My brother received his copy of Men’s Health this past weekend, so I knew a very special issue of Women’s Health was on the way. What was so special about the October 2010 issue? I WAS IN IT.
On Monday, when I first saw myself in a magazine glossy, I was stunned.
So I did what any social media obsessed twenty-something would do: I took a photo and posted it to Facebook. My network of friends responded immediately:
On Tuesday, the phone calls started:
…from my awesome aunts, whom picked up copies on their way home from work & wanted me to autograph them(!!!)
…from my event committee members, whom received their copies in the mail the day before and couldn’t believe my story
…from other relatives, wanting my weight loss tips and guides to eating right
On Wednesday, it reached a new level of ridiculousness (even for me).
A male friend asked if the magazine posted the article on their website since he didn’t get a subscription to Women’s Health. (I can’t see why not!) I clicked on over to the magazine’s website and saw MY NAME on the main page. I clicked on the link to find this headline: Weight Loss Success Story: Alicia Hansen: Get weight loss tips from one reader who lost 115 pounds to become the healthiest–and happiest–she’s ever been
I couldn’t help myself again. This time, I got my Twitter on. I was quickly overwhelmed again with kind words from my tweeps:
But something hit me when I got a good look at the article and accompanying picture on the website:
…was that really MY NAME on the first line?
…what that MY STORY they told?
…were those really MY ARMS looking THAT toned?!
That glorious June morning that I spent doing sun salutations, warriors and tree poses seems so long ago. I only got a quick glance at the photos that Greg Ruffling took that day. From the small camera screen I could tell they looked pretty cool. Now online and in print, I couldn’t believe THAT WAS ME.
I never expected to look so strong and so confident. Where had this girl been for the past few months – in the moments of self-doubt, fat talk, anxiety and depression? While I was busy inspiring others, I forgot to inspire myself. That changed when I saw this photo. Sometimes, you have to be the one to give yourself a good kick in the pants. This is an a-ha moment for me – a reminder that I CAN DO ANYTHING.
Today, I am so incredibly humbled by this entire experience.
My original goal was simple: to get healthy. Sure, I eventually set a goal to lose 100 pounds. I never expected to be featured in a national publication or to receive so much attention for something that just seemed like the right thing to do. I just wanted to ensure that I would be able to lead a long, vibrant life.
I am living proof that REAL weight loss is possible, but it was hard work. Please don’t let that statement scare you. We learn more and gain more when something is harder to accomplish. It makes the ultimate goal oh so much more worthwhile and gratifying.
I hope my story inspires you to make just ONE healthy change in your life. Talk a walk. Eat a salad. Quit smoking. Whatever. I never knew what a wonderful path it would lead me down. It wasn’t about losing weight: it was about changing my life for the better. I want the same for you.
To each and every Poise in Parma reader: THANK YOU. Know all of your kind words, your love and your enthusiasm for healthy living inspires me to reach for my new health and fitness goals:
…I am going to maintain this weight loss.
….I am going to run a half-marathon in January.
…I am going to live my mantra – be happy, be healthy, just be – to the fullest.
And I’m going to DO IT NOW.