I am currently the heaviest I have ever been in my entire life, except at the end of my last pregnancy. This is very difficult for me to deal with because for so many years I have dreamed of being a competitive athlete in running or triathlon or both. I feel like I’m an athlete in a food addict’s body. I’ve been trying to address the emotional eating for years, and obviously, given my current physical state, I’m not making a lot of progress.

It occurred to me, though, that one of my biggest problems is my inability to accept my body how it is now. Even when I’ve tried to do that in the past, it’s always been with a condition: “I love my body and so I’m going to only eat healthy food because that’s what it deserves,” or “I love my body because I know that loving my body will help me lose the weight.” Perhaps those comments don’t sound like they’re too far off the mark. But I’ve realized that the problem with them was that I still wasn’t accepting my body. I was still thinking and believing that my body isn’t worth loving unless it is thin.

What I instead need to learn is to love my body just how it is now, even if it stays like this for the rest of my life. Period. End of story. No strings attached. Who I am inside may not be an overweight person, but that is the body I have right now. And that is the body that I have created. And unless I can accept that and love my body and myself anyway, I’m never going to be happy and I’m never going to succeed at any of my goals.

So I’m going to still train for triathlons, but I’m going to do it while I’m overweight, and I’m going to be okay with that. I’m okay with my body never changing. I’m okay with my big belly that makes me look pregnant. I’m okay with my cottage cheese thighs and my chubby knees. I’m okay with being an overweight triathlete. It’s better than not being a triathlete at all. And what I’m realizing is that I can be happy like this. And that’s the end goal for all of us, isn’t it?

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