Saturday, May 25, 2013

You're Still Fat

There was a break in the rain this afternoon. The kids had just laid down for their afternoon nap, and hubby was following suit on the couch. I did what every mother runner would... slipped on my sneakers and snuck out the door.  I quickly decided on my 10k route and set off down the street.

The air was refreshing and cool - what a blessed change from last week!  I happily turned down my neighborhood streets without a care in the world. With no concern for pace, I took in all the sights, smells and sounds around me. It was a peaceful afternoon and I was delighted to be taking it all in. There is a special calmness to the air after a rainfall that pleases me. This running naked thing is really started to grow on me. It may take awhile to strap that Garmin on again.

My legs felt so strong and I was sailing down my favorite part of the 6.2 mile route. I didn't know my pace, but was feeling good about how quick my feet were moving. Honestly, I was having a "proud moment"... some people nap in the afternoon to refresh themselves. I run and it has the same effect for me. I used to be the prior, and now am so happy to have changed my life through running.

And then a car of young men drove by and yelled out the window at me...

YOU'RE STILL FAT!!
KEEP RUNNING FATTY!

I tried to wipe it away like the sweat on my brow. But like the rain that was spitting again, it slapped my face and wouldn't go away.  It hit a chord in me that will forever be my weak spot. As a former "fat girl" of 230 pounds, I've come a long way. I started my run journey to lose weight, but now I run for so many other reasons. But make no doubt about it... I will always be self conscious about my weight. I will always be trying to hide my imperfect tummy that gave me two perfect babies.

Will there ever be a time that I look in the mirror and like what I see? Probably not.  I love running and so desperately crave a "runner's body", but also know that it's most likely not in the cards for me.  For the most part, I'm okay with that. I like how running makes me FEEL. Yes, there are physical benefits, but when it comes right down to it, I run to feel alive. I like the healthy balance that running adds to my life. The peace and sanity it provides. The pure joy it adds to my days. And no one can take that away from me.

So to the punks in that car today...
To you, I flip up my finger ponytail and keep on running. 
There is nothing you can say that will keep me down.


89 comments:

  1. ugh. wtf is wrong with people? they obviously cannot feel good about themselves if they have the need to put down others. I'm pretty sure you could take them in a 1/2 mary anytime. bastards.

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  2. So many props to you for having such a positive attitude about this. I started running at 240 and still struggle with body image.

    This weekend I'm in Vermont for my very first marathon and have had several moments of looking around and thinking I'm the fat girl who doesn't belong.

    The simple fact is that we've worked HARD to be where we are and we DESERVE to feel proud!

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  3. I dont think it ever goes away....that horrible painful feeling when a complete stranger feels the need to comment on how you body looks. I used to be 320 and when I see race pictures I often see the "old" me. But she is still me. Keep running girl, stay strong and run happy.

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  4. You DO have a runner's body though Jess!! You are among the elite .01% of the population to have run a marathon! You have run it 4 times!!!! As you know, today's society adheres to the 'thin is in' motto. But we know better now. We know that health is what matters. Those kids have NOTHING on you Woman!! Erase those negative tapes that still replay in your head at times like this. You don't live there anymore. You've come a long way Baby!! <3

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  5. And... this is why I've always wanted to run but never have. Because at 300 pounds it's not so easy, and is made even harder when you've got the rest of the world pointing and laughing.

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    Replies
    1. NOT the rest of the world. Just a few ignorant people. The majority are cheering you on or wishing they were out there with you!! Give it a go!

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    2. Exactly what SarahJeanne Olson said!!!

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    3. Don't let someone else hold you back from something you want to do. You're just giving them the control over your life and IT'S YOUR LIFE! I'm over 200 and I just ran 10 miles on a very hilly course. I don't care what people think or how slow I'm going. I love that I'm out there every DAMN day trying for ME! And THAT'S all that matters. Take the first step and see where your heart will take you!

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    4. I'd rather someone laugh at me 300lbs and running, than 300lbs and sitting on my butt! Think of it that way.. I'm a big girl.. I get out there and try! I am far from a "real" runner, but I keep trying! Slow and steady wins the race!

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    5. Ditto times ten! I used to weigh over 350 and although I'm now around 165, I still have LOTS of fat rolls and skin that's not so pretty. I have to cover it all up to run and be comfortable and hope no one makes fun, but I love what running gives me and no one's careless words can change that! If you want something bad enough, you'll do it no matter what!

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    6. Although running feels empowering theres other great ways to exercise which are just as effective and sometimes better for the body. After foot surgery in January Im probably not going to be able to run until this time next year, so Im enjoying cycling and have some great cycling events to look forward to. :)

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  6. Ugh! People can be so insensitive! You ROCK! (and you look great!) =)

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  7. Wow. No words. If I had a moment with these BOYS they'd have their tale between their legs. That is straight up bullying. You look fabulous. I also don't have a "Runner's body", which only professional stick thin runners really have! Be proud of yourself, you look great and don't let COWARDS take that from you.

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  8. That is awful. You look great and should be proud of your body. Pay no attention to the people that ate hating. They most likely aren't going out and doing what you're doing!

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  9. I can SO relate!!! I used to hide when I went running (I'd go behind our elementary school).. but NOW?? I run on the street!! NOT going to live in fear of judgement cuz let's face it.. SOMEONE will ALWAYS be out there ready to judge us in a blink of an eye! So let them honk their horn, wave, or make nasty comments or looks at me while I enjoy my run.. I am Running For ME!!!

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  10. There must be something in the air today. I was also yelled at this morning while I was running, "Get that weight off!!" I'm less offended by the statement and more appalled at the disrespect people can so casually throw around.

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    1. exactly!!! Good for you for keeping at it!

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  13. You look amazing and I think you are a fabulous and inspiring runner.
    I'd like to see that punk get out of the car and try to keep up with you for a marathon!

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  14. People are jerks. Of course, I'm obnoxious enough I'd probably have yelled back "and you are still stupid", but that's probably not the best way to respond LOL.

    You are amazing and strong and those a$$holes can just stuff it.

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  15. You go girl. We all have unique bodies; unique to who we are. It has to be about more than that and you said it well. You have done more to encourage people to be healthy and exercise than most people I know, so be proud of that. You are amazing and beautiful the way God made you. xo

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  16. Bet they couldn't have run 2 miles with you. Shake it off and know that you are awesome.

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  17. I hate people, its very easy to be a bully behind a computer screen, text message, email and no a speeding car. ****ing asshats!

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  18. Young they might have been, but "men" they were not. Idiots. I run what I would consider a fair amount of miles a week, I eat healthy for the most part, and I still struggle with the last 15 lbs. I have a curvy body, large thighs, and big boobs. None of that went away when I started running 10 years ago. After the initial 25 lb weight loss I was left with what my husband says is a "killer" body but with what looks like chub to me and definitely not the typical "runner's body". 5'3'' and 146 lbs. This body carried me to a 25:20 pr in a 5k, a 2 hour half marathon, and too many "feel good" moments to count. Your speed and accomplishments inspire me.

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  19. Mean people suck.
    You, Rock!!

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  20. Ugh, I had this happen a few years ago when I first started back up running and first I cried and then I got MAD! You are amazing and inspiring to me, I cannot fathom running a full at this point and how many have you run? I know you know that no runner would ever say those things, it's always the asshole's that sit on the couch that judge that way. You are gorgeous and I'm glad that you could flip them off in your mind. They deserve worse though!

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  21. What idiots. You are amazing and inspire me to run when I don't want to. They are cowards. You are #whatsbeautiful.

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  22. Mean, stupid people. You're an inspiration to so many of us, don't let their tiny minds get you down.

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  23. Those boys clearly have more issues with themselves than they ever could have with you.

    You're an inspiration to us all - and the way you handled this is representative of what you ARE, and what they are NOT.

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  24. What little f'n a-holes!!! They must be really insecure to have to probably "shown off" to their friends. I bet not one of them would have done it had they been alone. You look fabulous and how anyone could call you fat is just not right!!! They were just being really mean, not saying anything true!!! You keep doing what you do and maybe they will grow up to be somewhat decent human beings - one can only hope!!

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  25. I love/hate this post. I hate what those boys said to you, but I LOVE your reaction. You are an amazing mother, woman, and athlete...don't you ever forget it. Keep it up, girl!!!

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  26. The world is full of dumbasses.

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  27. People are stupid. I wish you could challenge them to an endurance race cause I'm sure you would win! What a bunch of assess (excuse my language)! Sorry you had to deal with that!

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  28. One night I was walking home from the bar wearing a flouncy dress and some bitches yelled out their car window "Great dress for hiding those extra 15 pounds!"

    It was six years ago and I still cringe when I think of it. People are such assholes, and they always will be. But the thing is... you have it in your power to be the best version of yourself, but they are always going to be stuck as assholes. Or, if they do manage to stop being assholes, they will forever be haunted by their previous asshole ways. Either way, you are living the better life. You're an amazing role model for your kids and you are a good person. That's worth so much.

    And, for what it's worth, you aren't fat.

    Chin up! They are the cowards who had to speed off. You are the one standing your ground. Next time, yell out "let's have a foot race!"

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  29. Shame on them. May the fury of a thousand fire ants with VD descend on their private parts.

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    1. Can I just say ... I laughed so hard at this that I started crying? My bf came into the room (from across the house) to see what was going on!

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  30. Jerks! They weren't even seeing "you." They were just calling out nasty sh*t because they wanted to hurt somebody. You are amazing. You've come so far, you are beautiful, and some a-holes in a car can't change any of that.

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  31. Damn. They're probably just jealous because they know you would kill them in a race. I think you look amazing and you are an inspirational runner.

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  32. Stupid boys ! and you can't fix "stupid".....

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  33. Boys? Please. You just give them that knowing glance that says, "Just you wait." You have so much more on them than they will ever know. I pity them that they are in that place where they think comments like that are funny or cool. It didn't last five seconds on their lips but it reverberated with you all day. I would like to take them out back and invite all the Sole Sisters to beat the crap out of them. Of course, we're so bad ass it would only take one of us.

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  34. Those little bastards! I'm sorry to swear, but seriously... They can't pace you. They can't outtrain you. They cant catch you. F them. You're amazing-exactly the way you are! Love to you!
    Sarah
    www.thinfluenced.com

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  35. What a horrible thing to say.
    I think what they said has a lot more to do with THEM than what it has to do with you. Think of what type of person you have to be - or what you have to be going through (your own insecurities, etc.) - in order to say something so horrible to someone you don't even know.
    Overall, I think our country has a huge problem with just being plain rude, and I think we all need to be working to turn this around.
    So - props to you for keeping such a stellar attitude. You are definitely on the high ground on this one.
    (PS I think you look bombin', and I'm sure you ran faster than any of them could!)

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  36. Don't let the boys take anything from you! They are an immature bunch of a$$holes and you are SO much better than that. You're a mother and a mother runner...that makes you amazing, regardless of size. Keep up the great work because what you're doing is working!

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  37. Wow. That's all I can say. I hope you did flip them a ponytail. I can't believe someone that immature would do/say something like that. I would have NEVER considered you the forbidden 3-letter F word. You have run so many halfs and fulls at a pace that I struggle to maintain at my 130lb 27-year old self (that has zero kids). You are an amazing mom to your kids and to be out there pounding out those miles after all you sacrifice and do day in and day out is nothing less than amazing. I can only wish that when I grow up that I'm still in amazing shape like you! I'd like that childish man to own up to what he is able to accomplish. I bet he's never ran more than the high school mile in gym class.

    On another note--I would honk and cheer at every runner I pass while driving regardless of their weight (I don't because I don't like being honked at--more so because it scares me and I'm pretty sure they are yelling other calls at me). I love seeing those who do have more weight out there running--they inspire me. They motivate me. More power to them.

    Don't let those awful words tear you down. You have a husband, children, and family who love you to pieces and a whole blogging community that will willingly go hunt this guy down to put him in his place.

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  38. Just wanted to let you know that I kicked those kids asses! They will never be rude like that EVER AGAIN!

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  39. So sorry people can be so cruel...I just want to say that I have been following you for a while now, and I think you are super inspiring! Way to be positive about a negative situation!

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  40. Wow... People can be so rude/mean! Jess, you are beautiful and inspiring! Those guys are idiots and probably couldn't even walk a half mile without running out of breath! You keep doing what you're doing! You rock! :)

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  41. I know EXACTLY how you feel. I've lost 90 pounds, and it wasn't until I started running that I really began to accept my "new" body and appreciate it for what it could do -- flaws and all. Yet there's a part of me that still can't help but long for that more traditional "runner's" body, like you said...and I know I'll never have it.

    I've kept the weight off for five years now, and yet it's still a struggle not to see myself as the "old" me -- even when I'm crossing the line of another half marathon. You're an incredible athlete, you're in no way, shape, or form "fat," and honestly -- as someone who was bullied mercilessly for years and years -- you and I both know that WE are the winners here! Screw those a-holes. You're such an inspiration, and I'm so glad I found your blog! :)

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  42. I can't believe someone said that to you. Please don't let their rudeness change you. Karma will take care of them. I agree with what someone said above about what kind of place they must be in to think that is okay. They must have big problems in their life. You are not fat. You look awesome and I love you! I know it will be hard to forget what was said. I've never forgotten the guy that called me fat in front of a group of my friends. I was devastated. Now I think of him as an insignificant little person. I know this will not defeat you. You will continue inspiring everyone, everyday. :) Miss you!

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  43. If Gigi hadn't kicked their butts I would have! Mean people do not deserve even a fraction of a second of your thoughts. It amazes me how hurtful people can be. You're amazing Jess and your accomplishments are many. Nobody can take that away from you!

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  44. Dude, those @$$hats are lucky I wasn't with you, or I would have chased them down and given them an earful- surgery or no surgery! Why do people think they need to say crap like that?
    I bet those morons have never even ran a single mile as fast as you can, either- let alone a 4:16 marathon! And they've DEFINITELY never had kids! Morons. Absolute morons.

    I WANT TO PUNCH THEM!

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  45. I have to believe in karma. You are putting SO MUCH positive energy and light our into our dark world. Their negativity and ignorance will come back to them. It might not have happened that day, but it will come, and when they're thinking "Why me?" when it happens, I doubt they'll even remember such a stinging remark. I hope they do. And then there's Forrest Gump's momma's quote, "Stupid is as stupid does." You can't help stupid.

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  46. Ah Jess so sorry....you have to ignore them...they don't know anything about life probably
    They are just stupid people
    I lost 75 lbs myself
    I am now 5'11" and I weigh 140
    And
    A few months ago I had a similar experience
    They yelled "run fatty !" At me
    Did it bug me?
    Yep
    Of course,,,I still see myself as the bigger me...
    But I know those kids were young and stupid and I feel bad for their mothers and their future wives if they ever get one! Worst ....their daughters....can you imagine....
    Flip them! All fingers and ponytail!

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  47. Ah Jess so sorry....you have to ignore them...they don't know anything about life probably
    They are just stupid people
    I lost 75 lbs myself
    I am now 5'11" and I weigh 140
    And
    A few months ago I had a similar experience
    They yelled "run fatty !" At me
    Did it bug me?
    Yep
    Of course,,,I still see myself as the bigger me...
    But I know those kids were young and stupid and I feel bad for their mothers and their future wives if they ever get one! Worst ....their daughters....can you imagine....
    Flip them! All fingers and ponytail!

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  48. Ugh. Not okay at all. This makes me so mad. I bet they never run. They just drive around and make fun of people. It's because they feel so low and have zero motivation to go out and run half marathons and marathons - they feel the need to bring others down to their level. I'm proud of you momma. You are amazing and have inspired so many. Keep running and flip up your ponytail or finger or both!

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  49. Jess you are amazing. End of story.

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  50. Do you remember what those guys looked like? I'd like to rough them
    Up a bit! Eff them!

    I love your blog. Your story is very INSPIRING! You've run in numerous races. Once you've achieved goals, you become a role model to somone. I look up to you. Your pretty damn AMAZING! Don't ever doubt how inspiring your journey is to others. Even if no one ever to tells you. Keep moving, keep pushing through. That's what separates you from the rest. You got this!

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  51. Wow! That's just uncalled for! Those jerks! And they were probably the ones who were fat. Way to rise above and remember what it's taken for you to get there! You inspire so many!

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  52. Hugs. I wrote about this similar topic yesterday... it is SO hard.

    HUGS you are amazing!

    Rachel
    http://www.runningrachel.com/2013/05/just-a-number/

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  53. Hugs to you and yes, you keep waving that ponytail as you run on! After all, those punks were the ones SITTING in a moving vehicle as you RAN by. You continually put yourself out there mile after mile and inspire so many along the way. I know I don't comment on here often but I am ALWAYS encouraged by your Facebook pictures/ updates. It is so motivating to me knowing that there are other moms out there trying to better themselves while taking care of their families. Keep going Jess!!

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  54. I'm sorry Jess. Some boys will always be douche's.

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  55. You look in the mirror and wish you could see a runners body, I look in the mirror and wish I had your figure. You look amazing and many of us aspire to have your figure.
    So what if some nobody shouts out the window at you, you are NOT fat, you're an inspiration to so many people, those jerks in the car probably don't know the meaning of the word.
    Keep going Jess

    Linda - Skinny girl where art thou

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  56. People can be so mean. Sorry that you had to experience this. Some young kids just have so respect and think they are funny. I bet they can't even run a marathon like you can! You are awesome and don't let anyone tell you any different. I get the same dumb crap all of the time too and I just brush it off and keep on running!

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  57. I wish I could say it shouldn't bother you, but that would be naive. I still think about all the kids that called me fat in elementary school. The best we can do is turn the negative energy into something positive for ourselves. Because ultimately, that is who you are doing this for, yourself and those closest to you.

    I see mostly women commenting here, and while I cannot speak for my entire gender, I am sorry for our influence on body image. And for all the times we (myself included) are jerks. Don't worry about that "runner's body," it doesn't exist and yours is just wonderful the way it is! Watch any race, any distance, for proof we come in all forms. But you probably already know that. You are inspiring for telling your story, being honest, and being yourself. No stupid kids can take that away from you. Keep running, keep smiling, and keep being awesome!

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  58. What a bunch of jerks. I'm sorry you had to experience that, some people think it's funny to put others down. I'd like to see them run a marathon. People yell stuff at me all the time, I just try to ignore it and turn my music up.

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  59. When people are hurtful to you the pain is theirs not yours.
    Your fabulous!

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  60. Ugh that is terrible. I'm so sorry you had to encounter such ignorant idiots. I know how you feel though. My fat girl tries to sneak in my head from time to time. You are definitely not fat. You look amazing and feel proud of all you have accomplished!

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  61. so many have already so much, so I will just send hugs! Mean people suck, but we all love you <3

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  62. jess i hate this happened to you. i always feel like people are looking at me like i'm crazy when they hear ive run a marathon, like, this girl with this body didn't do it, or i bet she took 10 hours. i long for the day when i can not be like this, but the fat girl in me rears her ugly head. you're amazing and inspire me, don't let anyone take that from you!

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  63. I have come to realize that anyone who "spits" negativity about my running is almost always a PITA (pain-in-the-a**) slob who couldn't even imagine walking from the couch to the fridge and back without being winded.

    You rock, lady! Don't EVER let some drive-by jerk-off make you feel bad about yourself!

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  65. Those boys are "compensating". ;)

    You look great! And you are a running machine!

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  66. you're not fat but I really understand how you feel. As a former fatty myself, it's hard to love my body. Most days I do well, but when I haven't been eating well (too many graduations) , it's hard to not be hard on myself.

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  67. My mouth dropped open at the comments those kids made. WOW. To feel ok with saying that to ANYONE and then laughing about it because you think it's funny is absolutely awful. I am SO sorry you had to be the target of their boredom. You are amazing, awesome, and above all, you look great!! I'm glad you aren't letting them get you down!

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  68. What a bunch of jerks. Obviously someone didn't teach them the basics and it will come back to haunt them later in life. Be proud of the fact that they were in a car and you were doing something good for yourself. It is raining here too and I have been wanting to get out for a short little run just to get my frame of mind where it should be, and a Monday is always a great day to start off right.

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  69. if anything hopefully that comment made you stronger. Its amazing to me to see how everyone can view the same thing so differently. I personally LOVE seeing people run who don't have a runner's body (not saying that you don't) My most inspiration runs is when I pass an old man or lady wheezing and barely going faster than I can walk, but they are out there giving it their all. Screw those guys, obviously they aren't runners :)

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  70. How horrible! What dueche bags. And ya know what? I bet you could beat them in a race any day. What a way for them to prove to the world that they are ignorant and thoughtless human beings. I'm so sorry you had to go through that!

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  71. I have had that happen to me because apparently from the safety of their car men become particularly belligerent towards athletic women. Let's just say I utilized an F word of my own and some very useful hand gestures to get my point across.

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  72. They are still stupid. And you can't change stupid. But you can change how you feel about yourself and how you embrace the amazing athletic body your developing/molding/relying on to live. Your awesome. Remember that.
    you can read about my own journey about self embracement at runningjacksons.blogspot.com. Run on Supermomma!!

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  73. You are one of the strongest women I know, even if it's only virtually. I am always amazed at how you get our there and run day after day while juggling family and work too. You've run many races and have nothing to prove to the bullies that don't know you. What sort of person yells something like that our the window anyway -ugh! Continue to run strong!

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  74. I wonder how many of the pillocks (British for idiots) in the car could get up at 4am, run 26.2(and generally over) miles, head home to feed, bathe and entertain two little uns, whilst updating a kick-ass blog. My answer is none. Dont give them a second thought. Carry on being the fabulous Jess that you are. Carry on :)

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  75. What is wrong w/ people! What jerks. I get comments from people I know..." you don't look like a marathon runner". Screw you! When was the last time u went to a marathon! Marathon runners are all shapes and sizes! I used to weigh 251 lbs. Now I weigh 190. I got down to 160 but put some back on. Anyway, keep doing what you love! When u are 60 & those guys are 60... I know who will look better & younger!

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  76. Ugh, that is so horrible! I can't believe how rude people are. What possesses a person to insult someone when they're obviously trying to make progress? You look fantastic, though! He had no basis for calling you fat. He was just an idiot.
    George - www.revolutionhomegymreview.com

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  77. Oh Jess. This is so horrible to read about. Most of us struggle with body image and that is the LAST thing anyone needs. Those guys are losers. Just keep the satisfaction in knowing they probably couldn't run a mile and you could kick their asses in a race at a moment's notice. (((Hugs)))

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  78. The boys need to learn the lesson: If you do not have anything nice to say, say nothing at all. They also need a lesson in respect and compassion. That aside-if you run, you are a runner. And you have a runners body. We all struggle with body image in one way or another. Hugs and high fives to you all!

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I appreciate your feedback and comments!