Tag Archives: numbers

Throwbacks on comparison and number fixation.

After a most perfect weekend of unplanned-ness, good, quality time with M, and the downtime I’ve been craving (like whoa), I sit here somewhat amazed at a few things I realized about my habits and how they’ve changed.

In particular? Comparison and number fixation. 

These are two things that have dogged me big time in the past year, where I allowed comparing myself to others, including my sister Jess and to well, just about anyone, and my fixation on numbers (namely – the scale) to drag me down and lose sight of my achievements and progress.

There were two instances where I had an amazing a-ha moment that made me realize that I’ve come a lot farther than I really even realized. So, I call this a ‘throwback’ of sorts because I recall it being just about this time last year where I was neck-deep in a downward spiral of self negativity with relation to comparison and number fixation.

The first instance? Running.

At this point last year, I was struggling to embrace running, to love it as much as I proclaimed. To want to run another half marathon. And while I did run another half marathon last year, it was also that experience that made me realize that I am NOT a racer. But deep down? I was comparing myself to my sister. And her amazing PR. And wondering ‘why not me?’ WHY can’t I do it? Why is she better than me?

Fast forward to this weekend. My sister and brother in law ran a kick-ass half marathon…another PR. And I don’t think I could have been prouder if I tried. I was beaming when she texted me her finish. I was excited and proud to see all of the congratulatory tweets and Facebook posts. I reveled in it. And I didn’t feel an ounce of jealousy, frustration or ‘why not me?’ moments. In fact, I channeled her ‘run happy’ mantra on my own run that morning with M, as we spontaneously decided to find a new route. And ya know what? I ran happy.

Compare THAT to last year? I can’t even describe how happy that makes me. I’m not comparing anymore. I’ve released myself of it. And instead? I’m proud of her, and happily running my own way.

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The second instance? I decided to weigh myself this weekend, after not weighing myself since December. I honestly had no idea what the scale would say. Of course, I hoped it would be lower than when I weighed in December, but told myself to only do it if I knew I could handle what it said.

So, as I waited to teach my barre n9ne class on Sunday, I stepped on the scale. And looked down. At first, I was happy. It was below my goal weight of that December timeframe. But then my mind automatically started to want to compare. At first, I did. And then I brushed it off. And then I did it again. I started to fixate. But it was half-hearted. I didn’t WANT to compare, or fixate, or obsess. I taught my class, I channeled my frustration (and probably killed my clients, hehe, but hey, what’s a little extra sweat on a Sunday Funday?!). I looked in the mirror. In my brand-new Lululemon outfit that I couldn’t believe I was wearing. Crops I never thought I could rock. And I smiled. I felt good. The number started not to matter so much, or rather, I started to own that number, to be proud of it, and not lose sight of all that I’ve accomplished in the ‘year of barre n9ne’.

On my drive home, I thought about it some more. And I realized something that really drove it home for me. A proportional loss that made me realize that I had, indeed, worked so hard, accomplishing a number that I wanted to own, rather than ‘wish away’ into a lower, phantom number, I embraced it. 100%. 

And that, my friends, are two examples of harnessing two very almost-paralyzing habits – comparison and number fixation – and instead, embracing and celebrating the change, the progress, and the determination that I’ve worked so hard for. There’s no such thing as comparison…to anyone but yourself. 

This one needs zero explanation. Zero.

“The number only has as much power as you give it”

I’ve never fully believed words spoken to me more than I did last night.

Words spoken by M after I started to fixate on a particular number I saw last night that I wasn’t quite expecting. Now I won’t go into details of that number, because honestly, in the grand scheme of things, it just doesn’t matter. What does matter is how I handled it and what I learned last night.

I thought I would be more upset. I started to fixate.

But then I looked at myself in the mirror. Really looked. And you know what? I look GOOD. I do. I have worked really hard. Numbers don’t always show the true picture, in my opinion. It’s how you look, feel, and how your clothes fit.

And in the grand scheme of things, there are far more bigger things in life than worrying about numbers. Thank you again Susan for such a perspective-laden post. It’s one I will honestly always look to when I start to go down negative paths.

“The number only has as much power as you give it.”

I didn’t give it power. I used my own willpower to combat any fixations from happening. I used my own willpower not to go down a self-defeating path, tearing myself apart. I used my own willpower to turn around the negativity that was brewing into positivity. Mind over matter. I am winning this battle against overthinking, anxiety, and negative self-image and body-image.

Six months ago, I didn’t think it was possible. Three months ago, I didn’t think it was possible. But now? It is. It feels vindicating, as though I’ve won the battle against myself. I’m winning it, and I don’t ever want to go back to letting it win over me again.

It feels like I can breathe again. Today is a new day. And it feels so good.

*update* this is, in fact, not my ass. As much as I'd like for it to be 😉

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In other news…I am excited to see that my running challenge is getting some interest from this fabulous blog-land (see my sister’s fun post on our twitter chatter the other night, it was priceless!). Lee is in, and I think Alicia might be too. Nikki as well, but for yoga and ‘twitter accountability.’

Who else wants to join?? I seriously think it is going to help me, and others, get through the cold winter months and keep up the momentum we’ve all built up all year long. Bring it ON!!