The struggle is real


I did the middle-aged spread shuffle this morning.

I was damned if I was going to lose the battle between my waistband and my favourite Levis.

It took a few minutes of jumping up and down.

A few more of sucking in.

And, finally, the victory dance of doing up the zip.

Thanks giphy

I could buy another pair, but that would be admitting defeat.

I won’t.

Just like I won’t go to the loo today, in case I can’t do them up again.

I’m religiously going to the gym.

I can now kick-start a Boeing.

Squat like a broody hen and climb stairs like they’re Led Zeppelin’s Stairway to Heaven.

I’ve given up carbs.

I’ve forsaken chocolate.

I can’t remember what a potato chip tastes like.

What I can’t do yet is fit into the bloody Levis.

Maybe I can blame it all on impending menopause.

Maybe the washing machine shrunk every item of clothing I own?

Both are preferable to blaming my expanding girth on myself.

Maybe it’s gas?

To listen to the sheer genius of this song, link to the YouTube video:


The unpalatable truth

Gym Bunny by Jules

“Ooh, Mom,” said teenager strolling past, “You’re getting a little…”

“Fat, I’m getting fat. I have got fat. I’m standing in the doorway of my 600-pound life. Pushing maximum density. Looking ‘healthy’. Breaking the scale. Yes, I am aware of the phenomenon.”

This conversation was the eye opener I needed to move my fat ass to the gym.

I’ve managed fairly successfully to avoid all exercise for 43 years. I’ve had my fads, yoga, tae-bo, electric shock therapy, rowing, etc., but I managed to move past them back into couch potatodom.

To say that I was terrified doesn’t encapsulate the brewing panic attack in my belly as I walked towards the doors. I am deeply ashamed of my current, non-existent level of fitness. And, I am averse to any form of public humiliation.

At the door, I was asked to collect my tag the next time I came. I looked at the woman in horror and said, “You’re being awfully presumptuous assuming that there will be a next time.”

There was also the fact that my trainer, Geoff, is my son’s trainer and that my son is Arnold Schwarzengger in the making. Actually, he trains the whole family. Even my 13-year-old daughter is ripped and back.

And then there’s me.

“Is there anything you want to tell me before we start?” questions Geoff.

I pointed to a poster titles ‘Human Musculature’ and said, “You see all those muscles. I don’t have them. Inside me is just a mush of stuff around a crumbling skeleton, held together by a skin suit.”

“Don’t worry,” he said confidently, “I have another older lady who…”

I didn’t hear the rest. I was still sticking on the phrase, “another older lady”.

WHAT! I’m in forties not my eighties.

“Hang on,” I simpered, “Let’s back up. Another older lady?”

“I… I… I didn’t mean it like that. Just that she is older not that you’re another older…”

It helped that my trainer (my trainer – see what I did there? Owning the experience.) treated me very gently after that. I think my family had prepped him that in extreme circumstances and confronted with things I do not like, I can run very fast out the door. In those circumstances I can be Usain Bolt.

“What do you want out of this?” he asked.

“I want to be smaller. Everywhere. I want to be 2 dress sizes smaller.”

“Alright,” he said firmly, “Then no more Bar Ones and Red Bulls.”

“Hang on,” I erupted in guilt, “How do you know about the Bar Ones?”

Children, you can’t rely on them to keep anything a secret.

Anyway, my Reiki teacher says that if you bless your Bar One with Reiki energy before you eat it, you just pee out all the sugar and fat. So, really, diet food.

Look, I can be an optimist if I want to.

So, no Bar Ones. No sugar, in ANYTHING! No potatoes, pasta or bread. Just grilled chicken and spinach for eons and eons.

If you look at it from an environmental point of view, eating a Bar One will save the lives of hundreds of chickens.

And I have to drink protein shakes and eat eggs. I’m going to be eating double the amount I do now. Lots more food. Lots less variety. At the end of this, hopefully I’ll look like Chris Hemsworth. Call me Thorina.  

“I just want to get a baseline on your flexibility and fitness,” he says.

“I can tell you that right now,” I reply, “There isn’t one. It’s so far down below the Earth’s surface that lava flows over it.”

Somehow, he coaxed me into a public area and began making me do stuff. Lunges, squats and lifting a bar up. Lunges are exercises designed by BDSM practitioners. I also discovered that the weight of a bar is relative to the amount of times you have to lift the bloody thing above your head.

I did quite well considering my state of anxiety and growing thigh pain. Geoff, the trainer, is a sweetheart and also took into consideration my back issues, making sure that I didn’t do anything stupid to make it worse.

I think we could make a good team. However, I need small wins. I need to be able to see my pubic area again. I need to fit into my clothes again without having to get my husband or kids to force the zipper up.

I also have added incentive. If I stick with this for 12 months, my husband will pay for a boob job. I’ve long gotten rid of my early-twenties aversion to plastic surgery. I have had three kids and gravity is doing its job a little too well. Without this boob job, I’ll end up having to roll the bloody things up like a tortilla.