- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Twitter: @tidbits_of_tara
- Facebook: A Life Changing Journey/ Tara Martin
F(requently) A(sked) Q(uestions)
(work in progress)
- What drives you every day to get up early and kick ass?
It’s not always easy to get up as early as I do on most mornings. I get up usually around the 3:30a hour in order to make it to a boxing class or to a training session by 5a. I get up that early because I know that if I don’t take care of myself first and foremost then the ability to take care of those around me is pretty much down the tubes. I also know myself well enough that if I try to wait until the afternoon the likelihood that I’ve come up with some excuse as to why I’m not breaking a sweat is pretty likely. Oh and of course no one is at the freaking gym at 5a so I have my choice of equipment without a line (bonus!)…
- What made you decide to start changing. What was the hardest step?
Turning 40 was a big wake up call for me. In my 20′s I spent a majority of the time trying to get my life back together after battling both an addiction and losing my mother to cancer very early on. I spent a lot of time trying to figure out what I wanted to be when I grew up but also coming into my own as I moved to the “big city” (Seattle). Focusing on my identity as a queer woman in a queer community it wasn’t until I was late into my 20′s that I decided to go back to school after a much longer than anticipated stunt as a professional body pierce and pursue becoming a nationally certified sign language interpreter. I would then spend the next 10 years trying to carve out my little “American Dream”, moving back to my home town of Tacoma, buying a house, getting a few dogs and thinking this was what my life was going to be like for the next (enter random number here) years. Married, working and paying my taxes as a well abiding citizen something changed when I looked at myself in the mirror at the age of 40 and realized my dream was no dream at all.
I wanted a stronger body. A better relationship with myself. A stronger understanding that my past does not dictate my future but rather gives me the necessary tools to get out there and get what I deserve.
The hardest step? The first one. I was morbidly obese. I couldn’t just go out and run a marathon. I could barely walk up the steps without needing to stop and catch my breath. Understanding and subsequently allowing the baby steps which led to bigger steps which led to life changing steps made this journey one of ever lasting success but that very first step was brutal.
- What 3 words do you think are most helpful when giving advice to people about losing weight?
You deserve this.
I think one of the most detrimental aspects to admitting that you need to lose a substantial amount of weight (over 100 pounds) is the feeling that you failed for being so overweight (and in my case medically morbidly obese). When you spend your life fat you tend to spend your life hiding. Hiding from yourself. Hiding from your potential. Hiding from the athlete that is begging to get out (and by athlete I mean that spirit inside that wants to move).
You focus more on the needs of others instead of the need of yourself. You make excuses about why you can’t, why you would never be able too, and why “this” time won’t be any different than the “last” time. Screw that! You deserve to lose the weight. You deserve to stand up and take control of your life. You deserve to look in the mirror and say to your self “Self, I fucking love you so much I’m going to do everything and anything I can to make sure we have a long (and super awesome) life together”…
- How is life different now that you’ve lost over 100 pounds?
Before I didn’t like to spend time outdoors. I preferred the shelter of having a roof over my head (preferably with a/c) and spending hours and hours on end either a) watching t.v. or b) playing World of Warcraft. I was not a social person. I also have Aspergers so social outings are still a little on the awkward side but now that I’m much more physical and spending A LOT more time outdoors my social awkwardness has abated quite a bit. I’ve found that you don’t have to have one on one social interactions with people in order to “socialize”. I can run outside and say hello to fellow runners. I can go to the gym and interact with people I see on a daily basis. I can have conversations about things I’m passionate about with other like minded folks. I couldn’t do that when I was stuck inside the house trying to recreate a fantasy world in WoW or by channel surfing.
Losing the weight also gave me the body I’ve always wanted and the courage to go out and challenge myself to push harder, run farther, lift heavier…When I started out with the baby steps that led to bigger steps the words “Marathoner”, “Triathlete” “Athlete” never crossed my mind. They were way too far out there for me to even fathom, but today they are a reality because each time I pushed a little more the more I began to understand that I could become what I thought was impossible.