Time to take stock of how I did achieving all those lofty goals I set for myself back in January…Well, let’s see. I have accomplished one thing-cut the artificial sweetener from my morning coffee. Wow, that is sad. Oh, and I have been very good about always taking the stairs to my office.
Beyond that, my food journal lasted a whopping three weeks. And while I was eating somewhat better, I was still relying heavily on processed foods like frozen lean cuisines and kashi meals. I went in to the 5k terribly undertrained and came in at just about the same time I did last fall-except I wasn’t even pushing Squidgey this time. AND worst of all, I had to stop and walk about 10 yards because I was wheezing so hard I thought I was going to hyperventilate and pass out.
And then I celebrated with four beers and a ¼ inch thick fried baloney sandwich. True story.
That before picture I took would look identical to any “after” pix, I took today. Since there is no “after.” After what? After not being able to consistently sustain a healthy eating and exercise routine? Again. Some More. Ditto. Ad infinitum.
I’ve lost a handful of pounds simply by not eating all the time like a Survivor contestant at a reward challenge buffet, but I need to go beyond that in order to actually get rid of the flab encasing my thighs, hips and ass.
I got so desperate, that I decided to take a look at Alli; maybe that would be enough to jump start some pounds off and keep me on track. However, I got discouraged after reading the, shall we say, runny side effects. Even then, I thought maybe, the threat of pooping my pants would be just the motivation I needed to FINALLY stick with something and be able to resist temptations.
I shared this with my sister, and her response was, and I quote, “Just put down the donuts.” Because it is that easy. Because, that IS what I’m doing every day-eating copious amounts of donuts. When I thanked her for the compassionate response and pointed out that if it was that easy, no one would be fat, she replied, “Well?”
For people who struggle with weight, it’s not a matter of knowing what you should do, it’s a matter of actually doing it ALL THE TIME in the face of living in the real world with all the temptations and time constraints that entails. I feel like for every one time I do give in and have something “bad,” I have resisted temptation 5 other times. It seems like there is always some reason to splurge-either by eating something you shouldn’t or not working out-it’s a holiday, it’s a Cadbury egg and you can only get those at Easter, you have company, you’re going out with friends, etc.
For people who are prone to be slim (say, somebody who didn’t weigh over 100 pounds until she hit her 30s), weight only really piles on when they’re eating like they’re going to the chair and cutting back to reasonable portions most of the time is enough to take the weight off. For people with a different metabolism, it requires an ongoing precise focus on calories in/calories out-a level of intensity that is hard to maintain day in and day out unless it’s your only job to do so.
What especially pissed me off about Salsera’s response is that I’m heading out to visit her in a few weeks, and she has planned pretty much the entire trip around where we are going to eat-which includes the Melting Pot and Red Lobster. Let’s not kid ourselves, we are not going there for the steamed veggies and consommé. This is about cheesy fondue and cheddar biscuits. Which is fine, I’m complicit in that-I do enjoy the opportunity to go out and eat good food. I haven’t had a Red Lobster biscuit in at least 4 years and am practically drooling at the thought. I don’t want to be the party pooper who says, no, we can’t go there because I’ll be tempted to eat poorly. It’s a special occasion! I haven’t been to visit Salsera in years (oddly enough, that would be the last time I had one of those biscuits!). It’s my first trip away from Squidgey that’s purely for me to relax and enjoy myself.
The problem is that no matter how good I try (with varying degrees of success) to be in my day to day life, and not keep junk food on hand in the house, the events that create an opportunity for temptation are seemingly ongoing. A visit from parents-who like to cook and eat. A business trip to the east coast-who knows when I’ll get to have another lobster roll? A stressful and busy day where ordering pizza is just the best you can manage.
There is obviously a huge mental component to weight loss, and I think people who are finally successful have found that magic trigger that allows them to feel happier about NOT eating something than the short term gratification of a piece of chocolate melting on their tongue. And I am continually struggling to find that balance and that trigger.
But I guess the best I can do is continue the struggle and hope that maybe someday I’ll turn the corner and find it easier to maintain.
The weather being nicer has helped-I’m trying to alternate a run with Squidgey (which damn, that kid has gotten heavy since last fall) with the 30 Day Shred (and walk with Squidgey and dog on top of that). I’ve also placed my first order for a bi-monthly delivery of a farm fresh organic produce bin which will bring fruit and veggies to my door. I’m hoping that the availability, variety and freshness will make it easier to reach for a healthy snack rather than the brick of cheese.