I went back to my knitting group this morning and was extremely and pleasantly surprised to realise that my legs are not as fat as I think they are. I should thank a combination of Hypoxi, horsey and exercise bike for this and you would be excused to think I am displaying a flash of false modesty here. Really, I am not. I always think of my legs as a bit chunky and because I do not have a full-length mirror at home, every time I catch a glimpse of them, I always think they are somebody else's or the mirror is a lengthening one (something they really ought to consider in changing rooms the world over).
The epiphany took place thanks to Cellini, from Rowan's Mag 44:
Many people have commented on Ravelry that this is one of those dreadful preggo-styles that can gift its wearer with a good twenty pounds without even trying hard. I am glad to say I can disagree. At my local yarn store, there is a lovely Cellini on display, in a natural shade. I tried it on today and that is when I realised that it does not pregnarise the wearer and that the wearer today had pretty decent legs.
If that is the case, I can tell you it's been a long slog. Thinking back on my fitness misadventures, I cannot quite recall the moment when a sense of awareness descended upon me; yet, it must have happened at some point in my very early days for, even as a young child, I already displayed multiple flags that unequivocally marked me as one of those kids whose entire family, all the way back to the Middle Ages, must have lacked the Gym Gene. I insisted on volley-ball, intoxicated as I was by Japanese manga cartoons featuring improbable heroines gifted with improbable high-jumps, improbable strength, improbable stamina and improbably Westernised looks.
My own version of Mimi or Mila was secretly rehearsed with a limp helium balloon against one of my bedroom walls. Fast-forward to the school halls where we used to practise and there I was, a tall and self-conscious piglet, falling over and back onto my already vast backside, the ball imprinted on my forehead like a tortoise’s shell, my glasses pressed hard onto my nose and only miraculously unshattered.
These days I stick to what I really want to do (riding), but when the going gets tough on the horses, there may be spells when the exercise bike replaces the hooves and I must confess I do not like these spells one little bit. For a start, it is boring. Boring to hell. Boring like I never knew exercise could be boring. Secondly, if you're at all like me, you'll want to really push it and really pushing it on the bike means a full hour on mountain settings. The only remotely pleasing moment is when I step off the damn thing, grunting and gasping, clasping my chest as I peer at the display that blinks 830 calories burnt, 20.1 Km, 60 minutes. Hard as it is, I may have to try and conjure up images of my legs every time I run through mental excuses in order to skip (skip the bike of course, I cannot imagine skipping without falling to the floor in a tangle).