Sunday, December 23, 2012

This is heavy, doc.

Marty McFly: Whoa. This is heavy.
Dr. Emmett Brown: There's that word again. "Heavy." Why are things so heavy in the future? Is there a problem with the Earth's gravitational pull?

Let me tell you, ladies. Most of us are headed towards a heavy future, and it has little to do with gravitational pull. I thought I would be in super svelte, low body fat shape after taking on a half Ironman this year. I was wrong.

I would like to preface this conversation about weight with the following disclaimer:

I am aware that:
A) I am not a plus-sized person and
B) I understand that muscle weighs more than fat.

(I'm sure someone will still point this out to me.)

So, before you think, "Oh Suzanne, Shut the f--- up, you are not fat!" Remember that I never said I was fat. I said I am getting heavier and am trying to figure out why. That is all.

A few years ago, before I hit the big 3-0 in years, my goal was to stay at 127. After the age of thirty, I also went over one-hundred and thirty pounds. The doctor weighed me a few months ago when I went in to check out my ganglion cyst and I was 134 pounds. I can live with that. Last week I went back for a routine checkup, and I was 138 pounds. Really? Maybe I had more water that day?

My days of being under 130 are probably over, but my body is also capable of doing more, so I should just come to terms with it. But what about the next decade? What is 40 going to look/feel like?

This is what I've figured out (so far): Weight gain happens despite a lot of things. My weight gain is despite my workout activities. I put on the typical 5 pounds around Christmas 2011 and it stayed on me through 2012. Everyone keeps telling me that muscle weighs more than fat, but it's still extra weight that I have to carry around when I'm training. Maybe it would be best to take off a couple of pounds?

The more I talk to other people in their 30's, the more I realize that changing up routines is the way to go.

If you take on an extreme diet or exercise regimen, your body will change pretty dramatically.  Let's say you train yourself to run a mile. Pretty soon you can run a mile every morning before work. Your body improves, and you feel good about yourself. You think to yourself,  "Oh if I continue to run a mile every day, I will stay like this."


Your body will get used to running the mile, and pretty soon you will be able to run your mile but you will continue to start to put on weight again. At the rate I'm going, I will be a 200 pound 60 year old doing ultra marathons. Time to think about diets again, because it's food, not exercise that is causing the gains. My mom always told me that your appetite gets smaller as you get older. Still waiting for that one...

So this winter, while running 20 milers, I still indulge in everything winter has to offer. If only we could just hibernate for a month like other animals and wake up thin, well rested, and not broke. Maybe my doctor could give me a prescription or write me a note for that. Or maybe I'll just start some kind of diet after the holidays.

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