Monday, January 31, 2011

The Thick and Thin

It's the dead of winter and I am so tired of wearing heavy corduroy, thick fleece, and multiple layers of clothes. I long for that first day of spring when I can wear just a long sleeve t-shirt and not freeze in it. I hate winter's dry air, the constant static electricity, the flaking skin, and the relentless chill in the air. I cannot wait to chuck my winter clothes back in the closet and revel in short sleeves, lighter weight fabrics, and brighter colors.

Can I get some heat and humidity, y'all?

To complicate things, I started an exercise program that last week of December. We have an elliptical machine in our basement and I've been doing 2-3 miles on it about 4 days a week. I'm astonished that I've logged over 40 miles on the thing over the past month. In the grand scheme of exercising, this really isn't that big of an accomplishment. I have friends who regularly run 10 miles or bike 80 miles in one day, far outdistancing my paltry achievement of 40 miles in a month. But those 40 miles are mine, and it's 40 miles I didn't get the previous month. Or the month before that, or the month before that.

I can't say that I've actually lost weight, but some of my pants don't fit my waist very well now. There's a lot of extra material gapping around there and I've got to cinch them in with a belt. Don't get me wrong, I'm not whining about needing a smaller pant size. It's just making my dissatisfaction with my winter clothes all that worse. I'm not about to go shopping for
new winter pants when the last thing I really want right now is more winter pants.

I'll just fold the biggest pants up and stash them on a shelf in my closet and use a belt with the smaller ones for now. And that has me wondering about why women do this stashing of their "fat" pants. You would think that we would chuck those bigger sizes out the door as soon as we could, because who really wants to hold onto a reminder of being overweight? But no, we dutifully keep them in the back of the closet just in case we gain weight again and need those bigger sizes once more. Talk about a self-defeating strategy. We're setting ourselves up to fail and we remind ourselves of this each and every time we spy those fat pants hanging out in the back of the closet. And what if we do gain more weight and need a larger size again? Putting on a worn pair of big old jeans certainly isn't going to be a boost to your self esteem.
Go out and buy a new pair.

I suppose if you lost a significant amount of weight you might keep something as a reminder of how much weight you've lost. We've all seen the ads for the woman swimming in a pair of humungous jeans, grinning like a hyena and holding out the waistband a half foot from her belly button to show how much weight she's lost. I can see myself doing that if I ever lost that much weight. And keeping a pair or two of nice looking, slightly larger sized pants to wear after bingeing at Christmas or on vacation is practical and makes sense to me, too. But keeping a whole stack of big pants, or worse, an entire fat
wardrobe? No, there's no sense in doing that. At that point the visual reminder of those old clothes goes from a peppy, "Hey, look how much weight I lost!" to a relentless, depressing chant of, "You might get fat're gonna get fat again." If you need a strong visual reminder to motivate you to lose more weight, just tape a picture of yourself in your larger days to the inside of the closet door. You'll get the same effect AND you can still use all that precious shelf space in your closet.

So now you might ask me why I'm holding on to those larger winter pants. It's because I want to see how many pairs of pants I can stack up there on the shelf by the end of winter before donating them to a thrift store. And then I'll go through my old spring clothes and see how many of those still fit well before I go buy myself a new spring outfit. With glee.

No comments: