If you read my entry on whole belly, then you know that I really need to do something about how strange my new torso looks. Weight loss is really the only option, unless I want to do some elective surgery and get my remaining stomach fat suctioned out. I’m not really up for that, so dieting it is.
I do look weird right now. My lower stomach is flat and looks nice in pants. But I still have this beer belly like tummy, my arms are still flabby, my ass is still wide and has what some people refer to as a “shelf,” my thighs are still giant, and my face is still very round. So even though I had a lot of weight removed from my stomach, I am still clearly a “fat girl.” Perhaps I should just be happy to have had some of my fat removed, but unfortunately, it’s just left me uncomfortable and even more self-conscious.
My goal for the last few years has been to get under 200 pounds. My mastectomy did that for me – when I came out of surgery, I was 196. Goal met! For the last three months since the surgery, I have made a lot of changes to my diet – not necessarily dieting, but changing what I’ve been eating. I have stopped eating anything that is artificially sweetened, whether with corn syrup or with some kind of chemical sweetener like aspartame. I have stopped eating anything with hydrogenated oils or enriched wheat products (so now I only buy bread and pasta where “whole wheat” is the first ingredient). I have switched to real products – real butter instead of margarin, real syrup instead of who knows that that other stuff is, real oatmeal instead of the instant packets, real eggs instead of egg substitute, real milk/cream instead of flavored coffee creamers. So, in a lot of ways, my new diet has more fat and more calories than my previous one. I won’t say I don’t cheat – it’s hard to eat out and follow these rules unless you just order grilled meat and steamed veggies. I like to eat what I want to eat on a restaurant menu – if I’m paying for it, I want to really enjoy it. But overall, I am more conscious about eating good-for-me real food and it’s helping. My goal was to get under 190.
I weigh myself every day, and today I discovered that I have lost six and a half more pounds and am now officially under 190. It has been six years since I weighed 190 (that was my weight when I met my husband), and I don’t remember the last time I was below it (I suspect it was when I started my MFA in 2000). My next goal is 175. When school is over in mid-May, I will be able to start swimming every day. Fifteen pounds is probably not a reasonable goal by the time school starts in August, but I do think it’s reasonable to aim for 15 pounds by December – that’s two pounds a month, which is slow but healthy.
Why by December? Because that is hysterectomy month. I know once I’m in menopause, it will be even more difficult for me to lose weight. I want to try to lose as much as I can before my hormones go berserk and I have less control over my metabolism. It’s hard enough at my age, but it will be even harder after that surgery. I know that some women lose weight being on HRT, but I’m not counting on being one of those women.