Over the past 12 years of my life, I have probably tried to lose weight 10-15 times. So, naturally, people want to know what has made this time different – why am I suddenly able to do it now? 

Aside from the fact that I am better educated in proper nutrition and exercise, there is one other factor that I hadn’t considered until recently. But before I tell you what that is, let’s rewind a little…

Last week, my sister’s boyfriend Sheldon agreed to do a mini photo shoot with me – as a young woman hoping to get ‘noticed’ by the big boys of the industry, I figured I should prepare myself with a few decent photos – so, one night he came over to my condo gym with his fancy camera and proceeded to capture me in the moment. 

As I pushed through my regular workout routine, Sheldon snapped multiple pictures. The photo shoot was going great, but with each flash of the camera, I grew increasingly aware of all the eyes that were glaring at me - what I hadn’t considered was that there would be other people trying to ‘get their sweat on’ at that same time.

Now, I’m sure some gym-goers thought I was crazy, or maybe some even thought I wasn’t ‘fit’ enough to have a photo shoot, but guess what? 

I didn’t care!

I was having fun taking pictures, that for the first time in my life, I wasn’t ashamed of. I was enjoying that fact that I could curl 25lbs on each bicep and have pictures to prove it. And, I was finally aware of why I have been so successful this time around; because I am doing it for me. 

You see, in the past, losing weight wasn’t about me; losing weight was about looking great in the eyes of others. All I ever wanted as I young girl was to be considered by others as ‘beautiful’ or ‘pretty’, and I truly thought that becoming skinny (a word I now hate) would do that for me.  

Well, I was wrong.

Today I do feel beautiful, and today I do feel pretty, but not because I am 37lbs lighter than I was 8 months ago, and not because other people may think I look great.  

Instead, I feel beautiful because I finally let go of the image I was trying to live up to, and I finally let go of the idea that I had to be skinny to be accepted and loved by others.

What truly matters is that I accept myself for who I am.  

I’m not a stick thin girl, I don’t ‘fit in’ with standards, and I won’t get intimidated by other’s judgments. 

Instead, I am a woman who loves a little muscle.
I am a woman who longs to be different. And,  
I am a woman who wants to achieve what others think is impossible.

And that is ok with me.
25lb curls
9/26/2010 04:57:48 am

I'm a new follower and happen to think you look awesome! I think you're attitude is just as wonderful.

Yay for loving our bodies for what they are and what they are able to do!

9/27/2010 03:48:21 pm

Hey there, love the new pics! You look fantastic and your progress and attitude are inspirational as always. Just added your blog to my Google Reader :-).

Kristen (the melter)
9/29/2010 09:22:41 am

Thank you Amy and Michelle! I love having new followers :) Hope I am able to inspire you along the way!

9/29/2010 10:45:04 pm

Congratulations on everything you've accomplished so far, nothing short of fantastic. You do look fabulous. I love how you didn't let life's blows knock you to the ground. I found out about you shopping at BB.com. Not to contradict your coach on the lenghth of the diet break, this guy (Lyle Mcdonald) says 2 weeks at maintenance are enough to bring all the hormones back to normal and "reset" the body for another fat loss bout (his site is bodyrecomposition.com and his forum is lylemcdonaldforum.com). If you do go there and do post please be forewarned Lyle and other posters can be less than gentlemen but he generally is very nice with ladies! Anyway congrats again.

10/1/2010 03:42:33 pm

Looking good!
I have been following your blog for a while and I love seeing your progress. I, myself at am 17.5 lb arm curls at this point and hoping to hit 25 lbs by the end of this year. Your blog rules !

12/30/2010 01:20:43 am

In the season of joy I present my sincere wishes and kind thoughts. May the kind of New Year outshine all the rest

2/27/2011 06:13:31 pm

Humor has been well defined as thinking in fun while feeling in earnest.

2/28/2011 05:50:39 pm

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