…and the weight just fell off!

If I read one more person’s story about how they quit eating sugar or wheat or meat or dairy — or all four — or started walking or gave up pop or got a divorce or took up belly dancing “and the weight just fell off,” I’m going to, well, I don’t know what, but the point is, I’m tired of reading that.

In my experience, nothing I do will make weight “fall off,” short of lopping off an arm or leg with a chainsaw. Not that I’ve tried that, but I’m pretty sure it would work.

However, no amount of diet modification, calorie counting, dread-inducing exercise, mind-over-matter attitude, spiritual awakening or ANYTHING I’ve ever done has resulted in weight “just falling off.”

Maybe if I was significantly overweight to begin with, this shedding would happen. But losing 5 (or maybe 10) pounds has been next to impossible for as long as I’ve needed to.

Yes, 20+ years ago, I followed a strict low-fat diet for health reasons, and I was pretty darn skinny. But I was pretty thin when I started, so that hardly counts.The diet didn’t make me feel any different, so I stopped.

Yes, I did a pretty strict diet for a few months a couple years ago and lost weight. It made me look old (ummm, I didn’t really need to lose weight in my face and neck, thank you), and it was a drag since it was virtually impossible to find anything to eat at restaurants — at least the restaurants we frequent.

Yes, every Lent I give up something — most often sweets — and I do lose a few pounds. Maybe 2 or 3 over the course of 6 weeks. It comes right back on when the sugar-fast is over. Like, say, at Easter brunch with my in-laws.

Yes, I go on exercise kicks. Exercise makes me ravenous, so I eat more. No weight loss through exercise. Ever.

Yes, I often try to eat four 400-calorie meals a day. A 400-calorie meal usually seems like a snack.I think I just had one — light whole grain flatbread tortilla wrapped around a few tablespoons each of hummus and cottage cheese and a handful of spring mix with a cutie orange on the side. I’m busy now thinking about what else I can eat. Preferably something that starts with potato and ends with chips — even though I know we don’t have any because I ate them all a couple days ago.

I often think I could be REALLY happy just eating 1600 calories a day of junk. Potato chips mostly, with some chocolate occasionally to balance out the salt with sugar. Maybe some nachos once in a while.

I also love healthy food — brown rice, tofu, roasted veggies. I could live on that, too. But Mike can’t, so I’d have to make 2 different meals all the time, and it’s enough of a drag just making one. But, yes, I was thinner when I lived alone. And no, that weight-loss tactic is not on the table!

So that leaves me where I am. Needing (OK, wanting) to lose 5-8 lbs. Trying to watch what I eat (I know it’s an issue of quantity rather than quality, most of the time). Trying to force myself to exercise a few times a week. Feeling frustrating that short of following a super restrictive diet that makes me unhappy, those skinny jeans will likely stay buried in my drawer forevermore.

And that just sucks.

She looked as if she had been poured into
her clothes and had forgotten to say “when.”

~ P.G. Wodehouse


  1. facie said,

    Tuesday, January 17, 2012 at 5:49 pm

    Just think, if you ate three big macs every day and then stopped, the weight WOULD melt right off. 🙂

    I feel your pain. I ate a ton over the holidays and then I gained three or four pounds. I have been doing better and have lost one or two of those pounds. But like you, I get hungry after I swim so I come home and eat a crazy amount. The only way I can lose more than a few pounds is when something stressful happens. The only good thing to come out of my mom’s being sick last year was I was the thinnest I had been since 1994. Of course, I gained most of that weight back…

    You look fine. I say if you exercise a few days a week (and cleaning counts!) and eat decently most of the time, you are doing great.

    • WritingbyEar said,

      Tuesday, January 17, 2012 at 10:07 pm

      Thank you. I appreciate any and all encouragement.(And 3 Big Macs a day sounds great!) But I am already dreading that Lent starts next month — those 6 weeks without sugar are a killer — but of course, that’s the whole point.

  2. robbie said,

    Wednesday, January 18, 2012 at 4:28 pm

    Honey, what’s 5-8 pounds going to do for you anyway? You look great. As long as you feel great, that’s all that matters! XOXOX
    PS Did I mention I lost 10 pounds since Christmas without even trying.

    • WritingbyEar said,

      Wednesday, January 18, 2012 at 7:40 pm

      Robbie, I love you. (And you suck.) But good for you! Seriously. I’m jealous. Let’s see if we can’t put a pound or two back on come Saturday. My next post should help with that…stay tuned.

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