I have to call FIRST WEEK OF SCHOOL and keep this post fast (and fairly unedited for content – sorry) if it’s not going to be late.
As of September 2, I have been on this leg of the path toward better health for one year. Certainly my eating habits and attitudes have changed. I am still running three times a week and now taking the stairs at work (18 floors!) about four times a week. A year ago, I could not say (or do!) either of those things. I have lost 23.5 pounds and have about 11.5 more to go to reach my goal weight, which is supposedly the maximum healthy normal weight for my height. I’m about 2/3 of the way there, but my weight loss really slowed over the summer. I am giving myself another year to see how things unfold. Sometimes I wonder if I have reached what Dr. Yoni Freedhoff would call my “best weight” (i.e., the weight and habits are both sustainable) or if I am mastering the art of maintenance (which I know in itself would be a blessing). But really I think it’s going to be a long slow push to get out of the 170s, which is where my weight has tended to hang out since high school.
Most importantly, I don’t feel fat at this weight now, and regret beating myself up so much for feeling fat at this weight pre-baby. The big difference is that now I am healthier, regardless of what the scale says. If I have one piece of wisdom to share, it is this: You are never going to be any younger than you are TODAY. You are never going to have more potential than you do TODAY. Twenty years from now, you are going to look back TODAY and think, “I wish I knew how young and beautiful I was ON THAT DAY. I wish I had been brave enough to _____ ON THAT DAY.” Don’t wait for tomorrow, Monday, calm (ha!), January 1, or better weather. TODAY is all you ever have.
Now back to whining and being unwise.
Coming back to my job as a professor after two years of leave (mat + sabbatical) is certainly a big transition, one that seems to require wine on a daily basis. The teaching itself has not been a problem so far, but things like traffic, meal prep, and especially what to wear have felt totally burdensome. I made some progress on the epic task of cleaning out my closet, which was really adding stress to my to-do list, and have two big garbage bags full of maternity clothes, post-baby yoga pants, stuff I love but really is too big now, etc etc to get rid of. I am doing this with a no-turning-back attitude, not keeping any “fat” clothes in reserve. I still have to sort out what I *can* wear, especially in professional settings, and I’m sure this will eventually lead to shopping, which I despise.
While trying on a lot of that stuff, I noticed some post-baby changes to my body. What I refer to as my “primary gut,” which lies below the belly button, further deflated post-baby, which is probably actually a plus for fitting into clothing. What I refer to as my “secondary gut,” above the belly button, is either more pronounced post-baby, or more pronounced in comparison to what’s below, but I think it’s going to shrink with further weight loss. Happily, my “tertiary” areas (kind of over my ribs on my sides and back) have really shrunk, and should continue to do so. I’m loving my legs, which I’ve never had issues with. But I gotta come to grips with my flabby arms (which I admit do look a little smaller), even if it drives me to strength training. (How many times do I have to say that before I actually do it?)
So the questions I have for my September 2013 self are: Did you ever lose those last 11 pounds? Are you still running? (you better be!) Do you have a better relationship with your arms? (by becoming proud of their strength and potential, or reconciling yourself to the stretch marks you’ve had since grade six and the flabby skin that gravity does not help at all . . . I could go on) Did you decide to have a second kid? (yikes!!!)
Finally, in my desperation to make this week go well, I pre-cooked on Sunday, which I *never* do. I made a batch of egg muffins (last week I used grilled veg, as in this ratatouille frittata recipe, but this week I used broccoli and mushrooms, which are about the only two veg my toddler will ingest) and this Mexican polenta casserole, which I vegetarianized. The casserole was so big that I froze a dinner-for-two size, and the rest fed me and Mr. Wort for two suppers. Last night I made this chick pea curry when I got home from work. It’s quick, cheap, healthy, and tasty enough to recommend, if not the world’s best curry recipe ever. I think Sunday precooking is going to have to become a habit. I’ll keep you posted on how that goes. Meanwhile, please send any vegetarian (Or veggable. Seafood is ok too.) suggestions or recipes to help me out.