Denise DuBois: You’re more than the weight you see on the scale

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There is cause for celebration! I stepped on the scale this morning and I’m officially down 23 pounds. It’s been two years, but I haven’t been actively trying to see the scale move until the last few months. You see, I started lifting insanely heavy weights a year and a half ago. I was more concerned about my body composition changing and increasing the weight on the bar than I was seeing the scale reflect smaller numbers. And that has worked for me. People asked me how much weight I had lost and I could only say 10 pounds. But because the composition of fat and muscle was changing, I looked different.

The last few weeks, I made a conscious effort to stop eating. Something had to change because I was feeling badly. I fasted for a few days, eating only small things. I wasn’t hungry and I felt so much better. I was even stronger in the gym for a little while. (But that’s not how things work and my coach at the gym reminded my of that.)

“Do you want to be a power lifter or do you want to lose weight?” he asked.

“I want to do both.”

“Then you have to eat on days that we lift,” he said.

Fasting is great, but it’s not sustainable, and I know that. I needed to clear my head and my body.

The last week, I experienced a drop in strength because of the rapid way I lost the last five pounds. Let me tell you, that was rough. I found a love for lifting weights. It’s empowering. It’s a confidence boost. It’s adrenaline. It’s hard. Feeling like I disappointed my coach (and myself) because I couldn’t lift a certain weight was tough.

But I say all that to say this: I’m more than any of those numbers. I’m more than the number on the scale. I’m more than the number on the bar. And so are you.

Do you step on the scale every day? Stop.

Do you talk badly about yourself because of your weight? Stop.

Do you always feel like you have to lose 10 pounds? Stop.

You’re more than all of those things. The more you focus on those things, the worse you feel. The worse you feel, the gloomier your attitude. We can’t have a bunch of depressed people feeling badly about themselves trying to raise children and teenagers to change the world. They take after us! We need people in this world who are on fire with passion, confidence, drive and love for themselves and others. We need people who are bold and self-assured to lead others to feel the same way. You’ve heard it over and over, but your worth is more than your weight. Obviously, there is a health factor involved, so let’s get that out of the way. But if you’re making a change to a healthier you, don’t hate yourself in the process.

You were created by a loving Savior for a purpose, and you can’t fulfill that purpose if you find your worth in temporary things like weight on a scale. God put desires in our hearts. One of those for me is to lift heavy weights. I’m not sure what the purpose is, but I’m positive if I continue to give glory to Him while I’m doing it, the “why” will make itself known. But I’m so much more than that.

I hope, if you’re reading this, that you begin to feel uplifted and can speak positivity to someone else who needs it. I hope if you’re in the middle of weight loss that you feel emboldened to love yourself as you are right now. I hope if you’re struggling right now because your body isn’t cooperating with you like it should that you develop patience with yourself. It’s a journey and there’s joy in it.

Email me at ddubois@citizenea.com.