My body and its form (or lack thereof) has been my nemesis for what seems to be forever. Now, I am not fat, mind you, and people who know me would probably be annoyed at even the idea of me blogging about this, but it’s a problem for me…something that nags away at me on a daily basis…something with which I have not been able to find peace for a very long time. Recently, I have been inspired by a few random acquaintances (a fellow blogger, an old friend I bumped into at the mall, etc.) who have lost weight and it makes me really want to make an effort to do the same. Hey, if they can do it, so can I, right?
I didn’t get to my weight by any major life event. No freshman 15. No pregnancies. No illness or medication or major lifestyle changes. The pounds have just been steadily creeping on, little by little, since high school. Now that I am in my early 30s, I know that they aren’t just going to go away on their own. They have taken up residence and they are very comfortable right where they are, thank you.
So, I’m not a junk food junkie. I love healthy food. My main problem is that I just love to eat. I love food. I love to cook it, smell it, eat it. I love to make huge meals and invite a bunch of people over and feed them. I just love food. But not just any food. I like good food. I guess you could say I’m a bit of a food snob. I sometimes find myself mentally scolding people in front of me in line at the grocery store if they have a bunch of junk food or a bunch of “convenience meals” on the belt. You won’t catch me buying Oreos and Mountain Dew, but I digress. Back to the original problem… I love food and if it tastes good, I want to eat more of it.
I also hate to exercise. I hate to sweat. I do love the way it feels when I have had a good workout and my muscles are aching a bit, but it is sooooo hard for me to get motivated to exercise. I find it boring and I don’t like sports, so getting fit by doing something I enjoy is out of the question. If it is requires me to get hot and/or sweaty, I am not a happy camper.
I very distinctly remember my younger sister, during month 6 of her first pregnancy, complaining that her weight had ballooned to an astonishingly grotesque 130 pounds! I remember thinking to myself “Geez, I weigh as much and I am NOT 6 months pregnant!” I would like to make it clear that it really isn’t about a number on the scale for me. 130 pounds on a 5’6″ frame is perfectly acceptable, enviable, in fact, but it was around that time (in my early 20s) that I started to notice my belly bulging a little bit. I started to notice flab on my upper arms and inner thighs, and as the years passed I had to buy bigger and bigger clothes. And I have become so uncomfortable! I just want to feel good about myself again. I want to go into a store and buy any outfit I want and not worry about having “sausage arms” or how many of my stomach rolls are showing.
I have tried to follow an exercise routine and modify my diet a million times. It always ends up the same way. I jump into it full force, with both feet, and with the best of intentions and within a week or so I find some “excuse” to fall off the bandwagon. A family gathering, a wedding, a vacation, whatever it may be. And when I fall off, I fall off…HARD. I tell myself that I will get back on track tomorrow and then tomorrow never comes.
So, what makes this time different? Well, that’s a good question. There is a very strong possibility that this time won’t be any different, but maybe, just maybe, this blog will force a little accountability on me. Maybe I am just tired enough of hiding my body and avoiding photographs to follow through this time. We’ll see…
So I do have a few things working in my favor:
1. I am laid off from my job right now, which means I really have no excuse not to work out, at least a little bit every day.
2. I am going to Florida in 3 months to meet most of my boyfriend’s family and friends for the first time (and to visit some of my old friends as well). Extra incentive to be bikini ready!! (Incidentally, I have not worn a bikini in 5 years or so)
3. My youngest sister is about to move in with me while she finishes school. She loves to workout, so I will have a buddy.
I also have a few things which may work against me:
1. Since I am laid off from my job, I will have to be careful not to let boredom sabotage my healthy eating choices.
2. My boyfriend, Michael. He also loves to cook and eat and when we get together, we spend a lot of time on the couch. He also makes sure my wine glass is full and my feet are rubbed. Need I say more?
3. My past. I haven’t exactly had the greatest track record for sticking to it and as Michael likes to say, “History doesn’t repeat itself, but it rhymes.”
So, I need to set some goals, not too lofty, but big enough so that I can feel like I am actually doing something. I don’t really believe in dieting per se. I know that I need to make healthy choices and watch my portions. I don’t really like to count calories. This may sound like an excuse, but it is just too hard. Remember, I like to cook and I don’t have set recipes. I add a little of this and a little of that, so it is really hard to try to keep track of how many calories are in the dishes I make and what a serving size should look like. I just don’t have the patience to sit and calculate it all every day. So calorie counting is out of the question. I think I am just going to focus on portion control. I also know that I need to exercise. I know it will make me feel better and have more energy, but I know that I need to take small steps. I like to plug into my iPod and walk and my neighborhood is hilly, so walking a few times a week is feasible. I also decided recently to check out Cindy Crawford’s first workout video and I really love it! I know that there has been a lot of debate about the video, because her form is really bad and she does the reps way too quickly, but it’s not the best selling workout video for no reason. I know enough about form and technique to be able to modify it as I go so as not to injure myself.
So, let’s simplify, shall we?
Here are my goals for weight loss:
1. Eat what I want, in reasonable (i.e. much smaller) portions.
2. Get some exercise, 5 times a week. Sometimes walking, sometimes a video.
3. Drink more water. (I didn’t really say much about this before, but I know I need to do this.)
4. Start today, not tomorrow.
I think these are going to work for me, at least for now. Time will tell.