No, I don’t know what it’s like. I do not have a dramatic transformation story.
As a personal trainer working at a weight loss camp, I felt like a fraud. In some sense, I still do – working with clients who have long weight loss journeys ahead and 50+ pounds to shed. They have every right to a trainer who understands. I want to understand.
I feel like a fraud because I have not been there.
During my time as a weight loss camp counselor this summer, I always feared that someone would say “But you don’t know what it’s like.” I don’t. And while they may have been thinking that, it’s something I cannot change.
But I have been here: a place where I never felt good enough. I’ve struggled with body image, confidence, self-worth, feelings of guilt, dissatisfaction and unhappiness. I’ve compared myself to others, time and time again, only to realize I could never become someone else – and even if I could, would I be happy there?
I have enough experience to say that getting to a certain weight or body fat percentage (that alone) will not make you any happier; that you are an amazing, uniquely gifted being, regardless of your size; that your weight does not and cannot define your worth.
If you are not satisfied with your body now, you will never be. Because even in people at a healthy weight, I see this all around me every day. I see it at the starting line of races. I see it in transformational weight loss stories. I’ve seen it in myself.
All I have are my unique experiences, a desire to listen and understand, an open mind and a perspective that is continuously evolving. I hope that’s enough.