Do you have a bag of sugar?
Thursday, October 11, 2012
They do this thing on Biggest Loser where they make the contestants lug around bags of sand to represent the weight they've lost. Of course, at that point of the competition, they've usually lost huge amounts, 50 lbs and upwards. I feel for them, crying and sweating, lugging around that extra weight they thought they'd gotten rid of forever.
I confess it is a fantasy of mine to replicate that exercise. So today, I decided to lug a few cans of beans and a small bag of sugar in my gym bag to the tune of 10 pounds - roughly the amount I've lost since I became active again on Spark. If I counted from the time I first joined, it would be closer to 30 pounds, but for some reason I don't like to include that amount. Maybe because it seems so long ago since I did it.
Although there was a bit of grunting, particularly as I hiked the hill near my house, there was no sweat or tears. Yes, I've lost weight, but I've also gained endurance and some muscle from the workouts I've been doing. That sort of neutralised thing and I was disappointed it didn't feel more dramatic.
The weirdest thing was that no matter how much I tried to visualise, I couldn't remember what it was like walking around with those extra pounds. It hasn't even been that long, but my mind has kind of blocked it out. Not the factual stuff, the physical memory of it.
Defence mechanism? Clever coping device? Survival tactic or primal adaptability. Whatever the reason, my head didn't want to play games and my body wasn't having it either.
I went home, took off the backpack, put away the beans and sugar and then, finally, I felt it. I stood up slowly and walked into the living room and my limbs, my chest, my back and knees especially, all groaned a collective sigh of relief.
How amazing that we have these bodies capable of calibrating themselves to perfection - bodies aware of every minute change, good and bad. It's tempting to disregard our small victories and say 'oh, it's only a few pounds,' but what a difference to the way the entire thing works!
So I'm going to urge you all to take a bag of rice or sugar for a short walk around your block. Please let me know what you think and especially how you feel. Sure, we can wait until we lose more, but what's wrong with today? Try it and see.