Losing Ten Pounds


My whole life I’ve been skinny as a rail. Even after giving birth to four babies, each time I lost all the baby fat within about six months. It wasn’t until I turned 39 that I suddenly gained ten pounds. What you might not realize is that skinny people are out of shape, too, if they are not exercising. When I ran up a flight of stairs, my heart felt squished.

As soon as I realized I had accidentally gained ten pounds, I set myself the goal of losing ten pounds over the summer. I would exercise five days a week and eat healthier. I tenaciously stuck to my goal. After three weeks of exercising so hard that I sometimes wanted to puke, I wasn’t losing weight; I was gaining it! In desperation, I would sometimes run on the treadmill for an hour and a half out of sheer anger and frustration that my body wouldn’t respond to what I was commanding it to do. I did not want to admit that I had reached middle age. I noticed a gray hair on my head, and I quickly pulled it out without telling my husband. I didn’t want him to know that I was old.

Week three I was so “desanimada” (Spanish for no oomph left). I called my sister, who was a normal woman who had gone on lots of diets and lost weight many times. I’ve never been on a diet. I didn’t even know what I was doing. I told her I wanted to give up, that I was gaining weight, what the heck? No wonder women were upset at me back when I was skinny and I didn’t even have to work for it. The last ten pounds is impossible to get off. Except it was my only ten pounds.

My sister told me that I was gaining muscle weight. She told me, “Don’t give up now. You’ve gone through the hardest part, which is starting. If you hold on, you will start seeing results next week.”

Sure enough, like clockwork, by the end of the first month, I had lost two pounds total. But my belly was way flatter, and my husband said I looked good. Okay, I can do this, I thought. I was bummed that it was only two pounds, but it’s not really the weight that counts as much as how you fit into your jeans. More muscle will mean more weight, but more muscle means you’re more toned, which means you feel young and vibrant, not flabby and old-looking.

The second month I lost two more pounds; the third month, two more pounds. For those of you who are adding, that makes a grand total of six pounds lost during the summer, not ten. It was the first time ever that I remember not reaching a goal that I have set for myself. But it was out of my hands.

At the end of that summer, my husband and I went on a romantic weekend away. During that weekend, I could easily keep up with my husband on walks, and I didn’t feel winded when I climbed hills. My husband smiled at me.

In the middle of the night, I tripped on a step at the bed and breakfast. I splatted on the floor, threw out my back, and saw several bruises and a cut on my legs. The next morning my husband stated with gloom in his voice, “I’m not allowed to have a vacation.” I said, “Hold on. I’ve been exercising. My back will bounce back this time and won’t even hurt an hour from now.” I wasn’t sure if what I was saying would happen, but I didn’t want my husband sad. Sure enough, an hour later, my back was fine. All because I had consistently exercised for three months. (Other times that I’ve thrown out my back, I’ve been on prescription pain killer and can’t move for several days without excruciating pain. Let me tell you, the exercising was worth it!)

It took a total of six months for me, but by the end of the year, I had lost the ten pounds.

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4 Responses to “Losing Ten Pounds”

  1. I was always so skinny too! I guess I just decided these 10 pounds don’t look so bad… Seriously thought I’ve got to get back on that treadmill! Thanks for the inspiration!

  2. Miriam says:

    Love to hear this. I am 39 now and struggling with losing the weight from my latest baby (six months old) … I especially love to hear that ‘fitness’ is a goal of its own.

  3. Hope says:

    Thanks for stopping by my blog today. I can relate to this post. I’ll be 48 in 6 months and I gained 10 pounds over the past 4 months. Why should I be surprised, I ate, no exercise, and layed around feeling blue somedays. I committed to walking on my treadmill on Jan 1st. No results yet, but I will be patient. I must lose this weight nothing fits! And, I have never been this big and my husband made a comment, ugh. After reading your post I’m reminded to be patient. 4months to gain, at least that much to lose, right?

  4. Susan says:

    Losing the last 10 pounds is notoriously hard. And if you lose the weight and stop exercising, you just gain it all back again. Ask me how I know…

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