Struggles of a Big Girl

So, Girl Scout cookies are in. That’s always a special fifteen pounds a year for me. It’s okay to have eleven Thin Mints in less than ten minutes while you watch The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, right? I mean, I eat an apple for lunch everyday and I “ran” on the treadmill for 30 minutes at 4.5 miles an hour. I burned so many calories so it’s just like evening out my calorie intake…

I’m the queen of coming up with excuses to avoid the gym. Oh god! Tickle in the back of my throat? Nope, can’t go. I’m definitely going to die. Have to stay home and cook a big pot of spaghetti with meatballs with some Texas Toast and then lay on the couch watching Downton Abbey until I fall asleep. Meatballs cure sore throats. Fuck Mucinex. But, hey, I use whole wheat pasta and the organic pasta sauce. Less sodium.

I worked out a lot more when I was single and had high stress in my life. In college, my boyfriend went to jail for four months for breaking his house arrest to go get high and play poker at a bar. So naturally I thought, well he’s a winner. Let me stick around for this gem. I have to get skinny so when he gets home I’m really hot! You know, because the convicted felons are the ones you want to impress. It worked. I ran four miles every day for four months and lost about thirty pounds.

 When I was living in Austin, right after I made the decision to move back to Florida, I had a panic attack a day and worried incessantly about the transition from being a semi-independent mess to living with my parents again until I got on my feet. I self-medicated by being active. I started running every day around Town Lake and lost eighteen pounds in two months.

 Now that I’m tied down to my current location because of my job, graduate school and a loving boyfriend with no criminal history, I have no reason to go to the gym. If only that were true. There is motivation in my face all the time to get fit, i.e., the idea of fitting into a wedding dress and looking beautiful on my wedding day, fitting back into the $100 bathing suit I bought last summer, being heart healthy because, let’s face it, I’m not getting any younger. It all overwhelms me and then I just sort of shut down and being lazy seems way more fun than sweating.

 Sometimes I’ll stand under the shower head and imagine that the water raining down on me will slough away all the fat and I’ll step out of the shower looking exactly like Kate Upton on the cover of Sports Illustrated. Only, what I really see when I step onto the shag carpet in front of the mirror is everything but. I spend a lot of time standing in front of the mirror picking apart all of the imperfections. I’ve convinced myself that they depreciate my value.

 It doesn’t matter how long I stand in front of the mirror in disgust over what I’ve turned into over the last year though. It does not matter that I’m not getting any younger and I can always buy a bigger bathing suit. I’m fully aware of my problems. I work out but I still don’t push myself any harder than my normal 3-4 days a week for an hour run/walk/jog at the gym. Sugar is a serious issue for me. The Publix Bakery is my vice. Lately, I’ve been forcing myself to go to the Publix that’s in the same shopping center as my gym if I have to get something for dinner or I forgot to get laundry detergent. Nine times out of ten, I know that I’ll run into the girl who was just on the treadmill next to me running like a graceful gazelle at 6 mph on 15 incline. Buying her grapes and tofu and quinoa salad. She already saw me heaving and sweating to death after a 2 mile jog on an even incline I won’t be caught dead looking at Key Lime Pie and Brownie Bites.

Every time I go to the doctor he says, really nonchalantly, without looking me in the eye, “Well you know there’s the new law that says we are supposed to remind you every six months that you need to lose weight.” Only, I go to the doctor once a month and he tells me every time I go. And he knows he tells me every time but he sees that the scale has gone up two pounds each visit so he’s really hoping if he pushes the issue I’ll get it. He recently diagnosed me with abnormally high-cholesterol.  He prescribed Pravastatin which I’m supposed to take every night before I go to bed. He said as he wrote the script, “this could really be controlled with diet and exercise.” And I shook my head with acknowledgement and understanding but I’m really thinking Okay, well I need to go to pick up some steak for dinner anyway. I guess I can stop off at the pharmacy and pay the $7 copay.

 I’ve joined Weight Watchers a handful of times and only stick to it for a few weeks before canceling my membership. I went on Atkins in high school and lost about 40 pounds but the second I ate a piece of cake at a friend’s graduation party I instantaneously gained it all back. I’ve been on the all fruit and veggie diet, the shake diet, I’ve had bouts with anorexia since I started comparing myself to Malibu Barbie in the second grade. I wake up some mornings with determination. I’m not going to eat today. I will not eat today. Then someone will bring Dunkin Donuts in for the staff meeting and then it’s, Tomorrow, Tomorrow I’ll be anorexic. I won’t lie, there have been several occasions in my life where I have thrown up everything I put in my body for a week or two but then I give up because I’m exhausted and I feel disgusting and Hi, it’s not working. I’m still fat.

 All jokes aside, these are the struggles big girls face. Yeah I’ll laugh it off. I’m very self-aware and I’m the first person to joke about my weight. I have this need to point out my flaws because I know that other people are taking a mental note. Especially my family. I read Fat Girl: A True Story by Judith Moore when I was in college and I may be misquoting but she says “I could always tell that I’d gained the weight back because people stopped telling me that I looked great.” That line has always stuck with me because it’s such a truism.

I know what works for my body but it’s not easy getting to a point where I won’t give up. I am a quitter. I do not follow through on things. I just wonder what it’s going to take to get me to wake up and really fight to get a healthy weight. I don’t know. I really don’t. I know that I’m going to go to the gym for an hour today when it should probably be two and I’ll run/walk/jog at 4.5 mph, sweat a little and then go home and try really hard to not even look at the Tagalongs in my freezer.

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11 Responses to Struggles of a Big Girl

  1. At least you are still working out….I haven’t worked out since November….I could certainly identify with a lot in this post. Keep trying, celebrate the victories & try to forgive the rest.


  2. Janene says:

    This by far is my favorite posting! I think it’s because I can totally relate. Keep writing, cause I really enjoy reading!


  3. Okay, This was funny But I understand the not so funny part too. Been there and it sucks. Have you ever checked out the Venus Factor diet? I lost weight and have been able to maintain it without…wait for it….exercising! Seriously, it works. Look it up, and the best part? You can still eat your Girl Scout cookies thank God because I have 5 boxes in my pantry 😉


  4. holley4734 says:

    I hear you! For real. 🙂 Great post!


  5. Gin says:

    I love your writing. I think all it’s really important is to be active whatever that is. one hour a day if it s cleaning dishes, gardening or run because been healthy is important as we get older. Girls scout cookies will not kill you. We deserve them. It’s the long term habits that kill us.


    • kimpryor says:

      Aw thanks Gin! What kills me is sitting at a desk all day, only moving for one hour at the gym and then eating 37 Thin Mints in less than 3 minutes!


  6. I’m glad your anorexia phase didn’t last too long. All things aside, how much ever joggin/running/etcetera that you’re doing, keep it up. A lot of people I know have had the same issues and didn’t have enough stamina, but it builds up in time if you continue your workout and don’t change your routine; it doesn’t need to be extensive, just regular.
    I really like how you write this, though. Light hearted, yet it addresses a very big problem. Kudos!


  7. Your writing is very honest and full of energy. There are a lot of people out there that relate to you. I used to be one of them. You don’t need to spend hours in the gym. 40 mins of a decent workout program is enough. Get your mind right first, the progress will be long and full of struggle but small changes to the diet i.e. replace sugar with stevia, replace cereals to oats mixed with vanilla extract and cinnamon etc., the lists are endless. Diets don’t work. You are capable. Good luck deary 🙂


  8. Hi – – You have such an engaging, witty, and almost free association style of writing that immediately drew me in. I was originally coming here to thank you for following me (how did you find me if you don’t mind my asking?) and I was immediately mesmerized.

    Here’s the thing – – everything you wrote struck chords for me because I’ve been there and done it all. And the thing is you’re binge eating (like I did) because that is a symptom of a DEEPER issue which, for whatever reason, has not been addressed yet. And yes, the other side of binge eating is all the “other” make-up behaviors we do to compensate for it. So yeah, I did the fasting, the exercising for 3/4 hours a day, (luckily I didn’t fall into the vomiting thing but I could could keep a perfect fast up forever, nothing but water and vitamins for days) and the beating yourself up which just sets up the cycle to begin all over again because DEPRIVATION will always lead to bingeing. It’s like a math equation. It’s like yin and yang.

    So you have to stop the deprivation part first before the bingeing will stop (meaning all those diets we convince ourselves are fun and easy to do, but deep down we feel we’re in a prison and cannot wait for the day we can break out …i.e. the cake at your friend’s grad party. Yeah, I did Atkin’s too…and convinced myself I loved protein and HATED carbs….I became carbaphobic and had to actually retrain my body to handle complex carbs because I was so scared of them, my body would bloat up if I had a bite of bread or potato – – I had gotten my system used to ONLY protein and veggies. But you can only do that misery for so long…then the damn breaks because….WE ALL WANT FREEDOM. No human being wants to be jailed.

    Get Geneen Roth books. They have corresponding matching workbooks – – write in them. That will really help you get out of this vicious cycle you’re in. It’s a merry-go-round and roller coaster all rolled into one!. But my main point is, “IT is not really about the food.” The food is just the outer symptom that you can see because it manifests itself as weight on your body. But the deeper issue (the real underlying problem!!!!) is not showing itself physically or in any tangible way, but emotionally there is either some intense hurt/pain/trauma that needs soothing/healing or some void/emptiness in your life that needs filling and you (we) act it all out thru the use of food. Food is just a prop. Either bingeing or restricting (dieting) because that’s all you know how to do. For now. But that will change.

    Trust. Trust that the answers are within. Dare to break free from our society that dictates you must be a size 2/3 to be beautiful/healthy. THAT”S simply not true.

    I hope some of this helps. I have suffered with all this stuff since age 14 (was even hospitalized for it!) and I still have bouts of it (body image hatred) but 35 years later, I am making peace with myself and I can finally say I like myself and the size i am meant to be without all the dieting and bingeing may not be a fashion model, but that’s okay. It’s healthy. And most importantly, it’s me.

    I hope some of this helps. Wow, did I get on a rant! I mainly wanted to compliment your writing style!! See what you get for being such a damn good writer!!
    take care,


    • kimpryor says:

      Thanks for the comment! I really appreciate all the wors for wisdom and advice! I found your blog bc you commented on my post “Introducing the Boyfriend.” I hope you keep reading. I have more fun stuff on the way!


  9. MissFit says:

    love this. thank you for your candid writing, Kim. As someone else mentioned I see the funny and not-so parts.
    there are lots of ways to lose weight and lots of ways to gain it too. Like you, I’ve had my battle with underweight, overweight and all the agonizing in betweens. Focus on health. not on weight. You have a ton of supports in your personal life and the Blogosphere. Let me know if there’s anyway I can help or maybe just shoot the $hit. We all have our vices. If someone says they don’t ; well, their’s is simply just Lying


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