If you want completely change your lower body, take up speed skating. There’s nothing like skating around a rink in a squatting position again and again and again to build muscles you never knew you had. Not even all those times when out drinking at clubs or outdoor festivals where you needed to use the bathroom but there was no way in hell you were going to sit on the toilet seat so you squatted while you peed, legs shaking and burning. In an experiment I like to call “my 20s” I went out drinking with my friends to put the pee squat to the test many times just to see if it would build strong legs. One can never be too sure.
Despite all my years of running and off and on weight lifting, my body never changed much but over the past year a wonderous thing has happened. Where once I had a sad, saggy bum who liked to hang out with his best friend, the back of my thighs, it has now lifted. I’m bummed the back of my thighs have lost a friend but am delighted with how much bigger my ass is, it’s become independent and likes to stand on its own. My legs which were smallish and undefined are now muscular and more developed. I haven’t lost a pound, in fact, I have gained five – I’m the heaviest I’ve been in four years. In the past this would have sent me into a frenzy but now I embrace it, even though it means not being able to fit into any of my jeans. Larger sizes be damned, my lower half has a strength I didn’t know was possible.
For 12 years I fought an internal battle so my external body would be skinny. Not a “my body is supposed to be this size” skinny but a fight to become skeletal. When the numbers were lower, I felt better. I felt I looked better. The battle almost killed me.
Therapy may have helped me accept my body but speed skating has made me appreciate all it can do. Strength is my new skinny.