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Archive for the ‘Food’ Category

Last night I dreamed of Subway sandwiches.

They were delivered on a platter and people swarmed to the sandwiches, taking their favorites away on paper plates. I approached the platter and reached for the last turkey on wheat at the same time Harrison Ford reached for the last turkey on wheat.

It turns out Harrison Ford has turned into a crotchety bastard in his old age and he gave me a “Don’t fuck with my sandwich” look so I backed off because you do not fuck with Harrison Ford’s sandwich.

I took whatever meager leavings remained on the platter, which I promptly dropped on the floor. I had nothing to eat. Harrison Ford, on the other hand, happily walked away with the last turkey on wheat and didn’t look back.

And that’s how the first and only day of the 17-day diet cleanse ended. With Han Solo stealing my favorite sandwich.

I am back to my regular plan today. Yesterday started off strong with a bottle of kefir and an egg white omelet. I brought a salad, grapes and a yogurt with me to work and didn’t even feel the need to dig into the grapes until 11:00.

Then round about noon the fatigue set in. This was highly unusual for me. I never get that tired that early in the day, but I’d had an intense spinning workout in the morning, one in which I really pushed myself, and I don’t think I gave my body what it needed to refuel.  At noon I had my salad, at 3:00 I had the yogurt and at some point I found myself uncapping the bottle of Diet Wild Cherry Pepsi I’d left in the fridge.  By the end of the day I was an exhausted, cranky mess who had been bitterly hoarding vanilla Tootsie rolls from the work candy dishes all day with the hope I might be able to eventually eat them.

Had I not already decided to eat my minimum points, I would have ended the day with a 12 point deficit. I used up those points by eating almonds, peanut butter and cherries (not all at once) but that still did not remedy the feeling that I’d been completely hollowed out by hunger. Nathan and I had no emotional reserves to withstand Autumn’s monkey business and became very short with her. Of course it didn’t help that she’s exactly the kind of child who will test out the fire door at Costco even after she’s been told exactly what will happen if she opens it, but by the end of the night we were spent and went to bed early.

This morning was no better and we had a hard time mustering the energy to get out of bed. Nathan has soldiered on to Day 2 but I have happily embraced my carbs again in the form of an English muffin for breakfast and leftover pizza for lunch. I can’t tell you how much difference there is between yesterday and today. Instead of saying, “Hey…you!” when someone greets me, I’m able to remember names and concentrate on work. My stomach is not grumbling and I have, in fact, treated myself to a couple of vanilla Tootsies today.

This is the me I like. The me who loves to eat and be active and who has enough energy reserved to consider doing more in bed than just falling asleep holding my Kindle.  Last night any thoughts of intimacy were pushed out of my mind by the overwhelming desire for a damn sandwich.  I still don’t know how Harrison Ford fits into all of this, but if he shows up in any more dreams I’ll have a thing or two to say to him about how being a celebrity entails demonstrating just a little bit of generosity.

I guess I’m back to square one as far as figuring out how to break out of this plateau. I’m going to try staying away from diet sodas as much as possible and have a plan in place on how mix things up with my weekly and activity points.  The bottom line is I’m not (read: never EVER again) going to sacrifice feeling great in order to force the scale to move.

I just have to have faith that it will eventually move as long as I continue taking good care of myself.

 

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Last week Nathan and made the decision to try out the 17-Day Diet.  You may call me a hypocrite since I poo-pooed said diet a few months ago, but gosh darn it SOMETHING has to break me out of this plateau and I’m at the point where some behavior modification is needed to get things moving again.

At first I was going to follow the diet to the letter and suffer right along with my husband, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized the diet most likely would not allow me to do two things:

  1. Maintain my current level of physical activity.
  2. Remain a pleasant person.

Those things are very important to me. I love working out and really pushing myself. I love my spin class, I love the elliptical and I’m even starting to love the burn in my thighs the day after my attempts to jog on the treadmill. While the 17-Day Diet does endorse exercise, the caloric intake most likely would not be able to sustain me through my regular workouts.  I’m sorry, but I’m not about to sacrifice my hard-earned cardiovascular fitness level for the sake of a fad diet.

Then there’s Nathan, who not only consumed two Big Macs during a lunch date at McDonald’s this past week but likes the 17-Day Diet plan because it looks to be one in which he can quickly lose weight without having to exercise much.

Slacker.

As for the mood thing, I spent the worst of my depression being a difficult, insufferable person at work and at home and can pretty much guarantee I won’t be Miss Mary Sunshine if you start limiting both my food and my exercise. That’s not to say I don’t need to make changes and some of the principles of the diet, while gimmicky, might help me break the bad habits I still haven’t been able to shake these past two years, such as:

  1. Drinking too many diet sodas
  2. Not drinking enough water
  3. Eating too many carbs
  4. Dining out too much
  5. Eating too many processed foods

The soda thing will be hard, especially when I think of the diet Wild Cherry Pepsi I left in the fridge at work on Friday. I heart my diet sodas so much, occasionally drinking up to two 20 oz bottles in a day, but I know they’re bad for me so I’m going to give them up for the duration and switch to the 17-Day Diet staple of green tea and water.

Yay.

As for the rest, you can’t argue with eating clean, unprocessed foods such as lean meats and green, leafy vegetables, all of which we’ll be cooking and consuming at home.  The whole fruit abstinence after 2pm is a bunch of bollocks if you ask me and I can already see that as being one of the more flexible tenants of this diet.

The long and the short of it is that I’ve decided to follow this diet along with Nathan while still eating my minimum daily points, logging everything into my tracker and maintaining my current level of activity. I think I may be able to make this work if I view this as a cleanse rather than a diet.  I’ll probably miss the carbs as much as I miss my soda, but something has to change.  It’s only three months to the start of the holiday season and I need a little momentum to keep me going. The past two years have seen me lose weight between Thanksgiving and New Year’s, and while my goal during that time has always been to maintain my weight, I’d hate to break that losing streak.

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Last night I was starving.

Not really starving, mind you, but ravenous.  A chew-the-upholstery-off-the-furniture crazy kind of hungry.

I got home and could not wait for dinner to be ready. I opened up the pantry doors and ate a Weight Watchers Lemon Mousse Pie 2-point bar. Then I had another.

Then I got into the Wonka chocolates. I don’t even know how many of those things I had or why I brought them into my house to begin with.

Then there were the pretzels with the wedge of Lauging Cow cheese.

And finally there was dinner-rotisserie chicken, waffle fries and garlic bread (that was in the oven a little too long).

After dinner we went to the ice cream parlor where I had a small cone of real soft-serve ice cream dipped in chocolate. By that time I was finally full, but I ate the damn ice cream anyway.

The funny thing is I ate all that last night and I still saw my weight go down a little this week. It was less than a pound, but I’ll take it.

I’m not going to beat myself up for the binge or the god-awful 24-point chicken sandwich I had at Burger King Thursday night because I learned from these mistakes. For one, I learned I need to drink more water because I’m pretty sure the persistent hunger I felt all day was due to very little water intake while I was at work.

The second thing I learned is that I will never again order the bacon ranch Tendercrisp chicken sandwich from Burger King.

I also learned that I might be due for a “tune up” with my therapist because I’ve been very successful at sabotoging myself lately.

Did I need to buy two bags and four bars of  Wonka chocolate this week?

I did not.

Who suggested we go to Burger King with their chicken sandwich monstrosities instead of McDonalds, home of the 8-point southwest chicken salad?

I did, and I did it because I’d had a chicken salad for lunch and didn’t want another for dinner. Wah, wah, wah.

However…

I’m also the person who had dinner with her best friend at a great Mexican restaurant last week and ordered the taco plate instead of the chimichanga I really wanted.

I’m the person who had dinner at Red Lobster, ate one Cheddar Bay biscuit when I really wanted two and created my own feast of grilled shrimp skewers and steamed crab legs.

And I’m also the person who still got in five workouts during the week, workouts which apparently saved my ass at the scale today.

I wont lie. Last night really freaked me out. As I was sitting in the chair unwrapping chocolates, I was thinking, “WTF is wrong with me?” Am I reverting back to old habits? Am I going to gain it all back?  But then today I had to remind myself that I made a lot of good choices this week, too. Sometimes it’s easy to lose sight of the good stuff when the bad  stuff starts making its way back into your life.

I confessed to my Weight Watchers buddy about the binge last night and she said, “Don’t you know you’re supposed to do that after weigh-in?”

Yeah, but I kind of like starting the week over with a clean slate.

That’s the best thing about Saturday.

 

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I scream, you scream

Yesterday I had an interview for a promotion at work. I wasn’t at all nervous until about two hours before I was to sit down with the interviewers, all of whom I knew and work with every day.

I haven’t interviewed for a job in four years and my nerves were so bad at one point that I needed a sedative in the form of a piece of ice cream cake. One of the ladies at work celebrated a birthday on Thursday and brought in no less than three homemade ice cream cakes with vanilla ice cream and crushed Oreos drizled with chocolate and cramel syrup.

At this point I do know better than to use food to medicate myself, but I did it, went to the interview and lived through it.

However…

Later in the afternoon I had a second piece of homemade ice cream cake. I’d had a taste and wanted a second piece for no other reason than it was damn GOOD.

Those two piece of ice cream cake, as small as they were, may not have been so bad had I not also had a Rolo McFlurry at McDonald’s last night. We pulled up and I had totally intended on ordering a 4-point Vanilla cone.  Then I saw the sign for the Rolo McFlurry and I was gone. Nathan ordered a regular size one for himself and a snack size one for me, but when they pushed the drink holder out to us I could not immediately determine whose McFlurry was whose. The snack size was much bigger than I thought it would be, but that didn’t stop me from eating it.

I wasn’t expecting much at today’s weigh-in, but for some reason I walked away losing .6 pounds. Last week I gained one.

The good habits are the ones that led to that .6 pounds loss. The good habits are the reason I saw a loss at all, but the bad habits still seem to work their way into my week and it kind of bugs me. I know I’m not perfect, but yesterday as I was sitting at my desk about ready to vomit from the anxiety, the only way I could think to deal with those feelings was through eating.

Old habits certainly take a long, looong time to die.

But do they really die or do they lay dormant, awaiting the day we have a job interview or a death in the family or a child having problems in school?

I really have no idea, but if I ever figure that out, I’ll be sure to let you know.

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Sweet kryptonite

Earlier this week I bought three large (4.25 oz) bars of Hershey Special Dark.

They were on sale at Walgreens.

Translation: I’m an idiot.

I brought them into the office and stuffed them in a desk drawer after eating one of the fifteen segments of one bar. I calculated the points value of one segment and logged it into my tracker.

I thought, “Hey, how cool is it that I can eat just the one segment?” and then proceeded to calculate how long it would take me to eat 45 segments if I only ate one per day during the work week.

That’s nine weeks of dark chocolate for the bargain price of $4.

Well…Tuesday I was feeling a bit peckish and ate days 2 through 4. No biggie. No one said I HAD to eat only one per day. That was just my tentative plan at the outset of this experiment.

Yesterday I forgot the chocolate was even there. I know, right? But I was busy and too focused on work to care that there was chocolate near. I was also very delighted to finally find some lemon Chobani at a supermarket near campus and everything else took a back seat to the yogurt.

But then we get to today.

Today the chocolate simply would not SHUT UP.

My stomach also would not SHUT UP.

And I’m like, “Seriously? You know this week has been a challenge and you’re doing this to me now? Weigh-in is in two days. Can’t you just let me be satisfied with my banana and leave it at that?”

The chocolate laughed.

My stomach cried.

And I ate the rest of the bar.

That’s twelve segments of dark chocolate. The number of points in that chocolate is what I normally spend on dinner.

In fact, I have nothing left for the day, so I guess that was dinner.

Except I’m still hungry. WTF?

I guess what I’m trying to say is yes, I have lost 100 pounds, but I am not perfect nor am I strong enough to have that much chocolate on hand and keep my wits about me.

I don’t know if I’ll ever be that strong, but my co-workers were more than happy to take the other two bars off my hands.

So enjoy the chocolate, bitches.

Sorry, that’s my stomach talking.

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I try not to miss my Weight Watcher meetings. Granted, there are times when I’m in a pissy mood and walk out of the center as soon as I step off the scale because the scale did not show me what I expected it to show me. Of course it also happens the other way when I don’t expect much at the scale and am rewarded with the very generous gift of a loss I probably didn’t deserve.

I knew I was going to have to miss my meeting this past weekend due to attending Gleek Retreat. I also missed my meeting three weeks ago when I had to work. I only work two mandatory Saturdays per year, both of which are put on my calendar way ahead of time. In fact, I can look at the university catalog and know exactly which Saturdays I will be working through December of 2013, so it’s not like these days sneak up on me and I have no time to make other arrangements for my weigh-in. I just choose not to go.

Since I knew Gleek Retreat would also be preventing me from weighing in this weekend, I sort of relaxed with my eating last week. I actually relaxed a lot, with Friday night seeing me finish off the remainder of an order of moo shoo pork prior to a trip to the mall where I ordered a Fresco burrito from the food court Taco Bell.

There are two things wrong here, the first being why the hell did I eat the moo shoo pork before going out with my family? I knew we’d be hitting the food court, so why couldn’t my hungry ass wait 30 minutes until we drove our collective hungry asses to the mall? The second thing wrong is that I still ate a burrito after I’d essentially scarfed down dinner by myself at home. Granted, I did possess enough sense to order a Fresco burrito, but I wasn’t even hungry. So why did I feel like I had to eat?

Oh, and there IS a number three here. I capped off the evening with a coconut mocha smoothie, no whipped cream, thank you. I had a Groupon.

I haven’t eaten like that in a long time. I haven’t eaten that volume of food in one evening, nor have I stood in front of the fridge with the door open while shoveling food into my mouth in ages. That’s the kind of thing I did frequently when I weighed 350 pounds. I was like a Hobbit, eating second breakfasts and putting food before my own personal safety.

In my past attempts at losing weight, I’d slip like this and then decide to skip weigh-in because I didn’t want to face the consequences of my choices. This time was a little different in that I knew well in advance I’d have to skip my meeting and decided a week’s furlough was reason enough to unhinge my jaw and chow my way through the week.

Maybe I’m being a little hard on myself. I did still exercise and I really only took two days off plan, but I should not have let things go as far as they did considering I had a weekend ahead in which food choices would be even more challenging with the catered meals at Gleek Retreat.

And then there was a trip to a bar that involved a pomegranate martini and an appetizer of bacon-wrapped shrimp.

I wound up eating every single daily and weekly point on Saturday. Yesterday was a little easier since the conference concluded before noon, but I somehow still found myself with only six points to spend on dinner last night..

Try sticking to six points when your husband grills pork chops and garlic bread and makes a very delicious new potato salad.

Hint: I did not stick to six points.

So today I started off in the red. Thankfully I was wise enough to go to the gym and now have the teensiest bank of activity points at my disposal. My goal today is to not use them. We’ll see how that turns out.

Oh wait. I forgot about the roasted peanuts I ate before bed last night, so I guess I’m still in the red.

Damn.

I have to admit I’m not at all looking forward to stepping on the scale next Saturday. I have no idea how bad it will be, but I’m going to have to answer for the moo shoo pork, the martini and the bacon-wrapped shrimp.

Not to mention the chocolate cake.

And the Red Vine licorice.

And the many little chunks of Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip bars I broke off and ate throughout the week (thanks, Megan).

The thing that sucks the most is that whatever I gain will take twice as long to come off, so I guess I learned a very valuable lesson.

Get to a meeting no matter what.

Also, don’t order any more moo shoo pork.

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Ever since the physical therapist (a.k.a. Hot Yoda) gave me the go-ahead to get back on the elliptical last summer, I have managed to work out at least four days a week. My goal is five days a week, Sunday through Thursday with a two-day break for my knees before starting my five-day stint all over again.

I have to admit my motivation for exercise hasn’t been that altruistic. I realize exercise is necessary in order to be successful in weight loss, but I keep up with my 4-5 days a week on the elliptical because I get to eat more if I do.

I am a person who eats every single Weight Watchers point given to her. Every daily, every weekly and every activity point is consumed every week. My weight loss is progressing slowly because of this, which is fine by me, but I’m starting to realize that being able to eat more should not be the reason I head to the gym every morning.

At my current weight, a 45-minute elliptical workout nets me 13 activity points. I count every workout at high intensity and wear a heart rate monitor to make sure I’m staying within that high-intensity range. I’m probably cheating a little by counting the entire 45 minutes as a high-intensity workout since it usually takes five minutes to get my heart rate up to where I want it to be with the workout fizzling out after the last hill climb around minute 40.

I do love the elliptical, but lately I’ve been getting kind of bored with it. It’s been harder to wake up, get dressed and get my butt out the door, so much so that I’ve considered switching up my routine. But switch it up with what? There are plenty of other activities I could do, but none that could provide the low-impact, intense calorie burn my knees have come to appreciate. I could think of nothing short of running that could get me the same bang for my buck, and since I’m not ready to be a runner yet, I started wondering if I’ve been making exercise a priority for the wrong reasons.

That’s why this week I have decided to continue my regular routine without adding any activity points to my tracker. I am making this decision having already consumed 34 of my 49 weekly points (birthday cake, cookie dough, etc), but I figure if I can exercise without making activity points an issue, I should be able to open myself up to new activities that may not fill my bank with as much snacking currency.

Since making that decision, I can tell I’m already becoming more mindful of what I’m eating. Normally I wouldn’t think twice about taking a Lofthouse Iced Cookie from the potluck table since I have a few weeklies left and 39 activity points earned so far.

But if you take away those activity points, I only have 15 weeklies to see me through Friday. And Friday is pizza day.

So the cookie stayed on the table and I ate my mango instead.

It was a very good mango.

Aside from shifting my focus away from points, I’m also hoping this experiment helps me see a respectable loss at the scale next weekend. I keep saying I don’t care how long it takes me to lose this weight and I completely, honestly, truly mean that, but I only have 1.8 pounds to lose before I reach my 100-pound milestone and it will kick some serious ass to finally get there.

Completely, honestly and truly.

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