Wednesday, April 19, 2006

A knitting update

I've pretty much abandoned work on the FLAK until I finish the plum pullover. Here's some plummy progress:

I joined the front and back pieces at the shoulders with a three-needle bind-off and picked up stitches along the armscye to work the sleeve from the shoulder down. This is a shallow set-in sleeve, and very roomy; I didn't do any short-rowing at the upper part of the sleeve. There will eventually be a V-neckline [that little peach-colored blob you see is a stitch marker holding the center stitch of the V].

At least something knitterly is going on around here!

If you're at all interested in weight loss, you've probably read recent news articles about the discovery of a human gene that could contribute to the difficulty some of us have losing weight. Here's one article; you can Google for others.

In the article I point to, a photo of a fat mouse is captioned thusly [emphasis mine]:

"Rutgers researchers have identified a human gene, its protein product and the way in which the protein influences how the body processes fat, discoveries that may lead to drugs to control obesity and promote weight loss."

I'm so damned tired of hearing that drugs may be the answer. Defining obesity as a disease, as the IRS did in 2002 [in order to allow taxpayers to deduct the cost of medically recommended weight-loss treatment], creates a market for a pharmaceutical solution to a lifestyle problem.

Believe me, if I thought a drug would help me, I'd be first in line. I did, in fact, use Xenical for a while, with no results. And my insurance wouldn't pay for any of it. At a cost of nearly $10 per day, it wasn't worth it to me to refill the prescription.

When you shake my family tree, you'd better watch out, because fat people come tumbling down. It would be easy for me to blame genetics on the current state of my weight. But I've been successful at losing weight in the past. More than once.

What I'm not successful at is maintaining a weight loss for any significant period of time.

When I lived in a large city, I had a full-time job and went to a well-equipped gym every day. I also smoked, ate a low-fat diet and lived alone.

When I moved to the Middle of Nowhere, I stopped working and smoking, quit using fitness equipment [there are no gyms in the MofN] and began living with another person who eats far more than I ever have and has the metabolism to handle it. I call it the perfect storm for gaining weight. Do my genes have anything to do with it? Possibly. But there's no denying that my lifestyle changed dramatically and, eventually, so did my weight.

Why am I experiencing some success now? Several reasons, in my opinion:
  • I'm sticking with a food plan that is working for me.
  • I'm making time for vigorous exercise every day.
  • I'm mentally and emotionally ready to commit to these changes.
  • I'm saying to myself, every day, "I do not want to ever have to lose this weight again."
I'm still closer to fat than I am to thin. But I've only been successful at maintaining fat.

Big Pharma isn't about to help with that.

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