To make matters worse, we would have PT tests once a quarter where we would get weighed in, tape measured, and then tested on pushups, sit-ups and a mile and a half run.
If I didn't make weight, it was an automatic failure and no more uniform for me. So instead of fueling my body appropriately to do well on those PT tests, I would starve myself the weak prior and spend hours in the sauna wearing a sweat suit to make sure I could make weight.
You can probably guess my performance during those tests were subpar.
It was a lose-lose situation.
In hindsight, I wish I had reached out for help on how to lose weight the right way. I knew there were standards I needed to uphold, yet every Friday after weigh-ins I would binge on Taco Bell as a reward for surviving another week. When I would go out with friends, I would enjoy massive amounts of food and then force myself to puke it up. Not only would the calories not count, but it also prevented hangovers. Pretty distorted, am I right?
Thankfully, that season is behind me, but there is still more to the story.
Self-worth and Relationships
“Your relationship with yourself sets the tone for every other relationship you have.” – Robert Holden
Even after I had finally achieved the Air Force's goal weight, I still struggled with self-worth. I was finally wearing the uniform, but I was the slowest person on the track. It wasn't enough to make weight, nor pass the PT test. The next expectation was to get 100 points on the PT test, and I was rarely hitting 90.
I felt like a failure, a big fat failure.
It was during this time I started developing feelings for one of the guys in ROTC, except I tried my hardest to fight those feelings.
See, this guy was white, skinny, and came from the suburbs of Ohio.
I, on the other hand, was Puerto Rican, chubby, and from inner-city Cleveland.
What the heck would people think if they saw a big Hispanic girl with a skinny white boy?
What would my family say?
I was not going to allow myself to be embarrassed like that. Plus, why would a thin person want to be with a fat person? I genuinely believed I was too big to be loved. That I needed to find someone bigger than me or else it would never work.
I fixated on these beliefs so much, I pushed this guy away from me, into the arms of another girl.
It wasn’t until I realized the other girl was not interested in him that I decided I could not suppress my feelings any longer.
I had to tell him how I felt, despite feeling unworthy of him or his love.