Before you start imagining a completely round girl with blond hair perched precariously on her head like a mop (although the hair description is kind of accurate- I feel like Raggedy Ann ever since The Haircut) who waddles while she walks and always has some form of candy in her hand- no. That's not me.
But it's who I will be in ten years if I don't stop and do something now.
No one (the Teacher doesn't count) knows I'm obese. I'm over six feet tall, so my extra one hundred pounds has to cover a lot of ground. I look like a giraffe with inner tubes hung around its neck.
This is not THE SECRET. It's no secret I'm overweight. It's no secret that I start panting like a dog after a five yard sprint. It's no secret that I like Milky Ways and chocolate ice-cream (let me point out that because of the Teacher's various health kicks and a childhood rule that I can't spend my allowance on candy, I get those things maybe five times a year; this is the true definition of tyranny).
No. THE SECRET is that I'm no longer 'trying' to lose weight. I'm no longer 'trying' to get in shape.
I'm doing it.
The plan is simple. According to the BMI on Wikipedia, I'm 100 pounds overweight. There are fifty-two weeks in a year. Divide 100 by fifty and you get 2; recall that 2 lbs a week is almost enshrined as the 'safe' and 'normal' amount to lose. It is therefore quite possible that a hypothetical person could theoretically lose 104 lbs in a year. Remember how much weight the contestants on The Biggest Loser lose and it leaves the realm of the quite possible and enters the realm of the 'Well, why haven't you done it yet?'
I'm doing it.
I've lost 13.4 lbs this year. I'm eating normally (for me, which is insanely healthy- see last parenthesis) but I've cut out the seconds and thirds that would happen more than four or five times a week. I've cut myself down to three meals a day instead of twelve or fifteen snacks with three larger snacks interspersed through the day. I've been exercising six days a week. I've changed my exercise this last week from marching in the living room to going on four mile walks. As of Saturday I will have walked twelve miles! Which is the farthest I've ever walked without collapsing!
So you're thinking "Peaches! This is big news! Why haven't you said anything about it?!" (If you're thinking "Blah blah blah- when is she going to get back to the funny stuff about being smarter than the average lettuce?"- that's fine. You're allowed to think that. But keep it to yourself, okay?)
Because this started as a New Year's Resolution; New Year's Resolutions generally occur in January; and everyone feels obliged to tell the world about their resolutions. And when you don't know them and couldn't care less, it's annoying; it's even more annoying when one out of every three resolutions is 'I will lose weight'. I avoid being annoying (unless there's a possibility chocolate or enjoyment involved, in which case all bets are off). Which is why I didn't mention it here. I'm sure my parents wish this restraint extended to them, but some things you just have to suffer for family's sake.
That's the bright and shiny reason. This is the dark one:
Because I have dreams. And I'm paranoid about my dreams. I dream about being a figure ice skater. (Probably will never happen.) I dream about being a graceful dancer. (See last comment.) I dream about being able to kick butt in martial arts. (This will happen, or else. Don't ask which martial art. I haven't planned that far ahead.) I dream about wearing a bright red dress and not feeling uncomfortable that people are actually looking at me.
My motto this year is the same as that old WWII poster: Loose Lips Sink Ships. Because losing weight is my commando raid to take over my life before I lose it completely to my weight. I don't dare tell people because there's no way of telling who's a spy; there's no way of telling who will support me, who will sabotage me, and who will take knowing THE SECRET as permission to oversee every aspect of my diet and exercise, which would sink me more surely than anything else.
If I feel this way, why am I telling you?
I've already lost 13.4 lbs (that 0.4 is very important- the world might explode if we leave it out). I'm beginning to believe my promises to myself: my promise to learn to skate, my promise to take dance lessons, my promise to choose a martial art and stick with it no matter how much it hurts, my promise to buy and wear the reddest dress I can find next January.
I'm telling you because some support from total strangers would be totally appreciated right now. I sound confident, but honestly my mood swings are insane- especially around Weigh-In Day, otherwise known as the weekend. I'm elated! I'm going to do it! I'm depressed. I'll always be fat. Why don't we have any chocolate in the house?
So now you have great power; remember to use it only for good, never for evil; because you, yes you, are the privileged only to know THE SECRET:
I'm doing it.
(I will never, ever, in a million years, get sick of saying that.)