Feathers or Steel

For my annual physical, the doctor’s nurse hustles me off to the scales. This weigh in takes place before I can unload my handbag, which is the size of a small child, down filled coat and boots.

She exclaims, “You’ve gained weight.” Ya think? Of course, I’ve gained weight!  I relate the number I registered at home, nanoseconds before my appointment. Her body language indicates she does not consider my information credible.

I am working out most days, but the numbers on my scale refuse to decline to three acceptable digits. My doctor, who has heard all of my creative excuses, gives me “the look” when I tell him I am working out. He makes some veiled reference to the extra armor on my abdomen. I know when one eyebrow goes up and he puts both hands on his hips I am skating on thin ice. He will not be happy until I look like an Egyptian mummy. He is six ft tall, with washboard abs. He isn’t old enough to have wisdom teeth. He cannot possibly relate.

For the sake of argument, let’s say fat is feathers and muscle is steel. A pound of muscle does not weigh more than a pound of fat; it just takes up less real estate. Isn’t that progress? Some fitness experts say if you have a small amount of weight to lose, that weight training may not make the scale move down. You may weigh more; however, you will look thinner.

I’d be delighted to look thin, but my doc doesn’t buy that either. He wants to see that scale screech down to a number that my body refuses to acknowledge. Someone recently told me I wasn’t fat, just “thick”. Okay, I’ll buy “thick”, but does that support my muscle theory?

It is suggested I use only fat free products to give my metabolism a kick-start. Have you checked the ingredients on fat free products? More sugar and a bunch of chemicals I can’t pronounce. Sorry, but I am not eating any ingredient I cannot pronounce. Ever tried fat free yogurt? Split pea porridge would be a tastier alternative. Yogurt is good for you. Seems to me, eating less of full fat food that is good for you is an acceptable alternative to food that has more sugar.

I am sure my doctor is relieved my physical exam only occurs once annually. I’m not certain but I think I saw him take two aspirin after my last visit.

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