Skinny Daily Post

Invincible.

Or 19, or whatever age you think was your ‘physical prime.’ For me, that age was 23 or so. I had hit my WW goal, and I must confess that I looked GREAT. Let’s not discuss the state of my mind, however!

In any event, this was the topic of conversation this morning with a wonderful woman who’s lost about 40 pounds, and now has her diabetes under control . She’s determined to keep on plugging away at the last 25 or so, but in the meantime, she’s having serious body perception issues.

To put it bluntly, her belly is bugging her. She wants it to be flat, like it was when she was 17. That’s not gonna happen – she’s had some abdominal surgery that’s left her muscles in a state where they’re not going to provide a whole lot of support.

As we age, things happen. Gravity takes over, for one, and we all know the challenges we face with weight control. But frankly, would YOU want to turn the clock back to that ‘physical prime’ age, especially if you’d have the wisdom and experience that went along with it?

I sure don’t. I’ll happily live with the physical realities of a middle-aged body [even after the impending excess skin removal, I won’t look the way I did at 23], as long as I can keep my current attitude and whatever wisdom I’ve accumulated. I’m much happier now than I was back then, and I don’t want to trade it for the flat stomach.

So what’s left? Developing the balanced lifestyle that we all discuss and strive for. Sounds like sanity to me!

11 thoughts on “On not being 17 anymore

  1. QuinnLaBelle says:

    My physical prime was at about age 20. I just turned 49 this month.

    I wouldn’t be 20 again for anything, not anything at all. Not in today’s world. Oh, no.

  2. vickie says:

    I would! – in a minute – I’d go back to 18 (just graduated from high school) or 21 (just graduated from college). No it wasn’t all rosey – but I would do it again in a heart beat.
    Vickie

  3. Stephanie says:

    Great Post! I just recently turned 23, so I’m not sure how much this post applies to me, yet.

    I’ve been overweight since I was little, I’m actually at my thinest now that I’ve ever been, due to finally exersizing and eating well. I hope to keep doing well, so that my physical prime will be reached and someday I’ll have something to look back on and be proud of where I was. It makes it a bit harder to stay on track when you have no benchmark to look back on and say, “I want to look like I did when I was….” because this is the best you’ve ever looked. If that makes sense.

  4. jonquil says:

    The only thing that really “turns the clock back” is exercise, especially weight training. That youthful look is really a particular set of proportions, especially a good waist to hip ratio. If you can get your ratio below .75, or even to .7, you’re in hotsville. And that ratio is also supposed to indicate the lowest risk of chronic disease. Even if, like me, you’ve had some operations on the tummy, it can be improved! Google some of the “Body for Life” transformations, for example. You CAN fight time and gravity– with muscle.

  5. coraspartan says:

    I will be 33 later this month and I think I’m in the best shape of my life. Although I was thinner at age 18 (before I had my son), I didn’t have any muscle then. Now, since I’ve been working out and watching what I eat, I have muscle definition like never before! I am so proud of myself when I look at my muscles in the mirror.

    In response to your question, no, I wouldn’t want to go back to my 18-year-old self. Yes, I was skinnier then, but I have worked hard and been through a lot in my life and I know I am a lot more wise now than I was 15 years ago!

  6. Cat says:

    Would I go back? That really is a question that kind of haunts me. In some ways, this IS my physical prime: I’m more fit, and more thin, and certainly better dressed and more confident, than I’ve been for fifteen years. I was probably twenty-five pounds thinner than this when I went to college at 18, but the clothing and confidence bonuses stand. I’d argue that I look better and feel better now, physically at least. And they do say that when people are asked what age they’d like to be for eternity, they tend to point to their present age…WHATEVER it is.

    But what makes me waffle on “going back” is the other stuff–the romantic aspirations, the spine-tingling thrill of eighteen-year-old love, the unabashed intensity and earnestness, the hours spent talking to people who became lifelong friends (and some who didn’t), the lack of job pressure and time pressure and guilt pressure and all the rest of it. Sure, there was a lot of needless torment that went along with all that stuff, but that’s what YOUNG means. Sometimes I look at the (relatively) organized and leaderly and i-dotting person I’ve had to become to survive, and I wonder where I went. Sometimes I don’t feel like I know how to be anything but young, and whoever I am now, she’s not so young anymore.

  7. lysa says:

    I have just came upon this site and it iss so good to hear others like me…I have lost 118 pounds and have 60 to go I feel as though I’ll never get there but yet yhe first 100 flew by….Why is it so hard to finish the race?

  8. Debbi says:

    I’ve had three major abdominal surgeries. When I’m overweight, my stomach is ugly, something I want to hide with tunic tops and billowy rayon dresses. When I’m at a normal weight, it’s flat and I want to wear tucked-in shirts. I’ve lost nearly 40 pounds, with about 30 to go, and am very pleased that it’s getting flat again.

    The first time I lost weight this was the biggest surprise to me. I’d thought that having those muscles cut meant I’d never have a flat tummy again.

    So I agree with jonquil: exercising, especially weight training, can make a huge difference!

  9. london slimmer says:

    Cat’s post hit a chord with me. I absolutely agree with everything she says in her second paragraph. That’s partly why my husband and I (now both in our early forties) are about to spend a year travelling round the world! I don’t think I’ve ever really grown up.

    On the weight front, right up into my late twenties, I weighed approx. 95lb soaking wet , hated formal exercise (though I did go everywhere on my bicycle) and ate whatever I liked. I poured double cream on my breakfast muesli, liked to eat slatherings of mascarpone on toast and in the summer I’d consume ice cream sundaes as big as my head. When my metabolism finally slowed down, it took me a while to realise that I was no longer a naturally skinny person who could eat anything and in the meantime I piled on the pounds dramatically. I had to diet for two years to lose the weight and now I have to be extremely vigilant about calories and exercise like a demon in order to maintain my weight at l20lb.

    I miss those days of admiring my own movie-star-perfect figure and still eating cheese by the half-pound, but I have a few things now that I didn’t have then – chief among them, my lovely husband (and a group of wonderful friends). If a fairy godmother offered me the chance of going back, I wouldn’t, unless I knew that I’d meet him again. Being skinny isn’t the most important or most pleasurable thing in life, that’s for sure.

  10. susan says:

    Since I was in the best shape of my life for my 40th birthday, two years ago, I’d love to go back there. Except that I now live in a beautiful house I love (not the dump we lived in then), and my husband and I are happily in love (rather than just back together after separating for several months). Would I go back? No.

  11. Lisa says:

    It’s my 25th birthday today. My ‘smallest’ days were the time just after my 20th birthday to just before my 21st. Although I was physically smaller (my hips hadn’t spread or something), I wasn’t very healthy abou t it – dancing in bars all night, grabbing greasy food on the run and then speeding home to study. I wasn’t exercising and my muscle tone suffered.

    Today, after a 79 pound weight loss – I am still 10-15 pounds heavier than I was then. But I work out now and eat MUCH healthier. I’m also doing it just for me this time.

    Would I go back – maybe. But I would DEFINATELY do it differently.

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