This is not a diet blog. This is not a food blog. I will not be telling you how YOU can lose weight and look better. I will not be preaching on how YOU must eat. I am not trained in those areas and do not have the proper knowledge that makes me a professional in the field. I do have my own personal experience. So, I may reflect on past experiences that made me feel better, or worse, and why. You can take it as food for thought.
As part of the marathon club through Runners Soul, I had the chance to try the “Bod Pod Composition System” at the Sports Science Institute in Lethbridge, Alberta. It is basically one of the most accurate ways to measure your BMI and all that jazz. I now am the proud owner of a printout that lists my percent fat, percent fat-free mass, fat mass in pounds, fat-free mass in pounds, body mass, body volume, body density, and my estimated resting metabolic rate. There is no silly water submerging or caliper pinching. Just sit in the “Bod Pod” for 50 seconds, twice, and its all measured.
I was anxious in the pod, not knowing what to expect. I really despise weighing myself, as I do not think that number accurately depicts my body. Like most young women, body appearance and numbers have always been a stressful point. You want to look and feel perfect. I realize now that since I workout, I gain muscle, and this weighs more than fat. When I was a more intense high school athletic participant, and hadn’t gone through any body maturity, this didn’t go through my thick head. We had pom pon practice four days a week for three hours a day in the summer. Track season started with captains practices in February. Why was I never skinny? Why did my thighs still touch? I was solid, lean, muscle, working out more than most kids my age, but I didn’t feel ‘thin.’ I’ll admit-I tried to change it. From November 2002-February 2003 of my senior year I went on a unhealhty mission. I didn’t see it as a bad thing. I just intensified my workouts, limited my food intake, and cut out foods which I had no need to ignore. I got addicted. I saw results. But i put my body and my well-being at danger. In late January I distinctly remember feeling so weak at the WACPC State Pom championships. I had lost weight, but in the process lost that muscle which kept me strong and going. Thankfully, people close to me intervened and got me on track.
I realized that if I tried to change and alter my body type, it would have to be under extreme and unhealthy measures. I have always lead a healthy active lifestyle. I generally eat healthy, always eating breakfast to start off my day. But…I’m 5’3″. I have a mixture of my mom and dad’s build. There’s no way I would ever be a stick. I have come to accept that. Throughout the years, the number on the scale sometimes still gets me down. But I remember back to my 18-year-old self at my lowest adult weight. That number can mean so many things, and at that point it meant weakness.
What does my typical week day look like, food consumption wise? Well, I have a cup or two of coffee and either a bowl of oatmeal or a cereal like Cheerios. I pack a lunch for work, and it usually includes a sandwich with free-range ham, cheese, onions, and lettuce. Oh, and hot sauce. I LOVE hot sauce. I also have fruit and veggies. I drink as much water as possible during the school day, but not too much, since the staff bathroom is inconveniently located what feels like MILES away from my classroom down in skid row. I’ll snack on triscuits or tostitos after school (tortilla chips are my downfall). Dinner is something usually homemade with free-range beef, a starch and veggies. I have a beer or two or a glass of wine each night. I feel like I eat healthy, but allow vices in moderation. And this is important. I recognize the effects too much cheese has on your body. It’s bad for me!!!! But, I’m from Wisconsin and if I was lactose intolerant, I might cry. I am trying to cut back-cheese is my drug. But, will I ever cut it out completely? NO. Moderation….mod-er-a-tion. Craft beers and wine tasting are a pastime and hobby for my husband and I. Yes, my body would overall be healthier if I cut these out completely. That dreaded weight number would possibly decrease. But it’s something we enjoy. With proper moderation and exercise, my body can still be healthy while enjoying these things.
Back to the Bod Pod. What did it say? I’ll admit the key details all right here:
Resting Metabolic Rate-1287 cals/day
Body Fat Rating-Moderately Lean
Fat Mass-36.331 lb
Body Mass-140.625 lb
Do I feel 140? No. Do I feel like I look 140? I don’t think so. I was surprised this was the result. I’ll admit that this ‘weight number’ hit me like a rock. It always does. But, I took a step back and breathed. This isn’t the end of the world. I am older than I was when I was 18 (duh). My body has changed. And all my clothes still fit. If I tried to make myself any less than 140 it would have to be under extreme measures. And is this worth it? Hell no. As long as I keep running and doing what I do in the kitchen, and even enjoy my pints of beer, I have accepted that it’s OK if my thighs touch.
Lead an active, healthy lifestyle and be proud of who YOU are.