Saturday, January 1, 2011

I'm Resolved

It's the first day of a new year, a time when many people are inclined to take stock of their lives and resolve to do everything differently. I'm not one of them. To those of us with short-term memory deficits, every day  is a fresh start. But according to recent studies, there's some good news for anyone carrying around a little more weight than they'd like. It turns out that you can lose 50% of your fat  simply by running an ultramarathon of 2800 miles. If you're four hundred pounds, that might be a hundred and fifty pounds right there. Researchers studying 500 runners of such an event, lasting 64 days, discovered that the runners lose 40% of their fat at the halfway point. Which is great for them, but a hell of a cleanup job for the grounds crew on Day 32, I would think.

At any rate, I'm unlikely to achieve the same results. 2800 miles is 2799-3/4 miles farther than I can motivate. Different people have different superpowers, and one of mine is an exceptional relationship with gravity. There's a way you can determine how high you can jump, by making a mark on the wall as you do it, and subtracting the difference from your standing reach. The difference in my marks is the width of a caterpillar. Basically, even when I give it all I've got, I don't even leave the carpet, if it's a shag. When I try to run, I can actually feel the earth sucking me back down at every step. I doubt I could even be raptured.

I did run for a while, back in the eighties. Farthest I ever went was 9.2 miles, and that took a lot of working up to. And I did lose fat while I was in my running phase. If I ran for an hour, that was an hour I didn't spend eating chips.

The researchers discovered that visceral fat fell away faster than any other kind. But I have no quarrel with visceral fat, which is, after all, protecting my viscera, which are constantly under assault from hitting the pavement when I tip over. I'm not interested in losing visceral fat.

What I'd like to get rid of is back fat. Back fat is fat that you weren't even counting on in life, and the first time you discover it, it's quite a shock. What you think you're doing is cranking your head around to look at your own butt, which needs checking up on, but what you see instead is back fat torquing away. You can feel it, too. It's creepy at first. What is that pressing on my back? Why, it's another part of my back. Backs should not have cleavage. In general, I can do without any fat that I can't keep clean without floss.

Those who claim to enjoy running report that they achieve a runner's high after a certain amount of exertion. This corresponds to a release of endorphins, which are tiny mythical germs made out of unicorn breath. They aren't real. But the description of them sounds like what I already have in my head almost all of the time. They allow me to feel great joy from the confines of my recliner. When I run, they get jostled and leak out. In order to feel good again, I need to quit running. I can achieve this miracle in about a block and a half.

Which means my back fat will once again be joining me in wishing all of you a happy new year.

29 comments:

  1. Ah, my first laugh of the new year. You know that monkey that most of us have on our back? Mine's morphing into a shar-pei. Spring better get here soon, or I'm going to have to do the unthinkable and join a gym. Can't believe I even said that. Gravity is a harsh mistress.

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  2. Ah yes, what a great sendoff to get raptured by a Christmas bird count. And I'll get to fight gravity by paddling upstream for the return trip. Wonder if I'll leave a greasy trail.

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  3. My back fat wishes your back fat a very happy new year! What a great way to start the day: reading about your fat. :-)

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  4. "...endorphins, which are tiny mythical germs made out of unicorn breath. They aren't real."
    Now I have it, proof of something I have always suspected. Thank you.

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  5. I feel as though I need to re-evaluate my goal of starting a running program. I don't envy shedding body parts in public, especially the less attractive ones.

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  6. Oh heck, it's the bra... isn't it?
    I have a firm belief that there is a special room in hell where you have to run for eternity. That, in and of itself, is reason enough for me to be extra good here on earth.

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  7. Heck, I can't even run to the fridge anymore, but go ahead and do your 1/4 mile. See if I care.

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  8. One of the things that convinces me not to take up running is the look of excruciating pain and exhaustion on the faces of people finishing long distance runs. Who needs it? These feet are made for walking.

    Happy New Year!

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  9. I know I don't have as much back fat as I used to have.

    But the front fat? I've heard women refer to it as 'sort of like lying down next to a puppy'.

    Huh. Mine's more like a manatee.

    Good luck with the rapture thing... I am a hellbound mocker, myself.

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  10. Fat is such a four-letter word. When it's on your back, it's a member of George Carlin's Saucy Seven you can never say in mixed company. So I curse it as much as it curses me. But I draw the line at running. I'd rather keep the soap in my mouth.

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  11. At least Jayne has firm beliefs. Even my fondest notions are flabby.

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  12. I have been told that one can meet their minimum daily requirement of endorphins by partaking of special mystical cigarettes manufactured by the happy assault-weapon-toting people of Mexico.

    I understand that along our southern border, running for your life has become very popular.

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  13. O so funny, Murr! And commenters, you've caught the funny bug, too.

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  14. I miss too much when I'm running. I'm too busy concentrating on not dying. When I walk, I can take it all in, it isn't a blur seen through a gasp of pain or a heart asking if I'm serious. If I'm feeling snappy, I take my Nordic poles out for an airing. The brush wolves hang back in fear at the authority with which I swing those weapons....so do my feet. Sometimes I take my camera. Mostly I just take my dog. She agrees that walking is the best but I think she has a bit of back fat too. Och weel...

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  15. I'm all for the joy of movement. Not so much movement that causes you to contemplate your own death (or wish for it). There's a mountain near my house that my husband occasionally likes to run to the top of despite a perfectly good rail trail at the bottom. Crazy fella.

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  16. So basically what you're saying as the act of repeatedly lifting ones fork to ones mouth is not considered a cardio workout. Damn. I'm screwed.

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  17. Well, you know me. I love to run.

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  18. I have the same issues with gravity. Best to not fight it. Thanks for the laugh, I actually pinched my back.

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  19. For about the fifth time in a year, my doctor has urged me to take up water aerobics. I'm no water-lover, but I'm positively deathly allergic to bathing suits. I'm looking into a burqini, which I have some hope can conceal all my fat varieties.

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  20. Burquini!
    The other strategem is to bathe in dark water.

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  21. I laughed all the way through your post AND through the comments. I'm still laughing.

    The mistake you made was looking around to check on your butt!

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  22. Back fat! Yes, especially the flab that gets all bunched up around the part where bra strap meets bra-band. K-man pretends he has no idea what I am talking about.

    I do admit to liking running, though. It took a while, and much determination, and externally-imposed obligation, but eventually I'm now in a position where I miss it when I haven't found time to head out in a week or so. Despite my love, and finding that it does help to keep the lard down, I can report it mysteriously has no effect on the back fat.

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  23. "Back fat is fat that you weren't even counting on in life, and the first time you discover it, it's quite a shock. What you think you're doing is cranking your head around to look at your own butt, which needs checking up on, but what you see instead is back fat torquing away. You can feel it, too. It's creepy at first. What is that pressing on my back? Why, it's another part of my back. Backs should not have cleavage. In general, I can do without any fat that I can't keep clean without floss."

    Once again, Murr, you make me jealous. Simply brilliant. And, sadly, true.

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  24. "Back fat is fat that you weren't even counting on in life, and the first time you discover it, it's quite a shock. What you think you're doing is cranking your head around to look at your own butt, which needs checking up on, but what you see instead is back fat torquing away. You can feel it, too. It's creepy at first. What is that pressing on my back? Why, it's another part of my back. Backs should not have cleavage. In general, I can do without any fat that I can't keep clean without floss."

    Once again, Murr, you make me jealous. Simply brilliant. And, sadly, true.

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  25. For about the fifth time in a year, my doctor has urged me to take up water aerobics. I'm no water-lover, but I'm positively deathly allergic to bathing suits. I'm looking into a burqini, which I have some hope can conceal all my fat varieties.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Well, you know me. I love to run.

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  27. So basically what you're saying as the act of repeatedly lifting ones fork to ones mouth is not considered a cardio workout. Damn. I'm screwed.

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  28. "...endorphins, which are tiny mythical germs made out of unicorn breath. They aren't real."
    Now I have it, proof of something I have always suspected. Thank you.

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  29. Ah, my first laugh of the new year. You know that monkey that most of us have on our back? Mine's morphing into a shar-pei. Spring better get here soon, or I'm going to have to do the unthinkable and join a gym. Can't believe I even said that. Gravity is a harsh mistress.

    ReplyDelete