A picture speaks a thousand words, right?
Meet my little bundle of claws, Molly.
She’s seven years old and weighs fourteen pounds. She’s my feisty baby. This picture shows her in one of her favorite places giving me the old ‘turn the water on and I’ll hairball all over the clean laundry next time you leave it piled on the guest bed’ look.
Does it help conceptualize how big she is by seeing her in the sink?
Now chop her in half and attach one of the halves to my butt. Because that is how much weight I’ve gained on Prednisone since June.
I know that sounds horrible in several ways. I realize I need to not be so vain. I realize that I’m lucky to have access to healthcare and medications. I realize I need to be happy that I guess I’m feeling a little better (although I now think I’m getting the placebo rather than Enbrel because I’ve dialed the Prednisone back to less than 10mg and I’m not feeling as good) but I’m really upset about the weight gain.
I weighed 113 when I went to college. I admit that was too skinny- I’m 5’6. At my heaviest, after long term Prednisone use, I wore a size 12 and was teetering on having to go up a size. I have a hard time looking at pictures from that time. But I started to feel better, got off Prednisone, and took back control of my diet and exercise. In May/June, I was a size 4.
I worked my butt off. Literally. You know how on all the weight loss shows they have super scheduled workouts, controlled meals, top notch trainers, supportive friends and family, and then they all somehow get fabulous makeovers for the finale show? Um, yes….that doesn’t really happen. I did splurge on a trainer who was enormously helpful for the diet and exercise part and am considering doing this again. But scheduled workouts? No, anything beyond our weekly appointments was up to me to make sure happened. Controlled meals? Again, all on me. Supportive friends and family? They tried. “I’m so proud of how hard you’re working, Amanda. Now let’s go get Mexican and drink lots of beer.”
I am still waiting for my makeover.
So to gain 7 pounds so quickly after it took AGES+ literal blood, sweat, and tears to get it off….I’m having hard time not completely freaking out about it plus I feel gross and bloated and uncomfortable. But I’m also really weak from this dang flare so really getting in a workout right now is tough.
I started easing myself back into the gym this week. On Monday, I did 12 minutes on the elliptical- there was much hacking and wheezing and general feeling like I was dying! I had intended to do 15 minutes and then some light weight training but my legs felt like jello. I took yesterday off mainly for the courtesy of the other people using the gym. Today was better. I did 20 minutes on the elliptical. Then I did 3 reps of 10 on the leg press at 40 pounds and 2 reps of 7 of walking lunges with 8 pound free weights. (Point of reference: I used to do 3 reps of 15 on the leg press at 75 pounds and 3 reps of 25-30 walking lunges.)
Then I sat down on the bench and did a mental checklist of weight exercises I used to do: nope, can’t do that one yet and that other one would be a lot of force on my knees which isn’t a good idea yet. And oh heck no, I am NOT doing that one because it completely sucks. So then I went home.
But it’s a start and I’m happy with what I did tonight. My goal is to work up to 30 min/3 times a week for both weights and cardio.
I have a fun fall coming up: heading back to DC for the American College of Rheumatology’s Advocates for Arthritis where I’m ESPECIALLY excited to see some of you there, two trips to California, a Lady Gaga concert, tickets to see the Carolina Panthers, hopefully another trip back to SC, and a birthday a month from tomorrow. Ok, I’m not really excited about that last thing.
I would really like my present to myself to be the absence of those freaking seven pounds.
Note: no cats were chopped in half for the writing of this post.