In this Lagos, you can’t lose weight in peace by Peju Akande

In this Lagos, you can’t lose weight in peace by Peju Akande

I’m a foodie, azin I love eating, not cooking o. I’m adventurous with food, too. When I travel, I don’t pack garri, or fufu or ogbono, like some people I know, I go all out to eat the jazziest food on the menu and try as much as possible to enjoy it too.

Now,we all know there’s a down side to all of these grubbings, you get fat. We pile on the fat and then complain bitterly when that once snugly fitted skirt or blouse is suddenly too small; we look longingly at those lovely dresses on mannequins and make vain vows to stay off the next course.

When I began to notice a double chin last year, I scoffed, telling myself I should change my mirror. You know how you tell yourself to change that two-faced lying mirror of yours and that bathroom scale too. There’s something wrong with the needle, you can’t trust these china made scales!

However, when I began to get snide remarks about my size, I did a quick rethink; ‘Come o, a lil exercise never hurt anybody.’ So, I decided to jog off my fat. I had seen some female joggers sweating it out, sometimes alone, sometimes in the company of other fatsos, along Allen Avenue.

A silhouetted woman runs at sunset.
A silhouetted woman runs at sunset.

I often sniggered, from the confines of my car, as I watched the jiggly wobbly movement of  their over-sized butts and the flip-flapping of the massive tyres of fat around their waists as they pounded the streets.

I thought nothing of these when I hit the Allen Avenue stretch. I did that for three days and began to notice I had company, always at the same spot, this, very friendly guy, who as soon as I jogged close to him, would begin to sprint alongside, telling me he admires my discipline, my determination to maintain a trim figure…blah blah blah (just three days, o).

Hummmn, this one thinks I’m his mate!

Me? I changed routes, as thoughts of the screaming headline – Female jogger found strangled – refused to leave my mind. Blame it on the massive doses of CI and Discovery Channel I consume.

He probably watched the same channels too because two days later, I saw him along my new route. Whosai!

No more jogging for me.

I figured, since my side flabs hadn’t ballooned into tyres yet and my butt was just right, for now, maybe I didn’t need to jog.

So, decided to try swimming instead and on a dare from my partner, I bought my swim suit, caps, goggles and went seeking for a trainer to teach me.swim suit

There’s a public pool off Toyin, in Ikeja, and I went there to find someone who could teach me. My kids are great swimmers but they have no patience for an oldie; so I had to get help outside.

I made a couple of visits to the pool, struck a deal with a very eager young man, one of the life guards, who looked me up and down and decided to call me, ‘Hanty’.

The day came, and I was ready, in my swimsuit, to start. There he was again, in tight trunks, very eager. I didn’t like his eagerness. I felt perhaps he had cheated me. People in Lagos aren’t so eager to teach anybody anything except they’ve fleeced the person of some good money.

Too late, mugu, I told myself.

We were in the water and had performed a few strokes- hands stretched and legs flapping…you know the drill if you are a swimmer- when the reason for all the excitement hit me.

The yeye boy had grown a massive SOMETHING that was threatening to tear his trunks! Haba, I be Hanty na!

Now, I am thinking of registering at a gym but who knows what manner of uselessness is waiting there….

This Lagos is a difficult place to lose weight, biko.

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  1. Tara

    Hanty, go and join agym and spend this money ojare. No be all instructors dey grow something underwater. Go to police college for instance, dem get gym, grounds and swimming pool


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