It’s cold out.
The sky: gray.
The air: crisp.
The leaves: moribund.
Don’t get me wrong. I love fall just as much as any other basic white girl. In fact, I’m sipping on a spiced latte as I type this. See?
But I get anxious as autumn rolls around–not because of the ten months of winter and snow ahead, and not because of how emotionally attached I got to summer this year after being cooped up while recovering from a bad injury last year. Instead, the leaves turning and the temperatures dropping signal MRI season for me.
As longtime IOAB readers know, my MRI results historically haven’t been so great. Last year, after (another) medication proved to be unsuccessful, I had to make a shift to something a bit more aggressive.
And where do I go from there, if my body is still not responding?
After having a humbling discussion with my doctor’s PA about how fortunate I am that my previous MRI activity hasn’t caught up to me (yet), I began implementing more self-care and self-healing practices, which I hoped would make an impact on this year’s scans.
And maybe they did. Maybe they didn’t.
But somehow, everything aligned just right, and I received my FIRST positive MRI results EVER. No new lesions were present since last year’s scans and some of my old lesions appeared to be smaller.
And so I called upon my Instagram followers to help me decide how to celebrate this amazing news.
Several of you had some pretty great suggestions. And while the food, tattoos, and vacations are things I will definitely get around to, I decided instead to sign up for a six week fitness/nutrition challenge at a local gym.
1. I’ve always been “skinny-fat,” a term I didn’t realize existed until just recently. Now that I know it’s a “thing,” it’s all I can think about.
2. I want to understand macros.
3. Exercise has been proven to rebuild myelin, a thing I could use more of. 🙃
4. Exercise is good for bone density, another thing I could use more of.
5. I want, but mostly need, to improve my strength, balance, and flexibility.
6. I want to live.
The initial six weeks were tricky.
Sanctioned workout times clashed with my work schedule, I love sleeping, and I’m easily distracted by food.
Did I get discouraged? Yes. Did I feel inadequate? Like I wasn’t sweating enough, grunting enough, not working hard enough? Yes. Did I feel like I was being judged by others because I’m on the slender side? Yes. Were there days I chose to stay in bed? Oh, you bet your ass.
But ultimately, did I stick with it and accomplish something I didn’t think I could? Yes. Do I feel empowered? Yes.
Am I choosing to continue down this path? YES.
I choose me.
Being more consciously consistent with my fitness and nutrition, as well as learning to make myself a priority has made me a better version of myself–physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually.
Five years ago, my body betrayed me. I received a diagnosis of multiple sclerosis. A year and a half ago, it betrayed me again with a traumatic tibial plateau fracture and the surprise discovery of osteoporosis. To think I was only beginning to learn how to walk again one year ago!
But now? I’ve put on muscle mass. My energy levels are through the roof. I feel strong.
I’m in charge here.
Check out the video of my painfully cringe-y celebration wiggle fest below. And don’t allow my majestic awkwardness to distract you from the caption below it. It’s worth a read. 😉
You can follow along on my fitness journey by viewing my “Six Weeks” Highlight on Instagram!
This is only the beginning. Tally ho.