Last week my doctor’s assistant had me stand barefoot on a scale-like contraption and hold a metal bar that was linked to the scale so that the fingers and thumbs on both hands were touching the metal. The device, she said, would measure my muscle-to-body-fat ratio and also give me an overall weight goal.
I eyed the contraption with skepticism and trepidation. More than a year ago I made a concerted effort to lose weight through a low-carb regimen and lost about 20 pounds. I was happy with the results and decided to stop at that point, and I thought I had been pretty successful in keeping the weight off — but I don’t weigh myself regularly. The scale/handle device therefore would be the acid test.
I followed the procedure and waited for the results. The good news was that my weight was within a pound or two of where I was when I stopped the low-carb approach last year, and the device concluded that the amount of muscle was where it should be, too. The bad news, though, is that the device said that I needed to lose about 25 pounds and get below 160 on the scale.
160? Seriously? 160?!? That’s less than I weighed when Kish and I got married in 1982, which was the skinniest I’ve ever been as an adult. If you wanted to find the last time I weighed less than 160 pounds you’d probably have to go back more than 40 years.
I get the need to watch your weight, and I understand the different health problems that can be caused by excessive weight. But getting below 160 pounds seems like a pretty outlandish goal. Presumably it would require a radical change in diet and exercise efforts, and I wonder if it would be sustainable. I don’t want to lose two stone eating twigs and raw lettuce, buy an entirely new beanpole wardrobe, and then see my weight pop back up. And yo-yoing on your weight doesn’t seem like a particularly healthy thing, either.
I’m rationalizing here, I’m sure, and I’ll talk to my doctor, of course. But for now I’m thinking I’ll just take things one step at a time, and try to get down to the 170s and see how I feel about it. I’m having a really hard time envisioning the 160-pound me.