Oh wow!” just like I did when I put on an old dress that fits again.

Unknown-1I went to a party where I saw friends I had not seen since the beginning of the year. I wore a new dress that looked really good and put up my hair, which I think is slimming. The party was great. I ate well and had minimal drinks — my new usual. I felt so confident in the changes I have made — permanent changes — that the food and attitude have become almost second nature. I still think through decisions, but I lean toward the good and it’s no longer an eternal internal fight.

crushklorey-500x429I spoke with someone I’ve known for almost 10 years. She saw me gain all the weight (yes, I used to be a size 12 in my mid-20s) and I thought she might notice the improvements: my face is slightly less full, my dress isn’t clinging to my waist rolls as tightly, my choices are the new me and not a fad I’m going through. Then she straight-up asked, “Are you still doing your workout thing?” My heart sank. I wanted to scream “YES, OF COURSE I AM! CAN’T YOU SEE THE DIFFERENCE?!” Instead, I told her that I love it, that the people are my favorite thing, and that I’m getting home from work early each day to make sure I’m on time.

UnknownI’ve had some time to think about it, and I’ve decided that I have a bit of tunnel vision. In the past few weeks, my trainer, a fellow workout partner, and my husband have all commented that they are either proud of me or have started to notice differences. I reread some of my earlier posts and they are very Kathleen-focused. I was reminded that I am doing this for me. None of my goals are about having people applaud my achievements (just as they have never called out my failures); they are about being strong and healthy.

So… new attitude. No expectations of other people, just of myself: continue showing up each day, continue making good food and drink choices, continue setting new goals… and achieving them! But most of all, continue believing in myself because I am doing this for me, and that is not just good enough, it is great!

WellATL columnist Kathleen Lorey won one year of fitness classes from FitWit (disclosure: WellATL’s publisher is president of FitWit) and will be documenting her 365-day journey to better health. If her column inspires you, motivates you, helps you see that you aren’t alone in whatever struggles you face, or just makes you want to cheer her on, it has done its job and we hope you’ll let her know or share your own experiences in the comments.

Read more about Kathleen’s journey: