It’s times like these that I know how American I really am. Sure, I may feel like a foreigner in a strange land living in an uber Amercian cowboy town in the mountains where everyone knows the lyrics to Toby Keith songs but me, where to vote Democrat might seem an act of treason, (which means I’m really under cover as a Green).
But nothing makes me feel more like an American like feeling it’s some sort of affront to my character to wait in a line or worse–not have the gratification of an instantly perfect body through um work instead of by knife. Waiting sucks and I’m impatient. Intellectually, 4 pounds gone sounds amazing but it’s so far away from the goal that I can’t see it. I stand in front of mirror. Where did it go and why didn’t it take more with it when it went? Yes, it’s the first week. Yes, I could have not had that second vodka tonic. But still, I’m an American, damn it. Body, do what I say.
It’s Day 6 of the Gunnar Challenge.
This might be the longest I’ve lasted on a diet/exercise plan without making fun of it, cheating on it, giving up, or just convincing myself that this is too mainstream for me to participate in.
I am doing okay for me. I am not doing perfect. I thought about exercising all day yesterday. I thought about exercising so much I swear I broke out into a sweat while making dinner. I have promised to exercise every day, but I knew it would be a promise I couldn’t keep. I started looking around at the house thinking of things that might be able to count for exercise. If I squat while picking up stuff off the floor? Sweeping the shedding dog’s hair up?
The cat brought a baby bluejay into the house and I had to find a box and make a makeshift nest and bring it food and water and worry about the cat jumping in the box and killing it afterall. I chased the cat with a broom. How many calories were burned? I went up and down the stairs in the house at least 20 times. Calories burned? I start thinking about whether I can ‘deserve’ something if I haven’t expended energy.
At first I thought this whole online food diary was the answer to my sloth. If I had to examine in detail every last bit of physical effort I put into the day, what would happen? How much energy do I expend? If you stared at yourself naked in a full length mirror in the bathroom trying to find a difference from a week ago how much energy did that take?
I try to cheer myself on I have 56 more days of this challenge thing. I try and tell myself things like “remember when your roll of fat was so big you couldn’t see below it? Well now you can see below it. Isn’t that nice? It’s still a big role of fat. I think the problem with me and my fatness is really I have no imagination to see myself any other way. I don’t remember how I looked when I lived in Asia. I don’t remember what I looked like before I got fat, happy , and content. And other than that impending doom of gestational diabetes coming back in a pun intended big way, I can’t think of a good reason not to be fat. It cuts down on the come hither stares. A 40-something fluffy girl has the amazing freedom of being ignored. How many calories are burned by entering things into my online food diary? Do online food diaries lead to OCD?
I think about how many calories I burn doing all sorts of things. How many were burned washing dishes? How many were burned arguing with my kids to pick up their clothes off the bathroom floor? How many were burned having sex? Does the food and exercise diary have specifics for that? Like can I plug ‘sex’ into the online food diary and have it come up with options of which positions optimize for conscious calorie burners like myself?
I weigh in for the first time in a few hours. Wish me luck. And I’m hoarding calories to ration out a vodka gimlet a night.
The problem with living in the gorgeous Sierra Mountains is that it’s completely beautiful from outside my living room window but walking in it takes so much to prepare for….bug spray, sunscreen, frogs, bobcats, mountain lions. A nature walk alone is amazing but also slightly treacherous and not at all as spontaneous as one might think. When I moved up here I thought it perfect! I’ll be the fittest thing going. No excuses and no place to stop and eat.
I’ve since learned that San Francisco was great for my health. There’s the perfect calves from steep hills and the light on feet in and out dodging one learns to do to avoid hitting four feet tall women with 10 shopping bags and various encampments of people right in the middle of the street.
Here I just try and avoid snarky employment-free moms who hang out on corners next to their trucks in stripper heels and logging trucks.
But a challenge is a challenge. So today—I found some yoga pants and replayed Gunnar’s directions and did the cardio thing AND his work out. So there. I did it. I did that thing called sweating. The walk out side. It was pretty and I tried very hard to get over the snarky comments no one was making about my ass in yoga pants but that I was making in my head and attributing to make believe people behind me.
And I did his workout too. And felt partly like an idiot. (Why that looks so easy so why am I still stuck on the floor after that bench dip!?) But I did it. It’s not even 11 am. But how many calories are in a vodka tonic?!
Ever think about why most writers on the back cover have their hans somewhere around their faces or are photographed in black and white wearing black? Because most writers do lots and lots of sitting. Show me a writer that’s cranked out 400 pages double spaced and I’ll show you a writer with one fat ass and two chins.
Couple that with being a mountain writer. Mountain writers not only do lots of sitting, they also wind up indoors too much because snow is, well cold, wet, dampens the paper, etc. They have no coffee houses to walk to our sushi stops (always my goals on walks in the city). Although where I live you don’t have to be a writer to have winter fluff. Most people have it around here. Most of the winter exercises include splitting wood and building fires and baking.
Yeah, I know that somewhere there’s a waif-thin sinewy woman in Tierra del Fuego who writes all day and maintains a crisp weight of 100 on a bad day. I don’t even want to know how she does it.
So when Lela Davidson on http://www.modernmoms.com put out the call for company as she embarks on a personal training challenge with Gunnar –I thought, well? I’m not sure if I do challenges. I do deadlines, true. But most of the time challenge makes me bow and make an excuse to leave the scene of the crime. But yes, I’m up to the challenge. I need better reasons than I want to lose weight though. I need fear and self-loathing.
But in a month, I won’t be in the Mountains, I’ll be on our annual summer trek to Santa Monica. That special place where a size 8 is extra large. They don’t allow fat people in Santa Monica. It’s some sort of ordinance I’m sure. Or you can be there in a residential neighborhood but only for two hours, then you get one of their 65 dollar tickets. In truth, I don’t want to be a size 8. I just want to wear what’s in the other side of my closet. I want to be able to buy something on sale on modcloth.com cause fat girl clothes NEVER go on sale. Every designer who bothers making a 14-16 makes three dresses that sell out immediately. Who are these XS women who don’t buy enough merchandise?!
The advantages to an online personal trainer I’m banking on being enormous (pun intended). I do much better away from crowded gyms where I’ll start to critique the bad music selections and weird scents and microbiological germs that will kill us all. Online feels safer. And I don’t have to worry about someone like me who would look over and judge and eyeroll. Wish me luck. Starts May 21.
1) Keep the former gestational diabetes at bay.
2) Wear what I already have.