Monday, 23 May 2011

Does the mirror ever lie?


However, that isn't to say that what we believe we see in the mirror is always an accurate reflection.

For the past couple of weeks I've been very conscious of my reflection and when I changed to go for a run yesterday I noted that my 3/4 length running tights (I refuse to recognise that I could own and wear anything called 'capri pants') no longer appeared flattering, that there was a clear overhang above the waist and that overall I looked 'stocky'. I was less than impressed.

The previous Sunday I'd changed into similar clothing but added a water bottle belt. I could still do it up at its normal length but it seemed to split my stomach into prominent overhang and 'underhang', and if I loosened it to the point where this stopped the belt was too loose to run with. That grey mood contributed to a lack of enthusiasm for the run, which, coupled with strong winds and a sudden downpour, meant I parked up at the start of the route, opened the door to get out and immediately closed it again and drove home.

Likewise, I haven't been to the gym in 3 weeks as I felt that I'd look notably flabby to anyone there.

Essentially I felt ashamed of how I looked and thought others would notice it too.

Given time to think on yesterday's run it occurred to me that the reverse is true.

Had I started a stone heavier than now and had lost that weight I'd be looking in the mirror and thinking how svelte I looked, eager to don my exercise attire and get out there. The reflected image would be exactly the same but my perception of it, very different.

In the future I'll continue to enjoy the reward of feeling I look good, but if I have any gains I'm going to try and remind myself to see the glass as half full. Maybe in that way a one day blip wont become a 3 week rut.


Maria said...

So true and I think to some extent we will never be happy with how we look (and I mean "we" as in everyone)- that thing about the running belt is so true- mine does not look flattering on me at all, but it is the comfiest way to carry water, and if I loosen it to look better, it bangs about all over the place. So my marathon pics will not be flattering but I will be hydrated! Yes- the glass is half full so be happy with how strong/ fit/ healthy etc you are.
And thanks for the safety pins thing- had not thought of that

ursus said...

Haha - I'm with you on 3/4-length-running-tights - Bear's don't wear "capri pants" either ;-).

I can relate to quite a few other things too - avoiding the gym because I'm embarrassed at my weight gain, lack of enthusiasm to run, knowing that if I'd come down to this weight rather than up I would feel a lot better about it... I've spanned a weight range of 6 stone during my adult life (and have hit both the top and bottom of that range at least twice) and it is amazing how 'relative' our perception of being at different numbers is.

Good luck with getting back into your exercise groove - it will start to feel great again soon!

Manj said...

No, it doesn't but sometimes I wish it did because then I wouldn't be so hard on myself.

As always, so much of what you write about is such a reflection of my thoughts and feelings too and I thank you for sharing Rob 

The glass as half full eh? I shall try to remember that the next time I run out of the gym in tears about how fat I look  x