I will admit, with some needless honesty, that I’m a bit of a couch potato by nature, but right now, I’m about to go nuts with sitting. Once, long ago, I was both young and thin. In fact, I remember thinking quite seriously that I was lucky I would never, ever have to worry about getting fat.
This would be… oh… 1986, posing with my mom.
Oh, the hubris of youth! Obviously, I don’t feel that way anymore. I vacillate between being unconcerned about my body because I know — somewhere deep in my soul — that this unconcern is the key to actually being at a healthy weight, and Inner Hysterical Shrieking About My Stomach. Am I at a healthy weight? Well, define “healthy.” I’m not technically overweight, but I sure would like to tighten up a few things (only some of which would actually be affected by exercise, I have to admit).
Nothing like cinching up a 40 lb pack to make you feel… well, you get the point. Yes, those are whale vertebrae.
Over the years, my weight has settled where it currently resides and it absolutely refuses to budge from this place, like some sort of crazy neighborhood squatter. At first, you really notice where it is, then after a while you start to adjust to seeing that weird lady with too many small dogs peering out from behind the blinds. With the brief exception of my pregnancy, I have been within five pounds of my current weight (that’s a ten pound swing, of course) for the last fifteen years.
This would be in 2003, and when I was briefly blond. Pre-baby, and ten pounds less than the camping picture (and without the cinching).
Yes, I have tried many forms of exercise. At one time or another, mostly before the diagnosis with my chronic illness, I have tried all of the following with much temporary gusto: rock climbing; hiking; power yoga; running; swimming; walking; and plenty of cursing. Nothing has made any difference on the scale, though I have lost and gained a single dress size. Put it this way: I’m still wearing a pair of pants I bought before my son was born, seven years ago! I refuse to diet. I have a reasonably healthy diet, and I like food. I really believe that down that way lies true madness, so I refuse to obsess about food.
In 2008, belaying my son, before foot pain curtailed all climbing for me. Weight exactly what it is right now.
In the end, I like bikes. There’s no joint impact (except for that time I took a curve too fast and lost control of my old hybrid, breaking two ribs and a bone in my hand), and it doesn’t aggrevate my disease, the way rock climbing and yoga did. Old machines are a passion of mine, so I get to indulge that aspect of who I am. Riding is, unlike nearly every other form of serious exercise I’ve tried, almost guilt-inducingly fun.
All this is just to say: I’m home, I can’t ride, and I’m practically twitching with physical boredom and the desire to get out and MOVE. I think, given that I can’t ride, I’m going to try something else. I think I’m going to get up in a few moments, put some Ok Go on my headphones, and with only the cat to laugh at me, I’m going to boogy. But if I can’t get on my bikes soon, I’m in serious danger of dancing in front of other human beings, and trust me: no one wants that to happen.