Tag Archives: weight

How to Eat Less (At Least, What Worked for Me)

12 May

I used to have a magical metabolism.  I ate whatever I wanted, in whatever amount, all the time and was still thin.  I was never a heavy kid or teen.  And I got a little more hefty my first year of college when I was living off Domino’s Kickers and gummy worms, but only like 5 extra pounds.  I had this gift of a metabolism until I turned 34.  Then, things started catching up with me.  Suddenly, I had to pay attention to what foods I ate and how much.  And I did not like it.  It was different.  I had never, never had to pay attention before!  And it first, it was like I noticed it, but it didn’t really impact my weight.  But my clothes just fit different.  Then, clothes I’d worn since 6th grade, suddenly just didn’t fit.  Then my cute-stuff shorty-shorts didn’t fit the same.  Then, I suddenly couldn’t wear my jeans.  Abruptly, my weight shot up!  At an alarming rate, too.  Once the number budged, it just kept going up and up.  I was upset and heartbroken, yet I didn’t really want to stop eating like I had.  I love food!  So I tried to out-exercise it.  Instead of just the 1 mile per day, I added strength.  And crunches.  Those did help tone me, but did not fix my clothes situation.  And I was determined not to buy a whole new wardrobe!

So I knew I had to reign it in.  And it was a slow process, with a lot of embarrassingly loud stomach growls as I retrained my body.  Here are some hints that helped:

–>here is a key point:  -small daily** changes<– 

Seriously, don’t punish yourself.  Just like anything else, you have to work up to it.  Yes, hold yourself accountable.  Have goals.  But just go for one small change in habit every day.  Just one.  And when that gets slightly easier, challenge yourself a bit more.  Until you’re really getting somewhere.  Accountable and challenging, but don’t beat yourself up or too push too much, too fast.

-packing snacks in zip locks or tiny tupperware.  Because my appetite could have polished off a bag.

-Prioritize.  When I am trying to get my food under better control, I suddenly have to choose between foods instead of having them all.  Just do your favorites.  If you could take or leave donuts, don’t let yourself auto-grab a donut just because someone brought them to the meeting.  If you love pasta–fine.  But have smaller portions of light foods the rest of the day to counteract all those carbs.  Choose solid calories (vs drinks) because, let’s face it–it’s a waste to drink your calories and feel starving afterwards.  And remember, artificial sweeteners are 100x sweeter they so increase hunger.  Make what you eat count.

-Drinking more water.  And yes, at first this makes you feel even more hungry, but over time (like a span of months, so don’t give up) I think it really does help.

-Picking the right snacks.  Produce was like eating nothing at all.  I was starved out of my mind, hangry and cheatee.  But a handful of nuts, especially those flavored ones with wasabi or chipoltle were somewhat satisfying.

-Honestly, what really helped in those very early stages was adding a bit of soup broth to my water.  That salt (bad long term) really helped get my hunger back in check.  Just don’t over-do it, because soup is too salty for the heart and hydration status.

-Use smaller plates and tupperwares so you don’t SEE deprivation, and so you can clean your plate without overindulging.

-eat more fiber

-eat more protein

-I’m not good at eating my meals slower–ain’t nobody got time (or patience) for that, but I would pack a bag of Triscuits and just eat one every time my stomach growled at work.  So I’d work on a bag throughout the whole morning.  More power to you if you can stand to eat your meals slowly, chewing extra and all that.

-KEEP BUSY.  It’s all caps because it’s a big factor.  Don’t just sit there thinking about hunger, cheating, your next meal, or how you want to give up.  Focus on work.  Do extra chores.  Do anything to take your mind off of it.  Yes, it’s very preoccupying, especially in those first 2 months.  But keep busy, busy.

-Did you know belly fat stimulates hunger hormones?  Which doesn’t seem fair, since the problem just keeps perpetuating.  So doing that exercise is actually helping reduce the hunger too.

-When I’m fatigued and tired, I make shitty choices.  I grab the ice cream, skip the workout, then feel regretful.  So get your sleep!

I’m not gonna lie.  It takes a long time to reign it back in.  There will be times you’re super hungry, healthy meals that leave you totally unsatisfied, and some cheating.  But do stick with it in the long run.  I’m back in my jeans, back in my cute clothes.  And more than that I feel better, and have more energy than when I accidentally got fat.  It’s worth it, and as cliche’ as it is, YOU’RE worth it.

 

Intermittent Fasting

20 Feb

I love food.  But I want to fit into my pants so I’m trying it.

When I heard about intermittent fasting I was VERY skeptical.  My mom bought me a book.  I was still skeptical because the author only had a Bachelor’s I think.  But he name-dropped Marion Nestle and I have 3 of her books and trust her knowledge for the most part (I can’t get on to encouraging owners to make their own pet food).  So I hung in their and finished the book.

What I like about it is you don’t have to moderate your foods and portions and think about what you’re eating all the time.  And I like that you net less calories during a day even if you have say, Taco Bell.  I also like that fasting is giving the middle finger to big food corporations that are marketing abusively and hurting us ultimately for their own profit.

I was/am suspicious about hypoglycemia.  The author says the disorder is under diagnosed, overrated, and probably people who think they have it are actually just anxious about not eating.  Except, I had symptoms before I ever knew what blood sugar was, let alone hypoglycemia.  I wasn’t making shit up or having symptoms because of some anxiety.  I had and have some low blood sugar side effects.  But I tried to disprove it by looking up real research on Google Scholar, and everybody across the board was complementary of Intermittent fasting.  They even said it could be a cure for diabetes!  So I figured if people on insulin could fast without a problem so could I.

I tried it.  At first I wanted to get used to it so I just skipped breakfast and snacks every work day.  Which amounted to a 16 hr fast.  And it was kinda sucky.  I thought about food a lot.  Felt hunger a LOT–not just briefly either like the book promised.  And my stomach growled loudly, despite (always) drinking copious amounts of water.  I felt like I might get a headache and had a sort of lightheaded feeling.  Concentrating on work was difficult.  I felt like I looked pale, and I was definitely peked.

We started having a spoon of that super-food powder and on the 16 hour fasts, that does help take the edge off and fix the headachey/lightheaded feelings.  Not so much for the 24 hr fasts.  That headache is here to stay despite many asprins and boat loads of water.

Finally after 3 weeks (taking of weekends) of fasting for 16 hr every work day it wasn’t totally terrible.  So I thought I might try 24 hours.

I went dinner to dinner and got so hungry by noon that it was suffering until 5 Pm when it was time to break the fast.  I skipped our run, strength workout, and our creative intervals because I was so hungry.

The book said if one time doesn’t work, just shift the fast to a different time of day.  So even though my lunches are usually a smaller portion size, and less substantial foods than dinner I tried going lunch to lunch.  Oh and it made a big difference.  I still got hungry in the morning, but only for a few minutes at a time (vs. voracious and constant on the other).  So I have no idea what the difference is, but lunch to lunch is what my body prefers.

So after having finished 3 weeks of 16hr fasts per day and now 24 hr fasts twice a week for 2 weeks:  I don’t like how hard fasting is.  Nor do I like how I feel during a fast.  I do think I’m fitting into my clothes better and I like being able to eat the same as always at other meals and not upset my entire eating everything.  I also really like sticking it to the crooked food companies.  I do not think this way of eating will be a long term thing, and I don’t think I could sustain it over the long term.  Just because being hungry sucks.  But I will try–and hopefully with practice it will get easier.

There’s Some Glitch?

15 Oct

What is happening with WordPress right now?  I keep trying to write a new post,and it keeps freezing and making my cursor invisible, then I can do nothing on the page.  No other tab is acting up, it’s just this site.  I reloaded the page and it did the same thing.

Anyway, I took my big exam this morning.  I studied really hard for it, and felt like I knew everything we covered in class.  I knew my big probably would be reading the questions carefully, answering all the parts of each questions, and not accidently writing a wrong term or direction or some easy error.  The test felt very easy.  I think the prof tries to make different levels of questions:  Easy, intermediate, and advanced.  Except, I feel like the easy and intermediate ones are hand-fed to us.  So that whether you studied or not you could ascertain the answer from hints given, reading other test questions, or other tactics.  And then, the advanced questions are things she wants us to extrapoloate from information given in class–read things not explicitly taught.  So I go in to the test hoping to recall everything on the notes and in the readins, so I have some wiggle room on things I’ve never encountered in my life.  And the advanced questions are fine, but I think she needs to make the medium questions harder, because it’s not right that someone who didn’t study can get the same grade as me (who put a lot of effort into the class).   I guessed wrong on a 4 point(!) hydrocephaly (never mentioned) short answer.  I said meninges were the structure, when I should have guessed ventricles.  So it’s an automatic 93%.  And after all my studying (and an EASY test), I’m not super-happy with that. . .

On a slightly different topic–well, still the brain we got tickets to the snowboard swap.  It will be most practical buying snowboards and boots here, then using them in Salt Lake, Colorado, or Tahoe ie big, expensive, world-renowned snow-sport locations.  And I’m a big believer they need to increase helmet usage here, so I guess I’m putting together a group to talk about traumatic brain injury and the importance of helmets.  I’m not sure how I because the leader on it other then we’re going and I see a need and think it’s important.  But I suppose since I’m suggesting we go, I ought to volunteer some time too.  We’ll see how it goes–I e-mailed the people putting on the event as well as my classmates.  I don’t have high-hopes for a response.  But if anyone follows up, it will be a useful thing.

I started watching “Desperate Housewives” on Netflix, just while Cool is at work–we watch “Criminal Minds” but only together.  You see, I like to watch something when I eat.  Anyway, it’s kind of a soapy, kind of a drama/comedy.  What I already don’t like is the men on the show.  Total tool-bags!  Carlos thinks he owns Gabby, and is a total Momma’s boy, always taking her side over his wife.  The poor twins’ mom who is obviously overwhelmed, was made to give up her (more successful) career, is saddled with 99% of the household/kid responsibility, and her dope-husband does things like invite over company for a formal dinner without telling her, and with only 2 days notice.  Bri’s husband doesn’t appreciate anything she does for him, is always putting her down and griping, and is cheating.  I’m not impressed with how the writers have the women treated on this show.  Like they just have to put up with all this crap, and it’s normal.  I say these capable, beautiful, smart women could do a lot better then these jerks!  Plus, I’m never a big fan of obvious eating disorders for a whole cast–when they are role models for women.

I got a flu shot last Thursday.  Which I never have before, and have always railed against.  I NEVER get the flu.  If I get sick at all (which I haven’t since 2008) I get a head-cold.  Anyway, because I’m in closed-air, close quarters with so many people, and tons of kids–cleaning, at ground zero–I decided to this year.  My school did them for free last Thursday.  The site was a little tender that night, but I used it–to sort of work it through.  By that night, it felt just fine.  And I thought I did too.  Friday I was tired.  Saturday I felt crummy.  Like muscle soreness, but deep, deep inside.  And it was exhausting to even walk to the kitchen.  I couldn’t have stood on my feet all afternoon/night, let alone complete vigorous locker room cleaning–I had to call in sick to work!  Which also rarely happens.  Maybe I had a vaccine reaction?  Because I’m so new, I don’t have any sick time accrued, but my boss let me “trade.”  So I have to make up 8 hours sometime.  Being a worrier, I want to get that done sooner, rather then later, so I’m working tonight.  I already have to go for a child abuse prevention training, so I figure I might as well.  Besides, there’s never a better time then after an exam and before we get new material.  Those are my free-est, most stress-free times.  But it does mean I will have to be at work (until midnight) 4 days in a row, which as a morning person just might kill me.

If I’m alive I’ll write after the streak is over.

Suspicions Confirmed

26 Jun

A higher percentage of lesbians smoke and are overweight than straight women.  I think this, because it’s what I’ve rainbow 1encountered personally.  It’s what I’ve seen at the gay bars, at Pride, in LGBT organizations, in my friend and dating life, on the streets, on television, in movies, and per what I read about famous lesbians.  Now, research backs up my theory.

rainbow 4And it makes sense because marginalized populations are more susceptible to vices.  Anyone who faces discrimination must have a bit of self-hate to overcome.  Plus, if you’re already stigmatized for being gay, what’s the difference if you smoke as well?  Also, the gays have a larger disposable income.  And so they are targeted by advertisers.  And they have more time without kids.  And gays generally want to be around like-people (we all do) so where do you hang out?  Well, at gay bars–where smoking is commonplace.

And the weight issue?  Well, as a feminist, I do not prescribe to the strict beauty standard set by the patriarchy.  And I would guess most lesbians don’t either.  And without that constant pressure, we look–well, more portly as a group.  My guess is rainbow 8that lesbians take more stalk in a personality than physical attributes.    Also, I think a little self-esteem and boundary issues play a part.  Maybe lesbians let themselves go a little.  To prove they don’t need to please men?  To protect themselves with a physical layer of insulation?

Anyway, here are the facts from other sources that back up my claims:

-A new study from Community Marketing, Inc. provides insights about how gay men and lesbians spend their money and live their lives.  Gay men (27 percent) and lesbians (23 percent) smoke cigarettes at higher rates than the national averages for adult men (22 percent) and women (17 percent) (3).  Among rainbow 7homosexuals: 37% of women smoke; 33% of men smoke.  Among heterosexuals: 18% of women smoke; 24% of men smoke (4).

-Researchers say that lesbian women are more likely to smoke, drink and to be overweight, putting them at greater risk of health problems than other women, HealthScout reported April 17 (2).

-Roughly 56 percent of lesbians are current or former smokers, compared to 36 percent of straight women, and gay women are slightly more likely than other women to drink alcohol. Furthermore, about 28 percent of lesbians are obese, compared to 19 percent of heterosexual women (2).

-In all, 11,876 women were involved in the study. Eighty-seven percent of the women surveyed were self-defined lesbians, butterfly glitter rainbowwhile 12% considered themselves bisexual. (The researchers used the term “lesbian” to collectively refer to both groups.) (5).

-Nearly three in 10 lesbians surveyed were obese, compared with about one in five women overall; nevertheless, lesbians were less likely than average to consider themselves overweight (44% vs. 56%). Although there was no significant difference in current alcohol use between lesbians and women overall, the same was not true for problem drinking. More than 12% of lesbians reported having a history of problems with alcohol, a rate far higher than the 4% standardized estimate of women nationally who reported having five or more drinks almost every day. Lesbians were also more likely than average to rainbow 2currently use tobacco (21% vs. 16%) or to have used tobacco in the past (34% vs. 20%) (5).

-A comparison of these data with standardized estimates for all U.S. women suggests that lesbians and bisexual women are significantly more likely to be obese, smoke cigarettes and abuse alcohol (all known cancer risk factors). Furthermore, they are significantly less likely than average to have ever used oral contraceptives and to have ever been pregnant or given birth to a live infant (all shown to be protective against ovarian and endometrial cancer). Lesbians and bisexual women are also less likely than American women overall to have health insurance and to undergo cancer screenings (5).

These figures come from researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Published in the August issue of rainbow 9Tobacco Control, they’re based on a review of 42 studies about tobacco use among sexual minorities.

-The massive study was led by Elisabeth P. Gruskin, a public health researcher with Kaiser Permanente, and supported by the California Department of Public Health. Between July, 2003 and March, 2004 it dialed 187,000 telephone numbers in California, screened 31,000 households for eligibility, and completed nearly 3,000 survey interviews with adults, comparing those with the results of rainbow 5existing surveys of all Californians (1).

-Partly due to the tobacco industry’s relentless campaign to target gay men and women through bar promotions, sponsorships, andadvertisements in the queer press, LGBT adults and youth have roughly 40%-70% higher smoking rates than the general population; and bartenders and cocktail servers in LGBT oriented nightclubs are disproportionately exposed to secondhand smoke (7).

-According to the summary of an earlier report from the CDC, published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine in 2001:  Estimated smoking rates for lesbians, gays, and bisexuals ranged from 38% to 59% among youth and from 11% to rainbow tiny 150% among adults. National smoking rates during comparable periods ranged from 28% to 35% for adolescents and were approximately 28% for adults (4).

-I’ve just learned from NPR’s All Things Considered that in California, gay men and lesbians are 70 percent more likely to smoke than the general population (4).

-The 898 women participating in the survey divided fairly evenly: lesbian 34.2 percent, bisexual 29.3 percent, and women who have sex with women (WSW) 36.5 percent. The 1052 men showed stark division, with 85.4 percent identifying as gay, 7 percent as bisexual, and 7.6 percent as men who have sex with men (MSM). This gender rainbow fractaldichotomy reflects what seems to be a real difference in the way men and women experience sexual orientation (1).

-gay culture may be more accepting of lifestyle choices. Lesbians may also be less concerned about smoking and drinking because they’re less likely to have children, and more tolerant of weight (2).

-Tobacco companies also advertise heavily in gay magazines. . .  smoking is common in gay bars — often the center of lesbian social life (2).

-Likely explanations include the success of tobacco industry’s targeted marketing to gays and lesbians, as well as time spentlights in smoky social venues and stress from discrimination.” (4).

-As a matter of fact, childless households (whether gay or straight) spend, on average, 56 percent more on cigarettes and alcohol than their childbearing neighbors. (Among households where the parents have some education, the discrepancy is my x-mas 14even larger.) Nor is there anything mysterious about why. First, parents have extra reasons to live long and stay healthy, both so they can be there when their kids need them and so they can enjoy the company of their grandchildren. Second, parents have extra expenses—starting with diapers and continuing through college tuition—that leave less disposable income for cigarettes. Third, a lot of parents don’t like the idea of smoking in front of their children (6).

-Among the general population, 68 percent of women had never smoked, while in the study population those numbers were 43 percent of lesbians, 51.3 percent of bisexual women, and 21.5 percent of WSW.  Gay men were more likely to smoke than the general population (27.3 percent vs. 19.7 percent), while the smoking rates for bisexual and MSM did not differ significantly from the general population (1).sparkle-stripe

-When data from the males and females were combined, the study participants were much more likely to be heavy daily smokers than the general population (G/L 22.2 percent, bisexual 22.6 percent, same-sex partners 29.7 percent) (1).

-People 18 to 24 are more likely to smoke than those who are older (24 percent vs. 20 percent), but they are highly motivated to quit (1).

1.)  http://www.pridesource.com/article.html?article=25854

2.)  http://www.drugfree.org/join-together/drugs/lesbians-more-likely-to-smoke

3.)  http://thinkprogress.org/lgbt/2012/08/03/636731/new-survey-provides-unique-insights-into-gay-and-lesbian-consumer-habits/?mobile=nc

4.)  http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/booster_shots/2009/07/gays-lesbians-smoking-study-.html

5.)  http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/journals/3318301.html

6.)  http://www.slate.com/articles/arts/everyday_economics/2003/08/why_do_gays_smoke_so_much.html

7.)  http://www.no-smoke.org/learnmore.php?id=461

Eat a Sandwich

26 Apr

In the morning, my coworker brought (unexpected) cookies to share. When I drove past the marquee the temperature was displayed both times. I couldn’t find a belt to match my pants, and I’ve been watching a lot of Queer Eye for the Straight Guy lately, so I took a fashion risk and turned my belt inside out. Turns out, this belt (which I’ve had for the last 12 years, and is one of my wardrobe staples) is legit reversible. And I didn’t even know! Feeling sassy and on top of the world I had Cool take my picture.

eat a sandwich

Cool then tagged this picture on Facebook. It’s one of the only pictures where I’m not smiling with my teeth and my face actually looks good.  Usually my straight teeth and $10,000+ smile are the feature of note in any picture.  And I guess it should be after a billion years of braces and retainers, and Invialign.  But this picture was different–I exuded confidence and had a soft of flirty/feisty look on my face.  And some dude on Cool’s friends list (that I do not know, and have never talked to) was first to comment.

“Eat a sandwich.” he said.

I was stunned. I have never in my life heard such a thing. Especially not directed toward ME. I’ve BLAT mimosa and BBB wafflebeen petite all my life, but I never, never got teased or criticized for it. I immediately felt defensive. I wanted to tell him, tell everyone that was reading Cool’s wall and my wall, that the very day of that picture I had eaten a cookie at work at 7 in the morning. Had a large plate full of decked out nachos (we’re talking liberal amounts of lime chips, extra cheese, re-fried beans, black beans, jalapeno peppers, and huge dollops of sour cream) and a 2 alarm jalapeno cheese burger for lunch.

Then, I looked at Lose-It, where I input my daily calories in and out. The Easter 024last month my most common item was water [yay me! and how’d that happen?] 2nd was coffee. And third? Cheese. I ate cheddar cheese 16 times in the last 4 weeks. That’s 911 calories of just cheese. 4th? Cadbury eggs. Those come in at 4,200 literal calories in a 4 week span of time. Not my proudest health moment.

As I was looking up this information, it made me think how this douche, um dude obviously doesn’t know me at all. I LOVE food, eat it in vast, unhealthy quantities, and only exercise when weather and time-management are both optimal–if I’m not feeling too lazy that day. hamburgerAnd that’s probably why I’ve never had anyone give my criticism for having a thin build–because anyone who knows me even a little, knows I eat like crap and am generally lazy.

I became angry that some man felt he had the right to make any judgement about my body–my natural structure that I cannot help. He was making a harsh judgement that if confronted, I’m sure he would play off as a joke. Why does he feel he has the right?  I’m gifted with a good metabolism.  But that’s none of his business.  I don’t have to explain myself to him or anyone else.  In between seasons 026And this negative, uninvited comment was like me telling a stranger to go eat a salad. Or get gastric bypass. It’s not appropriate. And if it’s meant as a joke–not funny.

And so I debated telling him his words were unsolicited and inappropriate  But I’m sure he (and maybe others) would just tell me to lighten up. And I do not want to hear that, or argue extensively about it on Facebook, because I know this is not MY problem. And this is not really about weight or food either.  This is another form of patriarchy.  This is some man thinking he can take my power away by criticizing my body. Because society tells him that it is his right to make snap judgments about any female form.  Julyamsh 2012 003And I don’t want anyone thinking they have the right.

But I really am trying to live my (fast approaching 30) life with an “arguing with a fool makes two” mentality. And I think no response at all might be just as powerful–I will not let this stranger know he stole some of the thunder out of my good day and knocked my confidence for a loop. I will keep on dressing as I see fit, eating and exercising for ME and no one else, and have a good day no matter what anyone else thinks.  Then I will eat a sandwich.  A fluffenutter, not because some guy deems my body too thin, but because I want to.

 

Back to Fitness

22 Dec

I gained 2 inches on my hip measurements. I’m not certain how. Like everyone I have my trouble spots.  And I could weigh 50 pounds and still have love handles and saddle-bags.  That’s just my body.  But still it hurts to lose my buff-tastic self SO quickly after all my awesome running of the summer.  It’s just that studying makes me more sedentary.  And the weather doesn’t help.  And having to work when I’m not studying/in class/sleeping.  I’m tired when I DO get any free time.  And free-time means guilt.  You can never study too much.  And you can’t ever go into work and clean too much–for money.

back to this

So it’s mission get back into control.  The whole thing is mental strength.  I just have to remember that a little exercise in my day and not eating garbage isn’t that difficult and it isn’t that time-consuming.  There is no reason to feel overwhelmed.

The FOOD:
Beer is out.

Sugar–severely reduced.

I need to make sure and eat before I feel super-hungry.  This is key for me as I have a tendancy to grab the easiest, garbage and stuff too much of it in my face when I’m already hungry.

I need to have good choices readily available when I’m really hungry.  This means planning ahead and shopping at the Grocery Outlet at LEAST every other week.  And if it’s still impossible–I just need to cook ahead and make sure good options are grab-able.

Water is IN.

Portion sizes will be reasonable.

Produce is as in as finances will allow.  This:  An unrealistic dream.  Maybe some canned jalapenos and some red peppers can be snuck in.

Don’t keep junk food in the house–b/c I have no self control and eat it all in the same day.

Smaller lunch time portions.

The EXERCISE:

Wii hoola hoop 4/7 days for that crunchless 6 pack.

Walk further (faster) in between classes.

Maybe (this is a tall order during a semester) do 30 minutes of Wii Fit at least 4x a week.  Maybe not–that’s not all that realistic of a goal during school. . .

And the progress in November?  Well, I HAVE  increased my walking distance between classes–which means my speed, too.  Since I have the same amount of time before my next class.  And I have managed to do at least 3 minutes of Wii hoola-hoop each day–though today I feel too French Foodtired/lazy/icky to do it.  But I will try to make myself.  But the food?  Modifying my crummy diet in ANY way?  It is not going well.  You see, I usually just eat what I want whenever I’m hungry.  And for the past 3 days I have been trying to be mindful about WHAT I eat.  So instead of my normal burger with english muffin and Miracle Whip for lunch, I had just the patty with some hot sauce.  And as a result I felt so starving that I couldn’t concentrate on my flashcards.  Then I polished off the cookie dough/brownie/oreo dessert that was in the fridge.  Then I really regretted THAT because I felt all tired and lazy and like my blood sugar was all effed and like my teeth would rot out.  And that’s one example of what has been happening pretty much all week.

Walking about-July 2012 009My progress in December?  Nil.  This became a distant memory as finals, projects, and work took over my life.  But hey, it’s the holidays and everyone gains weight, right?  Back on track after Christmas!

Also, I’m not sure if it was just bad timing, because I wrote this:  So I think I’m going to leave my food alone.  I end up doing a lot WORSE when I think about what I’m eating.  I suppose my body is already pretty good about telling me when I’m hungry and how much food makes me full.  I can’t mess with that.  With the afore-mentioned business and outside factors (yummy food-gifts constantly available at work!), or if I don’t do well moderating my food.  I’ll give it another shot now that I have more of a true winter break.

I can do this.

Protected: A Few (more) Things That Bother Me

12 Aug

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Patriarchy Loves a Diet

21 Jul

These are stats from a documentary I watched about the obesity epidemic–that I can no longer remember the title of–sue me.

As a nation, we spend 137 billion on fast food and 60 billion on weight loss products.

Health care costs 147 billion in America.

39 million missed work days.

Whoa.

As I’ve said before–it’s all about calories consumed vs. calories expended.  There is nothing complicated about that.  Half the battle is just knowing where your calorie count is throughout the day, so you can make informed choices.  The other half of the battle–is finding the will-power to execute the CORRECT choices.

As a disclaimer, I have to tell you I have never dieted.  Not a true– trying to lose weight, limit food or only eat certain things, and ramp up the exercise to lose X amount of pounds–diet at any rate.  I think that is just a big money-maker.  Women, especially, are made to feel bad about their body (through media and culture), then presented with some pseudo-science so they can “fix” themselves.  The diets are complicated, rigorous (to keep women busy focusing inward instead of on important world matters), and impractical for long term.  Meaning, women will be forced to try diet trend after diet trend in an attempt to “fix” their body.

Showing people losing or maintaining weight is a simple process is not in the best interests of business or patriarchy.  That’s why it is usually presented as such a huge, work (and money)-intensive undertaking.  If women knew they just had to balance calories in/calories out–which is a cheap, lifelong, simple process, a whole lot of companies lose money.  Besides, I think it’s unhealthy to cut out entire food groups.  Not to mention high maintenance.  Which gets us back to what women spend their time doing.  Patriarchy would rather women are jumping on the latest diet bandwagon, spending loads of cash in order to get thin, and preoccupied with their bodies–it dis-empowers them.

No–no way.  I couldn’t last one day on a typical diet.  I love food.  It may be my favorite thing in the world, even.  And I do not believe in such things as dieting for feminist reasons, and because I think women are too focused on weight.  BUT just as good body image is important, so is good health–and the above stats show this country has a deficit in that.  Here are some tips (as tried by me, a naturally thin, and newly RE-fit person) that will save you calories (and as a bonus, money):

-Always have a healthy snack (wheat thins, dried fruit, a granola bar) in the car.  If you get hungry on the road or tempted by greasy fast food–pop some of your healthy option to take away the hunger pangs and re-direct your mind.  This is especially true for road trips.  Pack a cooler at home, or go to the grocery store before leaving.  You’ll reach the destination faster too, b/c you can just grab a smarter choice snack from the back seat instead of stopping at limited choices with bad food.

-Try never to eat fast food.  I can’t remember the last time I’ve eaten at Mickey D’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, or Carl’s Jr.  Not because I TRY not to go there, or am ethically opposed (I am, but since when does that stop me?) but because I genuinely do not care for the food OR I like just other places better.  There is nothing good about FAST food.  If you MUST eat out–upgrade to bar & grill fare or better.  It’s still not great, but higher quality.

-At restaurants–stick with the appetizers (only!)and share them with your dining companion.  Salads are expensive (sometimes MORE calorie-laden then other choices) and leave me hungry so I make poor choices later.

-I never, never, never have the will-power to control my portions.  At home, use small plates, or load up the plate with produce before squeezing the entree on.  At restaurants ask that they box half of your (giant, over-sized) portion up before even bringing the food to the table.  This ensures you will eat ONLY half–and that you have left-overs that are a full meal.

-Instead of eating ice cream, cake, pies, cookies, and other high-cal foods for dessert–stick fruit in the freezer.  It’s a really yummy treat, plus since it’s frozen it will force you to eat slower and your stomach is more likely to register when it is full.  I’m a dessert person from way back, but frozen grapes, mangos, or bananas are adequate to super-yummy in the evening.

-Watch out for those empty calories!  Attempt to eat foods that will make you full over time instead of drinking your calories, eating salty stuff that leaves you hungry in an hour, or gobbling down a bag of junk.

-Water is boring, but obviously necessary.  To help you WANT to drink it, freeze juice, lemon juice, or those Popsicles that come in the liquid tubes in the ice cube tray.  Plunk a flavor cube in the water for more taste.

-On days you know you will eat too much, go on a run, hike, or exercise vigorously to counter that.  And eat less the next day.

Those are really the only tricks I sometimes remember to use.  I’m blessed with the metabolism of a hummingbird, luckily.  Which I fully realize is a fleeting gift, so I need to try to establish healthy habits for when it expires.  For those that have less stellar metabolisms, and for everyone who wants to improve their health, give my tips a try.

Cooking Replication

9 Jul

I am going to try to make two of my favorite restaurant pizzas in an attempt to save money.

Flying Goat’s D Street Pizza:

Yellow Coconut Curry, chicken, potato, jalapeno, carrot, house cheese blend, cilantro, siracha, and lime juice

shopping list:  Boboli pizza crust, Starport Coconut Curry Sauce, 13.5 oz unsweetened coconut milk, 2 TBL thai fish sauce, (we have 2 TBL brown sugar), boneless skinless chicken breast, Del Monte canned diced potatoes, jalapenos, 1 actual carrot (grate at home), McCormick cilantro (spice), hot chili sauce, 1.5 tsp lime juice

Procedure:

Cook frozen chicken on Forman, let cool, slice super-small.

Put 2 TBL veg. oil in saucepan, add curry and stir.

Add the coconut milk, fish sauce, brown sugar, and lime juice.

Increase heat to med and bring to a simmer.

Add chicken and cook for about 2 more min.

Increase heat to med-high and boil sauce until it is reduced to about 2/3 C.

Arrange sauce + chicken and cheese over crust and bake.

Put everything else on post-bake.

Zeke’s Dragon, which we already modified and called The Dragonfly.

Italian sausage, pepperoni, fresh jalapeños, fresh garlic and fresh oregano layered over mozzarella and fresh tomato sauce

We added:

feta cheese, bacon, red peppers

Shopping List:  Boboli pizza crust, can of pizza sauce, turkey pepperoni, Italian sausage, jar of jalapenos, shredded mozzarella cheese, feta cheese, a red pepper, (we have oregano).

Procedure:

Slice sausage, cook with some red peppers and jalapeno juice in skillet.

Coat EVOO on crust and spread pizza sauce on crust.

Top pizza with pepperonis and sausage.  Top with both cheeses.  Add red pepper and jalapenos.

Bake.

What a Problem to Have

3 Jul

I want to show off my bikini body–while I have it.  Since I’ve been running, my body has gotten really lean and muscled.  I fully realize with my (mostly terrible) eating/drinking habits and Washington’s weather, this nice body is completely temporary.  Come fall semester (fall brews) I’ll be back to my (physically) lazy ways, and become pale and chubby(er) again.

As such, I am desperate to get some pool pics–just to prove in the future that once I was hot.  Don’t tell me you don’t know what I’m saying here.  As an example–what bride HASN’T gone on a major diet before the big day?  Who hasn’t shown their kids HS photos of their buffer, younger bod?  Anyhow, as common as it is to do–this whole thing makes me come off so superficial and boisterous.  Which is definitely NOT me.  I am just thrilled that my hard work (running and watching calorie intake) is paying off, that’s all.

Problems with this seemingly simple plan:

The weather.  Sure the whole country is complaining of a heat wave.  It did not make it here.  The mornings are chilly.  It’s constantly cloudy.  Even when it does get warm, there is a cold, gusty wind.  And there has been rain and 50-60 degree weather far more then sunshine and 80+ temperatures.

The bathing suit.  All of mine have been. . .  Seen.  In this world of Facebook photo-ops, I have managed to post all my best bathing suits already.  And I do not want the world to think I just have *gasp* just one or two swimming suits.  It’s bad enough that every picture of me seems to be in my Lucky jeans–just because they are so versatile, not because they’re the only ones I own or wear.  As an extention of this problem, the stores have picked-over, expensive seperates in July.  It has not been easy finding anything cute, matching, or afforadable.  How is such a small piece of material $40 and up?  THEY are making a huge profit on that.  It’s like those restaurants that offer a cookie/brownie with a scoop of vanilla as their feature dessert.  [Who orders those, anyway?  Stupid!] Very little cost to make–huge mark-up.

Lastly, I broke down and went to the mall (I hate, hate, HATE shopping) only to find that I am too modest for most all swimsuit cuts in ANY store.  I’m serious–the custest fabrics are made of strings.  I found an adorable fish-bone decorated top, but even standing in Pac-Sun’s dressing room I was uncomfortable and tugging on it.  The pattern = cute, but like any strapless top, shifting = decidedly UN-attractive.  The only bathing suit top I liked the whole time?  These cute, patterned halter tops with criss-cross back at Macy’s.  And guess what?  Those were plus-sized.  Sigh. . .

A side-note to my “problems” how do women shop???  I was horrified and appalled at most of the styles in every store geared toward every age.  I was waaaaay too modest for swim-wear, skirts, shorts, and even the pants.  And size isn’t an issue for me.  I can fit in the sizes, but strings, super-short, really revealing, skin-tight?  Nope, nuh-uh.  And I’m not certain who these clothes are even designed for.  Maybe 10% of the population actually looks good (comfort notwithstanding) in super-skin tight day-glow “jeans” or cheek-bearing shorty-shorts, or a string bikini.  Why waste so much money designing for models and ballerinas?  It has everything to do with patriarchy:  Make women feel fat and ugly to keep them from even wanting to do anything meaningful, and keep them so uncomfortable in their wardrobe that even if they want to take some sort of action in the world, they couldn’t possibly MOVE to do so.  I couldn’t bring myself to support that industry–or devaluation of women.

Anyway, that’s my dilemma.  And I fully realize you readers are spitting on me for having such luck to have a problem like that.  So I’m not sure of my “get the buff-bod seen” plan.  Maybe I’ll just buy some match-E-match sweats from the Victoria’s Secret Semi Annual Sale and call it good.  As a bonus–I could really USE those.  And  they provide coverage, and I can move in them without my stuff hanging out.  I’ll remember the 6 pack abs, lack of love-handles (almost), and beefed up calves.