Oprah would be proud of me. For the past week I have been quietly espousing the virtues of moving to anyone who will listen but have disguised the lecture as a personal revelation, or “light bulb moment”. For those who weren’t glued to the box watching Oprah but pretending they didn’t know who she was in equal measures during their university days, the former refers to an epiphany whereby the owner of such thought realizes the error of their ways and continues on in their life in an enlightened fashion.
Not to say that I haven’t had a moment of dietary related enlightenment before. I’ve often faced the reality of food consumption and exercise and understood why my shape remains the same. But this week, I am flying high on the result of a 1.5 kilo (3.3 pound) loss that I am convinced is due to simply sweating.
For those of you who hate moving, like I do, take heed. This is what I have learnt this week:
- Go to a specialty shoe store and spend 300 dollars on those specially designed running shoes with the pretty pink stripe that you are convinced will make that bulging ankle look less like a strung ham and more like a feminine curve; you’ll wear them once, then use them as a door stop forever more
- Purchase hundreds of dollars on a perfect sporting outfit that you believe will make you look less of a novice than you so obviously are; squeezing yourself into a Nike singlet isn’t fooling anyone
- Buy an exercise machine and park it in the middle of your lounge room; I know, I understand, I truly do, but honey, you’ll stop using it after a month and will have to do the walk of shame as you move it to the garage in the dark of night
- Think about an activity that you feel like or have to do that may raise even the slightest of perspiration, then do it
- Clean something. Just get up and clean the bathroom, the kitchen, really put your back into it until you feel some moisture on your neck
- Just walk somewhere that you have to be; no need for special clothes or shoes, just act normal, avoid eye contact, try to breathe and no one will notice this is a big deal for you!
Moving is normal, moving more than normal will break a sweat. I both cleaned and walked to a bookshop, the supermarket and to a coffee shop with my husband. I got out of each encounter with the pavement unscathed and realised that in fact, the world’s not out there to hurt a fat person trying to be a little more active. But if you get dolled up in all the sports gear, it’s embarrassing and it puts a lot of pressure on the fatty standing in them- I’ve got all the gear, should I hop or throw in a little leap somwhere? Perhaps I should be stretching?
I’ll admit, I’m paranoid about going to a gym, a yoga or palates class and have a general aversion to runners that I can’t explain. Moving however, can be done in thongs (my absolute favourite- it’s the Australian in me), slippers or no shoes at all. Just get a bit hot and sweaty!
Don’t worry about the slight whiff of B.O. : In the words of Kate Moss, “Nothing smells like skinny feels…”
I’m sure that’s what she said….
February has been a period of blatant teenage-inspired petulance. For the last three weeks I have been “doing” weight watchers but unlike the months gone past where I have been successfully losing weight, this month my energy has been spent on lies, manipulation and pointless negotiation. Such arguments between Me, Myself and I have included:
- Convincing myself that a packet of white fluffy rolls are ok, finding myself halfway through said packet, panicking, then running the remainder under the kitchen tap
- Telling myself that I should probably plateau at current weight, should new, cheap flimsy dress sit loosely on ample bosom rather than stretch across appealingly (so mistaken on all fronts!)
- Presenting what I thought was a very convincing argument: I’ll get fitter and exercise after I’ve lost weight; I’ll lose weight after I exercise….hmmm
- It’s perfectly justified to eat lunch after a five hour fast, so it’s equally valid to have a light meal at midnight seeing as the last time I ate was 7pm…my body needs it, I’m telling you!; And the real cracker
- Berating myself for not moving enough whilst finding comfort under a fuffy doona; “Ah…num, num, num, num….”
All this energy spent lying to myself only helps to maintain my current weight and therefore my unhappiness and ultimately, a sense of failure. Why oh why would I be so self destructive? There are those that eat well, exercise, read, talk and socialise with confidence. To you, Congrats! There are so many of us though that choose our poison, hell bent on preserving the status quo. The toolman is very good at recognising these toxic patterns in his life and annoyingly and consciously works towards breaking these shackles…which only serves to highlight my inadequacies.
Then again, he’s my husband and I’m happy for him and his highly evolved state…umm yeah…absolutely…
So this week, I’m breaking it down so even an ape couldn’t get it wrong. It’s shameful that I’ve got this low (and I can hear even the dearest of loved ones sighing with exasperation) but it’s all I can do to get the momentum going. There’s nothing witty or clever about it; diarising the most basic of tasks certainly doesn’t make for good reading. For those of you whom understandably couldn’t be less interested in my goals for this week, LOOK AWAY NOW:
- Walk! Four times, four hours, would be lovely.
- Limit food consumption to 20 points (Weight Watchers System)
- Track food consumption like “skinny girl gone mad”
- Drink 2L of that scrumptious stuff we call mineral water (without the ginger wine snuck in would be an added bonus)!
So if you happen to stumble upon a snoozing Hauling, permission to propel foot up enormous bum granted. And if you see me strolling through suburban streets on Wednesday with a gorgeous Eurasian baby, I’m exercising, not pretending he’s mine…
Note to concerned over-eating anonymous professionals: You don’t need to tell me, there will be no more rolls passing across the threshold of my front door.
Buying bread at the supermarket is like shopping for your ideal self. I read not long ago (from a very funny fellow weight loss candidate) that an overweight person will regularly fill their basket with things that represent their ideal- veggies, fruit and fat free biscuits. For me, this sentiment really reveals itself in the bread isle.
Last week, whilst pondering my ideal body shape and which loaf of bread was going to do it for me, a gorgeous couple came up beside me. I quickly picked up the soy and linseed “women’s health loaf” and confidently placed it in my trolley whilst concurrently fantasising about making my way to pick up a “women’s health” magazine (which would of course be precariously balanced on top of my hand bag for every one to see). In reality, I actually just plodded around the corner and did a full loop back into the same bread isle where I threw out the overpriced health loaf and picked up my favourite heavy rye.
I must admit, I usually experience an irrational sense of satisfaction from the bread I purchase. Fluffy white speaks fatty, whilst dark rye speaks healthy, tanned, slim. In reality, my shopping basket doesn’t really reflect my size at all. But even this is a huge source of embarrassment for me. I am sure that those who see my trolley or what I eat think that I am one of those sad women stuffing their faces in the car on the way home but order light in the restaurant (we all know the ones). Should I just order a pizza and stop the confusion, I regularly ask myself. It’s much more comfortable to appraise someone as a fatty because of their poor eating habits- more uncomfortable is the fatty that “is trying”.
This is the same reason that you’ll rarely see me exercising down the street. Walking works well- but I feel self conscious traipsing around my suburb the size I am. I’ve heard others laugh and nudge each other when a fat woman in stretchy pants puffs their way down the street. “At least she’s doing something about it!” I’ll spit out at them. But in reality, I’m terrified of being that woman and having that sideways poor-thing-but-it’s-kind-of-amusing look from strangers. A kinder person may not even consider this a conundrum, but a gentle soul I am not- I am all too aware of the bitchy perils of being a young woman.
So I admit, yes, sesame sour dough was my undoing this week. It was heavy, sour and beige. Not my ideal and it certainly reinforces the same weight problem. I know I’ve gained weight this week and I know I’m running (ok, a slow amble) round in circles doing the same things and getting the same crappy results. I’m also aware of coming apart at the seams because I drank a bottle of wine last night and I’m a non-drinker (and a two pot screamer as my good friend phrased delicately).
So tomorrow I’ll weigh in reluctantly. But I will weigh in because I will not hide from the scales. I just hope they’ll be kind…