“This is a letter to a Coach, from a past eating disorder patient. A year ago the sound of my alarm blaring at 5:30 a.m. set my body, or lack thereof, into auto pilot mode. Running shorts, sports bra, socks, shoes, iPhone and keys-out the door no later than 5:35 a.m. Down to a science I could do the elliptical from 5:45 a.m. to 6:00 a.m. and switch over to the treadmill to watch an hour long episode of Law and Order, drowning out the sound of my feet smacking the rubber and the internal screaming begging me to stop. The number of calories burned by 7:00 a.m. was the number that controlled the rest of the day. The number of calories that could be consumed without guilt, the number flashing in my mind as I watched others eating foods I dare not touch, and the number I would one day realize made life feel more bitter and lonely than I ever thought possible.
Thank you for not generating a number of calories burned for people like myself to be enslaved by. After spending the past two months loading and unloading 10 pound and 15 pound plates did I realize the gravity of where I once was, and where I am now. A place where I can physically feel the weight I gained to be healthy and to stay in recovery, while simultaneously dead-lifting my own body weight, only to smile and say, “How do I get stronger?”
Thank you for teaching me that being strong no longer means losing weight or skipping meals, thank you for teaching me that being strong means knowing my limits, eating new foods, and always being adventurous. Thank you for teaching me that practicing handstands, climbing a rope, and pushing a ridiculous sled with weight on it is better than any day spent counting calories or stepping on and off the scale.
I’d say as a coach you probably witness some incredible feats, thank you for witnessing and helping me come alive.”
Balance Athletics ECS Client