When I met my husband I weighed 123 pounds. At 5’8″ tall with a medium frame, I was almost too thin. As I gained knowledge and mental clarity, my weight settled into a healthy 129 to 134 range. Although I still complained about my weight, I was mostly happy with it. So much so that I didn’t deviate much from that range. Even when I was pregnant I was about the same size plus a little extra for baby, placenta, amniotic fluid. I stayed under the 150 pound mark, gaining about 19 or 20 pounds with both babies, and going back to my original weight soon after. Lately, however, my weight has crept up closer to the 140 mark. I am not amused or happy with that, but I don’t know if I have the willpower, drive, or desire to whittle that number back down to the lower 130s.
How did this happen? I know, of course. My biggest problem hasn’t really been with food. I’m not a binge eater. I eat pretty healthy, actually. My problem is with exercise — or the lack of it. I have always exercised on a daily basis. Always being defined as “since I have been an adult.” I didn’t do it obsessively. It was just part of my routine. Brush teeth. Eat. Work. Workout. I never deviated from that schedule because I’ve known for a while that exercise is part of what makes me healthy and happy. It’s my self medication. I work out to clear my head and shake out any anxiety and depressive feelings. But once I had Little Girl my workouts started taking a backseat to life.
Instead of doing cardio six days a week it’s dropped to three — four if I am really lucky. This week I went to spin on Monday and Wednesday. Tuesday I walked on a treadmill for about 40 minutes, but it wasn’t the sweaty, exhilarating cardio my body craves. Tonight I’ll try and get on the treadmill again, but I am exhausted from working until 3 a.m. last night, so it’s only a maybe. And while my exercise has waned, my food intake has not, hence the extra five or six pounds.
A lot of people would tell me to quit my whining. Boo-hoo, I can’t get to the gym every day. Poor me, I’ve gained a few. And in my head I’d probably agree with them. I don’t look a lot different. Rounder and fuller, but still myself. Besides, I find myself thinking — as I look at other thinner women — that as we get older we really do have to choose between our asses and our faces. There’s something youthful about a plumper face. Not to mention the fact that I am not a good dieter. I tend to let myself drift into Crazy Town, which for me is located just left of Eating Disorder Ridge.
And so I have come full circle. Do I want to weigh between 129 and 134 — what has always been my comfortable weight? Yes. Am I willing to change the way I eat? I’m not so sure. (Who am I kidding? The answer is no.) Can I start exercising more? Yes, but something — work, my kids, the house — will have to give. We’ll see, I guess.