“I am no fitness expert…but I definitely am a FATNESS expert!” This sentence has never failed to elicit a chuckle. However, that HAS BEEN the story of my life - from when I was 12, to be precise.
The “battle of the bulge” as most “like-bodied people” know, is no mean battle and as a person who has been overweight for more than 95% of her life thus far, I can vouch for it. Finally, after my pregnancy, delivery and subsequent, STUPENDOUS weight gain, I stood at a whopping 102(or was it 103?!)Kilos- unhealthy and lethargic, not to mention depressed. My good doctor suggested that I “do something about it”. He put it rather mildly, but since I detected the warning note in his voice, I decided I would ‘do something about it’.
I zeroed in on Fitness 1-- my-kind-of-clean ‘n’ classy gym -- last year and joined the aerobics classes and a little later, the gym itself. Managed to lose 15 kgs last year alone and have embarked on the uphill task of losing another 15 this year!! “Miles to go before I sleep” (thank you, Robert Frost), I like to quip. Initially, it was tough. I had not exercised in ten years and I first developed a bad back and knee pain and then, a strained hamstring, but regular exercise and stretches eased the pain off and the weight came down slowly but surely.
I now recognize and understand the mistake I made from the age of 12 (was JUST 67 kilos then!)– The mistake was: exercising / dieting in spurts – only to give in to cravings and binge and then gain it all back … and then some. “And then some” became 102 kilos at 31 years! I LOATHE it that I hit a century – not on the cricket field but on the weighing machine! Still, when I look back over the past year, I am QUITE satisfied with my weight loss and am praying that this newfound determination and (dare I say it?) self-control, continue……..as long as I live.
Must wind up now as I don’t want to bore my reader with more of this personal yarn - but at the risk of sounding like a broken record, I reiterate that there is no shortcut to good health. The only way to get there is through exercise and a balanced, reasonable diet – it HAS to be a way of life. That is a fact - better face it and enjoy it rather than ignore it and “suffer like a duffer”, I say!
Joke in context: My late father had many German friends who used to visit us with family. One day, when this German gentleman asked me what “Sujata” meant (he could only say “sujaba” or suraja”, never got it right!) , I puffed myself up to reply. You see, I had just then checked out a book in Landmark on the meaning of Indian names and thought I had it down pat.
I told him, “Sujata means WELL-BRED!” In the ensuing pause, I kind of thought the Germans looked quite impressed until my witty father added “Actually, it should have been “WELL-FED”, not well-bred!! (I admit, I really treasure this anecdote despite being the butt of the joke).