January 04, 2004

on track

Okay, Iíll admit it. I was worried. Two weeks off the plan, two weeks without diarizing (my spell check thinks thatís a real word, should I go get my speller checked out?), two weeks without exercise, without low-points days, without paying overmuch attention to what I was putting into my mouth. I had a few Wasa crackers, some Asian pears, some broccoli and some kale, but I also had some amazing chocolate truffles and some greasy but wonderful dim sum and oh yes, that pate and pastries the night of my birthday. And champagne on New Years Eve and cashew nuts and toffee from Danís work gift stash and more pastries and scones and sparkling cider and more chocolate and I think there was some white chocolate in there somewhere, not to mention two iterations of pear almond tarts and those sweet potato latkes two weeks ago, plus brisket and a custardy fruit tart.

I had a holiday, in other words. A full-on ďDieting? Whatís that?Ē indulgent vacation. And it was wonderful and I was not even a little ashamed or guilty. But I was worried. I wondered, as I accepted compliments on my weight loss, if while I smiled and nodded, I was right then and there sabotaging myself, shooting myself in the foot or maybe the belly, tumbling into the terrible waters of self-indulgence and willful self-deception. When you read over and over that the way to lose weight is to eat so carefully, so healthfully, and to exercise so regularly, itís scary to chuck all that even for a few weeks. Iíve fallen off weight loss regimens before. It felt pretty much exactly like this, only it went on longer. But would this too? It could. It can. It might. And god, that would be awful.

Today I exercised for the first time since Dan and Damian got off work and school. I warmed up, stretched my arms this way and that, twisted at the waist, pulled my foot up behind my thigh and then extended it in front of me, then I got on the Nordic Track and swished my legs and pulled with my arms in the rhythmic forward-and-back that stretches and works and gets the heart rate up and opens the sweat glands. Thirty minutes of that, plus ab crunches (100 regular, 70 on each side, 70 times bicycling my legs Ė until everything aches and then a little more), plus two sets of twenty push-ups. Then I collapsed on the bed feeling the thump-thump-thud vibration through my torso as my heart gradually slowed and the endorphin glow flooded my body.

I missed this. I missed the feeling of a body working hard. I missed the emotional gratification. I missed knowing that this hour today plus another hour tomorrow and more hours later in the week, that all those hours add up. Cumulative sweat, shifting the body under my skin in a slow transformation. Iíve grown accustomed to this as Iíve grown accustomed to calculating my portion sizes and taking extra veggies and dipping my salad greens in dressing instead of dousing them. Iíve grown accustomed to the feeling that Iím doing something good for myself. Coming back to it feels like coming home after a long trip. A welcome familiarity.

Thank god.

Posted by Tamar at January 4, 2004 10:48 PM