Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Weighing In

I wanted to weigh myself on Friday, but I couldn't get up the nerve. I was going to go out that night with some ladies from work, and I didn't want a bad weigh in to be an excuse to binge on nachos and gin in a rash display of "what's-the-point?" depression. If I had a good weigh in, I would also use it as an excuse to indulge. "What's a little plate of nachos and some tall gins and tonics going to hurt? You earned it!"

That has been my love-hate relationship with weigh-ins. It's that thinking that makes me want to die for a few hours before every Weight Watcher meeting I've ever attended, and every appointment at the nutritionist or the doctor. Blurg. It's not a good feeling.

(Sidenote: I did get nachos on Friday. And two tall gins and tonics. Then later a vodka and soda, and some of an ice cream sundae. But I only had salad and cereal that day, so it balanced out. And I didn't go out for drunken fried treats afterward like I've been known to do. I did, however, wander around the convenience store looking for snackies, but after a 1/2 hour of reading labels, I just settled on a pack of Chaser pills.)

Just a half hour ago, I realized I didn't eat my breakfast yet, and I could feel a poop coming on. I'm being honest here. I thought, "What if I pooped, then weighed myself before eating?" It's the perfect weigh-in situation - out with the old, weigh in, in with the new. The moment between taking a dump and eating a meal is the fulcrum of two widely varying outcomes.

Does that make sense? It does to me and that's all that matters.

So I weighed in for the first time since December 20th, when I was at my worst weight in a while. And what was the outcome, after the weeks of Christmas parties, New Year's, resolutions, and a nacho-enhanced girls night out? On an arbitrary day like Tuesday? Not a nice round day like Monday or Friday or Saturday? I'll tell ya.

I lost 9 pounds! NINE POUNDS, BITCH!

And really, I've only been committed to "making better choices" since January 2. That's how I've decided to look at tackling my weight loss journey, as a pathway of better choices.

I was talking to Dad last night, telling him about the food I've been making and about the different choices I've made, and that's when I realized how awesome it all sounded. The more I talk about what I'm doing, the prouder I am. We talked about making better choices at restaurants and in convenience stores - his weakness as a nomadic worker. He complained about his weight and said he should get back on the Airdyne (our excercise bike), but he's too pissed off about work to do anything when he gets home. I suggested he channel his aggression into the Airdyne and just start small, 20-30 minutes every other day. The truth is, he likes eating healthier, but he just doesn't have the time or energy to put into it.

And I can't blame him; it takes a lot of energy. If this blog isn't evidence enough, I think about food all the time; not so much what I'm going to eat next, but how I'm going tackle certain options. If a coworker asks me out to lunch, what am I going to eat at Panera or Chipotle or Subway or The Little-Sandwich-Shop-of-Joy-and-Reubens? What am I going to get on a date at a tapas place? If the suggested restaurant is a chain, I research the nutritionals on its web site. And that's always an eye-opener. Wanna get scared into eating at home? Read the nutritional information for your favorite foods at Olive Garden, Applebee's, Ruby Tuesdays, or your favorite fast food chain.

I pack my lunch every night now, so I can't wake up late in the morning and shrug it off. I think about everything in my fridge and pantry and plan an exciting dinner, so I'm all worked up about cooking when I get home.

When I feel like having a McDonald's day or night, I make a Boca Burger on a Whole Wheat bun and bake some frozen fries. Saturday I made a Gardenburger Black Bean Chipotle Burger and topped it with my homemade salsa, which I also used for dipping fries. These fake-outs are tasty! I've had "burgers" 4 times in the past 2 weeks!

Last night I cooked up a 4 oz. piece of salmon that I froze two weeks ago. I cooked up some frozen green beans in Thai sauce from Trader Joe's that were in the back of my freezer for months. I was too afraid they'd taste like curry, so I never had the nerve to cook them. I cooked up the whole bag, and ate half of them with the salmon and an orange sliced into wedges. It was soooo good!

This treat is my new favorite trick: Put some unsweetened frozen fruit - peaches, pineapple, berries, what have you - in a tall glass and pour Fresca or Diet Sprite over them. It makes the best little cocktail ever. My personal fave is pineapple and Fresca, but last night I did peaches and Fresca, and it was awesome. When you're done drinking it, then you eat the fruit. I came up with this one last month when I had warm Fresca and no ice. By the way, does anybody else have a hard time refilling their ice trays when they're empty? I do. Hate it. I guess I just don't like sloshing the water all over my freezer.

Anyway, I guess I'm at a good point in my life where I can explore this stuff. As for Dad, how does a 53-year-old man with 35+ years of adult decision-making start to make changes? Especially when he lives with Mom, whose consumption habits are an amalgam of steak, potatoes, Virginia Slims and Lord Calvert Canadian?

Don't get me wrong, Dad's independent and makes his own meals most of the time. He's a great cook with a healthy eye, but it's pretty difficult to make your own choices when the person you live with stocks the pantry 80% of the time, and you end up eating things "just so they don't spoil."

Which is why I'm proud to announce that Dad is going to visit me at the end of February. He's coming up on Friday the 29th and leaving Monday, March 3rd. I promised him a "spa weekend" where I would cook all kinds of good meals for him, show him how to do some new recipes (Sauerkraut with Chicken Brats, anyone?), and I haven't told him yet, but he's getting a pedicure.

I told Mom and Dad once about the pedicures I treat myself to every few months, Mom scoffed, but Dad was curious. "What do they do?" They wash and massage your feet and calves, shave away dead skin and buff your nails. I've seen guys have it done. "Well, a guy doesn't give them, does he?" A tiny Asian man gave me my last one, yes, but they're mostly women. "Well, I wouldn't mind having that done with a woman, but I won't let a guy do that to me. Heheheh."

So it's settled. Dad's getting a pedicure and a spa food weekend. He deserves it. After all, it'll be the first time he's come to Chicago alone, that doesn't involve moving me into a new residence.

So there's that,



Manda said...

Kudos #1 - great job Laura!! You are working so hard; keep it up! It's motivating when you step on the scale, and it goes down. I've tried the poop/weigh method many a time. I actually weighed myself one morning, pooped, weighed again and lost 2 pounds! Is that a Meyer or what???

Kudos #2 - Enjoy your "Dad weekend"! That's great that he's coming up, and you know, he'll probably be secretly hooked on the pedicures.

mkieper said...

i'm so proud of you Laura, that's the best feeling in the world.

I too have had the weight loss poo. I also call it the "Born again Christian Poo".

Melissa said...

Laura, I love your blog. I read it religiously! I am soo proud of you!

On a side note-can we please make a date soon?!?!?