Category Archives: humor

Food

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I’d be so skinny if it weren’t for all the food.

I’m an active person. I work out five days a week, six during the school year and I need to unwind a bit on Saturdays.  Running and weightlifting and stretching. Intervals. Bodyweight stuff. Yoga. I’m like a cat in a puddle of sunshine in terms of activity for all the hours of the day spent not in a gym, but for that one hour I am in the gym, I’m a machine. I’m on fire. I’ve shaved about five minutes off of my average 5k time in the last three months. I run about 10 miles a week. I can hammer curl 15 pounds and do 20 full-body pushups in a row without collapsing. I am a firm believer in a daily minute-long plank. I limp after leg day.

Yet, in spite of my herculean efforts in the gym, I’m encased in a lingering layer of comfortable fluff. Mostly in the sitting region. And, as I age, more around my waistley region. There’s a roll or two (or three) present when I sit down. I’ve got my fair share of cellulite and stretchmarks. There’s nothing remotely fitness modelish about me, and there never will be.

For the most part, I enjoy being stronger and faster than I’ve ever been so much that I don’t notice the persistent fluffiness, and even if I do, I don’t let it annoy me. After all, my diet is more conducive to weight maintenance than loss.

I eat healthy, too. I make everything myself. I eat mostly veggies and fruit with some meat and grains. I drink water, coffee, and fruit juice in moderation.

Mostly.

People keep giving me dessert.

Okay, there keeps being dessert available and I keep eating it.

Because dessert is delicious.

Because whoever came up with the phrase “nothing tastes as good as skinny feels” clearly has never had my mother’s homemade chocolate cake. Or my peach pie, for that matter. Or, well, food.

But all things should be consumed in moderation.  Including dessert. Especially dessert.

I keep telling myself I’m going to go off dessert for a while. No sweets but dark chocolate (because it’s good for me). I feel much better, have more energy, and run faster when I cut back on the sweets.

The trouble with this plan is that all seasons are eating seasons. Let me explain. All seasons have some sort of treat that I absolutely must have (or absolutely will encounter and be unable to resist) at least once while that season lasts.

Spring: chocolate cake (for my birthday), cake at all the graduation parties and weddings, Easter candy.

Summer: peach pie, peach ice cream, ice cream in general.

Fall: pumpkin pie, pumpkin spice lattes, Dunkin Donuts’ pumpkin cake doughnuts, pumpkin everything, if there’s pumpkin in it I want it, also apple pie. And Halloween candy.

Winter: baked chocolate pudding, Christmas cookies and other miscellaneous goodies.

My fitness life is a cycle of nibbling away at treats I love every season and not being given adequate time to detox before another season of deliciousness strikes me in the core (and the thighs and the tush and, well, you get the picture).

To make matter worse, I work an office job. There is always baked stuff. Our department has a doughnut fund. I have a hard time saying no to doughnuts.

Life is too short not to enjoy the sweet things. Even if it’s not very dietarily responsible.

So as long as there are seasons, there will be sweets, and as long as there are sweets, I’m going to be fluffy.

Oh, well. Pass the cookies. I’ll run an extra mile.

Irony: the Opposite of Wrinkly

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One of the most fun parts of being a bride-to-be is dress fittings.

I’m a little different. I didn’t want to walk into a shop and try on a ton of dresses. I know what’s fashionable right now, and frankly none of it appeals to me. What I wanted–miles and miles of ivory lace–would cost an arm, a leg, and my firstborn. My dress budget was $300. For that amount, I could purchase the bodice of a brand new dress that I didn’t like.

My mother got her lace and organza dress for $300, but that was thirty years of inflation ago.

I remember being a little girl and staring at pictures of my mother in her wedding dress. I remember specifically that there was a black and white picture of her in a frame on the table next to my grandmother’s armchair. When I wasn’t in my grandmother’s lap being read to, I was on the floor at her feet, holding the picture of my mother and hoping I could be half as pretty when I grew up.

Mother offered me her dress when a hundred internet searches did not yield a dress I liked.

I’ve always adored that dress, but I’ve adored it on my lovely mother. I’ll admit to being skeptical about trying it on. My mother looked absolutely majestic in those full organza sleeves and full, ruffled skirt and high lace neckline. There was no way I could fill it or do it justice.

Yet up went the zipper without a catch. The bodice fit like a glove. I loved how it felt. I loved how the skirt moved. I loved the subtlety of the beading (almost all dresses these days are covered in sequins–someone explain that to me). I adored the lace.

My mother is letting one of my dear friends alter the dress to fit my tastes more specifically. She practically thrust the scissors into her hands and said “Make it look like my daughter.”

Out came the netting. Gone are the ruffles. The sleeves and the neck are a work in progress. My friend brought it for a fitting.

Now, I’ve been watching what I eat. I’m not in any great need to lose weight, but I’m a bride, for heaven’s sake. I’m trying to coax my skin to clarity and make sure that the dress’s perfect fit remains a perfect fit. I am not one to starve myself, but I’m all about being cautious and keeping up with my running and yoga.

I tried on the dress.

It’s loose, dash it.

A lot of brides are fighting off the pounds days before the wedding. They crash diet, living off of cottage cheese and pretzel sticks for weeks on end. They deliberately buy a dress two sizes too small just to give them proper motivation to drop those last few pounds they’ve been meaning to shed. I’ve heard the story over and over again. I always thought I’d be one of them, but hey, I like food too much.

And yet the dress is loose.

So my official assignment from the seamstress, my bridesmaids, and both of my mothers is to eat more ice cream and do fewer planks.

I can live with that.

Week’s End

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Things I saw today:

  1. A good hair day ruined by rain.
  2. A weather report predicting a high of 65-ish tomorrow.
  3. Lots and lots of call numbers.
  4. Flowers on my dining room table.
  5. A perfectly baked sweet potato.
  6. The top of my yoga mat.
  7. The first grade report of my grad school career.
  8. My groggy face in the mirror.
  9. A shipping tracker telling me my new phone should arrive tomorrow–and I ordered it today.
  10. Not one page of the book I wanted to read tonight.