Wednesday, June 14, 2006

The Weight Game

The thing with a sponsor is that you're supposed to call them before you do the bad thing. My sister and I act as each other's food sponsor, except contrary to tradition, we call each other after the bad thing has been done.

"I ate a BLT chicken sandwich from McDonalds...with the crispy chicken and fries. And a Diet Coke."

"Yeah, I hear ya', sister, I crawled my way through dust and sick children and toys and one very big black Labrador to get at the Doritos. The Extra Cheesy kind."

"One small dish won't hurt you."

"Who said it was one small dish? We're talking a half-bag...of the Family Size."

"Ahhh...a Sam's Club special."

"That's the one."

"Just say no, the next time you want to get into the bag."

"And for you...just don't order fries. At least you ordered a diet coke with lunch and not a chocolate shake. Oh wait...did you mooch off M's shake?"

"Two sips."

"Penance...we work it off this afternoon. You take the dog, I’ll bike ride with Izzy in the carrier."

"We can’t – AH has microplasmic pneumonia and M has strep throat. Maybe I'll wait for the boys to come home from school then go. After the homework. After A's inevitable breakdown over some transgression by J."

"Okay, tomorrow we exercise. What are you making for dinner?"


"Sounds good. Maybe I'll take a quick spin to the market. Get some blue cheese - always good on burgers."

"Hmmm...reminds me. I should stock up on the ice cream. The kids are going through it now that it's hot."

We'll have to change our system.

Disclaimer: I'm exaggerating the subject of our conversation. Actually, my sister and I have been on a mission to filter out the junk food from our diet. We have a good jumping point - our kids have always snacked on vegetables: cucumbers, tomatoes, red cabbage, and salad. They do have a weakness however to grab chips when they're starved (and so do I). They've learned the guilty pleasure of eating chips out of the bag while in front of the T.V. I've tried to change the habit by making them use a Tupperware cereal bowl for chips instead. M and A are pretty good at that - J rejects the method. We're also working on dropping the sodas, preferring low-fat milk or natural juice. A has been good about it, so has M, J rejects the shift, always pulling out a soda or two. Now, I could simply not buy the bad stuff, but I've always been an advocate of moderation not abstinence, believing that absence makes the heart grow fonder. So we're trying to work with less rather than none.

For me...I've been all right about the adjustment but not over the past week thanks to A's birthday party. D brought many bags of chips much to the delight of my happy junk-food-eating-self. We had left-overs! My problems date back to being a skinny teenager and young adult. I could eat anything without gaining weight. When I got married at a young 26, I weighed 125. Then I had my first child and things have never been the same. The third child just pushed me over the fence, you know? Now...145. I can't seem to go below 140. Sometimes I'll drop to 138...but that doesn't last long. And that's all with decent eating.

Another difficulty is the exercise thing. In truth, I'm not committed to exercise because I don't like to exercise. The only thing I enjoy is bike riding and that's a rarity because it requires that I leave the house alone for more than an hour and I really can't do that all too often, not with my battling, challenging darlings of my life. I'm hoping to pick up the riding again next week when there's no homework, when D's home, when we're not up to our ears in junk food leftovers.

As a note, I have been trying high-energy yoga. That's not too bad. When I can get to it.

Back to food. Part of the trouble is that food's meaning has changed for me, as I've mentioned before. When I was younger, food served two purposes: (1) prevented death by starvation; (2) served as the centerpiece to social interaction. Today, I look to food for comfort, as a reward after a hard-day's work, as entertainment, as something very pleasurable, for social interactions, prevent death by starvation. The role of food has so expanded in my life that I turn to it far more often than before which...increases the inches and pounds and...

So I cry. I cry over my inability to gain control over what clearly is a problem. Some say, 145 isn't bad! Better than 175! Or 200! Yeah...but it's not good, not for me, not with tendencies. My 145 tends to look like 160.

I’m whining, aren’t I? Whining and doing nothing to resolve the issue.

I’m writing this with a Diet Coke to my side, sitting. Wishing I smoked. ‘Cause cigarette smoking cuts down in the calorie intake. Maybe I should order those diet foods advertised on T.V. with the free week of foods delivered to my door? Or the diet supplements or the diet pills that make people go from pudgy to six-pack abs in mere weeks? Or get that workout machine for only $69.95 a month for five years!

Well, I should go. I need to order pizzas for tonight for the kids and their friends.


Dale said...

Sigh. This thing just goes on and on, doesn't it? Seems to have a life of its own. I've resolved to diet, resolved not to diet, resolved to think about it, resolved not to think about it... doesn't make the slightest difference what I resolve to do, not in the long run. I diet and eat badly and think about it anyway. It's a mental disease, much worse for me than any obesity might be, I'm sure.

I'm guessing you're lovely and perfectly healthy at 145 lbs. But reality of course is a bit player in this game.

I wish you the best with it. Wish I had something wise to say.

Lori said...

Oh, I feel your pain, I strive to eat more veggies and set a good example for my kid...and then snarf down a slice of cheesecake after she's gone to I keep telling myself to get up earlier and exercise and I never do it. Ugh.

Shuana said...

I totally relate to you--When I was home with my young kids I ate for the same reasons. I had been scrawny my whole life until I was a stay-at-home mom and food was the most accessible, and cheapest entertainment. Now, two of my kids are almost grown, but I still have an 8 year old. Give yourself a break till then. You won't have any trouble taking off the extra pounds when you can get out more.

Adriana Bliss said...

Dale, your empathy is good enough for me - what you describe is much like what I do...there is wisdom is what you say. The mental disease is quite overwhelming.

Oh Lori...exactly right. I so know that feeling...the kids are in bed, I'm watching something on the tube, and off I go to sneak something I've told the kids all day not to eat. "You've had enough ice cream! Go to bed!" But it's so good...there is a direct emotion response from every bite...followed up with the remorse and promise to exercise.

Shauna, welcome! Your blog is something to behold - I've bookmarked it. And yeah...I'm sure as the kids get older and are here at home less, then I can be more disciplined. On the other hand...:) Thank you so much for reading (and commenting!).

Shuana said...

Thanks for the welcome and the complement Adriana. I've bookmarked your blog, too!

butterstar said...

Dieting sux. That's why I live on the all-ice-cream diet. I've dropped 60 pounds!

Really, I hear ya. I've always eaten for all of those reasons. Makes me cringe when my #2 asks for food and I know it's because she's bored.

As far as eating stuff the kids were told not to, hey, tell 'em that when they're adults, they can eat as crappy as they want. No guilt! The ice cream diet CAN work!

I believe in moderation, though, too (well, for them, anyway). A life without chocolate chip cookies or ice cream sundaes would be just a wee bit bleak, as far as I'm concerned.

I'm lucky, though. My kids prefer to drink water. Probably because that's what I drink all the time. Wow, maybe they really do learn by example. Ya think #2'd be eating veggies by now, then...

Honestly, I started dropping weight without effort once we completely stopped eating out, especially fast food. Even though we know the numbers, I think we still don't realize just how that stuff stacks up. So the key to weight loss is no pizza. And lots of stimulants.

And ice cream. Preferrably Haagen-dazs chocolate peanut butter.