Getting a handle on my handles

. February 1, 2013.
mary-helen

I wrapped, detangled lights, removed caked-on frosting from one contented Cor- gi who ventured into a post-holiday filled hefty bag, performed Biblical miracles by feeding a guest list that had an unexpected growth spurt, imbibed and feasted. Now the same society that wanted me to shop until I drop hours after giving Thanksgiv- ing gratitude for all I have, expects me to miraculously lower my cholesterol, drop some pounds and lose my Spanx for the New Year. Even worse as I try to get a handle on my “handles,” Cupid’s revenge (a.k.a. Valentine’s Day) pops up on the calendar. Gratuitous chocolate con- sumption is always a part of this glorious holiday. Although heart-shaped cards full of sentiment are nice, nothing says “I love you” like a brownie with powdered sugar and sprinkles.

I try. I really do, but there has never been a baked good I have met that I didn’t bond with immediately. Also, I have to get over the first few days of some pretty high octane psychological “stuff,” the first being the “I am going to eat every carb in sight today because tomorrow I be- gin as the healthier me” mentality. This state of mind usually lasts about three weeks. Once I get beyond that negative behavior the “What? You’re telling me I can’t have that? Well, I’ll show me!” phase kicks in. This usually ends with the realization that I can’t zip my calves into my chic knee high boots and that I find it necessary to hold my upper arm when waving goodbye so I don’t flab someone to death.

This year I decided to be “hip” as I lost my hips and calculate my food con- sumption with an “app” on my phone. I tracked my caloric intake and found out at the end of day one that if I were a 6’7”, 278 pound male I stayed within my boundaries. I guess as a 5’10”-ish female I didn’t hit the mark. Cranberry muffins are a wonderful mood booster and after consuming one (OK fine, two… and a half), I shooed the dust bunnies off the VCR and busted out a kick boxing tape. I nearly killed the dog with my first back kick. I decided that maybe it would be better and safer to hit the floor and work the abs. The combination of having a canine with two inch legs that rejoices in the rare moments when you are at eye level and trying to detect the source of origin for the stains in my carpet (which is right up there with trying to identify road kill) rendered the floor routine ‘not a success.’ The tapes that followed con- sisting of various models and celebrities breathing seductively (while I sounded like I was giving birth without an epi- dural) and clad in skin-tight leotards didn’t make the cut either. I settled for a Bollywood dance workout. I am happy to report that I have the “feed the chick- ens” and “elephant” moves down, but I have a long way to go before I find my “inner Indian.”

I have been trying to eat more fruits and veggies as well. I just don’t under- stand why blueberry Pop Tarts don’t count as a fruit serving. I also purchased a pedometer. FYI: there are 85 steps from the couch to the TV, 153 from my desk to the bathroom and 56 from the back door to my car. Another helpful tip is to visual- ize how you want to look. It beats laying on your bed trying to stuff yourself into your jeans.

Crazy diet plans have been around for centuries. In 1087, William the Con- queror of England was upset because his girth kept him from riding his horse. His brilliant plan of action to shed unwanted pounds was to substitute food for alcohol. He died from falling off his horse.

I am so proud of my daughter who shed pounds not by eating grapefruit, swallowing a tapeworm or drinking 12 glasses of lemonade a day with cayenne and maple syrup, but by doing something radical. She ate healthy and exercised. Who ever heard of such a thing?!