diet. 4 letter word. dread inducing. resist.
For over a year now I’ve been in various states of ‘diet’. I’m either in the middle of one, starting one or taking a break from one or thinking about starting another one. It’s deeply disturbing.
I quit smoking 6 years and some odd months ago and that – as painful and awful as it was – was nothing compared to attempting to lose weight.
They (the infamous they) say that quitting smoking is harder than kicking a heroin addiction. I believe that – cigarettes are available everywhere – heroin not so much. You are going to see people everywhere having a smoke – shooting up? not so much. So if you have the wherewithal to somehow get yourself away from the geography that puts you near readily available heroin I guess you’ve improved your chances of being able to kick it. That just sounds logical to me – not that it’s the whole fight but it would help I’d imagine. Getting – and then staying – somewhere that there is no evidence of smoking is not very feasable.
So I kicked smoking while people around me still smoked. I kicked smoking when 90% of my friends smoked. I kicked smoking when I could see and smell people smoking all over the place and even to this day I still have moments of wanting to smoke but somehow I am still smoke free (none of the other things have changed). You’d think that a diet would be easy. Not so.
If you think you see a lot of cigarettes and evidence of cigarettes – it’s got nothing on food! The damned stuff is EVERYWHERE. Even if you stay out of the fast food restaurants and don’t watch t.v. with commercials, it’s still on billboards and co-worker’s desks and the vending machine in the coffee room and those damned golden arches on the side of the road. There is no such thing as a coffee shop that doesn’t have a shining glowing case of delectables staring you down when you walk in the door. You can’t go “cold turkey” on food. That would mean no food ever. Not possible. So you cut out fat or carbs or sugar or percentages of the above. You follow the zone diet, the Atkins diet, the south beach diet or weight watchers and you muster all your willpower and you write things down, scan bar codes, count and use math and even though you do all the right things and you stay on the program – nothing happens.
You can’t go “cold turkey” on food. That would mean no food ever. Not possible. So you cut out fat or carbs or sugar or percentages of the above. You follow the zone diet, the Atkins diet, the south beach diet or weight watchers and you muster all your willpower and you write things down, scan bar codes, count and use math and even though you do all the right things and you stay on the program – nothing happens.
Well, not nothing. You lose a pound, gain 6 oz, gain 3 oz, lose 2 oz, gain a pound in what seems to be a sadist’s grand design to drive any sane intelligent person to curl into the fetal position and blubber nonsense – does that count as cardio?
So… you kick it up a notch and add an exercise program. yeah. I spent the first part of the morning near tears after rounding up the week’s progress to finding out that I had gained 2 lbs. Going from “only moving when absolutely required” to 30 minutes of sweat and heavy breathing E V E R Y D A Y – I did not expect to GAIN weight.
When I googled it I found an overwhelming amount of ‘helpful’ articles suggesting that I was overestimating the burned calories from the exercise and eating too much to compensate. Great – except that I was not counting calories or treating myself in anticipation of exercise – other than doing it – I was ignoring the daily treadmill jaunt, just presuming that it was helping my dieting efforts. I did, however, start writing down my food intake the last couple of days so after reading that I was probably not following my diet I calculated the calories. 2 days ago I consumed a grand total of 1865 calories from the weight watchers power food list (eat as much of this as you want until you feel satisfied).
Daily Totals: Daily Calorie Composition: 43% from carbs, 34% from fat and 23% from protein.
Well, I guess the percentages are a little less than stellar but then after weighing myself the next day I decided to really crank it up a notch so yesterday I consumed 1175 calories, from the same weight watchers power food list. Breakdown ….Daily Calorie Composition: 56% from carbs, 27% from fat and 17% from protein.
Daily Totals: Daily Calorie Composition: 56% from carbs, 27% from fat and 17% from protein.
gained 4 ounces.
So back to why this is harder than cigarettes to master…. this is the big one… when you stop smoking – I mean you make a decision to quit smoking and then you don’t smoke – for as long as you have not smoked – you HAVE quit smoking. Just like that. One day you are a smoker and the next you are not. Even if it’s only been an hour – you have quit smoking. yay you.
Weight loss – not so much.
As I said at the beginning, this has been going on now consistently for the better part of a year. And, while you’d think that with this much practice I would be good at it by now, that sadly is not the case.
I do feel I have to mention that I did find something to hang on which, for now, has helped me keep my resolve. That is a website that tells me that going from sedentary to workout queen will in the short term cause you to gain a little weight as your muscles get used to the increased exertion – that should, hopefully, keep me going for another few weeks but I would prefer instant gratification dammit!
I decided to start blogging about it because I need to vent. And I need to not give up. And I need to not cry.
Thanks for checking in.