We’re Not 22 Anymore

Believe me, I don’t actually think Joe and I are old. But we are getting older and as I approach 30 and he gets closer to 40 (eek!), we’ve started to notice that our bodies aren’t what they used to be.

When I initially lost a lot of weight, I was 22. I didn’t always do it in the smartest way but my body responded to the changes I made. I tried to eat better. I exercised more. And I usually could count on losing a pound or two a week. Perhaps after years of mistreating my body by being lazy and not eating right, it was desperate for a change. I also think it had something to do with that awesome metabolism you have in your early 20s.

Flash forward to now. I’m nowhere near what I once weighed but I weigh 20 pounds more than I once did. My weight has crept up a little for the last few years. For a while I stopped exercising. Then Joe and I started to live together and I got comfortable. We both love food and bring out the fat person in each other and now we’re paying the price. I’m trying to lose weight but it’s a struggle. Most mornings I want to throw the scale across the room. I’ll tell myself there’s something wrong with it when it registers the same weight every morning. I’m running and I’m eating healthy so why doesn’t the number on the scale change? Sometimes it does go down after days of being very cautious about my food intake and making sure I get the exercise in. But that small victory can be wiped out in one day. A couple of indulgences on the weekend and I’m right back where I started. It’s a brutal cycle but I know it’s not going to get any easier. I tell myself to have patience, that I’ll chip away at that number a little at a time. But I’m not a patient person so it can be hard.

Joe has been struggling to lose weight too but he knows his problem: portion control. He just does not know what a portion should look like. When I tell him his portion of meat should be the same size as a deck of cards, he looks at me like I have three heads. I know, it’s small and it sucks. But you have to make up for it by eating more vegetables and healthy grains. I tell him to eat more throughout the day so he doesn’t come home ravenous. He’s trying to learn.

He’s also starting to see more wear and tear on his body. He got me into running but he doesn’t run with me as often now because of his work schedule. When he does, his calves or knees will hurt, especially in the morning. Today he had to stop after a little more than a mile because his calves hurt too much. I kept going, hoping he’d recover and catch up. He did sprint to catch up to me at one point but it hurt him too much to keep going. I finished my lap around the Mall while he waited for me in front of one of the museums. I kept going ahead to get to three miles. I stood, at 5:45 in the morning, on the corner of Pennsylvania Avenue, waiting for him to catch up. When he finally came into view, I could see he was walking with a pronounced limp. It made me sad because he’s usually the one ahead of me and I know he doesn’t like quitting.

So, since we don’t have a time machine, I guess we’ll just have to work that much harder to lose the extra weight and get into shape. But really, getting older sucks.