For the last two months, I've been doing 30-40 minutes of cardio 5 times per week, plus weights 3 times per week. While I haven't been dieting per se, I've also been more careful about what I eat -- more fruit and vegetables, fewer cookies and chips. And I've lost a grand total of ...
On the bright side, weighing three pounds less than I did is better than weighing three pounds more. And my overall health and fitness have definitely improved: climbing the stairs at work used to feel like summiting Everest, and now I can do it easily. Also, it's February, and I haven't yet had the plague that traditionally fells me sometime in December, just in time for Christmas. These are all good things. But still ... three pounds? After all that work?
Stupid middle-aged metabolism.
It's not that I hate myself because I weigh more than X number of pounds, where X = some arbitrary number between "more than a supermodel" and "less than I weighed when I was 9 months pregnant." My current weight isn't terrible; in fact, it's (barely) within the normal range for my height. But it makes me uncomfortable, and more importantly, it makes me not feel like me. The self-image that I carry around in my head is of me weighing X number of pounds, where X = "about what I weighed when G was a toddler, plus a pound or two because I'm older now." That's not what I see when I pass a mirror or look at a photo, and the disconnect bothers me. Losing P was enough of an identity crisis in itself; I don't need to add looking different, and not in a good way, on top of that.
I was mulling all this over last night while pedaling away on the stationary bike (mmm, irony -- almost as delicious as cake) and I thought that really, any sort of angst over appearance is foolish when you look at it from a historical perspective. If I were the age I am now in, say, the fifteenth century -- assuming I hadn't perished in childbirth or been carried off by typhoid -- I would have been pregnant as many as 20 times, experienced life-threatening and possibly disfiguring diseases, and have lost several teeth thanks to poor nutrition and dental hygiene. I'd certainly have no access to sunscreen or hair dye, except maybe henna. In short, I would not only most likely be a grandmother by now, I'd look the part too. Here I am, fretting because my pants are a size 10 instead of a size 6, when by the standards of our ancestors I'm preternaturally youthful and totally hot! Silly me!
I still want to lose the weight, though.