This is me. I eat. I drink. I’ve had two babies. I’ve had fluff around my midsection since adolescence because of my genes. Oh, and because #CarbsPorVida.

Exhibit A

Exhibit B: Comfort taco

 Looking at me, you’d never think I’m overweight (I’m not). However, all kinds of charts and calculations say I am. And my pants.

Exhibit C: I’m always ready to help you eat cake

Ladies, how many different pairs of jeans and slacks do you own? I have nine pairs of jeans and five pairs of slacks. Each one claims to be a size 6 or 8, and each one has a different waist measurement. You know the deal: manufacturers make it up as they go along, and we have this insane need to remain the same size, even though the logic part of our brain knows better. My problem is that my genetic legacy has me predisposed to being full in the middle, and most clothing is designed to highlight this area of the body (or the cleavage).

I admit that this has made me extremely self-conscious about dressing up these last few baby years. I’ve learned to find ways to distract the eye from going to my fluff with loose tops, high-waist trousers, and (egads!) leggings. The handful of times we’ve had to dress up for something caused so much anxiety, I almost cancelled each outing. I would try on so many things I swore fit just a week before but were now impossible to use because they were so tight around my mid-section. Minutes before having to leave or be late, I’d throw something together that looked presentable, even though I was anxious about my appearance the entire time we were out. We took a cruise last year, and I wore the belly-hiding suits made just for this charade, and while they were very flattering and traumatizing, I’m slowly embracing this new shape.

Hi, my name is Amanda. I’m 40, and I wear yoga pants and leggings.

Almost everyday.

And I love to eat.

And I am embracing the fluff while trying to keep it in check so I don’t have to buy new clothing.

Oh, I’ve tried various exercise routines and programs, and had amazing results with Beachbody. My hurdles, though, are time and energy.

For the past year, I encouraged my Fitbit to harass me when I needed more steps or caloric burn. The bonus was that my previous employer encouraged wellness, and I could earn a bonus for working out (there was an on-site gym) and participating in group challenges. Nothing gets my butt moving like a competition among friends!

That’s different now that I work from home. I tried popping in a DVD in the morning, but would get easily distracted by the food I’d find on the floor or smashed into the carpet. I even attempted some post-kid-bedtime workouts but was distracted by exhaustion.

Thankfully, a new YMCA opened a mere minutes from home. The wonderful people of the Y have provided a kids’ club/minion corral, indoor swimming, classes, and personal trainers. The trainers work with you and help identify your (realistic) goals, and a kiosk prints and tracks your workouts.


I love the smell of weight loss hopes in the morning!

“Hello. I’d like to lose a couple pounds and tone up a bit.”

“Oh? How many pounds?”

“However many help me fit back into my favorite jeans.”

Turns out, that’s about 10 pounds. Sure, I could give up the Taco Lifestyle and cut back on the wine. But I’m not going to. I’m also not “resolving” to stick to X amounts of workouts per week. I’ve tried guilting myself into going to the gym before, and it doesn’t end well. I’ll be doing my best to care for myself, to set a positive example for the kids, to get into whatever type of swimwear I want for the next cruise.

I do resolve to like my body a bit more, and to treat it with the respect it deserves: enjoying some potato and egg tacos with my family while wearing funky print leggings, then chasing my kids around for some cardio. And maybe I’ll make it to the gym.

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