There Ain't No Such Thing as a Free Lunch.
Moon is a Harsh Mistress, Robert A. Heinlein
My husband has now lost almost fifty-five pounds. He's wearing a medium-sized shirt, which he has not been able to do since high school. And size 36 pants, which he says he can't remember ever doing. He weighs 198.
His friend at work, the one who does the Ironman competitions, promised to take him out to lunch when he got to less than 200 pounds.
Why does this just seem like a contradiction in ideas, to me?
He... lost weight. So you're going to take him to lunch?
It seems like making a chocolate cake part of my reward for losing five pounds.
There Ain't No Such Thing as a Free Lunch. Greg Mankiw described the concept as: "To get one thing that we like, we usually have to give up another thing that we like. Making decisions requires trading off one goal against another." To get his "free lunch", Thomas has given up eating cheeseburgers and moonpies and twinkies for eight months. To get his "free lunch," we walk over 6 miles a week. We play tennis, and climb hills, and run around the front yard. For two Computer Chair Eclairs, this has been impressive amounts of activity.
We dropped Darcy off with my parents this weekend. Remember I told y'all that my dad said he'd gained 25 pounds? I could tell.
"You know," Thomas says to me last night while we're in bed, waiting to fall asleep, "I was surprised by something this weekend."
"When we were playing with Darcy?" I grinned. My dad and Thomas had taken turns playing "monster" while Darcy ran shrieking and laughing in circles around her new playhouse.
(Look at that thing! My god! And Rosie, my step-mom, has put in a paved brick walkway, stepping stones, a small picnic table behind it, flower boxes under the window... ok, maybe I'm not the only one who never had anything like this as a girl, and Rosie is acting out her own prepubescent fantasies.)
"Yeah, I remember."
"Your dad got tired before I did..."
Keeping in mind that my dad lives and works on a farm, that he's always been completely whipcord thin and fit as a fiddle... he's the man who ROWED us back to his beach house when the boat ran out of gas...
"Impressive." I rolled over. "His elliptical had dust on it." I borrowed the weight bench while we were there to do a few sets. (I used the seven pound weights, which is four pounds more than my at-home set of weights, and was pleased to see I could manage them easily. Maybe I should get some new weights.)
To some degree, I find it sad that we're competing, even mentally, with a man who's almost 25 years older than we are. On the other hand, everyone's got to start somewhere. So we started at the bottom of the hill; so what? The rock hasn't rolled over and crushed us yet. Between the pair of us, we've lost over 100 pounds. He's down 54 pounds, and I got my 45 pound bling yesterday. (That pesky pound was, indeed, evicted, along with 2.8 of his friends.... biggest loss I've had in quite a while.)
But there ain't no such thing as a free lunch.
We've given up a lot to get here. We've gone through a lot to get here. We've changed and made changes. Both of us still have a ways to go, but it's been a better journey for the help and partnership.