The author of one of our favorite blogs about weight loss, and one of our top-35 healthy weight bloggers, Authentically Emmie, answers a few questions from Green Mountain on what she has learned along her inspiring journey.
You auditioned for The Biggest Loser twice, but did not make the cut. Do you see this as a blessing now?
At the time, I was devastated because I thought that was the only way I would be able to reach my goals.
I am thankful now that things happened as they did because my perspective on my goals (being thin vs. healthy) has completely changed.
Not making it onto the show forced me to dig deep and in doing so, I think I’ve accomplished way more mentally than I would have otherwise.
How might your life have been different if you did make it onto The Biggest Loser. Where do you think you’d be right now?
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I can’t really say. Maybe I’d be thinner, maybe I’d have gained weight back, maybe I would think I was a success. I don’t spend energy speculating on what could have been – it’s more about looking forward to reach for the next goal.
You were originally weight loss blogger Skinny Emmie, but became Authentically Emmie. Why?
I started regretting the word “skinny” in my blog name about a year into writing it because I felt like it was giving people the wrong message as to what I was seeking. Sure, I wanted to lose weight, but “skinny” was more about that feeling that I was happy and fit and could live a life without physical limits.
Anytime I’d tell people about “Skinny Emmie,” I felt like I had to justify why I was the size I was if I was writing a weight loss blog. I felt a lot of pressure from the word “skinny” and didn’t like the space it was occupying in my mind. I also wanted to write about things other than weight (like fashion), and it just didn’t make sense to keep the name as it was.
My goal in my writing is to be transparent and honest, so the word “authenticity” kept coming up. So now, we have Authentically Emmie and it feels so much better!
You stopped providing updates on your weight and started staying away from the scale. Why was this the right move for you?
When you blog about your weight, it can create an overwhelming sense of pressure to perform. When the scale doesn’t move how you want it to, reporting it over and over can feel devastating. My measure of success was too dependent upon a number. The feeling just got overwhelming and I was tired of trying to justify my actions and results of the scale. I wrote a blog post about it called The Elephant in the Room.
You have talked about how socially isolated you used to be. How did you change this, even when you were at your highest weight?
I am an introvert by nature, and can become quite the hermit if allowed. At my highest weight, my social interaction came from my work and out of necessity to build my resume by participating in professional groups.
“…the heaver I was, the easier it was to find reasons to stay inside by myself. Looking back, it was more of a reflection of my self-worth and not my weight.”
It was very much a concentrated effort to form and maintain relationships, and the heaver I was, the easier it was to find reasons to stay inside by myself. Looking back, it was more of a reflection of my self-worth and not my weight. I didn’t like myself, so why would others like me? It was easier to opt-out of the social scene.
I know not everyone likes the phrase, “fake it till you make it,” but that really was my motto as I tried to force myself out of isolation. Things got easier once I started becoming active because I felt like I had more to contribute.
In reality, I had the same amount to contribute at a higher weight – I just couldn’t see it.
Watch for Part II of our interview with weight loss blogger, Authentically Emmie.