My dermatologist makes me laugh with the same question whenever I bemoan my weight and aging: “Ass or face? Make a choice, Kristine.”
Allow me to explain. The sign above her desk shows two words: “ass” and “face.” When “face” has a smiley face below it, “ass” has a frowney face. And vice versa. Meaning–a few extra pounds might not help your ass but it sure will help avoid that sunken face/wrinkled look as you age.
I’d answer her if it didn’t feel like Sophie’s Choice. “Why can’t I have BOTH?” I wail. “A good ass and a good face? Is that so much to ask?”
In the interest of said ass, I recently began working out again. I hesitate to say it because my local readers may start checking my ass and my face now to gauge my level of persistence. So, just know I’m taking one for the team in sharing this with you.
My inner talk is probably similar to yours when exercising after a long hiatus. “Hello, treadmill, you S.O.B. You don’t like me and I don’t like you but can we call a truce for the next 45 minutes?” I think I may need to work on my workout self-talk.
Seriously, I’m finding working out at my age really should be different than even what I was doing five years ago. I used to hit it hard. Now, hitting it hard means I ache and creak and don’t feel so well. So, I turn to yoga, pilates, the elliptical. I work out for 20 or 30 minutes versus 90. I eat humble pie each and every time. It’s hard to accept limitations. But, I think my body loves me the more for it. And it is responding—albeit slowly. After a couple of year of thyroiditis, I still have to be careful. But, at least I’m putting a toe in the water. As my mother used to say, Rome wasn’t built in a day.
I work out now to have energy, clarity of mind, feel good in my own skin. There is no grand plan to be bikini ready or rock a sundress. It’s for health that I exercise now, not ego.
But that doesn’t mean I like my dermatologist’s question any more than I used to. I may be sanguine about being gentler with my body, but trust me—if I could change the sign above her face to show sunshine and roses for the Northern and Southern hemispheres of my body, I’d move with the speed of a superhero.
If only I could apply that same determination to the treadmill . . .