Being overweight has scarred me.
In ways larger than the stretch marks and loose skin.
Being overweight, and then losing weight, has forever placed fear in my heart that all my hard work will stop working and I will be overweight again.
I am constantly scared that when the number on the scale starts creeping up that it's not going to stop. That someday I am going to wake up, and without even realizing it, the scale is going to flash 220lbs back at me and I will once again be at my start point.
I know, deep down, that this is an irrational fear. But it's a fear nonetheless.
I know that I train my butt off and it's only making me stronger.
I know that my diet is mostly on point. It's minimally processed and full of whole foods.
I know that I make most things from scratch and I record EVERY SINGLE calorie that crosses my lips. I'm aware of what's going in and I know how much I am burning off.
I know that muscle is more dense than fat and I know all my clothes fit just fine.
I know that weight is just a number and that it's not the best indication of health or fitness.
But I also know that I've gained 6 pounds since beginning my half Ironman training in December and it bothers me like nothing else.
I know that my height-to-weight ratio is in line with a MALE triathlete, not a female triathlete.
I know that when I run next to many of my endurance athlete friends, I have to carry around 40-50% more body weight with each and every step.
I know that a runner can gain a 1% increase in speed for every 1% reduction in body fat.
I know that when it comes to endurance sports, weight matters.
And that's why I struggle.
Not because I want to be rail thin or because I want to flaunt a six-pack (although that would be nice), but because I want to me the most competitive athlete I can be. And my efforts to fight that number on the scale are coming up short, regardless of how hard I work.
Perhaps I should just throw the scale out the window. Just stop fighting all together. But not knowing what I weigh is almost as scary as watching the number creep up.
It's a battle I fight daily.
One that keeps those scars from healing.