It's official. I have a slow metabolism.
I returned from my recent walking holiday in the Scottish Highlands: 20 miles per day, 5 consecutive days with 2 friends.
I ate 3 meals per day and stopped when full. Although I didn't overeat per se I had a 2 course breakfast (cereal and toast) in our B and Bs, a sandwich and 'something' lunch (sometimes a cake, but just 1!) and an evening meal from a pub-grub-type of menu but I made reasonable choices and acknowledged I was too full for dessert so did not have it, any night. I had a couple of extra snacks whilst walking. A cereal bar or two at the most and perhaps 3 or 4 oatcakes. And no booze.
Despite all the exercise, I gained 6 lbs last week. 6 proper pounds too; I waited a couple of days for all the fluid from my swollen feet and ankles to clear and 6 lbs was what was left. My jeans no longer fit. When you are 5'2" (158cm) short, 6 lbs is a lot of weight. Plus I've hurt my knee and cannot exercise although I'm wearing my nice stretchy gym trousers for the aforementioned reasons!
On the other hand, my two highly metabolic friends are slim, eat normally and are not sure what they weigh. They had a cooked breakfast each morning, lunch and dinner pretty much the same as me, with the addition of a shared bottle of wine and a gin and tonic or two. During the day they ate a LOT of snacks. One girl ate between 2 and 5 full sized Mars bars each day (in response to feeling dizzy and faint before each one) and another had a massive Toblerone of duty free proportions which she munched steadily through.
Did they gain weight? They don't know, because they don't weigh themselves but their skinny jeans still fit and they looked at me in surprise when I asked because "No-one could gain weight doing all those miles per day!"
But I can and I did. The harsh reality is that I need very little food to maintain a status quo. Much less than I would like to eat and much less than I have substituted in the place of wine.
It all boils down to choice. What do I really want? And do I want to be slim enough to enable me to make the sacrifices which are required. I feel like I will have to remove the next thing that brings me pleasure from my life too, to do so.
I don't know. I'm still considering this. It's not fair but then that's life isn't it? I like eating. I like food. I like sweet things. But just as with wine, I never know when enough's enough. I am going to think carefully about my aims for my weight and how I will address my diet demons. I don't want to battle with them for the next 30 years as I have for the previous 30 years.....tbc