I'm the heaviest I've been in my whole life. I guess this is what turning 40 does to one's physique.
Unlike the rest of my life, however, I'm pretty much at peace with this. I struggled with self image for much of my first 30 years, and even when I was tiny with all my ribs sticking out, I thought I was fat and unattractive, my bum was big and my thighs were thunderous. Having a size 6 petite mother and a bunch of friends with self esteem and self images issues which they regularly vocalised didn't help either.
I didn't meet a bum man until I met my exhusband. I didn't even know they existed. All this time with my flat chest and my round butt, all I needed was a pushup bra and a bum man. Well, I never.
Turning 30 was awesome. I know for a lot of women this is a bit of a crisis, but for me it was great. Maybe it was just my own shift in perception, but it felt like I was taken more seriously, dismissed less, and less of an expectation to look or be a certain way. I cut ties with a couple of friendships (one particularly toxic one which, in hindsight, had been emotionally abusive), embraced my oddness, and started hanging out with other odd bods who didn't expect me to be anyone except myself.
The weight thing took longer. The most I'd ever weighed was 72kg. I gained it, I lost it, I gained it, I lost it. I have tried most mainstream diets (have always eschewed extreme choices like atkins, paleo etc) - weight watchers, lite and easy, etc.
If turning 30 was great, I had no idea how wonderful 40 was going to be.
Despite tipping the bathroom scales at a neat 73-74kg depending on the day, I'm happy with my body. It's got all the weird droopy bits and bumpy bits and distended bits that you'd expect on a 40 year old. Again, a perception shift: it's ok to have these bits. I'm still going to wear fun clothes that I like, from op shops and ebay stores and market stalls. (this is a fashion choice as well as an ethical and environmental one). I've discovered, finally, that faking "I'm shit hot and I know it" (fake it til you become it) totally trumps weight loss.
Well. That was a long lead-in to my little tutorial for today. Part of having a big arse and thighs is that leggings are a stressful experience. I love leggings, but I have so many problems with them - firstly the current fashion of low rise pants means that I've got nothing to tame the previously mentioned distended tummy-bits. And believe me, they need TAMING. Haha.
Most leggings come with the attached lie "one sizes fits..." BAH. There's lies, damn lies, and leggings, apparently. When you have honking big thighs and butt, these use up most of the fabric in that area, effectively shortening the rise and back area, so no matter what you do, you're gonna flash your sweaty 40 year old crack at whoever is sitting behind you unless you carry some sort of modesty scarf at all times. Now I know there's a fetish for everything, but most people aren't going to appreciate said crack. I mean, I know that with my not-quite-A-cups it's the only cleavage I'm ever going to have, but it's just not the same. Even if the poor sucker behind you *is* a bum man.
Ooops. Off I go again. Anyway - wanna see how I deal with having gorgeous leggings that I'm too fat to wear? Watch and learn. You're gonna LOVE this.
Step 1: Cut those nasty tiny-thighed leggings to pieces. Specifically, chop them off so you've got about 3 or 4 cm from the inner crotch seam. Straight off. I used pinking shears because I love those zig zaggy things.
Step 2: Overlock (serge) some 6mm elastic along the inside edge.
Step 3: Fold it over once and use a stretch stitch. You could fold it twice if you think the exposed overlocking will aggravate your skin. Oh, that's my thigh by the way. Sweet huh? That baby, along with the other bits of my legs, can run me through a half marathon, no worries mate ;)
Step 4: Measure around the part above your knee where your lower legging will sit. Cut your 25mm elastic to the tightness you want this to be. I have it *just* tight enough to hang on - the suspenders will keep them up - because I don't like the muffin top type fat thing you get when you squish your squishy thigh bits with elastic. Stitch the ends together to make a loop (just enough to hold it steady) and pin it around the outside of the legging. Make sure the legging has been turned inside out (the white in this pic is the inside. You'll have to do some stretching in the pinning and sewing, as in these pics:
Step 5: Overlock (serge) along the edge. You can see I'm stretching it between pins to make sure it's evenly done. It'll be slightly distorted when you're done but don't panic. It's meant to be like this, and if you've measured your thigh correctly it'll stretch out to be *just right*.
Final step: fold this over the elastic (again, once or twice is your call - I just did once) and stitch two rows of stretch stitching to finish it off. Ta da! Attach suspenders/skirt lifters, and you're off. Here's me modeling them with black stockings underneath. I'll likely wear a just-on-the-knee skirt with these. Yay!