I have this group of friends I've been hanging out with for the last 12 weeks or so. I don't know any of them very well, they're not even casual acquaintances. Really they are more like friends of a friend of a virtual friend. But over the past 12 weeks we got pretty close. I shared some personal stuff with them and, in return, listened (or read) about their struggles and successes.
This bunch of people formed a private Facebook group and organized a Biggest Loser-type competition amongst them. I was hesitant to sign up, but figured I should grab hold of any extra motivation in the health/fitness department that I stumbled upon. I saw a post for the group on a travel forum I frequent. I figured I didn't know the participants well enough to be too terribly mortified when they were treated to weekly pictures of my bathroom scale - so I took the plunge.
Yep. You heard me right. I had to upload a picture of my scale every week at our "weigh-ins". You should've seen me the first week. I was on the phone with my good friend, Heather - the only person on the planet I would actually trust with such confidential information, while my mouse hovered over the upload button. Now I have uploaded pictures to Facebook many, many times. My Facebook friends who have been subjected to oodles of pictures of my kids in DisneyWorld and Europe can attest to that.
Now, apparently, this group is a private group, which means that the content can only be viewed by members of said group. But all I could think about is random members of my family and a scattering of ex-boyfriends all looking at a bathroom scale clearly depicting my weight. I was a nervous wreck.
So back to me hovering the little arrow and talking to Heather at the same time...it went a little something like this:
"K. I'm gonna do it. Are you on your News Feed?'
Yeah....I'm refreshing.....nothing here.
"I haven't hit upload yet."
Well....are ya gonna?
"Yeah, but are you sure you are seeing current stuff on your News Feed? Here. I'm gonna update my status."
Kel. I can see stuff that was posted 2 seconds ago. You'll be fine.
"Sure. You're not the one ready to tell the whole world that there are NFL linebackers that weigh less then you."
Oh shut up. Its not that bad.
"K. I'm gonna do it. I'm hitting upload."
See. Nothing there.
"I still didn't do it"
Kelly. Its just one click. If I see anything you can delete it right away. No one will even know. Just do it.
"Okay. I'm hitting upload. Oh Man! I HIT UPLOAD! Oh Good Grief!!! Do you see anything? Can you see the picture? Can you see something on my profile page? Oh man....this was a stupid idea."
Kel. There is nothing here. I'm refreshing. You're all good.
If I see anything that remotely resembles the picture of a scale or three numbers in a row that could possibly be your weight I will call you right away.
Anyway, eventually I got that initial picture uploaded and there was no fallout or accidental posting on my profile page. However, at the end of the day when everyone had their pictures posted I realized that I was the fattest person there! Are you kidding me? I am involved in a group of people who admit to having to lose weight and I am bigger than every last one of them?
It was so depressing. Not only was I bigger than all of them. I was bigger by an entire 30 pounds! Holy cow! That was a pretty horrible night for me. I was actually irritated. And then sad. And then pissed off. And then I went for a run.
The weekly weigh-ins after that were much less stressful for me.
I found the people to be so supportive and understanding. It was a friendly competition and there was no mean-spiritedness. They also shared lots of good advice and links to informative articles. As the weeks passed those people became friends.
I thought I was doing really well in the competition because I usually lost more weight than anyone else. But because the winners are calculated by percentage of weight lost, I would only manage to come in third or fourth each week. I think I had one week where I came in second place, but I never managed first. It was frustrating for me. But I was starting to feel so good, that I got to a point where the game didn't matter as much.
A week ago today was the last weigh-in of the 12-week round.
Guess who came in first?
Yep. It was my first time coming in first place. And it seems all that consistency paid off because I also managed to snag the overall prize of a $120.00 gift certificate.
More importantly, I lost 42.4 pounds in those 12 weeks, I ran my first 5k, and I registered for the half marathon. I credit my FB Loser Friends for keeping me on track those 12 weeks and I look forward to them kicking my butt the next round too!