A Courtney Confession

Looks like I lied about posting on Monday or Tuesday. I've just had absolutely nothing to write about. I wrote a Hoarders season premier recap that I still need to edit (which is laughable because, judging by my numerous typos, you'd never believe I actually proof-read anything.).  I feel like nothing majorly exciting has happened to us lately, and I'm at a loss as what to share with my readers.  Clayton suggested I go back to my roots and write about recent events that have brought out my neurotic tendencies (to which I snarkily replied with, "I don't have time to write ALL DAY.").  But I have to admit that I do kind of skim over those things or just leave them out of my blog completely because I don't want people to mistake my personality quirks for an all-out mental illness.

For example, a major neuroses trigger for me has been my recent weight loss.  I stepped on a scale over at my in-laws' house this past weekend and was shocked to discover that I am only about 3 pounds shy of weighing what I did in high school.  I couldn't believe it.  When I go to the gym and enter in my weight for calorie counting, I've been typing in a number that's 10 pounds higher than what I actually am. I knew I lost some weight, but I didn't have an exact number.  And that's very exciting for me because I've been unhappy with my weight for a very long time.  I was extremely thin in high school, but then college ruined me.  It was only after I started running and dramatically changed my diet that pounds started falling off of me.

And it's been great! I love the feeling of my slimmer figure. The biggest change is in how my clothes fit (which I've mentioned before).  I wear the same two pairs of pants over and over again because I have absolutely no other pants that fit (which saddens my verily because I have a closet FULL of gorgeous Victoria's Secret and The Limited work trousers that I'm practically swimming in now).  A pair of capris that I couldn't even button last summer are now falling off my hips when I walk.  Unfortunately, none of my bras fit anymore either (the Lord giveth, and the Lord taketh away) ... But, in general, I'm really happy with my how my body has changed and it's given me some confidence that I desperately needed.

But the struggle with my weight loss is the fear of gaining it back.  I've tasted success and it is so delicious I don't want anything else ever again.  I am beyond petrified of gaining some or any of the weight back.  It's a fear that steals far too much of daily focus.  I know that running and working out everyday is part of what helped me get to where I am now, so I'm maintaining the exact same schedule.  I allow myself only one day of rest a week.  If I can't work out, I will get anxious and irritable.  After I eat a big meal, I devise a plan for when and how I can go burn it off.

To say I have an exercise addiction is an understatement.

But there, I said it.

My name is Courtney and I have an exercise addiction.

I have no concept on how to maintain my current weight loss.  I just keep saying, "More of the same!" and wear myself out running or biking or pumping away on the elliptical, thinking I need to workout every single day for at least 40 minutes.  I eat pretty well (so that's not an issue at all. Tried to whole anorexia thing when I was 13, but I am too much a pig now to starve myself anymore), but like I said, I just really don't know how to find the balance of staying at a goal weight without obsessing over it.

Clayton has known about it for awhile.  He calms me down when I start feeling jittery because I ate too much and he expresses his concerns when I start rambling on about how much more weight I think I need to lose. He does the husbandly thing by telling me I'm beautiful and that I don't need to lose another pound.  He understands I struggled with an eating disorder during my early teens and recognizes that I'm fueling a demon that's already been in my psyche for many years.  He makes sure that I only workout for a reasonable amount of time and that I'm not sneaking off the gym for more than one workout in a day (which I can admit I've only done ONCE in my whole life).

And he supports me sharing this openly on a blog.  I know it might not seem like a big deal to most people, but it is something that's very embarrassing for me to admit because it's just further proof that I can't be normal or healthy about anything.  I'm the world's biggest advocate for loving your body just as it is and not conforming to society's "thin standards", but I'm also the world's biggest hypocrite because I advocate that for everyone but myself. It's also embarrassing because the biggest reason I never shared this with anyone else is because I'm terrified that someone will think, "For someone with an exercise addiction, you're not that skinny."

I am completely logical when it comes to proper nutrition. I know my body needs fuel and protein, and I know that I shouldn't deprive myself of what I want to eat.  And I don't.  I eat pretty well-balanced meals (never skip breakfast) and allow myself to indulge with treats and cake (I could write a poem about how much I love cake), but I am absolutely fanatical about making sure I get my daily requirement of exercise. If I overindulge with a big meal (or extra large serving of cake), I'll tack an extra mile to my workout. Theoretically, that seems harmless, but when I'm constantly worrying if I gained a pound today, then it becomes a problem.  There's nothing wrong with being consistently dedicated to your workout schedule, but it is problematic when you carry those thoughts with you even when you're not at the gym.

Welcome to my life.  It's obnoxious.


  1. Dearest Courtney,

    I also struggled with anorexia when I was 16. I am 5'6" and in high school, I weighed 110 pounds. That may sound like a good weight, but if you saw a picture of me, you'd say I was too skinny, as do most people.

    The problem was that I had a very small support system. With a mother who is a personal trainer and also has an over-logical mind (meaning, she doesn't understand irrational fears, anxiety or obsessions), it made it that much worse. Instead of being sympathetic or helping, she thought it was just a simple change that I didn't want to make.

    When I turned 18, my beau at the time forced me to seek help which I did. It helped for a while, but the problem I ran into was that when I started eating again and stopped working out as much, I overindulge with food and don't workout as I should. The result? Over 100 pounds of weight gain. Granted, about 60 of it was needed to get me to a healthy weight, the rest is just unhealthy.

    I understand your struggles and wish I could offer some sort of advice. But considering I don't have my issue straightened out, I feel it would be useless. However, I can tell you that you're not alone and there is nothing to be embarrassed about. Talking to people can be the best therapy out there and the most help. I hope you find what will work for you. And Clayton is right, you're gorgeous just the way you are. :) <3 - Cat

  2. Bravo, Courtney, for taking such a vulnerable move to say everything you just did in such a public way. So many women and girls, myself included, have these warped senses of how we look and constantly think about and scrutinize our weights and figures. The problem you're describing is an epidemic among women in our country and I wish we could all lean on and support each other instead of either hiding it in shame or tearing each other apart. Thanks Courtney for being a voice when so many are afraid to speak.

  3. This was a great post! So honest. I am sure many struggle with this too. I don't, but I do have plenty of other neurosis, so I don't need another one!

    Your husband is right! You are a strikingly beautiful girl not matter what shape and size you ever end up being. You are breathtaking. Believe me I've been told "Your sister's SO HOT" by too many of my male friends! LOL

    Oh and "The Lord giveth, and the Lord taketh away" CRACKED ME UP!

  4. I don't know if it would help or hinder (ie cause more obsession by adding numbers to the mix), but my boyfriend and I both used loseit.com (he has an iphone, so he had the app) to lose about 10 pounds each. You enter in your height, weight and age, and it tells you exactly how many calories you need per day to either lose weight at a certain rate or...and here's where I think it may help...MAINTAIN your current weight. When you eat, you enter food and it keeps track of your calories. When you exercise, you enter that into the same program, and it subtracts your burned calories from what you've already eaten. You can also track nutrients to make sure you're getting enough of everything.

    Food (hah) for thought.


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