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40 years & 40 lbs (Guest Post)

I’ve seriously debated writing this post, I’m torn really, but in the spirit of open and honest discussions about fitness and feminism I can’t ignore my changing body and writing about it. I’ve shared with readers and friends about my journey from last April’s high blood pressure diagnosis to therapy around overeating and even hitting a tertiary benchmark, losing 20 lbs.

This post though feels, vain, yes, definitely feels like a vanity to share I’m wearing smaller pants. I’ve changed a lot of things in my life that have impacted my weight but my primary goal has been to get my blood pressure down without medication. I’m currently on medications that are keeping my blood pressure in a healthy zone, YAY!

In the healthy range for blood pressure and pulse!

The downside is, as a result of the medication, I now have Raynaud’s Syndrome that restricts circulation to my hands and feet in the cold, making running below 0C very painful no matter how many layers I wear. I asked my doctor in January at what point my declining weight would impact my blood pressure and he said “You have to lose a lot.” Well crap! This was especially annoying because my pulse at the doctor’s office (post coffee, ya ya but honestly I also have a goal of being a non-violent person and coffee assists me with this) being under 60 bpm was pretty awesome considering it was 73 bpm in July and 80 bpm before that in May. My cardiovascular health is definitely improving, which was my secondary goal to support lowering my blood pressure.

My weight has dropped by what I thought was “a lot”. Honestly I didn’t think I could loose 40 lbs without starving myself, measuring food and obsessively counting calories. I do none of these things. I use Canada’s Food Guide and cook from scratch. I eat bread and cheese and on Valentines Day had wine with dinner and chocolate for breakfast.

Therapy around overeating was crucial for me to change my relationship to food, to see it both as nourishment AND joy without it being a way to numb my feelings.

So, while 4 months ago I was freaking out about turning 40, today I’m feeling fantastic and wearing a smaller dress than I have in a long time. So 40 can be a number I’m happy about for a bunch of reasons. I share with you not a before picture, not an after picture, but my picture of feeling great for my date with my life partner. (That’s what all this is about anyway, being around a long time and extracting a lot of joy, right?)

All dolled up for a hot date.

I have no idea where my weight will settle out, it seems to keep going down, so that is cool but I don’t know if I’ll get to the point where I can go off blood pressure medication. I think I just need to be ok with whatever comes next. That feels like a good plan.

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