Sunday, September 1, 2013

Suck it up, folks......

My daughter is approaching 30, so I guess it's time to give it up. WAY past time, actually.

You may have even heard me whine this well-worn excuse a time or two: My stomach pooches out due to my (one) pregnancy, the one where I gained 50 pounds. I was 35 at the time, well past the age of a tight, toned body of most 20 year olds who begin child-bearing earlier than I did. Bodies just don't pull themselves back together as quickly as we age. 

Plus, there is the fact that for 9 months, I craved Egg McMuffins and apples. (The apples probably aren't to blame for too much, I admit that; my daughter does love apple juice, though. A lot.) Those yummy egg and cheese muffins, though? They became daily treats, if I'm being honest.

Thirty years is a long time to pull that excuse out whenever I stand in front of a full-length mirror, though, and grouse about that bulge that hovers around my midsection. I work out now--four or five times a week, two of those with a personal trainer--although I always have, sometimes more than others, but I've always paid attention to fitness. I joke that I have great abs under there somewhere, we just can't see them for the layer of "baby" fat I still carry around.

About three weeks ago, I  dragged the weary excuse again out while I was with my trainer and realized how idiotic it sounded. But my irritation with myself didn't answer the question of why all my work has left me with great arms, strong abs, improving legs ....and a fat stomach. Somehow in the midst of a conversation with myself later in the day, I thought "I wonder if I just have let my muscles in that area get lazy and weak, while I rely on my time-worn pregnancy excuse?"

So, what did I have to lose? I sucked in my gut and bam! Much better....except that I couldn't breathe. Well, that's not going to work. I almost gave up (and we know where that would have led......back to talking about baby fat), so I concentrated really hard and pulled my stomach in and practiced some deep breathing until I could do both at the same time. (Coordination has never been one of my strong suits, which my dance instructor can attest to.)

Anyway, it only took about three weeks and the improvement in the appearance (disappearance?) of my mid-bulge is quite amazing! I can pull my gut in AND breathe at the same time. I think I can even see some abs now, unless they are my ribs, but that's good, too, right? (If you are younger than about 50 and are laughing at me right now, STOP it! You'll be here someday and you'll feel bad that you laughed at me.)

Aging and all its consequences are often out of our control. But how many times do we use getting older as an excuse, just because we can?

Suck it up and take back control...whether it's your midsection or whatever consequence of aging taunts you.

A woman has the age she deserves. ~ Coco Chanel


  1. Deborah,
    I can't tell you how much I LOVE reading your Aged to Perfection blog. As my beautiful grandmother once said, "Getting old is a bitch." She was over 80 at the time and had Parkinson's so, she, too, knew a little about it. But she kept going, strong as she could, every day.
    It's nice to read your blog and acknowledge that getting old is a pain in the butt and it's a privilege. And that you reach for your dreams and make it an adventure? Well, that's more than commiseration; it's inspiration. Happy September!

    1. Thank you so much for reading and commenting! It makes it all worth it. Your grandmother sounds like a great role model for all of us....thanks for sharing that, too.