So, let’s pick up where we left off, shall we? After taking a year off before college to coach, I headed to my first practice as a college volleyball player. Even though I went to a very small school, I could tell right away that my skills were rusty and my conditioning was behind everyone else’s. When I got to basketball season, my confidence took an even bigger hit. I went from a post player to a guard (bad, bad news for someone with my lackluster ball-handling abilities) and didn’t have as much time to learn the plays due to volleyball commitments.
As I’ve mentioned, sports were my identity. Finding myself at the bottom of the talent pool and struggling to keep up with my tons of activities along with my grades set off a spiral into depression. I eventually quit basketball and started coming back to normal. With my sudden decrease in physical activity, I started to gain weight (the freshman 30 or so).
For the rest of my college years, I cycled between losing and gaining the same 30 pounds or so. At times, I was hyper-focused on losing weight and other times would eat my way through my problems and balloon up. I became particularly skilled at secret eating, as some of my previous roommates might already know (Pamela’s cherry cordials, Savannah’s Pop Tarts, etc.). It would be embarrassing to disclose how many candy bars I purchased from the vending machine during that time period (and how many I consumed in one sitting and where I consumed them).
As a physical education major, I felt like a fraud. How could anyone take me seriously if I graduated and became a fat PE teacher? I wanted to help the kids who weren’t the most athletic come to love being physically active, but I couldn’t even help myself. What I hadn’t learned yet is that my own efforts could never be enough.