Weight, Age, and Life

I left for Air Force Basic Training a scared but excited 19 year old girl. I’d never flown before and Cleveland to San Antonio was my first experience. I couldn’t wait to get in the uniform and serve my country. About six months before I left, in preparation for my training, I began running. The last thing I wanted was to be yelled at for being weak or left behind. I remember weighing myself a lot because at my height (5’1”) there isn’t much room for weight gain. I have been struggling with my weight and self-image ever since then.

You see, I’m a short curvy women. It’s the bait I used to hook my husband. But, before then, it was troublesome. Because Basic Training was so rigorous I lost weight and came out of there all of 108 pounds. I looked good and felt healthy. However, I still had critics. Why are people so cruel? 108 pounds is not fat! I was a size 6-7. Why did I let society and back then, men, tell me that I was fat? I lifted weights, ran and danced my way to feeling and looking good.

Slowly my weight creeped up. I didn’t mind though because I was an avid weight lifter and packed on quite a bit of muscle. I didn’t know anything about eating properly, I hated veggies and I drank alcohol. After four years I left the AF, went to college, roped my husband with my curvaceous lower body and moved to Japan where we began to make a family.

I think that most women suffer from body image after having children. I gained very little weight with my first child but I gained over 50 pounds with the second. Kids! Since the last child I’ve been down on myself about losing the weight. Now, I know you’re looking at my picture and saying that I don’t have 50 pounds to lose; you’re right. I have 20 pounds to lose.

A few years ago I took a stand for my health and went gluten and dairy free. I ran five miles and lost about 22 pounds. I was feeling good and looking good. But then it began to creep back up again! How frustrating! At this point it isn’t just about looking good, vanity and pant size. Now it’s about how I feel. I’m not happy with the way I look or feel. I know that my joints would feel better is I lost another 20 and tightened up the muscle again.

The frustration comes in because it seems no matter what I do I can barely keep the brakes on from gaining let alone lose. What the heck am I doing wrong? I’ve been to three different doctors and they say “It’s your age.” Well, that’s unacceptable to me! I’ve seen plenty of ___ aged people that look amazing. I don’t eat fast food. I don’t drink soda or juice. I don’t eat gluten or dairy.

Yesterday I talked to my primary care doctor. I really like her because she listens to me about natural alternative remedies instead of shoving poison down my throat. She said that she’s been doing a lot of reading and research and she believes that I’m eating too many carbs, eating them at the wrong time and that I’m stressed. FINALLY! I think she is right.

Did you know that you should eat your carbs at night? She said (based on a book written by a neurologist) when you eat them during the day it makes you hungry for more. So you are hungry/eating all day long. When you eat fats and protein in the morning they are more sustaining throughout the day. She also said to keep carbs below 60 a day. Lastly she said I need to find ways to de-stress. You see, that husband of mine who loves my curves is a disabled veteran and he is a handful (to say the least).

So, my game plan: Revisit the Paleo plan eating carbs (this includes fruit) in the evening and keeping my total for the day under 60. Exercise in ways I love like weight lifting, hiking and running. Find ways to de-stress. Any suggestions for de-stressing?

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