Monday, February 21, 2011

My thoughts on body image

My cousin and me (November 1999)
I have always struggled with my body.  I wasn't ever the pretty, skinny cheerleader type.  I was the average girl.  I was friends with everyone and didn't really fit into any of the cliques in my small-town school. 

When I was morbidly obese, I daily suffered with knowing that I had huge rolls everywhere and just looked plain dumpy.  When you are pushing 340 pounds at age 19, it is hard to feel good about yourself.  It was a struggle to get dressed; it was a struggle to go to class; everything was a struggle. 

Of course, when you do lose weight, it is extremely hard not to always see the image of your old self.  It seems like a vicious cycle, and it isYou have to find a way to free yourself from those thoughts, no matter how hard it may be. 

Every single day of the week, I have to deal with thinking back to where I was and still seeing the image of my body at its highest weight (May 2000).  I see extra skin, dimples and ripples in my legs, and stretchmarks every time I look in the mirror - the battle scars of having been obese and losing weight. 

Over the past several months, I have tried to look in the mirror each day and think about something positive with my body.  Now, I see those sections of extra skin, dimples and ripples, and stretchmarks as success.  Over the past 11 years, I have managed to lose a whole, average-sized, healthy person in body weight.  Along with shedding pounds, I have shed bad habits, destructive behaviors, and I am working daily to build more and more confidence in my body. 

Is there more work to do?  Yes, absolutely.  There are more pounds to be lost, but I will not let those pounds keep me from focusing on the good things.  I will continue to look at my body as a place of improvement, but also as a victory over the things of the past. 
It is that victory over things of the past that makes me want to:
  • find healthy recipes to cook;
  • pack a delicious and healthy lunch;
  • go run;
  • workout with my personal trainer;
  • compete in races even though I may be one of the slower people on the course;
  • go in new stores to try on clothes (even if I have to don some shape wear);
  • encourage other people on their journeys;
  • smile at strangers that look like they are dealing with their own struggles;
  • and have a better outlook on my life and body.
It is wonderful!


  1. Great attitude, Regan. I really like the idea of looking at "imperfections" as battle scars. I can learn a lot from you! :)

  2. Congratulations on changing your life and accomplishing so much! You're still going and we're here to support you. Thanks for helping me learn to reassess my attitude :)

  3. I think you are doing an amazing job!!! Keep up the fabulous work! :0)

  4. Look in the mirror every day and say I love you Reagan.
    if you follow darla?s blog she is saying it as a 30 day challenge. I think your future goals are great and smiling at strangers is awesome