Tuesday, January 27, 2015

5, 10, 30, 40...

The weight creeps on so slowly that you really just don't notice it.

Going to grad school in 2010, I was very overweight and miserable. The year before had been challenging and the weight had settled in around 215 pounds.  I didn't realize it until I saw pictures of myself of just how bad it was. I looked uncomfortable and I didn't even recognize myself. It was rough.

Once I got into the rhythm of grad school, working, and a social life, I started to get into a really good routine; making all my meals and working out every day. It was awesome! I started noticing that my pants were a little looser and the rolls deflated enough to wear a t-shirt or sweater rather than the layers of cardigans and scarves. People commented about how good I looked, even those that saw me daily, and when I made a trip home for a week, I knew people saw me differently. I had lost roughly 45 pounds and it felt so great to be in a routine and still be able to go out, be social, eat feta cheese bread, and have drinks.

After graduation, I moved to South Carolina and struggled to maintain my weight. I wasn't the happiest there and baked A LOT as my sort of meditation but it all balanced because I wasn't as social and I was also still working out. (P.S. I love Planet Fitness and am sad they aren't closer to me!) So I maintained weight in SC for a year and was proud of myself.

Cue to moving back to Portland, in, what I thought was a temporary layover while job searching, but ended up being a permanent placement. Within the first three months home, I lost my mom, found my amazing boyfriend, and tried to get to know Portland again. There was a whole lot of food involved. Oh, so much food. There's the comfort food when I was down, the fun food carts that I just "had" to try, and all of the times I wanted to go to happy hour and didn't even think about going for a walk afterwards. This cycle continued for, well, that brings us to today. I've found a bit more balance and my boyfriend is incredibly loving despite any size I may be at and we both encourage each other to be healthier now that we live together.

Working to find the balance doesn't equate to consistency for me. My calories jump wildly on nights when we want to go out or if there are treats in the office (my ultimate downfall!) and then I continue to eat normally for the remainder of the day. These little highs and lows wouldn't be as big of a deal if I actually did physical activity. Like, my 2,000 FitBit steps per day are not going to get me back to a healthy weight, so today I joined a gym!

It felt indulgent; too expensive. It felt like I was being had, like it was a sales gimmick. I still worry I'll fail miserably. But the roughly $600 per year that this will cost is an investment in my health. I pay $800 for insurance for my car so perhaps I should invest in the body that I will have to live with for the next 50 or so years. Wise idea, right?

So now, I dig out all my faded and musty exercise gear and attempt to not be self-conscious as I huff and puff on the treadmill or awkwardly row myself to a nice, decent sweat. Perhaps I'll even track things on here as a bit of accountability? We'll see.

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