The most talked about parameters of one's life apart from wealth, are age, height and weight...... though not in the same order. Even for a baby, the pediatrician is bothered about the length and weight vis a vis the birth weight. The other day my friend's wife was talking about the doctor's comment about her nine month old grandson being underweight.....!
During my childhood, I grew up among my siblings without any 24X7 care as being showered on the single kids of the present day. But as far as height and weight are concerned, I did maintain a fairly balanced growth till the late teens and early twenties until vertical growth stopped.
Even after settling down in a job, there was no major change in the stature and weight which was considered optimum. But the gain in circumference started sometime when I was in my mid thirties. That was the time when I had to spend almost ten to twelve hours in the office and had the luxury of a two wheeler and/or other vehicles to go anywhere. Walking was limited to within the house and in the banking hall. The bicycle which was my constant companion for decades started collecting dust and rust.
A doctor friend who was the fat guy of our class, had told me that as per my height, the optimum weight should be hovering around 65 kg. And I was weighing 63 and I was rather happy about it. But as l crossed my forties, I gained more weight.
My friend had only one advice. After sixty never allow the weight in kilograms to overtake the age.....! Alas by the time I retired the weight was far ahead...... beyond .........eighties......! Brisk walking for more than an hour, swimming, etc. were tried at irregular intervals. All efforts made no perceptible change!
Once, with great determination I started going to the Napier Museum compound in the morning. The walk lasted a couple of months. After couple of weeks, the faces became familiar and it developed into a chat club......from politics to cinema. Sometimes it became worse than the prime time discussions on certain TV channels. As there was no compulsion of going to office, the arguments on many days got extended outside the compound on to the by lane nearby. One day, someone offered tea from the shop there. The next day it became the turn of another member of the chat club and so on. And the smart tea shop vendor offered homemade steaming "puttu" on certain days. It was tempting. And on many days I happened to eat double breakfast as disclosing the first one would have created havoc at home. Ultimately, I gained a couple of kilos after two months of morning walk......!
With great preparations, I joined a group to play shuttle badminton and bought a pair of sports shoes the soles of which didn't leave an impression on the wooden court. A couple of shorts and T shirts to match were also procured. The preparation lasted about three days and cost me a few thousands. But the game lasted only two days. I started getting very severe pain in my joints. The other reason was reluctance to give up the best part of sleep in the morning hours. The time slot in the court was 5 to 6 in the morning. It was like getting up to catch Venad Express every day in the wee hours of the morning, which I had done while I was in service and given up after a week.....!
Walking around the roads of our own housing colony which I had started subsequently, had to be suspended after a stray dog ran behind me and I escaped from falling down after a fifty meter chase.
In the meantime I used to read with awe, the posts in Face book pages published by a couple of my senior retired colleagues which narrated their running half marathon and ten km. run, etc. They were really inspirational .....albeit, to me they remained like the old saying "I love hard work, I can watch for hours.."
The disturbing thought of my weight came to haunt my mind whenever I overhear the “Meditalk" in the afternoon. My wife is very regular in listening to it in the TV room when I escape for my afternoon nap. And she increases the volume whenever the doctor answered queries on obesity and being overweight.....!
Almost on every New Year day, the resolution was made to start a strict regimen of early to bed early to rise, abstinence from all evils, regular exercise, etc etc. But my meek will power waited for surrender to lame excuses invariably before the 15th of January......!
The latest Meditalk which I overheard last week was the most consoling- that obesity or overweight also could be related to one's genes, a recent study has revealed.....! My dad weighed over 85 kg and he lived up to the age of 84. He led a healthy life. And he died in sleep.
I have now stopped worrying about being overweight. And l have shelved my hopes of catching up with the advice of my doctor friend of leaving the weight in kilograms behind the age. I don't wish to do so by aging more either.....
And whenever someone remarks about my weight, I retort, "My weight is correct . But it is my height which should have been more!"