Please don’t read this if you have body image issues and you are triggered by concepts around weight loss.
I personally don’t. I like to think that I can choose to follow the same sort of method as any rational-minded person and make changes to my own physical vessel at will. When a male person decides to lose weight, everyone nods. When a female person decides to lose weight, it can launch tens of thousands of concerned or outraged voices. Here lies madness!
The madness of determining your own choices and taking ownership of yourself, asserting bodily autonomy. It’s allowed when someone wants a piercing or a tattoo, so why not this.
*shrug* Oh well, here we go.
I hit my top weight last year, after having COVID-19. The last time I weighed that much, I wore a size 14, so it seems strange that I still fit in a size 4. That’s due to body composition. I put on a bunch of muscle mass when I was taking boxing, and muscle is far slower to lose than cardio capacity.
Let’s keep the muscle and lose the adipose tissue.
Why do I want to lose body fat?
I have a list of specific reasons, any one of which would be enough motivation for me.
The dark secret, though, is that last night I discovered I had worn off a little patch of skin on my belly from wearing tight pants all day. It itches like crazy and looks terrible. The time that you have to slather antibiotic ointment on yourself due to a pants-related injury is the time to reassess.
Would I rather have new pants or a new... middle area? To me that choice is obvious.
Okay, so how am I going about this?
The first thing I did was to tell my husband I’m not messing around, I’m losing weight for the next few months. Since I’m not spending time around literally any single other human being, he is my only treat trap. (Oh yes indeed he is). Note that I’m not using him for an accountability partner - we’re usually out of sync when one of us is trying to drop weight. I’ve just put him on notice that if he wants snacks he has to eat them alone.
The second thing I did was to reinstate my food log. I use MyFitnessPal. It’s pretty easy because a while back, I logged every single thing I ate for a year, so most of my meal choices are already in there. I also use the bar code scanner on my phone. I’ve been spending maybe five minutes a day on the food log.
I already knew that I was eating too much for lunch each day. I have a favorite sandwich that I find irresistible, especially when I’m busy at work. It only really works if I’m working out regularly, and since COVID, I haven’t been. There are several ways to go about this.
I went with 4 and ordered a couple cases of Soylent, because I’ve tried most of the flavors and it does the job. I have used them to tide me over when I have back-to-back meetings and can’t get a meal break when I want one.
What I’m doing is eating a bowl of oatmeal for breakfast, bottle of Soylent for lunch, energy bar for afternoon snack, and then a normal dinner.
So far I’ve dropped 4.1 pounds in the first week.
Now, that is widely considered to be an unsafe rate. Two pounds a week is recommended.
I’m okay with this right now because we’re coming out of the holidays, and I was eating a bunch of large, heavy meals. We had pizza and brownies on New Year’s Eve. It’s highly unlikely that I would continue to drop weight at that rate after this first week.
On the other hand, I have a specific amount of weight I want to drop, after which I will revert to my normal, vegetable-packed, healthy diet. I will check in with updates to show how the plan is working.
If I happened to reach my goal in three weeks instead of six weeks, I would be totally okay with that! It seems unlikely that I would do damage to myself in that short a timespan. For my body type and food-oriented habits, nothing is as easy as gaining back weight.
The main advantage of doing a regimen like this is that it’s only a part of my mental bandwidth for a short period of time, and then it’s done. I’m not the kind of person who likes to spend a lot of time looking in the mirror, taking pictures of myself, or fussing around comparing myself to other people. I look fantastic for my age, and especially for someone who almost died this year. My body pulled me through a potentially fatal illness.
I trust my body, I trust my emotions, and above all, I trust my powers of reason and discernment. I set out on this brief process of body transformation with a specific image in mind. That is of a healthy, lively person with a lot more to do than worry about what is going on with my pants.
I've been working with chronic disorganization, squalor, and hoarding for over 20 years. I'm also a marathon runner who was diagnosed with fibromyalgia and thyroid disease 17 years ago.
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