Is it for health?
A boyfriend? Girlfriend? Spouse? Mother? Father? Grandparent?
Is it to look "good" naked?
As the conversation continued I realized, and shared as much, that for the first time in my life.... I am not primarily working at losing weight for vanity reasons. I don't care what a boy or my mom or the media might say... I look in the mirror and do more praise than criticism. I comfortably wear a (typically) medium tee and size 28 Lucky Brand jeans (and fill them out quite nicely I might add) without wishing for a smaller size or a better fit or an idealized body that I may never realistically achieve.
But I am still on the weight loss wagon..... Why you might ask? Because my drive is athletic ambition. I have dreams (whether I scream them from the rooftops or keep them quietly to myself) of making a run at qualifying for Kona one day. Achieving a Boston Qualifying marathon time. Running an ultramarathon and qualifying for the Western States Endurance Run. I may find that I am not physically capable of achieving some or any of these goals.... but carrying around extra weight while trying to do so will only make it less likely. As I see it, from my "ideal" racing weight to today's weight it's like I do all my training carrying a minimum 10 pound backpack. All. The. Time.
The best part about not being on the weight loss wagon for vanity reasons...? I really have learned over the years to love myself. Scale goes up, scale goes down, it has little impact on how my day is going to go -- truth be told, I have hopped on the scale the morning after pizza or Chinese food or Mexican (read: Salt Heaven) just to see HOW MUCH water weight I've managed to gain overnight. I smile, I chuckle, and the move on with my day.
I've come to realize that the number on the scale has nothing to do with my intelligence, my sense of humor, my witty commentary, or my love for my friends and family. I am not worth more as I weigh less. I take pride in my training, the time and hard work I put into it, and the goal has nothing to do with the scale and everything to do with those dreams listed above. I can only start from where I am today (like preparing for my first Ironman or planning my first marathon or thinking about my first ultra).
So, what drives you to the wagon? Does it build you up or tear you down?