We’re coming out of the winter blues, John and I. These blues have mostly been characterized by a lack of commitment to staying fit and an overindulgence in sweets, so coming out of them means exercising and dieting. Alright, I admit, not so much dieting is going on. I’m one of those people who gets “hangry” (hungry=angry, and no, I did not make that up. Someone else did.), so a diet for me usually amounts to avoiding sugary drinks and pastries.
The fun thing about diet and exercise is watching your body change over time. We’re still young enough that it doesn’t take that much effort to effect a visible change. John, for example, has been doing push-ups as part of his routine, so his chest and shoulder muscles are becoming more defined and filling out. I’m doing my month-long marathon run (5.5 miles so far!), so my calves are showing the biggest improvement.
The funny (by which I mean both funny “ha ha” and funny “weird…”) thing about watching this change is noticing how the rest of our bodies begin to look in comparison to the areas that are getting more observably fit. John was pondering his navel last night, which led to this conversation:
John: It’s like all the fat in my body is just migrating to my stomach.
Me: You’re making war on it everywhere else. All the cells are screaming, “Quick! Get to our last stronghold! He can’t get us there!”
John: Ha! So my belly is the Helm’s Deep of body fat?
My body is less desperate, I think, because I still have peaceful colonies of fat farms that don’t seemed to feel threatened by my evil efforts to eradicate them. I’m less like Sauron and more like… Dr. Doofenschmertz. I can rant and moan and produce lengthy backstories and wave my Fat-away-inator at them, but they all just smirk and roll their eyes and wait for Perry the Platypus to subdue me with whoopie pies and donuts. (If you didn’t understand the references in that last sentence, trust me and take twenty minutes to watch an episode of Phineas and Ferb.) The point is that my body likes to stash little caches of fat cells all over the place. A little in my thighs, a little in my arms, a little in my belly, and they all mock me for my incompetence in faticide.
The upside to my body’s guerrilla approach to fat storage is that when I’ve been gaining weight, it takes a while to become noticeable. I can easily put on ten pounds without feeling my clothing pinching in any particular place. The sad thing about this is, when I’m trying to get fit and healthy again, I can lose twenty pounds without noticing much difference either. I end up in the unfortunate position of working really hard to get results that only my scale can see, which is great for my heart and lungs and all those other things I also can’t see, but all the same, I always end up feeling like my body has entirely missed the point of working out.
I suppose I will just have to learn to appreciate my calves for their willingness to shape up quickly and lean on them for motivation to whip the rest of my winter-blues body into shape.