Thursday, December 07, 2006

Size 7 to size 2 in 12 weeks!

No, it's not a caption to some poorly taken before and after photos of a woman who went through the latest fad diet. This really happened to me! I've been wearing my new size 2 corduroys and jeans for the last five weeks so I could have told you earlier, but I wanted to make sure I truly did get back down to a size 2, with the test being my old, postnatal jeans (can you imagine I was thinner before Maylin? I've forgotten what that's like). Previously I was too scared to try them on, but to my relief, they went on without my sucking in my belly.

On my birthday, July 28th, I was seriously a size 7. After three pregnancies, it's no wonder. I don't think I looked really overweight by American standards, but by Parisian standards, I was a little pudgy around the middle, rear, and thighs. First week of August I started working out to my exercise videos at home and eating lighter. I had filling breakfasts (peanut butter and banana sandwich on one slice of whole wheat bread or two fried eggs and a yogurt), eliminated most of my white carbohydrates (and didn't miss them much fortunately -- what, no baguette anymore???), and kept snacks out of the house except for nuts, popcorn (to air-pop), fruit and yogurt. Lunch and dinner usually consisted of a meat or fish and veggies. Desserts were only off-limits if I was full after eating the main course. I would stave off hunger pangs in between meals with a banana, and then go on to another fruit or drink water if I still felt hungry. To this day, I have stuck to this regime.

I go to the gym on the average of 5-6 hours a week and am very conscientious about my exercising. It's very disappointing to see people make the effort to go the gym but then do the exercises half-heartedly. I'm thinking, what's the point then? In my weight-training classes, I continue challenging myself by lifting more weight each visit. In my dance classes, I fill each movement with as much energy I can muster. In my bodysculpting (I call them "torture") classes, I don't let myself give up even when half of the class has. I extend my body as fully as possible, to the point of mild discomfort, in my stretching classes. "No pain, no gain" is partially true. To challenge your body, you need to experience some amount of discomfort, but I do not believe in pushing yourself to the point of inflicting pain on yourself which I think may be an 80s way of thought because John sometimes works out to the point of nausea. For me, that's too far. It's important though to know how differently your body feels when it's being challenged from when it's not.

I haven't lost a lot of weight (eight pounds in four months) but I think it's because of gained muscle mass. My muscles have never looked better! My forearms, strangely enough, are the shapeliest they've ever been (I've never noticed them before). And everything's nice and firm, just the way my husband likes it.

No, my body will never look like the one I had in college (darn), but at least I'm fit, healthy, and full of the energy I should have always had. This winter so far I have not been seriously sick (unlike the last ten-plus winters -- knock on wood), I can function at nearly peak levels with even five hours of sleep (I try to sleep at least seven), and I'm in a better mood for my family because of this newfound energy. I can be the best mom and wife possible now!

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