Last month, I wrote whined about how puffy I was feeling. It's interesting to me that of all the things I write about, scrapbooking included, weight posts elicit the most comments. I do love the commiseration. I like knowing I am not the only one when it seems as though I'm swimming in a sea of people for whom food and weight is not an issue.
I also didn't realize I'd like getting kicked in the ass to stop whining and do something about it. One blog reader said, "Sorry. Not going to join your pity party." At first, I was all, WHAT? Wha? HUH? And then I was all, "Don't you know I'm not motivated by tough love?" And then I was all, "Alright already! I'll do something about it." (So thank you, blog reader, and you know who you are!)
What I decided to do was try and clean out as much sugar, fat and salt as I could from my diet. And get moving again. And make better choices.
Believe it or not, I decided to do the infamous Cabbage Soup Diet/Cleanse. Yes, that's right. The same diet your mother might have done in 1974. I'd heard good things about it from a friend as a way to help curb your sugar cravings and get you in the right frame of mind to start a diet anew.
Unfortunately, by the time I got to the day known as the Milk and Banana Day, I'd had enough. (I don't drink milk and I don't eat bananas. I was kind of screwed on that one.) Still, the first three days gave me the jump start I needed to get back on the healthy horse and ride.
I read a book that most of you have probably heard of, Skinny Bitch. For those of you who don't know what it is, it's a diet book about the vegan lifestyle, layered with enough profanity it would make your mother blush. A girlfriend of mine went vegan and it changed her body in mind in several ways. LET ME SAY THIS: I have no plans to become vegan and I respect ALL choices of how people choose to eat, but you need to know this as a back story to what I'm doing this summer, and possibly beyond.
The book is brutally truthful about the food and meat industries, as you would expect it to be, considering the topic. [Edited to add: this is NOT an endorsement of this book in any way.] But there were several nuggets of interest to me. See, my sweet One-Three is vegetarian. Has been for a while now. This is pretty common among her friends, too. They just don't eat meat. From 19 to 22, I too was a vegetarian. Not sure what triggered it, but it was a Burger King cheeseburger that ended it, I remember that quite clearly. I love a good steak. I love a good burger. But this summer, I'm taking a break from meat.
The good thing for me? I love alternative sources of protein. I adore tofu. Beans are my friend. And truthfully, other than a good steak or burger, I'm not a big meat eater. So there's that.
Next, I'm going to eat cleaner and greener. Even though I tend to flinch at organic prices, I'm buying as much organic produce as I can find at Whole Foods, my local farmers market, or even my neighborhood Rainbow Foods store. I'm trying to put better stuff in and feel better. It seems like a logical cycle.
I'm also cutting my dairy to a minimum. No worry on the calcium and protein. I'm making up for it with other foods, and vitamins. I've never been big on dairy anyway. I used to sit at our family dinner table as a kid long after everyone else had left, just staring down a big old glass of warm milk, willing it to disappear on its own.
Although don't ask me to give up all dairy. That goat cheese on the pizza above? DIVINE.
Finally, I'm reading a book called The End of Overeating, a rather scientific look at the food industry in our country, and how it's not just that we don't have will power, but that we really don't have a chance against salt, fat and sugar. I'm just barely into it, but I'm finding it interesting.
I'm not looking for excuses right now. I'm looking for information and then deciding how it can help me achieve my goals.
Finally, I'm exercising at least five days a week. Walking. Light weight training. No, I don't have a gym membership. I'm just making it up as a I go.
Still doesn't mean I won't whine about my puffy ass every now and then. Because believe me, I will. But I just thought I'd share how I'm trying to make some positive changes that will hopefully result in feeling better overall.
Note: I'll post a few of the recipes for the above pics later this week.