So, I am trying to learn to do proper squats. I only have one problem. Every time I start to get in position, this happens:
Coming up from an afternoon workout in my shorts and T-shirt one evening, I found Temple Williams, the editor who was then my best friend, waiting in my office. At that point, I’d lost 15 pounds. My calves were suddenly prominent, and my knees had thickened dramatically There was a new bridge of cartilage running downward from the point of my kneecap.
“You’ve changed your body type,” Temple told me. “You’re a different person now. You can’t ever go back”
– Benjamin Cheever, Strides (Holtzbrinck Publishers, 2007)
I picked up Strides from the library a few weeks ago. I wanted a book about running, but not on running – something about the act of running but not the technical aspects. Strides, which is a mix of the author’s own journey with running and the history of marathons, did the trick. There were several things in the book that made me stop and take notice. The section above was one of them.
I too have significantly changed my body type, and I am also a different person. It isn’t just the physical changes, though those are significant, but I have also changed who I am. There are some big personality changes as well.
I have a different kind of energy now. I feel more upbeat, more energized. I am more willing to get up and do things, rather than spend my time sitting quietly. Don’t get me wrong, I still get worn down. The last few days I wore myself out… right into a migraine. I guess my body figured if I wasn’t going to get enough sleep, it would make me rest. But over all, I feel great. It’s the little things that kind of surprise me – how easy it is to get out of my little hatchback car, how much I enjoy running up my stairs to the second floor, how much more “peppy” I feel around friends… you get the idea.
I commented about this on Fit, Feminist and (almost) Fifty’s blog post about risk, Why are the Very Fit More Likely to Have Unsafe Sex?. Something happens when you decide to make a life change like getting fit. You have to take risks. Getting out there and jogging, knowing there were times I looked pretty darn foolish, and yet doing it anyway has changed me. I’m taking risks every time I lift weights or go out for a run, and after each success, I am willing to take a few more.
It isn’t just physical risks, it’s translated into my personal life. I am wearing clothes I never would have worn before and willing to try new things. Julian (my boyfriend) and I were talking the other day about how our communication has gotten better. I know I feel more comfortable and have been more open lately.
These things are turning into a bigger thing – I am happier. It isn’t at all about my dress size or even the lovely compliments that I have been getting. The fact is, I feel better on the inside, and that is more than enough for me.
I’ve been craving fruit – incredible quantities of fruit. I can’t stop eating it. It’s like I have an insatiable hunger for fruit. In the last week or so I have eaten:
I’ve eaten several of these in one day, in fact, several in one sitting, and still I want more fruit!
Usually when I have a craving, I can guess why. When I am low on iron I crave red meat. When I am low on fatty oils I crave avocados and tuna. When I am low on happiness and the ability to punch people, I crave chocolate. Right now, it’s fruit.
And as you can see, it isn’t even any particular kind of fruit. It’s pretty much whatever is looking good at the store. I’ve put away countless clamshells of raspberries and strawberries and an entire cantaloupe – by myself. Okay, it wasn’t a very big cantaloupe – but still!
Is my brain craving something sweet? Is my body craving fiber? Is my immune system craving aid against a cold? Is my heart craving summer?
It’s not that it is a bad thing. This is an easier craving to indulge in than say, exotic caviar, and far better for me than the great Funions craving of 2011, but still… it doesn’t stop! See, the thing about all of my cravings is that, up until now, usually once I give in a bit, the craving goes away. This time it is like I am a bottomless pit of fruit yearning. I know there are all sorts of health gurus that say that the whole “Fruit is nature’s candy” thing is literally true – that we should moderate our intake of all sugar, including natural ones. I’m not worried about it though, I am sure it is temporary thing, and I am still getting lots of proteins and fats. So, nothing to do but ride it out.
Now, if you will please excuse me, I need to go buy a honeydew.