A Curvy Gal’s Guide to a Happy Body

Dear Reader,

Let me start by saying if you are looking to lose 15 lbs in two weeks or get a six-pack in a month or ever or trying to fit into a size 2, discontinue reading this post this second.  This is the story of not how I became a body of rippling muscles, not how I lost all the weight I gained and became a health nut who only eats when she’s hungry, not how juicing and smoothies changed my body, mind, and soul, definitely not how I gave up sugar and lived to tell the story.

No.

This is the story of an absolutely average Indian-American woman whose ass grows exponentially every year no matter what she does to keep it a certain size, of a woman in her mid thirties whose metabolism has slowed to a snail’s pace, of a gal who loves food and isn’t looking for the easy way out, of a female who is learning to accept that slow and steady actually wins the race.

A few weeks ago, I read Kate Hudson’s Pretty Happy and got all Feng Shui on my closet.  I have to release to welcome in the good, I told myself. So I tried on all the clothes that I’d been hiding from myself because I knew the truth, but couldn’t face it: my ass and hips would need something more potent than WD-40 to slide into these shorts and pants.  I squeezed my lower jelly into these pants and at first thought to myself, in a few months surely, I’ll fit them or worse: all I need is a flowy top to hide the roll and not eat if I ever wear them.  Needless to say, I woke the next day and shipped them off to my skinnier girl friend on the West Coast.  A week later, my phone began to rain text messages with photos of this friend wearing my beloved clothes and more than that looking damn good in them.  My first thought:  Fuck, I’m fat.  My second thought: No!  But she looks great and it’s nice to have someone else continue a story for the clothes which you used to have.  Third thought:  Fuck, I need to hit the gym.  My ass, that back fat, my hips.  All of which need some serious squat therapy.

After a day or two of simmering in those judgmental, negative, obsessive, comparing thoughts, I decided to do something.  No, I didn’t sign-up for Crossfit  nor did I go for a jog.  I sat on my couch with a 1/2 cup of Ben & Jerry’s Milk and Cookies Ice Cream and began texting every friend whom I thought was a Skinny Bitch excuse me…every friend whom I believed to have maintained their body and somehow still lived a normal life.  Feeling quite proud of myself, I began surveying the masses.  By masses I mean 10 girl friends.  Clearly these girls were holding on to a secret that I needed a piece of!

I collected data, and diligently made graphs aka colored a few sections of my new adult coloring book.  The research was calculated and super scientific.

Here’s what I found:

  1.  Exercise 2-3 times a week; 3 out 4 weeks a month
  2. Thank your mother for the genes she gave you and live life as usual
  3. Sleep!  Sleep or you will say you’re too tired to workout.
  4. Eat clean with a once a week small splurge; No carbs, sugar, fat
  5. Treadmill 20 minutes, 3 times a week; 3 out 4 weeks a month at least
  6. Don’t eat after 7:30pm!
  7. Do Intense workouts that are so hard that you have difficulty finishing them- 3 times a week
  8. 7 minute workout app; yoga/stretching while my daughter chills or watches tv; watch my portion sizes; long walks; sporadic running
  9. No sugary drinks
  10. Limiting my alcoholic drinks helps me with my food because I don’t crave hangover food
  11. Exercise is my way of life.

Here’s who I am and what I know for sure:  I am a pear-shaped woman in her mid-thirties.  I’ve never mothered a child.  My genetics don’t make it super easy for me to lose weight and keep it off–I’m a 5′ tall woman; there’s not a lot of body for the fat to spread over.  I have a short torso, the best ass in the DMV area, killer hair that can go straight or wavy with the right styling products or tools.  I love to dance and learn new activities.  I just got a bike last summer and am learning to get better at biking in my thirties.  I’m open-minded as hell, but sometimes I can get super hard on my self and my body thinking that I am not hot enough or skinny enough or worse that all my friends are skinnier, prettier, blah, blah, blah.

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The many curves of me!
After evaluating my research, I began to conclude a few ways that I could live a better life.  First, comparison is the thief of joy! (I wish I was smart enough, insightful enough to have come up with that, but alas it was Theodore Roosevelt.)  I am working on a lifestyle change and this doesn’t happen over night.  I am a foodie and that is going to show on my body.  I do workout and really enjoy exercise, but can’t and won’t do it to the extreme.  I am not perfect.  I don’t want to be is the next conclusion that is what I value the most.  I will say that I have lost a few pounds in the past five months and am happy with the results, but have plateaued for now.  So, what has helped me in figuring out the next step is keeping a food journal.  Now being a foodie and keeping a food journal are not mutually exclusive, although I honestly believed they were!  The food journal is not to count my calories, again although many use it for that; it is to give me information about what I’m fueling my body with.  It helps me to see clearly without guessing or lying to myself that yes, I did over eat on Friday.  What am I going to do about it, well nothing really, except make the next best decision for my body and mind.

So yes, exercise is important.  Being regular with exercise? Also important.  What kind?  Cardio 3-4 times a week with alternating resistance training.  Choose activities that you enjoy.  I like anything outdoors.  I’m even forcing my husband to be my tennis coach this summer.  I enjoy dancing, so I go to Zumba and even do private dance parties at home to workout.  I recently have gotten into strengthening my upper body because I’m having some neck and back pain–a result of having gorgeous boobs!

But for my body, being who I am and what I love to eat, it is tres important to not watch what I eat, but be informed regularly about what and how much I am putting into this cutie-cute, sultry, ass-that-don’t-quit body of mine.  I used to believe and fight over the idea that restricting your diet does not equal thin, but the truth is if you restrict your diet you will end up losing weight.  I guess what I was trying to articulate at the time was that I don’t believe in extremes for anything because I can fall into the trap of all or nothing very easily.  This is not true for many people, but with me if I give up something then there will come a time when I binge on it.  Therefore, instead of restrictions, I try to live moderately.  If I really want something like my Ben & Jerry’s, I have it, but maybe not the whole pint.  I may eat the actual portion size, write it in my food journal, and move on.  The key is writing it in without judging it!

The final conclusion:  go to the department store and buy some comfortable shape wear that makes you feel and look hot in your dresses and clothes and move on!  Another thing I used to be against was shape wear, but after searching and finding a few key pieces that are breathing friendly and smooth out instead of accentuate rolls on my mid-section, I am now a proud owner of a few pieces from Yummie Tummie mostly.

Warmly,

Curvy Girl Who Can Find Her Body Happy…6 out 7 days a week; 3&1/2 out of 4 weeks a month!

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