If you’ve ever had issues with maintaining a good weight, this is the blog post for you. Sort of.
No, I’m not going to give you some handy advice to shed those last fifteen pounds. No, I’m not going to repeat “you can do it!” over and over again until you believe me.
What I will tell you is that you’re not alone. Weight has been a constant source of irritation for me my entire life. I was that chubby kid when I was young; round faced, with no definitive body definition until I hit high school. As it happens, things moved and shifted and suddenly I wasn’t so round up top…it had all conveniently dropped to my ass. Lovely, huh?
Now, I admit, I was in okay shape in high school and in my early 20’s. Too curvy perhaps, but I still managed to have a social life and believe for a few moments that I could eat powdered donuts for lunch, chips for dinner, and still rock a pair of jeans.
That’s all well and good until you have kids. As most of us know, what stretches to accommodate a baby is not always appealing after said baby is born. I was one of the fortunate ones; I only gained about 15 pounds with my first baby. I quickly shed the baby weight and jumped back into a size 12 jean a mere two weeks later.
Then came baby number 2.
Remember how I said things stretch? You get the picture.
Fast forward to my 40’s. Things started to hurt….I suddenly needed glasses to read…and the exercise I used to do to maintain my weight was no longer enough. I recall having a conversation with my doctor, who asked me how often I exercised. I told her 4-5 days a week, for an hour each time. SHE TOLD ME TO DO MORE!!
More, you say? I’m barely squeezing in the hour a day as it is.
Anyway, my point to this entire thing is that because of my battle with scale, I’ve tried a host of diets over the years. You name it, I’ve probably done it. And when I hit my 40’s I decided that the diet stuff was BS. I eat well, and sure I enjoy dessert once in a while (and wine, but that’s a subject for another time). I was not giving up the things I love simply because the scale said I should.
I’ve had a variety of exercise equipment over the years. There’s the stepper thing that’s currently under my desk, giving my feet a nice prop-up when I work every day. There were the treadmills – three that we’ve had over the years. I have the videos (remember Richard Simmons, Sweatin’ to the Oldies? Yeah, I had that.) I bought more videos, then I moved onto yoga (which I dearly love by the way). I trudged along day after day, trying to squeeze in exercise, berating myself when I decided to sit on my ass instead of putting in my one required hour (or more). I bargained with myself – if I eat this cookie today, I’ll put in an extra 30 minutes of exercise tomorrow. Bargaining doesn’t work by the way.
I recently purchased a Pilates machine. I dropped a cool $400 on something I’d only heard about. I’d seen the benefits of it in all those long-limbed size zero starlets who swear up and down it’s amazing. I tried it for the first time today, and here’s my feedback:
It’s work. I was sweating big time, just lying there on the machine, and bouncing my legs.
It’s harder than it looks. I was winded afterwards…and feeling it too. I took a few Aleve just to be safe…and to keep me from hobbling around like an idiot.
You need a good space – the machine isn’t tiny. Mine folds up, but it is heavy, making it not so easy to put away after each use. It’s currently propped in the middle of our spare room, so everyone has to trip over it.
There’s a lot to be said for exercising lying down. I fell a few months ago and since then EVERYTHING hurts (knees, hips, shoulders). I was looking for a low-impact or non-impact exercise machine, and I found it with this. My left knee wasn’t happy after I finished, but my hope is that as I grow stronger that pain will go away.
It’s a nice change of pace from the treadmill. When I walk on the treadmill, I typically read on my Kindle to distract me from the fact that I despise exercise. I can’t read on the Pilates machine (but I’m lying down, so it’s a fair trade). My hope is that I can alternate machines and remain more invested in my physical well-being.
I have no idea if this machine will actually get me in shape and keep me from battling my too-snug jeans. I am looking forward to growing stronger and I really like that I don’t have to be on the damn thing for an hour every day. 20 minutes, 3 times a week is what’s recommended.
The weight battle is something many of us face on a daily basis. It would really be nice if we all (myself included) accepted ourselves for the person we are on the inside, and spent less time worrying about what’s on the outside. I’m sure I will never be content with how I look, but as long as I’m working toward a goal of good health, I really can’t complain.