I tried never to get up. It was hard to move my 300 pound body from the comfy couch cushions. I had to brace myself against the arm of the chair, get my legs just right, and haul myself up. It wasn’t easy. And if I happened to be on the floor, well, just don’t try and watch me get up.
The bigger I got the less I moved. It’s such a shame that that’s what happens to many of us who struggle with our weight. I got bigger, my physical activity became smaller and could be measured in 100’s of steps a day rather than the 1000’s of steps I can measure it in now.
As I moved from average sized to morbidly obese I made real, concerted efforts to move less. In fact, I planned my day around moving less. Instead of embracing those rare moments where I had the opportunity to move, I avoided them. I remember one day, when my oldest was in Kindergarten, and her teacher asked me to supervise a field trip. (This was before we started homeschooling.) I declined, making up an excuse about a conflict. Okay, I didn’t just decline, I lied. Why? I didn’t want to go to the outdoor museum and walk around. I was worried I would be too tired so I stayed home and heard all about her trip when I picked her up from school. I still remember feeling sorry for myself that I couldn’t go.
Looking back I see that yes, I should have felt sorry. Not sorry for myself because I couldn’t physically go, but sorry that I didn’t try. I stopped trying to move around and stayed down as much as I could. And by doing so I missed out on some really wonderful opportunities to make memories with my family. I wish things had been different.
I remember sitting at a social event. And that’s all I did was sit. Other moms and dads were up and about, interacting with each other and their children, but I just sat. And I’m embarrassed to say it, but I often had a plate of food balanced on my lap. The girls would come running over, “Mommy, come watch me go down the slide.” I’d say, “I can see you from here.” I didn’t want to get up.
At home I carefully planned my morning chores. I did what needed to be done in the morning, so when the girls took their naps I could sit on the couch with some chocolate, chips, and crackers watching television shows. I loved my remote control and cordless phone. Two more easy to sit conveniences I embraced. From the time they napped to the time they woke up I only got up if I needed some more food or had to use the restroom. No extra energy expended.
I honestly thought that if I moved more I’d be more tired. Guess what? I was 100% wrong.
When I started down the healthy path I did start to exercise, get up off the couch, and move my body. And you know what happened? Even at a morbidly obese 275 pounds I had more energy. Sure I was tired, but I no longer experienced the kind of tiredness I had in the past. I had finally learned to get up and get moving. Even though I couldn’t move fast or far, just moving at all was a victory.
What got you up and moving? Was it a sudden realization that you were sitting too much, or was there a gradual change in your attitude? Oh, and if you are still sitting?! Try getting up – you’ll be surprised at how much better you feel!! Diane