I Just Feel…..Big. The Newest Great Adventure.

Debbie Hatch | Family & F.I.T.


Late yesterday, Brooke Erickson posted on her Facebook page, “Competing is not and should not be for everyone and no one should ever compare themselves to someone else’s stage physique. As tempting as it may be for you to want to compare your body to that of a stage-conditioned competitor…
believe me when I say that there is a flip side. They too, suffer from poor body image and self-comparison. They just don’t talk about it. They too, don’t feel good enough and dissect themselves in the mirror. They just don’t want you to know they have flaws. They too, can feel lost and depressed after the stage lights have turned off. Your journey is your own. Don’t worry your mind or waste your time comparing yourself to anyone else. Work hard to be a better version of you…not the woman in your newsfeed. Strive to be your 10… not theirs.”

Brooke was my coach during prep for my last Figure competition (June, 2014) and, as she frequently does, she spoke directly to my heart with her post. I want to scream a reiteration of her thoughts.

“They too, suffer from poor body image and self-comparison. They too, don’t feel good enough and dissect themselves in the mirror. They too, can feel lost and depressed after the stage lights have turned off. Don’t waste your time comparing yourself to anyone else!!!”

I have been struggling lately.

I’m not comparing myself to anyone else. I’m comparing myself to my stage-conditioned competitor FigureandLiftingself, which is just as unreasonable. Especially since I’m not competing.

Special thanks to Jeannine Trimboli for her support and advice: “Allow yourself to start looking at your weight as a tool rather than something that defines your value.”



Again….YES!!!!!! I’ve said this to clients. Why am I not applying it to myself?

The fact is, whether you are struggling to lose weight, to gain muscle, to be healthy, to find a healthy body image, or something entirely different, the struggle is just as real.

For the past 3-4 years I have been competing. I love the ripped, competitive body. I like being shredded. The physical aspect was amazing and I love being on stage.  But right now I’m trying something new.


I have a new coach (Jordan Syatt) and I’m working on Power Lifting.


I can’t wait to share my experience and all of my changes as I go through this program. But, to be honest, I’m struggling.

I feel like I’m starting back at square one. I feel like I have never lifted. This is different than anything I’ve ever done. The workouts are different. The breathing is different. The body mechanics are different. I’m excited to see what I can do.


I also feel like I don’t know this body. It’s not for figure. It’s not ripped. It’s softer. I am uncomfortable. I feel big. Not fat. Not muscle-y (I only just started this new venture two weeks ago).

Just big.


Not following my own guidance, I even stepped on the scale this weekend. I am the heaviest I have ever been other than when I was pregnant.

I’ve wrestled with that.

There’s a battle going on inside my head.

“Who cares what you weigh?”

“No one even knows what you weigh!”

“Weight is irrelevant. Your clothes still fit and you feel strong.”


All true.

I would say every one of those things, out loud, to a client.


There is that number on the scale…….

My number.

My scale.


It shouldn’t matter, but it’s in my head.


So I stood in front of my husband, distraught and naked. I asked him what he honestly thought of this body (he liked the lean, competition shape as much as I did).

Anyone that knows him will verify that he wouldn’t lie. He can’t….


My husband said, “You look amazing. You aren’t shredded but you look so strong and powerful. To be honest, this may be the best I’ve ever seen you look.” I know he was being sincere.

But that’s not how I feel.

I just feel big.



So why am I doing this?  For several reasons.

–  First, I got a little tired of just focusing on aesthetics.

–  It’s contrary to what I tell my clients so at times I felt like I was being dishonest – with them, with me or maybe both. I tell clients that their size doesn’t matter. I tell them that they need to focus on fitness, strength, and improving what they can do – – the rest of it will come. I believe that and they’ve proven it to me time and time again.

– I told a friend, who needed the encouragement to pursue her goals, that I would do this with her.

–  I am strong and I like new challenges, so I’ve decided to see what I can DO for a while, vice just what I can make myself look like.

It is my most sincere hope that as I go forward into this new challenge, I can come back and tell you that I’ve come to grips with this new shape and that I’m comfortable with myself.

It is my most sincere desire that you would also work on feeling comfortable with your body just AS IT IS RIGHT NOW…even if, and while you’re making changes.

I will share my journey with you. I’d love it if you would share your journey with me.


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    • Carol swift on May 19, 2015 at 21:45
    • Reply

    OMG, I’ve got a story for you. This morning I was on my way to the gym and for some reason I was thinking about my biceps, thinking that they feel big, bulky so I felt my bicep and OMG, they’d some MUSCLE there! And I wasn’t even tightening them up! Oh what a feeling! So when you say you feel big and bulky I certainly know what you mean. It’s different and I’m liking it!

    1. That is AWESOME, Carol!!!!!!!!!!!! I <3 it!!!

    • Sylvia on May 20, 2015 at 03:17
    • Reply

    If you hadn’t said anything, I bet no one but those that are very close to you (Brent) would have noticed that you are bigger. I love what Brent said about your body. I guess it’s easier to appreciate words like that when no one’s ever spoken them to you, no matter what size you were. You’re very blessed. I haven’t admitted this to anyone, but it’s just been recently that I’ve been able to look at myself naked in the mirror and not cried. (I don’t even have a mirror in my bedroom!) Alex is constantly looking at himself in the mirror, dancing, laughing, and I can’t remember the last time I ever did that!
    You’re very blessed that you have the ability to work with your body the way you do. Some of us would love to do one thing and be able to stick with it! Debbie, I still truly believe it’s your heart that determines your true beauty, and you’ve got a great one! If your heart still fits, that’s all that matters.
    You really look happy, too! Good luck with the competition! I bet you nail it!
    One more thing, we all know you can lift those heavy boxes. It’s okay if you allow someone to carry them for you once in a while. It’s probably the only workout they get all day! LOL! I love you !

    1. Your comment made me cry, Sylvia. I am standing here with tears on my face. Thank you soooooooo much!!!!

  1. This aritlce keeps it real, no doubt.

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