Operation Lose Ten Kilos

I’ve always had weight issues. In high school, I went as high as 80 kg … and yes … I have heavy bones. But my optimum weight is 60. It looks good, it feels great, and at 5 foot almost-six-inches, its BMI is 22. I think.

Right now, I weigh 70. It’s very distressing, since even while pregnant, I didn’t go over 65. Somewhere between sun, sand, and Morocco burgers, I gained ten kilos. Luckily, the excess weight doesn’t show unless you look very closely. It’s mostly centred around the middle, and corsets do wonders to hide that. But corsets can’t stop heart disease, fit under bathing suits, or solve bedroom shyness. So now, my target is to lose 10 kg.

I’ve been hoping to do it through sheer will-power like The Secret says. After all, wisdom claims that all weight is gained by thinking fat thoughts. I don’t know about that, but considering I’ve had four years of coastal cuisine and no exercise [I lived five minutes from my office], I should be a lot heavier than I am.

Despite thinking thin thoughts, gorging on chocolate, and watching UK’s Biggest Loser for three months, I haven’t lost [or gained] an inch.

Enter my good pal, who talked me into joining the neighbourhood gym. It’s right next door to my flat, they open at 5.30 a.m., and they throw in free stretches after each workout. I’m not talking hands-in-the-air-and-reach-for-the-sky here. I’m talking actual stretches. They grab your limbs and yank them till you squeal. Then they pound on your back and massage it. It’s heavenly! When they’re done, your skin feels like jelly. I work out from 6.00 to 7.00 each morning, sometimes 7.30. Then I get stretched and rubbed, no gutter intended. After that, a protein drink, a nice hot shower, and off to work.

To help me along, I enlisted some GR2, which is a weight-loss health kit. It contains a protein shake [which mostly tastes like chalk], a fibrous appetite reducer, and a metabolic catalyser. There’s also a toning shaper that works while I sleep. In total, I take two drinks and 12 pills a day – all herbal.

The kit is organic, and it’s meant to make me burn more and eat less. I don’t know how it works on other people, but all it does is make me hungry. Plus, I hate pills. Still, I got a two week dose, so let’s see how things look after that.

I start my workout on the treadmill; 20 minutes: walking, not running. Then I either use the bike or skip to 600. This number increases by week. Next comes abdominals and arm work under my instructors, then stretch and massage.

Whoever said crunches are the worst tummy exercise lied. Crunches are easy. But those other things, where you put your legs in the air then swing, bend, cycle, scissor and sway them, those are pure torture. They work the abs like a roller – I’m not kidding! I didn’t feel it the first day, but by day three I could barely walk! It gets easier with time though, especially if you whine a lot and get the gym guy to give you less leg and more crunch.

My gym has five guys who work in three-day shifts, which means I get to work with each one of them. The upside of this is that I get lots of different training styles. There’s the soft-spoken guy whose hands are oh so gentle come massage time. There’s the torturous one who’s all fun and friendly but yells like a drill sergeant. There’s the masochist who stretches me till I scream and looks at me funny. There’s the quiet one who mostly talks in grunts if he has to talk at all. Some guys go easy on me, some push me past toleration and make me want to smack them. But they’re all great with the stretches and the back rub.

In training yesterday, I saw my reflection and got depressed. Surely after two weeks, I should look less chubby! The guys on Biggest Loser shed 10 kilos a week! But this morning I looked considerably better. Lesson learnt: never train in a white t-shirt; black is more slimming.

I don’t know how much weight I’ve lost so far. The scale in the gym claims I’ve gained five, and I almost had a stroke before the gym guy told me it was broken. It’s some kind of motivation tactic to make you work harder. Fail !! Good thing I have my own scales at home.

In one month’s time, I hope to have purple hair and a slightly flatter tummy. It’d be great to have bikini-worthy washboards, but I’m taking it in baby steps, and I’ll be glad just to have  smaller love handles.

In the meantime, I’m bonding with my girl, becoming much more lithe, and having a lot of fun for just over two thousand bob. All is well with the world.

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Crystal Ading' is a professional author, editor, rock lover and mother. Her work is available through threeceebee.com.