“Being weak is a choice… so is being strong…”

Tough week.

I need to let off some steam.

I’m so tired of people thinking that THIS (the bodybuilding life) is easy for me because I’m “disciplined”.  It’s discounting to say to me “you’re so disciplined” as if I’m different from you.  I’m not so different.  It’s not easy.  I just don’t complain about it or fret about it.  I choose to do it and I make this choice repeatedly all day long.

Look at this woman.  If you knew her, you KNOW she was unhappy.  Do you seriously think it was easy for her to get up every morning to workout?  To make herself do it?  Do you think it was easy to start logging food – every meal, every day?  Do you think it was easy to ignore every insecurity that comes with letting yourself get this unhealthy – ignore all of those negative self messages and ask for help?

And now?  Do you think it’s easy to not eat whatever I want to eat when I want to eat it?  Do you think I don’t like to sleep and that’s why I’m at the gym every morning at 4:30 am and tolerating some of the crap I’ve been tolerating from the gym rats?   Some people think I’m being selfish.  Really.  They let it slip and I hear it.

I do this to SURVIVE, so yeah, if wanting to live longer and be happier is selfish, I’m selfish.  I do this to have something to look forward to and to accomplish something scary.  I was unhealthy physically and mentally.  I’ve had a bumpy life – a little rough like most everyone’s.  My own family was so dysfunctional that after Mom died, we lost contact with each other.  When I found out I was infertile and realized that adoption was not going to work  for us, I was devastated.  I wanted to be a mother more than anything.    The life I wanted wasn’t going to happen.  It hurt.  I ate all that pain and disappointment and created a new problem.  I threw myself into teaching because those kids were my surrogate kids.  I was killing myself with stress and apathy about the future.

So if you think I’m some kind of mutant with an extra “discipline” gene, get real.  I still have the same life I had before with the same stresses.  I still have the same people thinking I’m supposed to be doing this or that – and I feel guilty about letting them down.  I make choices every minute of every day to counter the effects of stress in a healthy way.  Those choices were tough when I started.  Those choices are tough now.   Maybe I am selfish to do this bodybuilding thing.  OK.  I own it.  If following a dream, setting a goal, and working hard to make it happen is selfish, OK.  I’m selfish.  But it just ticks me off to have it thrown in my face as being “easy for me”.  I made sacrifices.

I’m still making sacrifices, but I’m happy to do it and I don’t feel like I’m making sacrifices at all.  But apparently, since I’m not walking around complaining about what I can’t eat, about how I don’t get enough sleep, or about how I’m working extra hours to earn more so that we might be able to afford for me to do this…well maybe I’m fooling everyone into thinking my life is “just wonderful”.

Honestly, this isn’t me.  Not anymore.  I don’t complain very often.  If I do, it means there is a problem that needs to be fixed and I’m processing it.  I choose to be grateful everyday.  I’m grateful for the strength. I’m grateful for the discipline that seems to keep coming from nowhere.

But I’m tired of being strong all the time.  I think I’ll have myself a nice cry and call it a week.  It was a rough one.  Once I recharge, I’ll be just fine.  Don’t worry about me.  Just having a moment… and it’s done.

P.S.  I turn 50 in 3 days.  I’m stoked!!  Confirmed today that I can use the harness at the gym to pull my SUV on my birthday.  Students are annoyed that I’m not doing it at school.  Maybe next time.

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5 responses to ““Being weak is a choice… so is being strong…”

  1. Wah! I’m so confused! Who complains that you’re so disciplined?! Wow. This post was HEATED! Glad you got it off your chest, girl! 🙂 I love that you post that before pic every once in a while, it’s such a great reminder for the rest of us (and you, I’m sure) of how far you have come, and just what is possible if someone sets their mind to it! I’m also very stoked about turning 50 the same month as you – can’t wait! What a milestone.

  2. Reblogged this on Lifting My Spirits and commented:

    If you are just getting started or a year or two into your own health transformation, you might relate to the frustration I had on this day. I think most people get to this point in their journey – where other might discount your struggle because you’re actually engaged in it. It is a personal choice to live differently; to live less comfortably.

    I wish I could tell you that it will get easier and stay that way. It won’t. Life still happens. And the longer you are living it, things will come up. Accept the changes and adjust.

  3. Candace

    Hi Tammy, I want to start out by saying that I just received your book in the mail today thanks to my wonderful son who found you while doing his research.. he was truly inspired by your journey as well as I am … I am 52 years old and considered obese … my 19-year-old lives at home and has transformed his body from a wet 99 pounds to a healthy 147 muscular pound young man . He is now in the process of helping me to try to become healthier and thought that I might enjoy reading your book for inspiration and help.. I for one can’t begin to imagine how challenging this journey has been for you …. I wish you health and happiness .

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