This is one of those posts I've contemplated repeatedly, then discarded in favor of stories more fun to tell. But the time has come, I suppose, for a little self-disclosure. I don't write a lot of heart-wrenching personal journey stuff because I feel like there's plenty out there that is more compelling and better written. But this is a big part of who I am, so here we are.
I need to lose weight. I've probably needed to lose weight since I was eight years old, though the amount and proportion has changed over time. When I was in high school I was mocked for my size, though looking back at the pictures I am puzzled, since I wasn't particularly grotesque, but random cruelty is a reality of high school that a lot of people experienced in one form or another so, whatever. I will mention, though, that the table of former jocks and beautiful people at my 10th high school reunion somehow got invaded with a handful of paunchy almost-thirty-year-olds with thinning hair. The karma train always runs on time, kids.
So anyway, with the weight loss thing. I've had a lot of stops and starts, some success and eventual return to old habits, but I'm staring down the barrel at 40 and realize that family heredity is dealing some cards to me that I do not want to double down. So its time to stop with the grand plans and make some practical progress.
Most of my help comes from Sparkpeople, a very useful site that is a mashup of every self help book you ever read, a warehouse of cookbooks, trackers, and calculators, and MySpace. Just go there and be mindboggled. I've been a member nearly a year, recently serious about it, and making progress. There are teams, and challenges, and encouraging and fun things you can do with other people that are nothing at all like the humiliating flag football games in 8th Grade. I promise.
I started by eliminating the closest thing to drug abuse I've ever engaged in; eating fast food. I realized that it was one of those things I couldn't bargain with, couldn't rationalize as a 'once in a while' deal; I simply had to not go there anymore period ever for any reason even if it was cold and wolves were chasing me. I've managed to live a whole month so far without any discernible evil befalling me for not going there.
I have committed to some pretty cool goals for 2008, most of them involve moving more and being smaller and I won't bore you with all the details, but I may check in now and again and talk about how its going. Because a lot of it sucks and schadenfreude being what it is, it should make for some humorous reading material. Once I get a little ways down the road, I'll give you some stats so you know where I actually started. Or you can join Sparkpeople and look for SHIELDMAIDEN96 and you'll see it unfold in all its messy glory.
And the flying squirrel? I've adopted it as my mascot because its probably what I'll look like when I'm done. I'm okay with that. I may even get me some aviator goggles.