Corset, 3 weeks in…

So I’ve been wearing a corset for three weeks. It’s quite comfortable now, although since last week was a heavy gardening week and this week is a heavy housework week, I haven’t (won’t) be wearing it a full 12 hours per day. And since I have to drive long distance on Friday, I won’t be wearing it then…

But it has done wonders for my posture. I’ve discovered (or re-learned) that my slumping problem occurs in the middle back, not the lower back. If anything, my lower back tends to sway in the other direction. That means that the corset does NOT cure my slumping. However, what it does do is remind me not to slump. When I start to slump, I feel the bones of the corset shift against me, and I sit up straight again.

So for that, it’s been really helpful.

In addition, my appetite has actually been less, although I don’t think I’ve lost weight since that first dramatic drop. (I haven’t weighed in two weeks, so I don’t know.)

As an interesting aside, I ran across this blog post today, wherein the blogger describes trying to sleep while wearing her corset. I’m not sold on the idea, especially since I’m a flailing sleeper. I think I put my desire to sleep ahead of any advantage that could be gained by that.*

Anyhow, I’m almost at the end of my four weeks, but I will be continuing to use the corset while working. (In fact, I’ve purchased another.) It does seem to do what I want it to do.

*I am not in this for waist-training. I have plenty of waist to train, but I prefer not to tight-lace.

#SFWAPro

Corset, Day 5 (with TMI section)

Today is Day 5.

The corset is becoming increasingly more comfortable. As of Thursday morning, I think the thing has stretched/formed to my natural waist. It no longer tries to ride up on my ribs, and instead of compressing the ribs, it feels more like it’s cupping them.

Perfect_Health_Corset

 

Source: Wikimedia Commons

The corset is going on easily now, the busk snapping into place quite nicely. It only takes a minute or so to get corsetted up. I do tighten the laces several times during the day, which becomes easier as the thing warms up (and my waist does as well.)

My only remaining problem is my tummy. Yes, I have a rounded tummy and, sometimes when I sit, the very bottom of the busk digs in. This happens most frequently in the car, but also when I squat (yes, I know that’s not ladylike) to pick something up off the floor. So I’m learning to suck in my gut first. Hmmm.

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For those who haven’t worn a corset, I still have some flexibility inside the corset. So it’s not as if my spine can’t move at all. I’m just limited. Also, my shoulders and neck are completely separate, so they’re not having any issues.

As far as sitting up straight while working goes, this is fine. I’m being much better about that.
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Question asked over on FB:
Are you wearing normal clothes? How do they fit over the corset?

I’m currently wearing yoga pants, a t-shirt, and a big ‘ol sweatshirt. They fit fine over the corset, and no one has commented, so I don’t suppose it’s noticeable.

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And, I weighed this morning and have lost 5 pounds since the last time I weighed (2 weeks ago). I suspect that a lot of that is merely a factor of my appetite being suppressed.

________________TMI section below___________________

OK, the bathroom.

I now know why Victorian/Edwardian women were floating around the house in their dressing gowns all morning instead of getting up right away and getting dressed: they were waiting for certain bodily functions to be over with.

In my case, there’s been no change in the bodily functions themselves…and I assure you, I’ve done ALL the bodily functions this week. Bad week to start with the corset, huh? But it’s over with now.

What is different? Cleaning up afterward. Since I can’t bend much at the waist, reaching certain areas becomes more difficult. Not impossible, just more difficult.

So if I were an Edwardian lady, I would probably put off donning the corset until after….um….the coffee has worked (as we say euphemistically here.)

And if I were wealthy enough, I would just plead a headache for certain days of the month and stay home in the afore-mentioned dressing gown.

Unfortunately, working women didn’t have any choice about that sort of thing, and had to get up into the corset before dawn….so that must have been a royal pain.

Corset, Day 1

OK, not exactly Day 1, but that will take some explaining.

Here’s what I’m up to: I plan to wear a corset all day long (by which I mean about 12 hours) for the next four weeks save for when I’m gardening or exercising.*
black_cotton_underbust_steel_boned_305_front__09536.1391206782.386.513
Photo from Orchard Corset. That is definitely NOT me. I’m not going to post pics of me in my undergarments.
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Why on Earth would I do that?
1) Research–there’s nothing like wearing a corset to know how you should write someone who wears one.

2) Posture–this started when I was working toward the deadline for book three, and noticed how I was hunching over the computer. As I’m a mature woman with neck issues, that’s a BAD thing. So I purchased an elastic lumbar support with boning (via Footsmart) to help with my posture. It was intended mostly to remind me to sit up straight. The moment I started hunching, it would dig in to my ribs….and I would sit up. This works pretty well except that once the elastic digs in, it stays dug in and after a while that’s really uncomfortable, forcing me to get up and re-arrange the whole thing.

Then one day I thought….hey, a corset wouldn’t bunch up in the front…and they don’t cost much more than the lumbar support…and…

3) Appetite–this was the part that surprised me. I stumbled across this article, I had this strange moment of going…Oh! That’s exactly what I’m experiencing.

“…Chrisman says the one thing she can’t do while wearing a corset is put down a big meal like she once enjoyed. Since the stomach can’t bloat with expansion, one feels full, faster. And yet this discovery became a pivotal turning point for Chrisman, who always refused to diet, though still battled the body image fight that so many women, regardless of size, often do.”

What I’d noticed was that when I wore the lumbar support, I had virtually no cravings for food. In fact, yesterday I was having my afternoon snack of 12 nut-thin crackers and a piece of cheese, and ended up putting some of the crackers back in the bag because I had the strange experience of ‘it’s just too much trouble to eat these…’

Seriously? Who thinks that? It’s something that I don’t recall crossing my mind before. Ever.

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So, given all the above, I thought, why not give it a try?

I ordered the underbust corset pictured above and it arrived yesterday morning. As soon as it did, I took of the lumber support and put that puppy on and wore it until 8PM.

People who wear corsets will tell you that they’re surprisingly comfortable. This one was, and provided a nice feeling of a hug around my rib cage. The -only- thing that wasn’t very comfortable was sitting back on the couch. When you lounge, the corset digs in a bit—not into the body areas that are compressed, but to the areas next to those.  (This is why women in corsets sit on chairs most of the time.)

So this morning, after having spent a couple of hours lounging on a couch, my armpits feel a bit sore. No, the boning of the corset didn’t dig into my armpits. Instead it shoved my excess flesh that direction (no more clarification will be given.) Oddly, this isn’t much different than after a day of wearing a minimizer bra, so…no heartburn.

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But today is day two, and Tuesday, which means Yoga Class…and I certainly won’t wear the corset for that. I’ll clean up after class and put it on afterward.

Anyhow, if you see me posting about this over the next month (leading up to Memorial Day), that’s what I’m doing. Wish me luck, and sanity!!!

*I will, of course, stop wearing the corset if I notice any issues with my bum neck or my shoulders. Health of my spine takes precedence over everything else!

#SFWAPro