But the child who is born on the Sabbath day is bonnie and blithe and good and gay

Aiming for normal

I’m sure that if you saw me in the street you wouldn’t think fat. I’m not fat, I’m slightly overweight, annoyingly so. I have a BMI that is nudging into the overweight section of the scale. This is not the reason why I sometime get a little obsessive about my weight. I’ve always been on the heavier side of normal but over the last few years it’s gently slipped into the light side of heavy. It’s more to do with the running and cycling.

I don’t have the ideal frame for long distance running yet I quite enjoy it. One thing that subtracts for this enjoyment is the feeling of my wobbly bits waving up and down whilst I run. I find that feeling very unpleasant and would like to avoid it. It comes on after a certain weight and it takes ages to get the weight off to stop it wobbling. I would prefer wobble free runs.

Cycling up hills is not my favourite activity but I live in an area of rolling hills so going up them is an inevitability. Normally I throw the bike into a low gear and grind my way up to the top. It’s only when I’m with others that I realise how painfully bad I am at going uphill. I’ve got used to the small and thin people passing me with regular monotony but do they really have to go quite so fast? Climbing I’m told is all to do with power to weight ratio. I suspect that if I lose some weight I’d be able to climb up hills with some of the less bad climbers.

I had a medical a while ago and as part of that they took all kinds of measurements. The only thing they could find wrong was the fact that I was slightly overweight. I got the usual “sugar in your tea” talk (I don’t take sugar) and the “you really should” talk. Part of the test was a diabetes risk assessment. I was currently at a low risk but next time I go the risk will be significantly higher because I’ll be older. I feel that this assessment is fairly meaningless and the nurse giving the test said so in not so many words but it’s still a worry.

The only area that doesn’t suffer for me being slightly over weight is the cold water swimming. The heavier I am the longer I can swim, I guess it’s the added insulation. However I’m happy to trade a little insulation to be a little lighter.

I decided a while ago that I really should have a normal BMI, the top end of normal would be good enough, I wasn’t fussy, this was just a numbers game. I decided that calorie counting was the way forward as I’m I believe that moderation is better than abstinence. The first attempt didn’t go well. I sat down and reassessed. I hadn’t taken into account that I had a very sedentary job that requires me to sit in front of a computer for hours on end, walking to the loo is sometimes the only walking I do between getting to my desk and going home. I felt I had to discount the evening training sessions. I readjusted my daily calorie goal to something a lot smaller. The problem with this target is that I find it very hard to stick with it, Breakfast is fine, Lunch is fine but come going home time when I’m standing waiting for the train the hungers strike. If it’s not there it’s when I walk through the door at home. When the hungers strike anything instantly edible is fair game. Sometimes the hungers strike after dinner in that period between finishing dinner and going to bed. I’ve tried drinking water instead but that just ends up with me having to go to the loo in the middle of the night

Holidays are another problem. I don’t want to weigh myself every day and not indulge in all the goodies that are on offer but that is a fast track for all my wobbly bits to return. I try to justify the extra food and drink by doing more exercise but the post-holiday weigh in tells another story.

The main problem I’ve found with my quest to have a normal BMI is that it requires me to eat less. I find that very hard and my subconscious mind can find many ways of convincing me to eat more. It starts with imaginary hunger pains and moves all the way to elaborate justifications as to why it is perfectly acceptable to eat a family packet of Haribo in front of the television. I want to be a normal BMI but even losing a little bit of weight and keeping it off seems to be a task that I’m very good at sabotaging.