I love to eat. Unfortunately for me, the things I love to eat are crap. I do not crave large plates of raw veggies. I want chips by the bag full. I want donuts by the dozen. I don’t have the attraction for bread that some folks struggle with but give me a gently toasted Asiago cheese bagel drowning in melted butter … mm hmm I’m a very happy girl.
I can also be stubborn. I have successfully lost weight simply by limiting my calories. Recently I came across a thin-spo meme that said something like a bad meal can destroy a good day at the gym. I scoffed because it’s what I do. I scoff. I argued with said meme. I lose weight without caring about the content of the food I eat. I do just fine. Then I got to thinking, Well, sure, I can do it that way but do I have to? Do I really need to be hungry all the time to maintain my weight?
So, I started paying attention to my food journal in conjunction with my weight log. I watched them side-by-side – not just the number of calories but the content of what I was eating. I desperately wanted that meme to be wrong. Food makes me happy. Healthy food does not. This is my weight graph:
You can see at the beginning of July where I resumed working out every day. Rain or shine, pain or no pain. Forty-five minutes of aerobics every day. There is very little variety in what I eat on a daily basis, for breakfast and lunch. Though the content varies, dinner is nearly always home-cooked and of decent quality. The exception to that is take-out night once a week.
Given that information, I wanted to play with the base line a bit. I found that Chinese take out is an instant 2.5 pound weight gain over night. I expect that’s due to the horrific sodium levels because I did not eat a massive portion or any of the fried options on the menu. I switched to the scrumptious yumminess of bagels for breakfast for one week. They were fabulous and a very bad idea. Boy howdy, do they pack on the pounds. Quickly. A couple of days of being back on my daily Raisin Bran and *poof* I’m magically losing weight again.
This is a bummer. What this means for me is that I don’t get to eat fun foods with any regularity anymore. Even before this experimentation, I would experience what I call food stress, frequently. (I define food stress as the overwhelming desire to eat huge amounts of happiness-inducing, very-bad-for-you food. I’m an addict. Because food is my drug of choice, food stress makes me horribly bitchy.)
I’m trying to make peace with this whole “eating good food” thing by telling myself I won’t have to be hungry all the time. This is true. I’m making better choices. Better choices = larger portions = weight loss – near constant hunger. I should be happy about that. I should be, but I’m not. I can’t eat tasty foods anymore. I’m experiencing food stress nearly all the time. It pisses me off and that’s no fun at all.