#55 - I'm too young to feel this old!

Stiff joints, bad knees, short of breath, weak, tires easily, not able to walk long distances, issues with blood sugar control, and high blood pressure. Does this sound like the description of a 32 year old woman? It is. It's me! I am way too young to feel this damn old! I should be running around enjoying the prime of my life. Instead, I need to rest and conserve my energy as I deal with health issues (health issues brought upon me from excess weight). How did I ever let my weight get this out of control? It's like all this weight mysteriously sneaked up on me. Didn't I notice I was starting to have health problems? Or did I get fat first, and then the problems showed up? I just can't remember. I have fat amnesia. "Doctor, I just don't know how it happened. I don't remember gaining any weight. I was 150 one day, 300 the next. What happened to me?" I fear this amnesia has cost me my youth. I'm to the point now where I don't remember being young and healthy. How sad.

I was at the doctor today for a check up on my high blood pressure. Good news, my new exercise and diet regime has allowed me to drop my blood pressure 10 points in two weeks. Yeah exercise! I say 'yeah' because my success means I don't need to go on blood pressure meds. Anyway, as I was sitting in the waiting room I watched an elderly couple pass by, the little woman shuffling along with her husband following behind slowly with his cane. I shit you not, as I watched the old man walk by I actually thought to myself, 'Man, a cane would make walking so much easier.' Are you kidding me? I was actually jealous of this poor 80 year old man with the cane? Have I gotten so fat and lazy that I think walking with a cane would help me out? Lunacy! Pure lunacy. What's next? Will I fantasize about using a walker? Yeah that's it. I've got the perfect million dollar idea: market walkers to the obese. Who wants to rely on their own muscle power to walk when you can make it so much easier with a walker? But what should I call it? The Chubby Strider? The Fat-So-Glide? The Stout Waddler? I really hate the idea of products that help accommodate the obese. I know, I should be a little more compassionate. Some fat people really do need specialized products to help them cope with life. But ultimately losing weight would mean those special products wouldn't be needed in the first place. So, yeah, in principle I hate these fat products. I don't ever want to use a walker, that is, unless I'm 90 or something and still kickin'.

I'm never going to feel younger unless I get this weight issue under control. I really have been working hard to eat better, limiting simple carbs, eating more fruits and veggies and lean meats. And I've started exercising again. I got a new elliptical trainer in my house which is turning out to be a lot of fun. It's so easy to squeeze a little exercise in while watching TV. I've also started doing some strength training. More muscle = more calories burned. I'm starting small, I'm starting slow, but hey, at least I'm starting. I think when you look at big goals, like losing 50 or 100 or 150 pounds, it seems impossible. How can you lose so much weight? But then if you make really small goals, like eat healthier, exercise a little, weight loss will eventually come. I think a lot of people race to lose their weight, losing 3+ pounds a week. Like those people on Biggest Loser. They lose 10-20 pounds a week! That seems great and all, but what will happen to them 5 years from now? Experts say slow, steady weight loss is more likely maintainable, while rapid losers usually gain their weight back. So I guess what I'm trying to say is that I'm trying to focus on health and wellbeing right now. If I adopt healthy behaviors I will lose weight, albeit slowly, but surely. I hope that my slow and steady method will mean that I will be able to maintain a healthy weight. I know that if I keep working at it, one day I'll feel young again!


Anonymous said...

An excellent post! [Applauds wildly]

I really hate the idea of products that help accommodate the obese. I know, I should be a little more compassionate.

I totally agree. I don't think we have a lack of compassion, just realism. Barring (very rare) medical issues, it was self-indulgence and self-denial that got those people obese in the first place.

And you are spot on about accepting that it will take a long time to lose 100 or so pounds. It takes a long time to change your lifestyle, food preferences and habits. But that's fine. People forget that it doesn't matter how long it takes to lose weight, but how long you can keep it off.

You are doing great!

Nana Sue said...

My doctor is overwieght and so is her nurse and when I speak of my weight and my back issues and my blood levels they both uderstand and sound very compassionate - but also are not on the bandwagon of OH MY WE HAVE TO DO SOMETHING - I feel I am the one to bring up the topic and have asked about possible bypass surgery - my former doctor - which I would still be with had he not passed away (he was an older doctor in good health until heart problems)- said WELL YOU DID NOT GAIN ALL OF THIS WEIGHT IN A FEW MONTHS - IT CAME ON A FEW POUNDS HERE AND A FEW POUNDS THERE AND OVER TIME HERE YOU ARE - I know this and change my eating and I have noted in past posting that I use drink coke going through cases every week - changing over to water changed very little in the way of weight loss - what a let down - Now comes the back issues - in Nov 2004 my back went out one day to the point that I could not move - sitting - laying - much less walking - my husband called 911 - I end up in the hospital on Dilaudid and placed on a Morphine drip for a week - after back injections I was able to be awake and know what was going on around me without screaming in pain - pain meds, wheel chairs, walkers and cains were my friends. How could this be I was in my early 50's I know people in their 60's who ride bikes to from Mpls to Chicago. I use to take my 4 girls get on our bikes and take 20 mile bike rides - what happen??? I had major back surgery in early 2005. I wanted to just stay home and die - pain ruled my life and the weight kept adding up. My family was very supportive and caring and my grandkids gave me my will to want to keep going.
During therapy(water is my friend!) one of the therapist the best but an ok guy - said he was working with the adult program over the summer and he worked in the schools with kids during the school year - while talking during one of my sessions he was talking about all of the kids he deals with (speaking in general terms) and he told me the one thing he tells them is just keep moving - that has stuck with
I still think about wheel chairs and use a cart at the store like a walker. Pain is still there and I am work hard to just keep moving.
Just Keep Moving!

Lori G. said...

Congratulations on losing enough weight to avoid the BP medicine. You will save a lot of money, trust me (I was on 2 at one time, now down to 1).

Listen, you have a lot to lose, it's true. But you can do it. And like you said, you can break it down to small goals and practices. Even on an off day (and we all have them), you will still be coming out ahead. Make sure you take photos of yourself and measure yourself and keep track of little things that show you that you're on the right track. You can look back on it when you feel discouraged at how you're doing or when you have an off day.

I know you can do it. Keep up the good work.

Natalie C. said...

I love the premise of your blog. The health awareness that we have now is awesome. With all these tests, etc. that tend to depress us (I just got a horrible cholesterol & triglicerides test & I'm only 35), at least they give us a heads up before we're in the hospital with a massive heart attack.

The issue of compassion-- I hope that I never lose compassion on overweight people. 50 pounds ago, I didn't know what got them there or what they are going through. There is ENOUGH mean-spiritedness and downright prejudice against fat people without other fat people joining in on the cruelty. That said, the idea of walkers for fat people really does make me cringe.

Anonymous said...

I feel very sympathetic to the overweight/obese etc, but (like yourself i think) my compassion fails when i see people who go around in motorised wheelchairs just because they are massively overweight. I dont understand how you would get to that point. Seriously, just walk around the damn shop, you probably drove here anyway. Though perhaps they have injuries besides obesity that prevent movement.

Leah said...

I know this isn't a recent post, but I just want to say: I love your perspective on the weight-loss thing. I'm trying to lose weight and get healthier myself, and going through the archives of your blog is very motivational for me. Your point of view on weight loss is, it seems, the one that is best but hardest to have: walking that fine line of being motivated to lose, but not straying into areas of self-deprecation. It's very hard for me to both want to lose weight and have a decent opinion of my person. Thank you for providing me with an example! :)

Anonymous said...

Here I read the article about two women who had the same problem