This week, I finally got my orders to report for Navy Reserve duty this upcoming weekend. Last night was my moment of reckoning: the first attempt to pull on the old military uniform in over a year. The result was not pretty. Picture a lumpy, stubby sausage crammed into a khaki case, with hair. A fair amount of sucking in and reconfiguring was required for buttoning and zipping the pants. Sweat stood out on my brow as I cinched the waistline and tried to breathe with everything fastened. This clearly would not do. I could not report for the beginning of a new phase of my career with my uniform molded around my ass like one of those spray-on pick-up bedliners. The despair drove me to change into workout gear and go for the second run of the day. As I ran, I tried to conjure a scenario in which I could somehow buy a pair of pants from the Norfolk Navy Exchange (the closest Navy uniform facility) AND get them hemmed and pressed before Saturday morning. There were two possibilities: contact a friend with whom I've spoken maybe once in the past six months and impose on her good nature, then take the sewing kit down there and hem them myself by the midnight candle Friday night. OR, I could drive down this morning before opening time for my store, somehow finagle my way into the Exchange without a military ID to buy a pair, drive back and take the pants directly over to the military tailors on Rt 36 and slip them a twenty to put my crap ahead of the soldiers already in line for expedited service. Neither of these scenarios seemed particularly practical.
I'll be the first to admit that I have only myself to blame. Having been raised in the Deep (fried) South, I know I'm genetically predisposed to the tiniest amounts of sugar and fried food addiction. Knowing this, I could have exercised a little self-control, maybe pushed back from the feeding trough OCCASIONALLY. I could have started the workout program sooner. I could have tried the %*#& pants on before three days prior to D-day. None of this was a consideration before Wednesday night. So now I've had to get draconian. I've put myself on a Biggest Loser-esque regimen of two-a-day workouts and a scant 1,000 calories a day. I just had salad for lunch with half a can of tuna spread on it, the tease of a tablespoon of light salad dressing drizzled over it. For breakfast, it was an egg, nothing added, and a banana. This makes THE PROGRAM weight loss scheme from last year look like a hedonistic splurge in Vegas in comparison. It seems to be working--already the pants feel less medieval torture device-ish. But, oh, the humanity! I'm left staring forlornly at the carrot sticks I picked out for a mid-afternoon snack and wondering where my metabolism went.