Monday, June 27, 2005
The Pendulum Theory
Here’s something else I suffer from, Pendulumism. I don’t just gain and lose weight in a traditional sense where one eats a lot then gains weight, or eats less and loses weight. Oh no. I need to make this very tricky.
Last fall I was very fit because I exercised more and ate less (yeah, yeah, whatever) . . .and then I embarked on Holiday Gorge 2004 which began around mid November. As I tested the waters of eating more and more shit and exercising less and less, I still felt and looked fit and lean. The momentum of my health was still in the right direction. The pendulum was still swinging on the side of good. Isn´t this cool that I can eat a lot and give up exercise and nothing will happen? I must´ve exercised my way into some kind of miracle because, look, I don´t have to go to the gym anymore. 'Nother slice of pizza please. Oreos? Hell yes. Five pieces of toast? Uh, duh. Three gingerbread lattes a day with a muffin? I deserve that. Only after a long month did I even start to notice my waistline getting a little thicker, softer. The pockets on the side of my thighs were poking out a little. I thought, hmm, maybe this Gorge thing is not working out so well; maybe I'm not a modern-day miracle. But my pants were still fitting nicely so, no! Onward with the Gorge; can’t stop now, Christmas is almost here! By January, I was all but rolling around in my own shit. The pendulum had reached its pinnacle and began falling, rapidly now, in the other direction.
We had gone to Puerto Rico on Christmas Day and by this time, I wanted the Gorge to be over so badly, but trying to hunt down a vegetable on the island was laborious. Many of the fruits were out of season. And the only thing I could find not made out of pork -PR's Love Pork!- was the hot bread, pan de agua, that was sold out of a van that drove by the family house every morning. I’m not entirely sure the bread wasn’t made with pork, but listen, that bread was like celebrating heaven every morning; half a loaf of steaming heaven and coupled with a sweet, filmy cup of milky coffee - FORGET IT! Who needs fruits and vegetables? Mid-stay, my husband's grandmother made a fantastic rice & shrimp soup which I was very excited about (I was still eating fish at the time), but after eating half a bowl, a pink, salty cube floated to the top. I stared at it, gulped down my trepidation, and finished the soup avoiding the swine, pretending I didn't really see it. "Pass the pan de aqua please." Warm bread makes everything ok. Except when you get the shits in a 60-year old concrete block of a house that was battered, plumbing included, by Hurricane Andrew. We went 2 days without running water, which stopped me up for the rest of the trip.
Finally, I cleaned up my act in February. Veganism, regular exercise, plenty of water - still big portions, but I was doing light-years better . . . But my body didn't believe me, that I had changed. My body said, "You ate globs of cheese, mountains of processed bread, sweets galore, you ignored a pork floater in your soup for fuck's sake!" I had lost my body's trust and the pendulum had swung so far the other way, I'm still waiting for it to come down.
But lately and only lately, six months later, and after drastic exercise and pure eating has the pendulum only started to budge. In my younger days, I'd be a super model by now, but at almost 38, my body is like, “Nu uh motherfucka, I'm not coming back so easily after the mess you put me through.” I'm still begging, like a cheatin’ rat dog. But god, thank god, I finally see a tiny layer of the Holiday Gorge peeled back, and I hope soon to slam that pendulum permanently back on the side of good.