Weight maintenance (Part 1)

So a big part of all this weight loss has to be maintaining, right?  In some ways, losing the weight will probably turn out to be the easy part.

Becoming overweight isn’t something that happens overnight.  It happens over weeks, months, years of bad eating habits.  Now that I have successfully lost 4.5 stone, I can look back and understand why I got to the situation I found myself in almost three years ago.

I am disabled – but that in itself doesn’t give me a reason to be overweight.  It meant that because my mobility is restricted, my walking, my ability to exercise – then I needed to eat less calories (many less calories!) than my two younger, taller, physically fit sisters.  They are both a foot taller than me.  I’m only short because my femurs are shortened.  If I hadn’t been damaged by Thalidomide, there is a good chance I would have been a 5ft 9, long legged fit bird!  By “fit” I mean athletic, rather than attractive…  they are both!

My sisters both lead very “physical” existences, to the point of being a bit excessive.  Not that I knock that, and they’ve even considered if perhaps their wish to participate so fully in everything physical is because of my disability.  We’ll never know.  Anyhow, both aged 48 and 50, they enjoy visiting the gym, cycling a 9 mile round trip to work, water based activities, running, walking, mountain climbing, trekking, etc, etc.  They both enjoy a real physical challenge – there is no doubt about this!

Me and my two “bigger” little sisters, aged in our late twenties.

It may just be the company I keep, but I don’t think many of my friends of similar ages are quite as “sporty”!

Back to me.  At school, I was encouraged to join in all the various sporting activities on offer.  Tennis, rounders, badminton, gymnastics, athletics….  The school I attended cannot be faulted for ensuring that I got to have a go at all of these things and more!  Sadly, my involvement alongside my pals served to make me feel a bit of a physical failure.  I mean, having the high jump bar lowered to about 50cm and being tasked with virtually stepping over the damned thing did little for my self-esteem.  

I was spared having to endure some of the longer distances when it came to running, but I was forced to run the 100m and 200m.  How demeaning.  I’d only just left the starting line whilst my classmates were being cheered over the finishing post!

I did manage to hit the ball once in rounders.  I was so shocked by this event that I forgot what I was supposed to do next!

The poor girl who partnered me for tennis and badminton spent the whole of the hour picking up stray balls and shuttlecocks!

So, I have learned I either have to (1) move a lot more and a lot more regularly and (2) eat less.  Ideally finding a good balance of the two.

Exercise is a bit of an issue for me.  Until two years ago, I believed I really didn’t like exercise!  Now I’ve discovered that I do enjoy exercise, as long as I can do what I want to do and fit it around my life.  A good “workout” leaves me feeling virtuous, alive, in less pain, able to move much more easily – and – best of all, it earns me some calories so that I can enjoy occasional treats and meals out.

I haven’t exercised during the recent hot weather spell we’ve enjoyed, but that ended about two weeks ago.  I now am using the excuse that I have an extremely heavy 11ft long 5 barred wooden gate leaning up against my treadmill and across the centre of my “gym”.  But the guy is coming to instal the gate on Saturday at 8am….

I know it’s just a question of getting back into it again, and I am absolutely sure that I will do.  Far from hating getting out of my bed on dark Winter mornings and spending an hour or two in the cold air of the garage, I enjoy being able to get my day going early and working up a bit of a sweat ahead of my shower.  I especially enjoy my weekend workouts, when my showered is closely followed by a calorific and enjoyable cooked “brunch”.

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