What the hell is Ditch the Tiara?

Redefining the word beautiful...one dirty, sweaty, bruised up mile at a time, with a few downward dogs along the way...

Tuesday, December 11, 2012


These past few months I've been working on "homework." Switching gears from swimming, biking and running. I've spent a lot of time in the gym, and 2 days a week with a personal trainer who continually challenges me. He told me that I am one of his favorite clients [READ: BRAGGING] ...constantly letting me know how I work extremely hard...I never complain or say "I can't" as he throws heavy weight on machines that used to intimidate the hell out of me (the word can't is no longer in my vocabulary)... we are working on my power to weight ratio, increasing the weight I work with, achieving PR after PR. Crazy good stuff.
CONFESSION: When I was going through "transition" earlier this year, at 5' 9", I weighed in at a whopping 122lbs (note sarcasm)... I know what you're thinking, believe me I have heard it all..."you are SO thin", "I'm SO concerned about you", "you SO need to eat more"...and so on. I ate little and drank, a lot. That was my coping mechanism and of course there was Ironman training...12-21 hours a week of intense cardio. In August I weighed in at 125lbs at IM Louisville (slight progress)...and after spending the past 3 1/2 months in the gym, I'm in the ballpark of 133lbs (huge progress)...difficult to talk about? F**k yes. Empowering to share? Oh God yes. 

I felt like I was always defined by my weight- only loveable because I was thin...I have dealt with this painful misconception for [WAIT FOR IT] 24 years... *sigh* ...more than half my life. Since I can remember, if I was thin, I would get the attention I was yearning for. (For reasons undisclosed, it actually never dawned on me that someone may have actually cared about what was on the inside.) When I was 40lbs heavier in college, I craved attention - even when it was negative. As you can imagine, along with finally sharing this comes a huge amount of fear and shame...but I know I'm not alone, especially in the small bubble of endurance triathlon. Chrissie Wellington recently came out and shared her weight/eating issues and the pressure she put on herself, an idol and IM icon. Wow, how I could relate.

Tears well up as I write, reminisce, and come to terms with the plight of my past weight issues and struggles. Ultimately, I want to be loved...BUT it isn't until recently that I figured out by whom...I now realize that I just want to be loved by the most important person in the world...M.E. So many people love and care about me, why shouldn't I? For the past several months, I have made huge strides and am 95% *there* and am in "recovery"... rationality is finally rushing over me. I don't want to be the skinny girl anymore.  She was so unhappy! I just want to be me because the girl that I see in the mirror every day has actually never been happier.

I try to live and breathe positivity and start each day with a brand new attitude...life is all about second, third, fourth chances and if we're lucky, more...How brilliant that we are given a new gift every day when we simply...WAKE UP. Suzy Sunshine...yup, that's me as I wholeheartedly continue to live in the beautiful moments called my life...this is my reality. Don't get me wrong, I still struggle...but in doing so, it's what makes those beautiful moments so... beautiful.


Christi said...

Wow, I am so proud of you and all that you have accomplished!

lori cunningham said...


Erin Carson said...

beautiful. thanks for sharing! if only we could all love ourselves for who we are- inside and out. the world would be a much nicer place... :) and you truly ARE beautiful INSIDE and OUT!!

jill privalsky said...

it's so true.. sometimes when we are unhappy with something in our lives, or feel overwhelmed, we turn to something that we can sortof control..

i have been there. in my case, starving was the answer. i starved away my high school cross country years.

today, i realize it's not my size that matters.. i love being active. so now, by body is all about what it can perform or do.. wherever i am healthiest, let me be there so i can do what i love.

RunnerChick said...

Do you ever get tired of me saying how awesome you are? how much you inspire me? Cause you're going to have to put up with it. I love you and am happy you are finding happiness!! YOU deserve it!!