A few months ago, I sat across from a muscled gym junkie while he explained the benefits of signing up for a membership to the popular luxury gym in my city.
It was probably one of his easiest sales. I quickly penned my signature on the dotted line, eager to start my new fitness journey.
Walking through the doors of the gym for the first time, I remember feeling like I was walking into a new season of my life. I dropped off my young children at the childcare centre and walked into my first yoga class.
Since that day, I have become a regular fixture at the gym. My gym bag is permanently stationed at my front door, and gym clothes have started to pile up in my drawers. You could call me a gym junkie, except you wouldn’t be able to tell simply by looking at me.
I’m easily the largest participant in most of my classes, a fact that is difficult to ignore when standing in a room full of mirrors for an hour-long fitness class. My arms are doughy, and my legs are dimpled, and my stomach hangs over my pants. I’ve carried three children in my tiny five-foot frame, and each of them has left their mark on my body.
Each week that passes, I notice new things about my body. It feels stronger, and I’m able to push myself harder. I’m not winded anymore when I run upstairs to break up a fight between my daughters. I have more energy and don’t groan every time the alarm clock goes off or the baby wakes me up before the sun does.
One month after joining the gym, I decided to weigh myself. My clothes were a bit looser, but I hadn’t noticed a significant difference in my appearance. Still, people had started asking if I was losing weight, so I figured I should get them an answer.
I felt a small twinge of defeat when I stared at the number on the scale. It was the exact same as it was one month ago, pre-gym. I hopped off and continued my day and didn’t think much about that number until the following month.
I decided to weigh myself again two months post-gym, but the scale still hadn't budged. By now I was exercising almost daily and eating far healthier too.
This time I just shrugged my shoulders and shoved the scale into a cupboard.
So much has changed since I started regularly exercising and introducing a new healthy routine. I feel happier, my clinical depression has improved substantially (I’m still on medication.) I feel healthier and know that inside my organs are thanking me for all my hard work. I feel stronger and more capable in so many ways, both mentally and physically.
The number on the scale hasn’t changed, and I’ve decided that I am okay with that. The roundness of my belly has remained, and I’m not sure it’s going anywhere.