Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Not Much for a Big Woman

11 or 12 years ago, Hubby and I were on our first date. We had gone to a Chinese buffet because he loves (I have since found out) buffets.

We both went and got a plate of food. I slowly ate and we talked and he went and got a second plate of food.

He finished that second plate and headed out for the third plate full. I meandered over toward the dessert section and got a couple coconut macaroons and a small dish of soft serve chocolate ice cream.

I was slowly eating my dessert and he finished his 3rd plate then went to the desserts himself. I finished my cookies and ice cream and pushed my plate back.

"You can go get more - you can eat as much as you want" he informed me.

"Yes, I know. I'm full"

He looked amazed. "Really?? You're kidding! You don't eat much for a big woman!"

There it was. I sat in stunned silence - there was about 75 pounds less of me than there is now days - and I wasn't quite sure how to respond.

I was fully aware of his plane crash and the resulting injuries, and I was aware of the personality changes that can result. But then, I hadn't known him before the crash so I had no yardstick with which to measure.

So I sat back and thought this through before answering. Do I reach across the table and smack him them run out? Or say something snide?

Well, I am (even then) a Big Woman so I decided I would just own it. After all - he was being honest and if there was one big thing missing from my past relationships, honesty would have to lead the list.

"Yeah, I guess maybe I don't eat much for a big woman. Just imagine how big I would be if I ate a lot!" Then I laughed and he laughed too.

I have never regretted the decision to handle it that way - he's a great guy.

But past experience had demonstrated to me I don't eat much. I can gain weight on 1200 calories a day - I know, I've tried. 1000 calories and I will just maintain.

Increase my activity? At that time I was a nurse in a very busy clinic - on my feet walking 8 - 9 hours a day.

SO I'm a big woman. I will be the first to admit it.

Will ever weigh 120 again? I doubt it. In my early-mid 20's I got down to 120 and kept it off for a few years. I ate breakfast then drank coffee for the rest of the day. I went those years never having a candy bar or ice cream. Is life really worth living if you can't have a Snickers or a Turtle sundae? Not really, to me at least.

One day I decided I was hungry so I started eating. oh, glorious FOOD! Baked potatoes, Snickers bars, M&M's, Hershey's with almonds, Hot Fudge Brownie Delights from DQ (back in the days when I fit in their booths!) and all of the other goodies I had missed.

Even when I started "eating" again, I didn't overdo it - I just don't want much food at a time. I refuse to be guilty about leaving food on my plate if someone else has served it to me. In a restaurant I will often order 1/2 of my meal put into a to go container before it even makes it to the table.

Yes, my thyroid has been checked. All is normal.

I just don't eat much for a big woman. Get over it.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Is it KIDDING???

I had been thinking I really needed - in the worst way - to be healthier.

This was somewhat influenced by my recent trip to AZ to visit Sis. With the new direct flights between Springfield and Phoenix-Mesa, we are now only 2 hours apart.

That's great but with the recent controversies about obese passengers on planes I was a bit apprehensive. So I searched the subject and found.... Not much specific info. Well, except for the fact there is a certain percentage of the population who doesn't think obese passengers should fly at all.

They should, at this time, adjourn to the celery stick bar and not bother to read the rest of this.

All I could find was this: If you weigh over 250 pounds and cannot fit into a seat - using a seat belt extender - and/or cannot put both armrests down, you should buy 2 seats. It seems, if there is room on the flight, most airlines will seat you in a double seat for no additional charge, and some - again, according to space available - will refund the price of the second seat.

I could find no specifics about the airline we were using (Allegiant) so I just prayed it would be okay.

At 290 pounds, I was a tad skeptical. After all, the last several times I had flown I had been able to just get the seat belt around me with no extender so here I go.....

The outbound flight we were assigned seats on the side of the plane where there were 2 seats. I got my belt snapped without an extender - and I put down the armrest with no problems.

Coming home, I was really worried... After all, not only had I eaten a Thanksgiving dinner, but also ate more than I usually did overall. (But, oh! Was it good!!) But again, I fit into the seat belt. Phew!!!

With the exception of the seats not reclining on either flight it was a great. But then, those airplane seats don't really recline anyway so that minor detail was no loss.

However.... Before we left I had ordered a scale that analyzes body fat percentage and hydration levels along with weight. It was waiting at the post office when we returned.

So I unpacked it, put in batteries, read the instructions and tried it out.

Bear in mind... The last time I had stepped on one of these I was working as a temp in the office of a bariatric doctor and at that time I weighed around 200 pounds and according to their scale I was 58% body fat. So this time I was expecting a reading of 80 or 90%. Maybe even more.

I got my weight - 289 pounds, then "Err3". Hmmm...... I looked up "Err3" and it said my "body fat percentage was outside readable levels". It didn't give me a hydration level. Back to the book. After all, I had to be something less than 100%, right?? (Yeah, I know - but not by much - LOL!!)

As I was scouring the book looking for the problem Hubby came through the kitchen and his eyes lit on a new gadget.

"Here," I said "take off your shoes and try this."

"Do I HAVE to take off my shoes?" Now, before you all accuse me of husband abuse - he was wearing house slippers...

"Yes, you have to take off your shoes and socks and stand on here barefoot or it can't do a reading".

After just a bit of whining he took off shoes and socks and (after I played with the settings) stepped on the scale.172.4 pounds, 78% body fat, 48% water.

So, okay. This told me the scale does, indeed, work.

Here I was, proud of finally working myself up to 2 minutes a day (from 15 seconds!) and I find out my body fat percentage is "above readable levels".

I took hubby's advice. I made us some chocolate malts and we sat and watched TV a while to think it over.

Now my goal is to get to the point where my body fat is down to "readable" levels. Then I'll work on the rest of it.