Tuesday, June 10, 2003

Pros and Cons

What could possibly be wrong with getting closer to a healthy weight? I'll tell you what, constantly changing shape and proportion is what's wrong with it. Even though the general trend is one of improvement, I'm starting to find it disconcerting that my bra size has now changed at least three times in the past six months. I say "at least" because I don't get measured that frequently, so there may well have been more fluctuations than I'm aware of, because I've certainly been having trouble finding ones that fit comfortably. I came to the conclusion that bras for anything along the lines of 36DD or 38D and up are incapable of providing support without looking and feeling like some kind of immobile cantilevered contraption strapped to your chest. So, of course, I'm relieved to be back in the realms of 36D, it's where I'm used to being: I have a significant bosom, I can choose a fairly wide range of attractive styles, but it no longer feels as though a civil engineer had to be called in to calculate the arc of the underwire. Hey!...my beloved 1940's style bikini might fit again now...

Now I am caught in a little bit of a dilemma. I have just found jeans that fit me. I have just gone to the Victoria's Secret clearance and bought a couple of bras in the new correct size, and even more knickers in frightening colours...and I don't particularly feel like changing the shape of my ass right now. Even though I know I'll feel better after the fact, even though I want to be more flexible and toned, I keep thinking of the pricetag on the fun "I shrank out of those clothes so I need some more now" shopping sprees. I am in a mindset where I feel I'm supposed to try hard to continue my shrinkage, rather than truly wanting to for myself.

The last 40lb I lost absolutely had to go, I hated the way I looked and felt in that version of my body. But I've always been on the large side, I do remember the brief period when I was a svelte size 11/12, but I don't think I ever really registered how it felt at the time, I just know that I was wearing a size 12 with room to spare, but I was still plenty curvy even then. I don't do dainty.

So where does that leave me on the self-improving resolutions? I don't really know, though I do know that I want to be stronger, I know I want to be more flexible, and I know I want to have the ability to work on the speed part in karate. I want to be the woman who can make a spin kick a practical attack because I'm just so damn fast with it. I want to be the woman who snaps out a strike and it looks as though I've been standing there with my fist out all along because the transition was so fast.

When it comes down to it, aesthetically, I like the shape of my body right now, ideally there'd be a little less roundness in the tummy and less squish in my thighs. There will always be such foibles, nobody is every completely satisfied with themselves. What I'm not so happy with is the achey joints and stiffness, the fact that after about ten minutes of sparring I slow down significantly because my arms get tired and that makes me feel pathetic and weak.

Perhaps this spells pilates tape and home weight training. More sparring drills and possibly picking up a shinai on Sundays. Stretching before bed. Ignoring the "dieting and weightloss" stuff for a change and working on feeling relaxed and well exercised. I'll probably end up with a tighter belt as a side effect, but it's not going to make me happy if the size 12 jeans are my goal, rather than a pleasant side effect. I can't allow myself to focus on those numbers, what I want is to feel healthy, to know my body is less of a limiting factor on my activities, maybe even to find some muscle definition in places that haven't had it before.

I suppose this has turned into a declaration of sorts. That what I really want from my body is to be strong, fast and capable. So what if the girl standing next to me has far prettier legs? I don't care how I look in a bathing suit if I can go through my forms and feel every move coming out as it's supposed to. I don't want to look like this or that I want to feel comfortable in my own skin (which requires being small enough to avoid the titanium reinforced brassieres), and to learn to kick ass properly and with style.

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