Strong not Skinny


So here my friends is a photo of me today at 52 and 175lbs!!!! I took it to show some friends my latest Zyia purchase.

But as I look at it I also see a message to share.

I used to be skinny. Today I weigh 40-50 lbs heavier than I did in my younger years. And I’m considered overweight.

A few years ago, Kenneth Chavez sparked a fire 🔥 in me. I joined his fitness class in Carnegie to help me lose weight. I guess age, along with that nasty lil Thyroid problem that plagues a lot of old women like I 😂, had other ideas. (Girls! When they tell you after 40, losing weight is harder – IT IS TRUE! So start your lifelong fitness journey TODAY!)

So the physical and mental battle began. I tried several different diets, I didn’t over-eat, and I was working out. But the scales would not budge! “What the hell? What the ever- loving HELL!”

I can’t tell you how many times I just wanted to quit going to class! But something in me just wouldn’t allow that!

I looked at the ladies in my class. Each one was a different body style and at different fitness levels. The group ranged from teenagers to women in their 60s and 70s. I saw them smiling, a glow on their faces and tone to their bodies.

So I took a step back. I focused on my gains: My mental state was awesome. I felt good. And I had tone in places that I hadn’t had in awhile.

I stopped focusing on my weight.

Now, I would be lying if I told you it isn’t still a mental battle for me. I’ve accepted that it always will be. But when it starts getting in my head, I just adjust my focus! I tell myself to accept the body I have and to be proud of it! And I remind myself…


Even as I write this and look at the photo those nasty, lingering thoughts come pouring in…

“OMG, if someone hasn’t seen me in awhile, I can just hear them – ‘Good gosh, she’s gained a lot of weight. She was always so skinny!’”

“Is Evan repulsed by my body?”

“I bet my haters are loving this!”

And here’s where our mental challenge begins! We must let our minds do their little negative thing. THEN we look again, and embrace who we are, what we look like. We accept our flaws and our strengths!

One thing I learned from my dad is that life is just too damn short to harbor.

My friends, we all come in different packages. And we are each beautifully flawed!

So move forward in your battle and never give up. Do what you can, and be proud in what you do and who you are. Don’t let the voice of the things you can’t change be louder than the voice of the things you can change!

And start your fitness journey today! Whether it’s walking or taking a class or joining a gym – always be moving forward!

Just my random thoughts after taking a simple photo this morning.

#strongnotskinny #fitnessjourney #nevergiveup #over50andfabulous #alwaysmovingforward

Published by Susan McElhaney

I love my kids, NYC, writing, photography, movies, baseball and cream cheese. I am a mom and a wife. I have a bachelors degree in English and Journalism and a masters degree in School Counseling. For over 20 years, I have served as the Communications and Marketing Director at a trade school. I love travelling, and dreaming.

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