Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Day 28 - my year, in great detail

This past year was mostly about:

1) My first year in grad school
2) Moving back in to, and then moving out of, my parents' house
3) Figuring out changing relationships
4) For the first time, feeling uncomfortable with my body

Even though this whole post is supposed to be "in great detail," I've already written ad nauseum about #s 1 and 2, so I'll err on the side of not boring what little audience I have by repeating myself.

As for point 3 - this past year has found me in the familiar position of experiencing that managing "school-based" relationships/friendships once school has ended is just, plain and simple, kind of freaking difficult. Particularly with my not living on the Westside, I've seen very little of most of my closest college friends, and I've felt very much on the outside of a group that I used to be very much a part of due to, at least in part, geographical inconvenience.

I love where I live now, but its distance from, well, pretty much everyone, as well as my growing lethargy (another problem I'll address in #4) kind of result in an atrophied social life.

And, as for #4.

I feel like I need to make a few disclaimers here, because (annoyingly enough) I can't rely on being able to bring this up to people in person without being told, essentially, "Oh shut up, you're so skinny." So. Ahem.

Yes, I know in the past I was very much the ectomorph. I know that I am, overall, slender. I know that a lot of people would love to have my body, and so I'm working on not disparaging it as, generally, a sucky body; sadly this is kind of difficult to do . My complaints are very specific -- and very relative -- to how my body has been in the past, when I was in better shape, and to how I know my body can be if I took better care of myself.

Therefore, what may not be clear to other people, but what is clear to me, is that I dress well enough for my body to give it an overall flattering shape, and to, in fact, hide the weight I have gained. I know that in order to pull this off, I currently cannot wear more than half of the jeans in my closet, because they're giving me a gnarly muffin top. I also know that I've always had high cholesterol, despite being on the low-normal side of BMI. So even though everyone knows I'm a goddamned bacon fanatic, now that I'm starting to try (and lord knows this will take time) to eat fewer fatty and sodium-filled foods, I don't want to hear it about how I don't need to be on a diet. Losing weight would be nice, but my main objective here is to finally treat my cardiovascular system like the delicate flower that it is.

Furthermore - exercise. I've quipped here and there about how boring I find the routine gym trips and how I just generally can't stand it. But one of the things I learned in the last year from working in and with cardiovascular and obesity-related labs is that exercise isn't just about losing weight. It's about improving your overall metabolism, and how the combination of even moderate physical activity and improving metabolic biochemistry can lower your liver fat and improve your sensitivity to insulin, which means less risk of diabetes! And that's great for me since Type II runs in my family. So this exercise thing? I need to just do it.

I'm only looking to lose about 5-10 pounds in fat weight, but I know not to cry if at the end of my body makeover I'll be the same weight I'm at now, since ideally I'll have some more lean muscle going on. I need at least enough to not always be tweaking things or getting injured all the time. I need my body to be more hardy.

So, that's my story. Yay 2010!


  1. you once told me something similar to this on one of my posts, so I am gonna return the favor: Just do what works for you and feels right for you! Who cares if other people tell you "oh you don't need to diet because you are already too skinny". By all means, you look great, but I think both of us have become aware of the reality that eating healthy and exercising is about so much more than just weight or body appearance. Those two things aren't important. I think you are on a great track of eating right and exercising for the RIGHT REASONS: for your health and future well being. Eating a diet low in fats and exercising somewhat regularly is the easiest, cheapest, most effective way to prevent and combat future hypertension, type II diabetes, etc etc....

    Just to be sure this isn't coming off the wrong way, I think you have an awesome body! (but that obviously isn't the issue you are talking about :P) I totally support the effort to live a more healthy life style! :)

    One of the most life-changing classes I took at UCLA was taught by a wonderful MD/registered nutritionist Dr. David Heber. He was a GREAT book out called "What color is your diet?" It basically gives you the scientific reasons behind eating healthy and building more muscle mass to burn more calories at rest. It's very cheap used on Amazon if you are interested. :)

  2. Thanks friend :) I appreciate the support! I definitely did think of you when I wrote this post, because now that I'm experiencing what you did I completely relate to what you wrote about awhile ago. I hope your healthy lifeplan is still going well for you!

  3. @#3 - at least you only live <1h away from them...