Hurray for active holidays! I can't tell you how excited I am to ski in the Rockies over Christmas with my family. And knowing that I'm going to be that active every day and burning that many calories takes all the pressure off Christmas and means I can ease up a bit in terms of what I eat and drink while I'm away.
Here's a preview of my new ski suit!
It hasn't been a cheap trip so far - let me tell you. All the new gear has cost me a fortune, but for me it's an investment in a return to my active lifestyle which I will now continue for years and years to come.
As a kid I lived 15 minutes from a ski hill and in the winter that's what we did every weekend. I was never a "ski bunny" being that I was always overweight, even as a kid - but my overeating was more controlled by the amount of physical activity that we used to do. Some of my absolute favorite childhood memories involve a day on the hill, after which we'd come home and tuck in to my mom's amazing chili or split pea soup that would be cooking in the crockpot all day while we were out. Served up with a fresh loaf of bread, a fire in the fireplace, and a couple rounds of Donkey Kong on the Atari with my brothers. Then, if I was good, my dad would take me back to the hill at night and we would go night skiing together - just the two of us. There is nothing I like more than night skiing - the big overheads lighting up the stark white hill. Everything is so quiet. All you hear is the "swoosh, swoosh, swoosh" of your skis as they cut into the snow. It's peaceful and idyllic and everything I love about being outdoors.
When I was in the 7th grade - a couple of years after we moved away from that ski hill - we made a trip back for a weekend. The move had caused me quite a bit of psychological damage (it's terrible to move a child in the pre-teen years and I was being bullied regularly by my new peers and trying desperately to fit in) and I was looking so forward to getting back out on that hill and back to a better time in my life. Unfortunately, however, I had packed on quite a few pounds in the couple of years being away from the hill. My ski suit was snug at best - I actually broke the zipper in my pants when I bent over to do up my boots, and my dad had to install an additional leather strap to my boots to even get them to buckle. But I was going out there and I was going to ski dammit! ...They ended up taking me off the hill on a stretcher. I wanted to relive the good old days. I wanted to be like my thin and fit brothers who were hotdogging the black diamonds and hitting all the fun jumps and moguls. I pushed myself beyond my abilities and landed myself in the hospital with a broken arm. And I was devastated.
I have only skied a handful of times since that incident. Since moving to "The Land of The Flat" I haven't skied at all. There aren't any decent mountains around here and quite honestly - you can't get ski boots that fit you when you're 313 pounds. So for the past 10 years, I have been separated from a sport that I love and that makes me feel alive. And the pounds kept creeping on.
But no more! My new ski suit is SMALLER than the one I owned at 12 years old! In fact, that ski suit still fits - but since it's no longer 1996, I opted for an upgrade. Here's a pic for the scrapbook though - and for your viewing and giggling pleasure:
Check out those sleeves dude! And the tag from the day I broke my arm is still on that jacket. Oh lord.
Actually - I was really surprised when I started shopping for new gear this year that the number one colour in ski essentials is hot pink. The pants actually fit me pretty well, so I was just going to go for a jacket that had pink accents in it, but then my brother sent me pics of my new skis that he procured for me out west and they're black, red & white - so I chose to bite the added expense and feel TOTALLY chic on the hill this year. Matchy, matchy - oooh.
Since my birthday is at Christmas and my parents are gifting me most of my ski equipment, my flight out was purchased with miles, and our family Christmas gift is the stay in the ski in/out chalet - all inclusive with meals, beverages and lift passes, my expenses haven't really been all that crazy. I invested in my boots which will last me years and will adjust down as my body continues to shrink. I spent a bit on money on the new pants, jacket and ski socks (LOVE my SmartWools!), which I may only get one season out of depending on how small I am by next year, but all in all it's a justification that I can make for my health and my happiness. And since I don't have to buy Christmas gifts for anyone this year, this is what I chose to blow the budget on!
I'll make sure to post the holiday blog, complete with pics from the hill - but just a little warm-up (or, rather - cool down) to show you where I'm headed:
Kicking Horse, British Columbia
Fresh powder anyone?
Such a teaser!
So here's hoping for more big dumps (ski term for LOTS of snow! hehe) - reports are that despite unseasonably warm temps in Edmonton and Calgary, the mountains have been producing and they've already seen 10+ feet of snow in places.
I am SO ready to get back out there - a leaner, meaner, fitter, more confident ski bunny - who looks dang good in that new outfit if I do say so myself!
Swoosh, swoosh, swoosh...Mountains, here I come!