The Gym Ghost

This morning I noticed a weird little crease above my elbow. This afternoon, I ran on the treadmill for twenty-one minutes without stopping. My life is a bit different than it used to be. Food, for instance. I spend a lot of time chopping fruits and vegetables, weighing various bits of cheese, counting up kalamata olives. I eat less than I used to, sure, but I only eat things that I like. Mostly things that grow, with a few luxuries thrown in. Like chocolate. An occasional Big Mac without the fries.

It's wild to me that I've lost a bunch of weight while eating things like Big Macs. Moreover, it makes me furious at every other diet I've ever tried. All those weird restrictive diets and points systems and “rules.” This time, it's mostly been math. Eat less than I burn, to lose. Up my calories to maintain my weight whenever I need a break. (Diet breaks are fantastic!) Don't freak out if there's an off day, because off days are a part of life. Chill, I remind myself when I feel impatient. It'll take as long as it takes.

What was once a hassle has become routine. I log all my food into one of those handy apps. My bloodwork is looking great, so the changes are working, but I'll likely have to keep tracking for the rest of my life to avoid rebounding. That notion used to bum me out, but at the moment, it sounds okay. It takes less than five minutes a day. Why worry?

Like an archeologist exploring the fossil record, I've excavated shirts and pants from deep inside my closet. Everything that fits is painfully out of date. Low rise jeans are hilarious! Why did we wear them? I don't want to spend money on clothes until my size is stable, but I did break down and buy a new bra. The underwires were spearing my armpits and it was time to end the war.

Earlier, when I was jogging my twenty-one minutes (a new record!) my underwear fell down inside my leggings. It felt like being pantsed by a stealthy ghost. 😂

I don't think I look any different. This morning I picked up my jeans and eyed them skeptically. Surely they wouldn't fit. Yet somehow, they did. My eyes haven't caught up to my brain. Will they ever? I'm getting closer to a “healthy” weight and I feel mildly astonished that the boring old “track calories and walk” thing is still working. It feels like a scam. A trick. Surely the scale is making a mistake. Someone is paying it to lie to me.

The running part is pretty new. I've tried it before, but it sucked, and this time I'm actually enjoying it. I'm mystified to be one of those people. They who have always existed across a gulf I couldn't cross. But I got bored after four months of walking, so I ran. There's less of myself to carry, so it feels easier to do. Could it be as simple as that?

That little crease above my elbow feels real though. Tangible. I'm deflating a bit, like a balloon. It left a small fold. I keep poking it. Wiggling it. It's evidence that my gym ghost isn't real. Proof that change is possible.

Anyway, I think I'll spring for new underpants. It's time. 😅

#health #running