Mar. 21st, 2017

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Three weeks ago when I realized I was going to need to go on job interviews and that I had nothing that I could put on that I could easily locate, given the combo of the weight that I've lost in the past 4 months and tumult of boxes and flotsam in the garage, I made a trip to Ross in Ukiah, specifically to find some pants. Ross has always been a place where I could find something to fit me, even when I was very heavy. There may have only been one or two pair of pants in a size 52 or 54, but there was always something, most frequently Dockers. Fat men have always played a major premium for clothing that would fit, & I'm not particularly fond of being taken for a financial ride. Why pay $60 for a pair of pants, if you can find them for $20 or less.

Ross has apparently changed. The size of their men's department is noticeably smaller in all three of the stores that I've checked out within the last month (Ukiah, Sacramento & Santa Rosa). Once upon a time, I could generally find 2-3 pair of pants in the largest size they were carrying; even though I am now considerably smaller, I remain in the largest sizes that they're currently carrying.

At the Ukiah store I found two pair of Dockers, one a size 46 & black, the other gray flannel in a 44. How many pair did they have that might fit me? Three. The last pair were Levi's 501s in a hideous shade of green. I left those on the rack. Perhaps an overweight leprechaun might stumble into Ross at some point on his way to a rodeo.

The 46 fit perfectly and while I could close the 44s, they were too snug for me to wear then. Nothing makes you look heavier than clothing that's clearly too small for you. I'm now sitting and hemming them, as less than three weeks after they were purchased, they're no longer too small. After a single wearing, I can no longer wear the 46s without an effective belt or suspenders.

I'm not eating at all much differently; I'm moving my butt. The gym is my friend and a place of sanity. On average 4 days per week I run on an elliptical for 30 to 45 minutes; this is a calorie burn of 500-750 kCal per visit. Years ago, I was told by an exercise physiologist that people with the best success at weight loss are maintaining at least 2000 kCal of exercise per week. I now average about 2500. I'm now 50 pounds lighter in the past 4 months. 3.5 years ago I stopped eating anything with gluten; no wheat, barley or rye. My simple carb intake is significantly lower, but without the exercise, I'm quite capable of not losing & even gaining. In the last year of my practice when life got crazy and I stopped going to the gym, I gained 45 lbs. That's gone now and then some. The expulsion of the gluten put my inflammatory arthritis in remission. It's allowed me to start moving. However, it's up to me to do it and to structure my life so that I can.

The other benefit is what this is doing for my head. Life is rough right now. We have major crap going on. Despite it, I'm sleeping reasonably well and still feel a modicum of control. I'm not depressed (been there, done that). Exercise rivals many of the antidepressants on the market for effectiveness. The New England Journal of Medicine has published data to that effect. I'll be off the the gym again in the morning.

There's an elliptical with my name on it.


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