Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Bringing the body back to life.

I have been very conscious of my body recently, and rather than pretend it ain't so, I will document it, in case doing so might contribute to the recovery process.

These things happen, of course, when you are used to living in one body and suddenly (or even not so suddenly) find yourself in another. At those moments, it is easy to idealize the old body. For instance, my old body was extremely strong, fit, and significantly slimmer than my new one. My old body made me feel like a champ. My old body did not take up so much space in my pants. My old body enabled me to look at people and say, "Yeah, I could take them." My old body did not make me feel guilty all the time, like I should be trying to subsist on a diet of water and air. My old body got less tired in the course of a day, and it still felt like going for a swim or a ride after a long day, rather than wanting to collapse early in bed. My old body liked to wear tank tops.

In my new body, I look at the USMS Nationals qualifying times I used to make with ease and wonder how many seconds or tens of seconds I need to drop. I laughingly tell myself that cotton pants get tight in the dryer then feel like shit the rest of the day. I wonder if maybe this is the time that it is not possible to come back to fitness. I feel ashamed that I was not able to keep the weight off during the last year.

But if I am being optimistic, which I sometimes am, I remember that the actual differences between the old and the new are not as dramatic as they feel. The tank tops never looked that great. I notice that after a good swim, I start to feel tough again. It's just that it seems like I have so far to go.


Joe said...

I hear you. I was a complete pig over the holidays and put on close to 5 pounds in about 3 weeks.

But I think you're right. We're not really that far off. It will take a few weeks of determination and hard work but we'll get there. What choice do we have, really? Are we just going to capitulate and sit on the sofa, eating potato chips, for the rest of our lives? Nah, didn't think so. Let's get back the eye of the Tiger. You and me kid. We can do it!

MartyTheFool said...

Isis, Injury will do that, and eventually (gasp) age does it as well. Speaking from experience.

And: "healthy" and "fit" are not always the same thing.

You may not be as fit for certain things as you used to be (like taking someone on? tough grrl!) but if you are "healthy", you can always get back to "fit". Yes, it certainly takes time.

Enjoy the process of getting back there!