The following is guest post from Upper limit Coach, Tess Leblanc…
Alright everyone, I’m going to open up and be 100% real and honest about my struggle with my weight and body image. Share my story about something everyone deals with, but doesn’t always talk about.
Pretty much my entire life I’ve been thin. When i was a freshman in high school i wore a size 00. I weighed about 105 pounds. Trying to find pants that fit was a struggle. (Which it still is today, but for different reasons). Beginning of my senior year of high school I was around 110. At my high school, seniors were allowed to leave for lunch. I had a job, I was making money, so pretty much everyday, i went out to eat. Didn’t take long before the number on the scale started to climb and my body started to change. Before I knew it, I weighed 125-130. I had put on 15-20 pounds from eating crap food everyday, and too much of it. I had a tummy, love handles, my legs and butt got bigger and i was NOT HAPPY with the way I looked. I started going to the gym, and eating out less and had no problem losing the weight I had gained.
Ever since then, I’ve had body image issues. After high school I was probably around 115? Still pretty thin. I used to think I was fat. Looking back on pictures from when I considered myself “fat” my hip and collar bones were sticking out. My arms and legs looked like tooth picks.
I started Crossfit back in 2016. I didn’t start it for weight loss. I had heard about it, and thought I’d give it a try. I drank the cool aid and I was hooked.
I probably weighed around 120 when I first started Crossfit. Now, I weigh around 135. (I’ve been working on my nutrition, which has always been a struggle). The most I’ve ever weighed is around 140-145. After 3 years of crossfit, and weighing 15 pounds more than when I started, my body looks completely different. I’ve put on 15 pounds of muscle. My arms, shoulders, butt, and legs are all bigger. When I say “bigger” I mean muscular. Now its hard to find pants that fit over my quads and butt, that aren’t too big in the waist. Same thing with shirts. Sometimes I have to buy large shirts so my arms and shoulders don’t feel like I’m going to hulk out of them .
When I first started crossfit I used to compare myself to everyone else. I had pretty low self esteem and not much confidence. (Relationships at this point in my life had a huge factor on my self esteem and confidence). I was always worrying about what people will think of me or what they might say.
Thinking I’ll never look like that, or I’ll never be able to lift that weight, or do that gymnastics movement. Well three years later and I’m doing pretty much everything Ii thought I’d never be able to do. I’m happy with my body and what it can do. Don’t get me wrong, I still have a lot of progress to make. Looking back, I’ve made so much progress, mentally and physically.
Crossfit, my coaches, and the friends I’ve made through crossfit, has changed my life for the better. Physically and mentally. I have self esteem and confidence. I love and respect my body. I love coming to the gym every day, pushing myself and kicking my own ass to get just a little bit better every day.
If you are going through the same struggles I faced, and am still facing, definitely not as much as I was before, but its still a struggle. I hope this helps you in some way, to know you are not alone. My best advice, stop worrying about the number on the scale, focus on what your body can do, how far you’ve come, and staying consistent to continue to get better. Surround yourself with like minded people, people who will push you and help you to continue to learn and grow. You will make progress, it just takes time! Be patient and trust the process.
-Coach Tess Leblanc, Crossfit Upper Limit