Making fun of myself has been a normal way of life for me for a long time. I think it is just a way of dealing with the issues I have had in my past, my lack of a positive self image of self worth. I cannot go into detail on why I think I am like the way I am, or feel the way I do, but at my age (approaching 50) I am who I am at this point, so there really no need in trying to drastically change myself now … is there?
I have been “called to task” on this a few times in the past year. Amazingly enough, though, not by family, who I think is just used to this sense of humor I have, but more so by friends and training teammates who have not known me a long time. The see the title of this blog, The Fat Slow Triathlete, see my numerous reference to me being old, or fat, or slow, or whatever, and tell me I am none of those things and should not think of myself in this way. Jennifer is on me about it, but she is no better than I am in this department. Megan is ALWAYS on me about blog post titles, statements I make, which I do take to heart at times, and sometimes not. Even Genna Beth and Cheena Bike chime in from time to time to “correct” me in what I have been saying. They don’t see what I see in the mirror.
Some would say that it is in some way a cry for attention. Kind of like reverse psychology. If I say how fat I am, then someone will validate what I do by telling me I am not fat. A valid point I guess, but what these people truly do not understand is that I am in no way trying to validate my progress. It is nice when someone notices a weight loss, or that your “run looks pretty (to borrow a statement from Genna Beth during one TNT training day)”, but I am really not the type to fish for these compliments. My sister, when I started writing this blog, I think saw it as a way to get validation and attention. She didn’t understand that I was using it as a way to keep myself on target. She has since come around, or is faking it very well. At least she is not criticizing it anymore. My brother got what I was doing immediately, but he is the athletic type and knew how I was feeling and understood my need to “share” it with people.
This sharing of new ideas and techniques can also cause people to view me in a way that is not always pleasant. I recently wrote a post about the way some present food that is not good for you as OK to eat. Even though I began that post in my normal self deprecating manner by saying I have become one of those annoying people, like born again Christians or recent non-smokers, and was clear (I thought) that the person who posted the picture was NOT the one I was talking about, it still upset a number of readers. I took down the post, which is not in my character at all and only the second time I have done so, because I felt that the point I was trying to make was lost. I heard from MANY people that loved the post and understood what I was trying to say, but I just felt it was a better action to take (but one I am not ever do again after getting some advice on it from some pretty well known bloggers/podcasters). The hard truth is that I have not met ONE person through this training journey that I dislike. There are of course some I get along with better than others, but everyone from KC, to Summer, to Beth, to Genna Beth, to Cheena, to Theresa, to Megan, even to Pete, Lyle, Gene … I have learned something from everyone and hold every one of them in very high regard. I would never what to hurt any of their feelings, especially unintentionally.
You get excited when you find something new that works for you, and the normal human response is to share this knowledge. I started No Sugar No Grains eating, and after a year of being stuck between 255 and 260 pounds the weight started dropping again. Wow, I thought to myself, I need to share this … I NEED to share this with people. That doesn’t always go over in the way it is intended. I’ve learned that lesson. KC put it the right way to get it through my hard marble-like head. “State what you want to get across. Give them the facts. If they choose not to listen, let it go.” I am paraphrasing of course, but it was along those lines. That is hard for me, because as little self esteem as I have, when I feel I am right about something, I can be a bit stubborn, and get pretty irritated when some one closes their mind.Now I am discovering Chi Running methods that is making me feel the need to SHARE SHARE SHARE. I am trying to not be a zealot again.
I’m working on it.