Over the course of 25 professional fights, I have only ever fought in a crop top once. Even when I am lean, I always wear t-shirts because I am so self-conscious and embarrassed about my stomach.
Back around 2012, I was diagnosed with Poly Cystic Ovarian Disease. I had been exercising rigorously and eating well and not losing weight. I had been poked and prodded and tested for a million different things but no one could figure out why I was still, technically, ‘overweight’. At this time I weighed about 77kgs (I am a staggering 5’5”to give you some measuring stick).
I sought out a new GP and she immediately said to me, these all sound like classic symptoms of PCOD. I went and had a very uncomfortable test to confirm, and what do you know, I have PCOD.
I’m not here to write about the impact of PCOD on women – maybe a story for another day. But my point is this; PCOD messes with your hormones. In a lot of women, being lean is not even possible. I actually had to go on a specific form of an oral contraceptive, just so I could balance out my hormones a little and I naturally shed a little weight. For me as an athlete, I never look like I ‘should’. If you had someone approach me in a bar, or in the street, chances are, they might have a hard time believing that I am a professional athlete. I don’t have abs, I don’t have superior definition in my arms or legs, I do not look like the girl on the cover of Women’s Health magazine.
To top things off, this year has been insanely taxing mentally. I have been injured for 6 months and I really just had no self control with my food. I couldn’t train properly, so saying yes to a few drinks became easy. What did it matter if I didn’t feel good the next day? Food, as per usual, became my comfort during an extremely stressful and trying time. The end result of a visit home for Christmas, and a few months of bad eating, I have gained noticeable weight. It happens.
When I fought the other night, even the staff who know me weren’t hesitant in telling me that I was “pom pui” (chubby) and my trainers have made it clear that my extra weight (in their opinion) is slowing me down and I need to slim down. This may sound harsh, but they are not wrong, and once again I am venturing to lean out and be the best I can possibly be.
My point to this little blog? Since becoming a brand ambassador/sponsored GRRRL athlete, I am calling my own bullsh*t. It’s time for me to practice what I preach.
I tell women all the time, to not worry about the way they look. The scales don’t matter. Mainstream media is unrealistic. Real life is no photoshopped. Yet I struggle daily with this myself. I always wear baggy t-shirts, because I am now, even more so, embarrassed about my recent weight gain.
On Saturday night, in honour of our GRRRLs, I let it all hang out. Fat rolls and all. I got stared at, I felt uncomfortable, and I will probably never post the video footage because I hate seeing how out of shape I look – however – it was one of the most liberating things I have done in a quite some time. Getting in there and not caring, and realizing that my looks did not impact the way I fight – it didn’t impact me getting a win, even though I took a fight on short notice. Being a bit chubby doesn’t stop me from being a good person. It doesn’t stop me from being a good fighter. It only holds me back if I let it.
Your looks don’t define you as a person. I am not ‘perfect’, but I don’t need to be.
To all the beautiful GRRRLs out there – my biggest love to you.
For those of you that haven’t discovered GRRRL yet – head over to grrrlclothing.com and see what we’re all about! If you want to purchase some swag, use ‘missmuaythai’ as the coupon code to get a nice 15% discount 😉