Thursday, March 25, 2010

My baby belly is a jelly roll

[Or perhaps a big, doughy bagel]

Let me preface this post by saying I really don't have body "issues." I've never dieted, I don't (and never have) suffered from anorexia or body dysmorphia or any of the common -ias that make women eat Lean Cuisines. Once, after learning that the milkshakes in my dorm snack shop were made by merely microwaving a pint of Ben and Jerry's until soft, I stuck my finger down my throat, but that really just an experiment to see what all the fuss was about. And for the record, the Chubby Hubby stayed down.

But I do have an issue now. And it's my belly. I pretty much look 4 months pregnant all the time. The belly is part fat, part excess skin and it is usually accentuated by the end of the day with bloat. Not a pretty picture, and it's taking all the courage I can muster to admit it here.

Now I've learned how to dress my waist to best disguise the pooch, but a couple of days ago I forgot the rules and wore a somewhat clingy sweater tunic. And hated myself all day. My mantra must be jacket or ruching, wrap dress or layers. I haven't yet figured out a flattering solve for the gym, where my muffin top always pokes out of my stretch pants.

Speaking of the gym: I work out, I do. But I know myself well enough to know I'll never up the intensity to level guaranteed to burn off all my stomach fat (although I've done a great job of strengthening the muscles under my middle roll).

I'd love liposuction--at least in theory--but the cost, recovery time and sheer selfish vanity of it have so far kept me from Googling local plastic surgeons.

For now I'm trying to eat moderately, exercise more and dress to disguise my major flaw. But I can't help wondering if there's some kind of miracle cure I don't know about. Is there a food I should eliminate? An ab exercise I need to learn? I know better than to hope my salvation will come in the form of a pill or a cream, but a girl can dream. Right?