I can’t stop thinking about my weight. I know, if you’re a male reader, you’re tired of hearing women talk about this sort of thing. But what I’m talking about is going beyond the occasional comment by your female companion of, “I can’t eat that, it will make me feel fat.”
In the last several days, I’ve entertained the following thoughts:
Bulimia–How glorious it would be if I had the balls to just go into a bathroom stall after lunch each day and puke it all up. I know this sounds disgusting and I realize the implications of how serious of a health problem bulimia is. Regardless, my obsessive mind can’t help but contemplate the utter relief I would feel if I could just purge everything out of my system. Starving myself is out of the question because I just can’t think when I’m hungry. I have thought about eating paper instead of food and drinking more water.
Laxatives–Along the same lines of bulimia, my mind just flows with happy thoughts of instantly purging my body of all the crappy food I’ve eaten so that I could start over clean. I know that it wouldn’t get rid of the fat I already have, but it doesn’t matter. The psychological side effect–the feeling of relief–is what I crave.
Drugs–I heard of a drug on the radio that does not let your body absorb fat. It has the unwanted side effect of making you leak an oily substance from your nether region. Sickeningly enough, I think this is a fair trade off to lose weight.
Liposuction–If I could afford it, I’d totally go with this quick fix. Then, I would look so good, I know I could stop myself from eating crappy food.
I know that I’m hyperventilating needlessly. I mean, I have a pretty healthy lifestyle with this close to 3,000 miles of riding. The problem, though, is that I probably don’t always eat as I should. In the past, I’ve been much, much better at regulating the food I ate. Two years ago, when I lived in Colorado, I never ate breakfast (just a granola bar or fruit with coffee); I ate a very light lunch (sometimes just popcorn); and I ate an equally light dinner (usually soup or a potato with veggies).
When I moved back from Colorado, I kept this habit up pretty well, only allowing myself to pig out once a week–on Fridays, when my friends used to get together to watch science-fiction. I’d eat two pieces of pizza and have a few beers. The rest of the weekend, I’d go back to my fasting. I exercised 4-5 days a week at this great gym down at the end of the street. I got myself into this great habit of waking up before work and exercising. On Wednesdays, I’d skip the morning routine for yoga in the evenings. It was going so perfectly and never once did I obsess about my weight. I felt good.
Then, I started dating my ex, Ted, and I just lost my routine. I haven’t been able to get back into this routine since we were together. Not only did my time with him bring about a looser eating routine, but he was a smoker so I started smoking again. We were just not good for each other in any way whatsoever (except that I fell for him hard, but that’s another story).
It has nothing to do with him that I haven’t had this strict eating or exercise routine. I think he just caused me to fall off the routine and I haven’t been able to find my way back on again. Yeah, I quit smoking again (hopefully for good!) and I’m back to cycling (which I’d lost in the time I was with him).
Part of the reason I fell off the routine probably has to do with the fact that I moved into my house in Stow, leaving that great gym behind in a city way on the other side of Cleveland, in Willowick. I just haven’t been able to find a gym I like as much, nor one as cheap (my membership fees at the one in Willowick were only $275/year). I just don’t feel like paying $40/month for a gym membership that I only need to use four or five months of the year.
It’s not like I’m a sloth. Nearly 100 miles/week of riding is certainly aerobic. I just must be eating too much bad food to net zero weight loss. I know I’ve lost weight since the beginning of the cycling season, but I’m still heavier than I was when I lived in Colorado. It’s so frustrating because I’m throwing out clothes that used to fit me nicely.
Every day, I grab that fat around around my ribs and belly–give it a big huge squeeze. I start to panic that it was bigger than the last time I grabbed it and I’m just going to keep gaining weight. I think the thing I fear the most–after death, that is–is being fat. I can’t stop thinking about it. It makes me grumpy all day. I don’t even notice other people who are overweight, but I exhaust myself thinking about how overweight I am. I look in the mirror and all I see is this giant linebacker of a girl. I wish I could get my whole body to be as fat free as my legs.
It’s even harder to lose weight when you’re dating someone. Guys just don’t seem to care at all about diets or will power. Boyfriends always want me to bend those rules, eat a little ice cream here and a little cookie there. But they don’t seem to understand that I just don’t have their metabolism. And I feel like rules are being broken all the time. At some point, I gotta practice a little will power. Every day could have an excuse or an event in which to bend the rules.
On my own diet, I try to limit how much meat I eat a day. But every time I am in a relationship, I gain weight because the men I’m with want to eat meat with every meal. Or they have a blatant disregard for how bad pasta is to just eat for no reason. It seems like every man I date just eats whatever he has a hankering for each meal. If I did that, I’d be three tons by now. I want to bring my own food when we get together for meals, despite how rude that looks. If I were married, I would hope my husband would let me eat my own food. Is it too weird for both members of a family to make their own meal? Why must everyone eat the same thing just because they are under the same roof? I wouldn’t expect anyone else to eat my weird meals if they don’t need to, and they shouldn’t expect me to eat their carefree, fat-filled foods.
It drives me crazy. I was the heaviest I’ve ever been when I was married because my husband was a good cook. I don’t even think it’s cute to call it “happy fat.” It made me miserable back then too. The only rectifying thing about that situation was that my husband also gained weight. We both needed to get into an exercise routine.
Today was a bad, bad day. Lots of celebrations going on in my office because my company’s contractors finally finished the building we’re in and had erected the sign (now visible from I-77 before Miller Road). So they had cake, cookies, and a bunch of delicious pastries to celebrate. I ate one little doughnut hole type thing with cream in the middle and chocolate on top. Then, I proceeded to eat my low fat Yoplait yogurt (banana cream pie). The yogurt didn’t stop me from going for one of the frosted cookies. Fortunately, I split half of it with my coworker.
We had our quarterly meeting at the end of the day, followed by a catered buffet. I tried to eat light. I had some stuffed chicken, some noodle substance with mushrooms and steak, and a few garlic potatoes. I cleaned my plate like a starving child. I wish I wouldn’t do that.
Needless to say, I came home from work and forced myself to go for a run (since it was already dark and I didn’t want to start riding in the dark). The whole time, I could hear the food sloshing around in my stomach, feel it shifting from side to side. I felt so heavy. Again, I longed for the courage to just puke it all up. I’d had my fun with it–I’d tasted it. Now it needed to go before it started to digest. “A moment on the lips, a life time on the hips.”
I’m starting to hate people who have will power. My dad lost a ton of weight a few years ago and he has not gained it back. He runs every day and eats like a squirrel. I wish I could do what he does. I know he has a sugar tooth similar to mine, yet at family events where there’s food, he takes a tiny, minuscule piece of his favorite desert, and that’s that. I know I weigh more than my dad and it pisses me off. He must think his daughter is a real porker. (He used to make jokes when I was a teenager about how I ate too much, suggesting that guys would never like a fat girl so I should watch what I eat.)
I used to envy a cousin who was anorexic. When I was her age, I thought she looked really good in the worst moments of her illness (fortunately, I look back at these pictures now and realize she waas too thin). But some part of me was always envious of her because she could follow through with not eating, like I wanted to do.
I know it sounds incredibly vain of me to obsess so much about my weight, but I can’t help it. I don’t judge anyone else nearly as roughly as I judge myself. In fact, most of my time is spent glaring jealously at girls skinnier than me and damning them for their better will power or genetics. The sad thing is, I watched this show about anorexic girls who couldn’t stop themselves and I understood their narcosis because their obsession with food sounded so much like my own. I’ve always called myself the lazy anorexic/bulimic because I obsess like one, but never have the diligence to follow through. Thank God, right?
I’m also starting to feel like events where there is food are designed specifically to make me fall off my internal diet wagon. These events are everywhere and I can’t avoid them. It seems multiple times a week, I’m invited to some event that involves food, and usually in the evening when I could be riding my bike instead, but now I’m at an event, eating badly, and not exercising. I wish we could just do whatever business we need to conduct in these activities without having food along side of it. I think that just as sick as I am about my weight, our society is just as sick in its requirement to involve food in all of our rituals or gatherings. I can see how people on necessity diets–such as those for diabetes or high blood pressure–must struggle with handling social obligations. It’s like being an alcoholic in a bar–all the temptation to slide is there and the people around you are indulging and you’re salivating as you crave what you cannot have. I feel like that every day.
I think I would stop obsessing if I could get myself back on a good exercise regiment. If my older clothes started fitting me again. Some of my friends have suggest that now that I’m older my metabolism has changed and I might never be as thin as I once was. I don’t know. Maybe I need a personal trainer or something. I’d be totally happy if I was 130 lbs like I was back in Colorado (even though back then I was trying desperately to get to 125 lbs). Maybe I do have an eating disorder that I just don’t follow through with. I could probably always look in the mirror and see more fat no matter how much weight I lost and I’d always want to push it just five more pounds. I’ll still have the urge to do cardio every day as if in payback for lapses in my strict regiment of a diet.
I try to tell myself that right now, to the world, I look okay. I don’t look extremely thin, but I don’t look fat either. So I should just try to maintain this weight and not work so hard at fighting this lifelong battle to remove these fat rolls that never go–just get smaller from time to time when I’ve managed to diet enough and exercise better. I’m trying to love my body for what it is. But it’s just so hard.