It’s a hot summer day in July, and my fiance Jeff has taken me and my two young teen-aged daughters on a day trip to the Brock memorial in the Niagara Falls area. We are climbing up inside the old watch tower, on a quest to reach the look-out. For me, the climb up the decaying wedge-shaped staircase is laborious. I am panting, sweating buckets of sweat and grunting with effort. Occasionally one of my daughters reaches a hand back down to help me past some tricky area, or just to check on me. I have to stop repeatedly to let my thumping heart-rate calm down. I constantly slurp water, and my thighs are burning. Eventually I do make it to the top, joining my daughters with a tiny personal sense of triumph, and we all take pictures of our view of the gorgeous Niagara region.
One thought persists: I can’t believe how out of shape I am!
It’s a nice, unseasonably warm fall at the house I share with my fiance Jeff in Norfolk
County, Ontario. We have to rebuild the front deck after exterior renovations, and the front “lawn” is a wasteland of that brown clay particular to our county. Once the deck is on, I hunker down to take measurements for the end railings. I can’t squat: my thighs are too chubby. So I have to get down on all fours to get the measurements. With the tape in my left hand and the pencil in my mouth, I put out my right hand to move along the end of the deck, but my hand keeps going right out into space off the end of the deck. The rest of my upper body follows it down into the brown slippery mud, chest and face first, then bounces back because my left hip caught the edge of the deck, twisting my back. I then came crashing down, a second time, full body impact. (BTW, the pencil snapped in half right in my mouth!)
My one prevailing thought? I am SO out of shape!
It was a long week before I could walk somewhat normally, but I experienced stiffness and soreness in my hip joints until about Christmas-time. Also at this time, I discovered that several of my dress clothes no longer fit me, or they fit very tightly. Due to more than one incident in 2015 I was on the verge of making that life-changing decision to literally get up off my butt, and do something about it!!
My cooking partner in my house-hold is my daughter, whom I will refer to as “Sassy” in this blog, to protect her identity. She is overweight like me, and since we do all of the cooking and grocery shopping, the two of us decided that we were going to do something for ourselves, for our self esteem and to improve everything that we don’t like about our current lifestyles! We were going to start dieting to lose weight, and we were going to get in shape!
Our discussions about this were candid. My fiance offered all sorts of suggestions, the first of which was to make a decision about joining something or an organization. We used to have a Curves gym in our town but it moved to Dover. I wasn’t sure if joining a gym was going to do it for me. I felt that I needed guidance, because the last thing I wanted to do was take over Sassy’s life and boss her around. Hell, my mother did that to me and look how I turned out!!!!
Sassy was leaning towards Weight Watchers. I looked into it and hoped meetings were going to be conveniently held in our town. Due to some already scheduled conflicts, we couldn’t attend until February 11th.
That gave us over four weeks to diligently turn our diet around, by adding in fruits and vegetables. We bought the WW Cookbook in Cole’s and followed recipes. Fiance Jeff was in heaven! Even then I could feel the girth of my big belly loosening, and I felt heartened. I was going to commit to a change and do something about my out-of-shape, over-weight body!
* I’m going to insert a short disclaimer here, to say that I am not promoting or endorsing the Weight Watchers program. We looked into several programs such as L.A., Herbal Magic, Tops, etc., and this is the one that we felt we could afford, we believed we could relate to the program and we both agreed on it.*
The first night we went was the first time I had weighed myself since 2002. Yes. I am not over-exaggerating! I was shocked to discover that I weighed….ready for some fair honesty here? 225 pounds! My reactionary thoughts were, “Wow! You really are what you eat!” I felt like a whopper. I was SO RELIEVED that I had semi-dieted for four weeks before that first weigh-in because I was left wondering what I actually weighed four weeks prior.
Joining WW was the easy part. Doing it has been a whole other ball game.