So one of Toirdhealbheach Beucail's stupid little secrets (after all we are among friends here): I struggle with my body image.
I have no idea why. It is not like anyone has ever commented on it And actually, I am reasonably good health. But for some unknown reason, my weight - a simple number, for goodness sake - has always been a barrier for me. I have consistently 160-165 for almost 30 years. But it still bothers me.
This month also represents the sixth month that I have been lifting as more than an activity. How am I doing? Here were my numbers in July, when I started:
Bench Press: 1 x 110 lbs
Push Press: 1 x 65 lbs
Deadlift: 1 x 130 lbs
Squat: 1 x 155 lbs
As of this last week, these were my numbers:
Bench Press: 8 x 130 lbs
Push Press: 8 x 75 lbs
Deadlift: 8 x 200 lbs
Squat: 8 x 220 lbs
Legitimate progress (which I assure you, is completely - and painfully - earned).
Here is the issue: my weight has not changed at all. Weighed myself this morning. Right back at 165.
Immediately I ran back into my old scripts, all the old body things that I tell myself - including the fact that I do not look (or feel) a bit less fat (there, I've said it).
And then I looked at the numbers.
Iron does not lie. You cannot fake strong. Your numbers are what your numbers are.
And I had trouble reconciling the two. I should weigh less, right? I am lifting a lot heavier than I used to.
And then the thought came to my mind: It is not what you weight is, it is what your weight consists of.
I can lift a great deal more than I could before. That means I have more muscle than I do before. It is replacing the other parts slowly. So why do I need to worry about the number on the scale? If it is lean muscle mass, it is eventually going to change anyway.
Change comes sometimes dropping slow and often in ways we cannot see. But never doubt that it is coming.