Life + Faith

Good Job, Chubby

I’ve been planning this post since August 22nd. August 22nd at 10:45pm to be exact, because after 5 years of walking on a Portland to Coast relay team, and constantly fearing I would be heckled for not looking “athletic”… it finally happened.

Good job, Chubby!

It was yelled out at me by a woman, though the open window of her old red pick-up truck, as she passed me on a dark country highway in the middle of the Oregon Coast Range.




I stared after her until her tail lights disappeared around a bend in the road, trying to make her words into anything other than what I had heard. I had been awake since 4:30am, had already walked my first four mile leg, and was now walking my second four mile leg on about 3 hours of combined sleep. Alone in the dark, I tried desperately to keep my confused feelings in check, because it was like getting a compliment while simultaneously being slapped in the face… I guess I’d never truly understood the ‘backhanded compliment’ until that very moment.

And then my inner dialogue took over:

“Hmm.  So this is what if feels like. Five years of dreading this moment, and on my final walk, it finally happens. It was kind of a compliment and she yelled it with such gusto, but it felt like an insult… but she did say ‘chubby’ instead of ‘fatso’ … so… nope, still an insult. I just got heckled by a stranger, on a backwoods country road in the middle of the night. Yeah, good job, chubby indeed. I knew I shouldn’t have done this stupid race again! Every year I swear I’m going to lose weight, but I never do. Never! Don’t freak out. Keep walking. Do. Not. Freak. Out. … But I AM chubby. I AM CHUBBY. That really is the truth. I am chubby, and everyone knows it. Chubby girl walking! That’s me. And I AM doing a good job. I am chubby and I am walking in the Portland to Coast for the fifth year in a row! Screw you, backwoods country girl! I’d like to see you out here! Good job, indeed! Yes, good job to me! I am chubby and I am doing a great freaking job! GOOD JOB, CHUBBY!!! YEAH!!”

And with that, I threw my fist in the air, and decided to accept the backhanded compliment from the mean country girl, and get on with my life… I win.

me at finish 5th year

I’m actually really surprised this isn’t more of a story about how I curled up in a mud-filled ditch and cried my hurt feelings to sleep until a search party found me in the pink light of dawn… because that’s really what I had been expecting I would do if it had ever happened in the previous four years. It’s interesting what you learn about yourself  in the moments following your fears actually coming true.

I’ve sworn to everyone who will listen to me that this would absolutely be my last year on a team. Five seems like a good place to stop. It’s more than most people ever do, and I’m happy with that accomplishment.

I expect you’ll see me with a sixth medal next year.

Good job, Chubby! Good job, indeed!

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  • Reply Patty September 17, 2014 at 11:44 am

    Congratulations on your positive self-talk.That is your true victory (though the 5 medals are something the be proud and brag about too) because you did not let some outsider’s comment affect you. It’s irrelevant how they meant it, you gave it true meaning. So proud of you! {{{Hugs}}}

    • Reply Tiffany September 24, 2014 at 1:32 am

      Patty! Thank you so much for always encouraging me! HUGS! and sorry for the week late reply. :)

  • Reply Danielle Kempe (@DJDiG) September 17, 2014 at 12:45 pm

    Wow! People can be jerks!

    Thank you for finishing your relay and NOT letting the idiot get you down.

  • Reply Mona September 17, 2014 at 12:55 pm

    Fuck. Her! You’re awesome and good for you for not letting that bitch (I’m usually against women calling each other that but not for her) bring you down!!!

  • Reply Tiffany @ This Is The After September 17, 2014 at 1:13 pm

    People are rude…and cowardly. The fact that she said it while driving off says a lot about her. The fact that you didn’t let it get you down says a lot about YOU! Congrats on finishing and I wish you the best of luck on your journey. :-)

    • Reply Tiffany September 24, 2014 at 1:31 am

      Sorry for the super late reply, but I wanted to say THANK YOU! and of course, I love your name! ;)

  • Reply Amaris September 17, 2014 at 1:26 pm

    “Tiffany’s Triumph” should have been the title of this post! You are amazing! Punching fear in the face in doing the relay and in completing the relay over and over again. Thank you for being so honest and open. I plan on doing the Ipswich Park2Park in July every year and have not done it yet for the same reason – I don’t look athletic, I haven’t trained for it, I’m overweight, what would people say? I did the family run one year with a friend but we justified our ‘slowness’ by taking our children with us…lol! You’ve inspired me to look at next year differently :-)

    • Reply Tiffany September 24, 2014 at 1:49 am

      Thank you so much, Amaris! And yes, you should absolutely do the Park2Park – it’s definitely a hard mindset to overcome, but you can do it! :) PS: I visited Brisbane/Surfers Paradise a lifetime ago (waaaay back in high school). Beautiful area!

  • Reply Amanda Nyx September 17, 2014 at 1:36 pm

    SERIOUSLY amazingly well handled. That part where you thought you’d be crying a ditch but you didn’t? That’s called character growth, and it’s one of the best side effects of personal fitness. You should be incredibly proud – and, fyi, we’re all pretty darn proud of you too!


  • Reply Tracy September 17, 2014 at 1:44 pm

    You. Are. AWESOME. And you totally win, at life. :)

  • Reply Amanda - RunToTheFinish September 17, 2014 at 3:40 pm

    we all have these inner monologues, but interestingly once we hear someone else say it I feel like the power is lost. I love when it causes us to rise up and look at our strengths!

  • Reply Rebekah September 17, 2014 at 7:16 pm

    Tiffany- more proof of what I suspected, you are awesome! Glad you didn’t let that mean girl get you down! :)

  • Reply Marianne September 22, 2014 at 8:14 am

    Awesome self-talk Tiffany! If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that when people say mean things, it’s more about THEM than it is about YOU. I’m so happy to hear you kept going and didn’t let her drag you into that ditch, crying away. You’re a strong and amazing woman to do something 5 times that most people are way too lazy to attempt even once!

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