Friday, May 7, 2010

Owning My Number

A lot of women won't tell a soul what they weigh - not even their best friends or husbands. I have never been one of those women.

I am announcing with pride that this morning I weighed in at 199 lbs. This is the first time I've been under 200 in two years! To me, that is cause for celebration, not shame.

In fact, I don't see any sense in being ashamed of your weight at all. It's just a number, not a judgement of your worth as a human being.

Your weight is not necessarily even an indicator of your health! I remember reading a magazine article years ago about what 150 lbs looked like on 6 or 7 different women. They were all different shapes and sizes and levels of fitness, and no one could have guessed just looking at them that they all weighed the same thing. There are so many other factors that determine your health...your weight is just one piece of the puzzle.

I feel like our society places too much importance on "weight" and not enough on "fitness," and this causes a lot of people to obsess over the former while completely missing the boat on the latter. I wish we could get rid of all the social stigmas attached to weight, and take a more commonsense, practical approach to health and fitness. That's what I'm trying to do in my own life, and I believe I'm succeeding.

Yes, I am working hard to lose weight...but as an overall effort to get in shape, not because the number on the scale has any power over me at all. I'm so unashamed of my weight that I'll tell you all about. My highest weight was about 255 lbs, the day my oldest son was born. Yes, this was a 9-months-pregnant weight, but it was also a HIGH weight. I gained somewhere between 40 and 50 lbs during that pregnancy. My highest recorded non-pregnant weight was 222, after my second son was born. I then started exercising and eating right, and got down to 196 before my last pregnancy. After my third son was born, my weight topped off at 218, so now I have lost a total of 19 lbs in this latest quest for fitness.

In order to achieve a healthy BMI, I need to get down to 170 lbs. I'd love to go even further, to around 150 or 160, but it won't crush me if I don't. Once my weight is within the "healthy" range, I will be focusing much more on cardiovascular fitness, endurance, strength, flexibility, and of course other important factors like my cholesterol level, which I've never had tested.

Before anyone misinterprets what I'm saying, I'd like to clarify that I don't think weight is unimportant or should be ignored. It definitely matters! It IS an important's just not the ONLY thing! And that's precisely why I think it's healthy to face the number, not hide from it. If you don't own your number, it just might own you.

I'm owning all of my 199 lbs, and the 19 I've burned off already. I gained them. And I'm losing them - as many as I need to in order to be healthy.

If you're reading this and you don't have the courage to own your number, there is no shame in that either. No one can force you out of your comfort zone, and you're certainly not doomed to a life of obesity just because you don't care to make your weight public. I believe owning your number can be liberating and empowering, but in the end it's still not as important as just trying to be as healthy as you can, however you go about it. Whether you own your number or not, at some point you do have to own your health!


  1. Congratulations April. You must be thrilled and I hope it gives you the motivation to continue. You are doing GREAT!

  2. This is so inspiring to me. Thanks for getting me motivated to get my slovenly butt off the couch! Well not right this second because I just happen to be on the couch, but still I'm working out in the mornings because you MOTIVATE me!

  3. You rock April! Seriously! You=Rock Star.

    I'm so very proud of you...and you motivate me to get up and get back on the treadmill...All 153 pounds of me. :)