But a split second thereafter, reality set in: I’m gonna get fat.
That is a preposterous as an immediate thought for most, I realize, but one never fully shakes an eating disorder. I manage in normal circumstances. A broken foot changes everything.
The night before my accident, I’d bought new jogging gear after renewing my routine with a 12-kilometer run earlier in the week. Running with crutches? Highly impractical.
My swimming regimen is also sidelined.
Gym workouts? As I waited in Emergency, I visualized a gym tour, considering every machine, bench and free weight. What became clear was that most apparatus would be off limits.
I have been back to the gym three times since the accident. My two-and-a-half hour workouts are now forty minutes, during which I use machines that don’t seem to do much. I go through the motions, hoping the exercise will make the comeback trail a little easier when I’m cast-free.
It’s the lack of cardio exercise that generates the most despair.
I know I have already gained weight. I remind myself it is to be expected. There will be plenty of time to work it off come April. Still, I feel surges of panic. A pound is not a pound to me. It’s more like six. If I’ve already gained three, my reaction would be similar to someone who has gained eighteen. It’s more than a setback. It feels like I’ve lost control. I do not have the power I want and need.
Based on my visit to a specialist today, I will be out of commission for 8 ½ weeks. And that doesn’t factor in any physio that will follow. If I’m lucky, I’ll get through this with 8-10 (48-60) extra pounds at most. I will have to up the intensity of my workouts right away. How long will it take to get back to a fitter me? Will I have the drive to do so? Why am I not dieting right now?
In moments of calmness, I remind myself that this is all temporary. I will work through this. If only I could fight the perception that my belly is expanding with alarming speed and that everyone sees it.
Clearly, navigating with crutches is the least of my worries.