Slowly But Surely


Well, this was a less than stellar weight loss week…

I’ve been really religious about certain things since spring and it’s amazing how a little leniency for only a few days can completely sabotage your weight loss.

Traveling…ugh. Makes me even more stressed about Thanksgiving since I know I’ll be stuffing my face will all the gluten-free goodness I can get my hands on.  I tend to get flustered when I’m outside my normal element…i.e. when I’m not at home.

Nonetheless…here are this week’s successes and failures…

The Oops Side…

1)   I Drank My Damn Calories – For the last 6 months or so, I’ve been incredibly religious about not drinking my calories. I am TERRIBLE about downing 4 gallons of liquid at any given meal. Waiters hate me…HATE me. No sooner than they’ve refilled my glass and I’ve inhaled what was in it. I’m not sure if it was the carbonation that was making me feel like crap or the sheer amount I was sipping, but I decided to only drink water or unsweetened tea months ago and I think just this alone has made a world of difference in my weight and how I’m feeling. (I absolutely swore off diet drinks anyway because I’m super afraid of what aspartame does and that definitely wasn’t an option.) I seriously think I’ve been saving myself 3000 calories a meal. And even if it was only one Coke…it was one restaurant sized Coke which is the equivalent of about 4.5 cans of Coke and frankly, I’d much rather be able to eat those French fry calories than drink ‘em.

But this week…we were home. And the Carolinas means one thing…Cherry Lemon Sundrop. My kryptonite. I was introduced to it in college and I’ve been hooked ever since.  We bought a case and I’ve been downing them ever since.  If you’ve never tried the stuff, you’re seriously missing out. With that sweet cherry-citrusy goodness also came some calories I’d like to return.

2)   Sweet Tooth – With Halloween having been a few weeks ago, we still have candy left over. We bought a bag but had no costumed munchkins at the door so it’s left for us to consume. I’m guessing it was either the M&M’s or the pound of pralines I bought in Charleston. OMG…Pralines. I think I just got cold chills typing that. I truly think that eating a straight tablespoon of Crisco is better for you than a praline but who cares. They are so freaking delicious. In my book, people that don’t like Pralines are in the same category as people that don’t like babies or puppies. How can you not like butter and sugar and pecans melted together in a glorious heap? Well…apparently the scale didn’t like them…Heathen.

3)   On The Road Again – Being in the car for what felt like days at a time meant that cooking my own meals wasn’t really an option. So while traveling up or down some boring stretch of highway I was left with the only truly safe gluten-free options I knew of…Chick-Fil-A and uh, yeah that’s all. (Unless you count grabbing a bag of chips at a gas station.) Convenient, car worthy food is unfortunately not the healthiest. Maybe it was the 4 packets of Chick-Fil-A sauce? Best sauce EVER. (Damn sauce and its calories…ugh! I’m such a saucy girl. Ok…not saucy like that…dippin’ saucy girl.)

4)   Pre-meal – Allen and I have gotten a lot better….strike that. Hannah has gotten a lot better about not feeling like I HAVE to have an appetizer before every meal. I’m often so hungry that I feel like I might implode before the food can get there so almost always insist on some type of pre-meal snack since we can’t indulge in the bread and butter. (Side note…why do waitresses always look so offended when you say “No Bread!”?)

Cutting back on the appetizers has not only cut the calories, but the cost too. I mean seriously…what is the profit on spinach dip if it’s sold at a restaurant for $9.00?!

This past weekend however, I think we appetizered at every meal….except breakfast. Between the chips and spring rolls and pimento cheese with Bugles (you have to try it! Bugles are the unsung hero of the dip world), I over-indulged a bit. (Just to clarify…we did not have all of those things at one meal.)

But aside from a few hiccups…the week was not without a number of successes.

The Ohhh Yeah List…

1)   These Boots Were Made For Walking – Went to buy new boots today and was able to fit into non-elasticy, non-extended width boots. Yay!!! This should make my shoe fetish a bit more expensive. 🙂  I’ve had a tough time the last few years finding some that were wide enough and didn’t feel like a calf tourniquet. Three cheers for cute shoes!!

2)   Little Black Dress – At the beginning of all of this, there was a dress in my closet (I actually think it belonged to my sister in HS) that was my goal to fit in. Very late 90’s looking. Strapless. Stupid slits and the most horrid material. I never planned on wearing it out anywhere, but always set a goal that I wanted to be able to fit in that dress. I was probably close to 200 lbs when I was actually able to fit the dress for the Get In The Black Dress Mission over my hips. Zipping was out of the question. There was a good 4-5 inches before that thing was coming close to closed.

Well…I forgot about that dress. And for some reason, a few weeks ago, the thought of that dress randomly popped in my mind and I ventured to try it on. Well…goal dress is now what we would call too big. Hah! Fancy that…I am ripping the seams before and now it’s loose. Hashtag Awesome!

3)   Closet Clean Up – I finally got rid of all of my bigger girl clothes. There were a number of pieces that I held on to. Not sure why…not sure if it was to give myself a psychological pass to gain weight again. Not sure if it was my cheapo brain that didn’t want to throw anything away that I’d paid for.  I would wear a few things every once in a while thinking I was getting away with a slightly looser shirt or pair of pants. Not so much. I looked like a hobo, which I decided is not an appropriate look for job interviews. So…to prevent frumpy in the future, all clothing that is not my current size is now in the hands of Goodwill. Organization and a tax write off!

4)   Photo Op – We took a trip to NC for a fantastic photo session. It’s the first time my sisters and I have been together since my sister’s wedding. Not only was the session a million times less daunting because I wasn’t as stressed about how many chins were showing, but I got to see my amazingly adorable niece and that was worth every minute in the car!

5)   And last but not least…The Scale – I’m in the 150’s for the first time…ummm ever?! I think I was born weighing 160. This also means that my BMI has dropped from a 42.6 to a 27.3…craziness!


Hoping for less ‘oopsies’ next week and a better loss result. I’ve got my sights set on that 100-pound mark!

“I don’t measure a man’s success by how high he climbs but how high he bounces when he hits bottom.” ~ George S. Patton

It’s Opposite Day – And I Lost Weight!

I’m sick and tired of all this weight-loss mumbo-jumbo. I come on here every week and write something silly or pen something sappy, and you come waste your time skimming over whatever hodgepodge gobbledygook I happen to push out.

Happy Opposite Day!

I take my Opposite Day seriously and think I’ll head to the weight-loss blogosphere today and pass on some really horrible advice.

So in the spirit of completely phoning a post in, here are some tips to make sure your next weigh-in doesn’t drop you too, too much…

  • You don’t have to workout on days that end in “y”.
  • Dog paddling can burn up to 10 calories an hour; dog paddling in water will burn even more.
  • Driving by a YMCA earns you three activity points
  • That tuna salad could use a little more mayonnaise
  • Wearing sweatpants in public isn’t always perceived as a sign of giving up
  • Low energy can cramp your style… and nothing provides a quicker energy boost than Twix bars dipped into a can of vanilla frosting.
  • Most Mexican restaurants will keep bringing you baskets of chips if you ask.
  • Most scales are generally five pounds “off,” so be sure and take that into account before registering your numbers
  • If you go to one of those fancy gyms with the treadmills with the TV sets built right in and you just stand there and watch the Soap Opera Channel for an hour… hey, that still counts.
  • Eat smaller meals throughout the day… roughly every 20 minutes.
  • If you have a good weight-loss week, you deserve to blow it out over the weekend.
  • If you’re looking for a substitute for butter on your toast in the morning, why not try fudge?
  • Staying up all night farting around on the internet is just as good as sleeping eight hours.
  • People will tell you that eating too many carbs is bad for you, which is why I encourage you to quit listening to people so much.
  • If you wear a wide belt, nobody will notice that you have your pants unbuttoned.
  • A glass of half-and-half has a tremendous amount of calcium.
  • If nobody sees you eat it, it doesn’t count against you.
  • Make it your goal to be more like Jillian; that is, be a total bitch to everyone around you.
  • You know what’s a good appetite suppressant? Belgian waffles and syrup! I don’t know why it works, but it does!

Why such a sarcastic mood this week?…well…1) my vacation is over…2) look at the freaking results of a ‘week off’:

Ugh!!! Apparently the peanut M&M’s didn’t help…or the alcohol….or the 90 pounds of shrimp I ate a day…or the butter that said shrimp were dipped in.  But…nonetheless, it was vacation after all. Not that being on vacation gives me an ‘official’ excuse…but telling myself that it’s all ok is making me not beat myself up quite so badly.

I am motivated to get back on track though…especially after I had a reminder of what I could look like this past weekend…

Anyone that has ever been overweight will tell you, having a friend that is your same size makes a huge difference from a confidence standpoint.  I used to have that friend….

Aside from the fact that she was significantly more “chestily” endowed than I was (which I always hated her for) we were very similarly built. People always thought we were related…some even questioned whether or not we were twins. We shared clothes; we shopped in the same stores. I won’t call her my fat friend, because neither of us was necessarily fat, but we weren’t skinny either.

We spent many summers at the beach together…I didn’t care what I looked like because I knew she wasn’t judging me and vice versa.  I didn’t worry what she was thinking if I ordered French fries, and she knew I’d never criticize her for ordering the same.  We both had a penchant for The Biscuit Factory and could both destroy a plate of Japanese food and a cup of white sauce.

But it wasn’t all about the food. I felt comfortable around her. I felt safe around her. I didn’t feel self-conscious…Well…That’s how I used to feel.

Fast forward 10 years and my previous not-fat-but-not-skinny friend is now extremely thin. Like size 2 thin. And she looks AMAZING.

I am so jealous of what she has morphed into. I am so angry with myself that I didn’t follow the same journey and we can’t both relish in being each other’s skinny friend.  The girl that used to share my disdain for shorts now looks like a knock-out in them.  The girl, who used to swear that she’d only feel comfortable in a bikini around me, now looks like a model in one. The girl whose clothes I would borrow with no issues, now wears pants that wouldn’t fit around my left ankle.  I now look like a giant ogre next to her.  Her petite frame easily overshadowed by my un-flat belly that we used to have in common.

I want to hate her…but I think I’d rather just look like her.

We vowed to do everything in life together. But I failed on my end of the bargain…She got skinny. I stayed fat. It makes me so upset with myself when I realize the insecurities about myself I didn’t fix because I had someone else to share the same ones with. I no longer have that fat friend…and my insecurities are as raw as they come.

Part of me wants someone to be envious of my physique. I want someone to watch me walk down the beach and be green with envy over my figure. I want for someone to be jealous of me like I am of her…

And as it turns out…I hate that we’re different. So, Amanda…I’m coming for ya…and we’re gonna do this skinny friend thing together…till we’re 307 – unless we kill each other first.

“A true friend is one who thinks you are a good egg even if you are half-cracked.” ~ Author Unknown

Supersize This!

I’m not currently a member of Weight Watchers, but have been in the past…After seeing a really cheesy commercial for it, I decided to come up with the Things You’d Really Like to Say in Your Weight Watchers Meeting: 
  • “Weight Watcher’s frozen pizza is delicious… if you like fake-cheesy cardboard.”
  • “This is what I get for losing 25 pounds? I’ve won better stuff playing Skee-Ball.”
  • “I believe that scale needs to be re-calibrated and I should know because I’m a full-time scale calibration technician.”
  • “Dip my fork in salad dressing? Lady, that’s just crazy-talk.”
  • “Is there a Weight Watchers iPhone app that shocks you when you try to eat pie?”
  • “Yes, that’s a five-pound gain, but I have a good excuse: there was a weekend in there.”
  • “A Big Mac only has fourteen points? Let’s ride!”
  • “That’s right… this week I’ll be using my ‘Get Out of Weigh-In Free’ Card.”
  • “I suppose it’s just a coincidence that “leader” rhymes with “eater.”
  • “We’re watching a movie at this week’s meeting: ‘Diethard with a Vengeance.’”
  • “Weight Watchers yogurt is fantastic… for grouting tile.”
  • “I can’t have gained weight! I haven’t eaten in 96 hours…”
  • “Order a pizza with no cheese? What kind of sick maniac are you?”
  • “No, I didn’t track all my points, but I did DVR every episode of ‘Top Chef’.”
  • “My family really let me down. They just sat there and watched me eat that can of Crisco.”
  • “I just don’t think “rice cakes” should be allowed to use the word ‘cake’ in their name.”
  • “Let’s ditch this bitch and go get some ice cream.”

Kind of a blah week weight loss wise….

I know…having consumed a zillion ounces of adult beverage this weekend probably didn’t help.

I do have one particular gripe this week…well 2 but they’re similar…

What in the world is wrong with society?!  I irritates the crap out of me that people blame places like McDonalds for their obesity. That children are fat because McDonalds doesn’t have healthy options. I’m sorry, but when did children start driving themselves to McDonalds?!  That theory is like blaming a bullet for someone being shot…there’s a person involved that has to complete the action. If you go through the drive thru 6 nights a week and get chicken nuggets, fries and a coke and then you shouldn’t wonder why your child is larger than average.  Trust me…I’ve eaten fast food plenty of times in my life.  But I have NEVER ordered a Big Mac, large fry and a Coke and thought “This is good for me!”

Now people sue these fast food places because of their obesity? Seriously?!  It’s not like it’s the only option for lunch or dinner. Is it faster than cooking something at home? Yeah, sometimes.  But that all boils down to poor planning in my opinion.  I’m fat because I ate poorly for too long…Ate poorly by choice – not by requirement. I chose the crappy food, and now have the crappy physique.

And my other gripe deals with our backwards society as well.  We’ve got a debt crisis, crazy unemployment, phone hacking scandal, Carmegeddon, and Casey Anthony is free…and what was the media worried about last week…What Michelle Obama ate at the Shake Shack.  The woman is absolutely beautiful. She’s in shape, she’s fit…yes she runs a campaign to fight childhood obesity – but who cares if she consumed a meal consisting of 1700 calories. Moderation is key to every diet. One meal doesn’t lead to obesity.  An occasional indulgence should be fine, and is what keeps most people on track with their diet.  The problem is that most Americans do this more than “occasionally.”  Eating should be about balance, not perfection.

If she wanted a cheeseburger, fries, a chocolate shake and a diet coke, by god I think she should be allowed to have it without it being broadcast on every news program in the United States. What’s next? Are they going to say that she holds her cell phone too close to her head or is she going to be vilified because she buys non-biodegradable tampons?  She’s the wife of one of the most powerful men in the world…in my opinion, it makes her more relatable to know that she’s not only eating a small salad with no dressing.  Everyone needs a little Shake Shack in their life. You can’t diet on lettuce alone, with or without the balsamic vinaigrette. Well, you can, but it probably won’t last very long.

Afterall…as the first lady reportedly once said, “Life would be boring without a burger and fries.” And I agree…as long as it’s infrequent…and gluten-free.

“Be moderate in order to taste the joys of life in abundance.”  ~Epicurus

Confucius Has A Credo…

Confucius Say…

…person who eat too much over the holiday need to quit cold turkey.

…person who employ low-carb diet is going against the grain.

…person who drinks too much coffee has a latte problems.

…person who succeeds in diet employs mind over platter.

…person who lives life as couch potato will likely raise tater tots.

…person who eats too many donuts dozen have a good diet plan.

…person who are butter lovers generally are not better lovers.

…person who eat too many French fries find weight ketchup to them.

…person who drinks too many fancy coffee drinks may get brewed awakening on scale.

…person who eats too much at Japanese restaurant might have sake weigh-in.

…person who doesn’t like bread overcooked might be black-toast intolerant.

… person who has successful weight-loss journey find it takes breadth away.

Breadth is still going away!

So after the mini-weight loss…here’s what have I learned this week…

Lesson # 1: – Eat at Five Guys Burgers.  Surprisingly enough, Five Guys has been a great gluten-free ally for me! I know…sounds backwards since it’s a burger place, but they are so accommodating when it comes to dietary restrictions. They don’t skip a beat at all when I let them know of my gluten aversion, and are so good about changing their gloves to avoid cross-contamination. Might have to eat the burger wrapped in a piece of iceberg lettuce, but hell, I’ll take it! Fries aren’t too bad either!

Sorry – I know this is a blog centered around losing weight, but it has been so long since I’ve been able to eat French fries (they’re often fried in oil with forbidden things), so I certainly enjoyed the opportunity this weekend! This would probably be a good time to remind myself why my weight loss might have been so mini…damn, bovine deliciousness!

Lesson # 2: Dinner parties/family get-togethers are not so stressful afterall! Have made it thru 2 successfully in recent weeks…one that I had semi-prepared for, and one that, thanks to my amazing aunt, I didn’t have to worry about at all. Entire menu was gluten-free and it was delicious! I had forgotten what it was like to go somewhere without overanalyzing everything that was going on around me. Such a relaxing feeling…finally!  Heather, your hospitality was divine…and the rosemary cashews…Mmmm! I’ll eat burnt nuts any day!  (Haha…that sounds so wrong out of context.)

Lesson # 3: Apparently a blind person creates the sizing standards for women’s clothing. I decided to give myself a little retail therapy this weekend. What I want to know is who in the world sets the standards for these things?! How is it that an 18W is smaller, yes I said smaller, than a regular size 16?! And I don’t mean just a little more snug…I’m talking about so-tight-I-can’t-fit-it-over-my-left-butt-cheek tight. Yes, I know it’s different across brands…but THAT different?! Oh look…today at Target I’m a smaller size! Oh damn! Now at Macy’s I’m banished to the muumuus! Yay! Now at Dillard’s I can shop in the Junior department! No wonder my self-esteem is like a roller coaster when I go shopping! Prozac please!

I think it’s time for legislation! I think it’s time to write our state representatives and demand some consistency! Maybe it will give Anthony Weiner something to do in “rehab”….ah, nevermind…pants are obviously not his specialty!

Final Lesson (yes that’s right…I only learned 4 things all week!)  I am so blessed….blessed with an amazing support system…blessed to have such an amazing and supportive group who read this blog every week…A group that encourages me and motivates me more than they probably realize. I may not have all the answers right now…I may not have everything figured out all the time…I might have been thrown a curve ball or two along the way – but I’m still standing. It’s not about how many times I’ve failed at this before – it’s about picking myself up one more time than I’ve fallen down.

When the world says, “Give up,”
Hope whispers, “Try it one more time.”

~Author Unknown

God Bless the Pork Belly!

No, your eyes did not deceive you. I did say God Bless the Pork Belly.

If you want to get me all hot and bothered, whisper “pork belly” in my ear. I ordered this at a restaurant for the first time last week. It was beyond slap your momma good. I was with my mom and it warranted an action far more grandiose than smacking her. (Side note: I would never intentionally slap my mom.)  If you’ve never had it before…you’re missing out.

I’m sure you’ve had bacon before (pork belly is the cut used to make bacon), but this is completely different. Let me try and describe it for you.  Ok, close your eyes…ok, no, don’t. Guess it’s a smidge difficult to read with your eyes closed.

So, the pork belly…. Imagine a ribeye steak that tastes like bacon.  The texture was more like a steak – a steak with a crispy topping.  It’s such an amazing textural experience.  You have a nice layer of meat, a nice layer of fat, another nice layer of meat, another nice layer of fat, and then you have a thin crispy layer on top that’s crackly when you bite down into it.


Doesn’t it look beautiful?!

I feel like I needed trumpets playing while that picture is being viewed. It needs Ariel from The Little Mermaid in the background singing. Streamers and confetti should be raining down.

I considered making a deal with myself while I was eating this. I honestly believe I could give up every unhealthy horrible food and/or beverage that I have EVER craved or eaten just to allow myself a taste of pork belly every once in a while.

While eating it, I had another thought…as delicious and pristine this pork belly was, I reminded myself that pigs aren’t normally eating fried and processed foods. I’m not saying that I want to get my belly in tip top condition so that it’s delicious to eat, but it did make me wonder how ungodly the human stomach must appear with all the hydrogenated, fried, processed, fermented crap that we (mostly I) have ingested in one lifetime.  It’s almost like being in 2nd grade again and looking at the lung of the smoker vs. non-smoker….”Here, Ms. Hayes, is the belly of an organically fed pig…notice how flawless and succulent…now here is your belly, all crusty and gangly from the bologna and French fries you’ve eaten in your lifetime.”  I need to strive for that perfect belly! On the inside and out.

Aside from my belly composition epiphany, you may now be asking yourself, “why is her blog post for this week about one of the most fattening things on the planet?”  Well, yes, this is a blog about weight loss. But this is also indirectly a blog about food and I need a little humor after this week’s result.  I went the wrong way on the scale this week…though not by much.

I needed this to refocus myself.  I’m sure I could have burped an extra time and not gained as much. Nevertheless, I was not careful about what I ate last week. That compounded with the fact that I had been eating almost nothing the week or 2 before really bit me in the ass. I know now that I need to keep my metabolism up so that if I do happen to eat 300 more calories than the day before that my body just doesn’t immediately decide to prepare for famine and store food for the winter around my belly button.

I need to plan better. I want to tell myself that I’ll make the best possible option at the last minute, and I should know by now that I don’t.  It’s not even that I make a bad food choice…I don’t make a choice at all. Eating 1 meal a day is catching up with me.  For those of you that are working on or have been successful at weight loss, what are some of the tips and techniques you have for staying focused food wise or making sure you plan ahead? I know it sounds simple to just say that I’ll plan out everything I’m going to eat 7 days in advance, but I don’t know how realistic that is all the time. Perhaps that’s the problem I’ve had in the past.

Aside from battling some type of food-borne illness or bug or whatever it is that keeps rearing its ugly head every few weeks with me, my attention is completely refocused. I’m going to work on the planning aspects of the diet and hope to get some great feedback from you all on what I can do to not make this organizing-what-I’m-going-to-eat so overwhelming.  I did take a very small step backwards…well the scale did, mentally I’m still moving in the right direction, but despite a slightly higher number, I feel thinner and my clothes are fitting better. My body has never made sense…gain weight and lose inches! I’ll take it though…here’s to getting everything back on track next week!!

Until next time…HH

“Failure is the opportunity to begin again, only this time more intelligently.” ~ Henry Ford