Thursday, September 22, 2011

Le Freak, C'est Chic

I know for every person who weighs themselves on a daily basis there is one who doesn’t weigh themself at all and instead uses their clothes as a guide.  I would say that I am somewhere in the middle.  I weigh myself around once a week but I also know that no matter what the scale says my clothes will tell their own story.  I know this because even at the weight I’ve been carrying for the last couple of years, I’ve been wearing a smaller size thanI have in the past at this same weight.  For me, this means my clothes have been acknowledging the working out that I do, even if the scale does not.

My least favorite clothing switch is from the loose flowy sundresses of summer to the more tailored clothing of fall, winter, and spring.  Right around the end of September to mid-October is when this usually happens and honestly, no matter what the scale says, I dread it. 

Because I have an outing planned for Friday evening that will require casual clothing – but not a sundress as it will officially be autumn by then after all – I had to dig out my dressier jeans and khakis to figure out what I could put together.  As I shook them out and held them up my brain began to scream, “These were getting tight by last spring and now you know you’ve gained weight since last fall…” but I chose to ignore it and began to pull them on.  They did go up over my hips but only zipped halfway and were not even close to buttoning, even if I did the typical womanly trick of laying down on the bed to flatten out my pot belly.

Not me but very well could have been...

So, now I was faced with having to find a pair of jeans or khakis or something that would fit before Friday. Tuesday at lunchtime, I ran into TJ Maxx and grabbed a pair of jeans that looked like they would fit - Ralph Laren - so even though they were the same size as my old jeans I figured being designer they would also run big.  Get home after MT, cleaned up and used that opportunity to try them on. They fit but unfortunately were so long I'd have to wear heels and I need to want to wear flats.  Sigh.  But my bad for not trying on.

So back to looking for jeans.  Yesterday while out at lunch to buy a roll to eat the chicken salad I’d brought for lunch, I ran into the Dress Barn that is right next to the grocery store.  Dress Barn has 2 sides:  regular misses sizes and "woman"....14W-24W.  As I enter, I am just praying I don't have to go on the W side. (That would be like going to the dark side for me.)  I go in, find jeans and grab the size I’d like to wear and a larger size, still hoping I don’t have to go on the W side of the store.  The smaller size did not fit and the larger?  Glided right on like they were made for me.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t even enjoy the fact that I found jeans that fit and were the right length because the size I had to buy is my official freak out size.  Even though they were still from the regular misses section I could not find any comfort in that. So, I sat in that dressing room trying not to have a melt down and yes, freaking out. 

My current feelings about all this are only compounded by the fact that all of the exercise I’m doing right now feels really hard.  As I said when I was trying to explain to Mr. Helen about our Muay Thai class Tuesday (and he wasn't 'getting' it):  the moves were not hard but I felt so fat and out of shape and out of breath that I was miserable.

While I have no choice but to wear my freak out size at this time, because yes, even I know you need to wear what fits otherwise you look ridiculous, I am not happy about it.  Not one single bit.  I feel betrayed by my clothes.

Double whammy:  not happy with the scale, not happy with my clothes.  Miserable in fact.

Le Freak?  Not so chic.


  1. {{hugs}} {{hugs}} to you Helen. My scale doesn't have numbers, it just tells me how many pounds up or down I am from the starting point, which is kind of nice, but the clothing always has a number.

    Exercise does make a huge difference in how clothing fits, though - as you know.

    And the feeling horrible during the workout? Having just been through that and the subsequent meltdown - I am right there with you.

    I wonder if it might have something to do with your hormones or some other imbalance (like electrolytes). Hoping the lab work you did gives you some answers.

    Would you be open to trying biking?? Just a thought :D

  2. Big hug for you Helen! I always remove labels from my clothes, what's important is that it fits. I do have a freak out size but never been there. Everything between 40 and 44 (European sizes) is fine by me (46 is the freaking out).

    I weigh myself once a week. Don't feel the need to step on the scale more often.

    I'm the opposite: I prefer the Autumn/Winter outfits over the Summer outfits because my Winter outfits are more dressy than my Summer outfits and I feel more feminine in my Winter outfits.

  3. I hear you and I know that freak out. I also like to hide in winter clothes under the bulky sweaters and sweatshirts....what a mind game we play.

  4. Helen, even though I know you are sad, this was so funny. Even the label was funny (my butt is too big.)

    But I am right there with you, especially on the 'not going to the dark side.' I'm right at that borderline point too. And since its sunny California, I haven't had to try on the jeans. Honestly you could have been observing my life and writing my story right now. Down to the not feeling good when you exercise. Ever since I hurt my leg 'jogging' two weeks ago, I have been very frustrated. With one hand and one leg out of commission, is there any point in going to the gym???

  5. I know it really sucks, having to buy your freak-out size, but the optimist in me is pleased that you found a pair of jeans that fit...something that is not easy no matter WHAT your size!

    Yeah, yeah, I know...doesn't quite help. Hugs? :)

  6. Helen, right now I have three pair of khaki pants - one is an 8, one is a 10 and one is a 14 and they all fit me the exact same say.

    So of course I like to believe I am a size 8, right?!

    Sending big hugs your way - you are an awesome runner, you are not sitting on the sidelines, so you have a lot to be proud of even if you don't like the size on your jeans.


  7. I feel much better for knowing I'm not the only one who has freak outs in dressing rooms. I can wear certain clothes in "normal" sizes, but many come from that dark side of which you spoke. The only way I can turn that around is to drop pounds - like 15, at my height, would make all the difference in the world, even though I'd still have 30 to go.

    Every time you post a picture I think how good you look - normal sized - womanly in the best possible way. You do not look like a plus size at all. Wish I could say the same for me!

  8. This is why I curse Spandex and flowy dresses! They are deceitful little suckers. I recently heard someone say that they refuse to wear yoga pants because they know that their jeans won't fit by the weekend if that's all they wear Monday-Friday.

    The good part: you can always get back into your jeans. No worries. Just focus and do it!

  9. I feel your pain Helen!!!! Hang in there, sending hugs your way no matter WHAT number is on your tag!!!

  10. HUGS HUGS HUGS HUGS and love.
    no matter the number.

  11. Buying jeans is always hard, Helen. I find that I have to wear a size or two larger in jeans than I wear in regular pants. You are a very attractive woman, Helen, and I know you'll look good in whatever size you bought. But I also know how it feels to shop for clothes. It's tough, and we're so hard on ourselves. Have a good weekend and be kind to yourself.

  12. Oh, Helen, I feel your pain! Even though I keep telling myself this is a foodstyle and it's going to take a while before I go down in sizes, I am so very frustrated by the size that I have to buy these days. I AM on the W side of the store, and I hate it.
    Why do we have to stop wearing sundresses? Why, why, why??? :(

  13. Helen, I bet you look great. Don't beat yourself up..I like women with meat on their bones. Not walking skeletons with skin hanging on them..