Ever since middle school, I've had a strained relationship with my body. I remember the first time I thought that I was fat. I'd try to hide the fact that I wasn't as thin as I used to be. I wore baggier clothes and when I sat down, I'd pull the bottom of my shirt down in an attempt to cover my thighs. It was embarrassing to look around at the thin girls in my grade and wonder why they could be so skinny without even trying. I wanted to lose the weight, but I was too lazy to actually start exercising. Exercise was hard. I was out of shape and every time I tried to run, my lungs would feel like they were about to explode. I then came to the conclusion that there were other things I could do to lose weight, such as stop eating. I figured, if eating made you gain weight, not eating should be able to easily make you lose it. I was wrong. This led to short periods of barely eating, followed by binge eating everything I could get my hands on. I knew this method of weight loss wasn't working, but I convinced myself it would next time.
I just finished my Freshman year in college and I'm still overweight. I'm actually overweight by a lot too, but you can't always tell because I carry it pretty well. Of course, being a first-year college student, I did what every Freshman does: I gained the Freshman 15. Now don't get me wrong, I'm not huge. I weigh in under 200 pounds and I have a lot of....well, boob. This alone makes me appear a lot skinnier than I am on the scale.
In this day and age, it would be easy to be praised for my body. Everyday, I see one or more things in my Facebook feed about body positivity. If I wanted to wear a bikini that showed off my chubby tummy, I'd have thousands of people waiting to back me up and protect me from those who say I should lose weight. The thing is, I don't want to be protected. I think body positivity is great and necessary. I don't think anyone should be shamed for the way their body looks, fat or skinny. I know that some people that appear to be overweight are actually perfectly healthy, but this isn't the norm. I don't look very overweight, but I know I'm not healthy and the last thing I need are for people to tell me I don't need to change. I love myself, but I refuse to accept my body, right now, for what it is. I refuse to let myself continue to be overweight.
I've decided to start with walking. I realized that in the past I pushed myself too hard and this caused me to be unable to commit. I want to commit and I have. I've committed to walking everyday this summer, for at least 30 minutes a day. I've committed to being less hard on myself; weight loss takes time and I'm not going to see results right away. This doesn't mean I'm failing, it just means I need to keep trying.
I'm not doing this for anyone else but myself. I'm not doing this for my family, my friends, or even my boyfriend. I'm definitely not doing this for the industry that says girls should be stick thin. I'm doing this because I want to feel good about myself and losing weight would do that. If people are constantly being supported for being plus-size, then I should be able to support myself and my journey to wear a size I love myself in.