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So, What to Eat?

In my last blog post, I presented my thoughts on diet and exercise and what to do if you want to lose weight.  And since I want to lose some inches from my waistline, I also presented a basic plan for myself with regard to the overall calorie and macronutrient intake I was going to start with for myself.  It is now a week later and by simply paying attention to what I was stuffing in my face, my pants are a tiny bit looser.

Chocolate, bourbon, pecan pie.  
I'll tell you a secret that's not really a secret.  My clients often allude to the fact that they think I eat like a monk with tireless dedication to perfectly balanced meals epitomizing optimal nutrition.  Well, its not true.  At all.  I'm actually an unapologetic foodie with a sweet tooth and a minor diet coke addiction.  When I'm hungry and there is pie in the house, I have pie for lunch.  Likewise, the kid's Halloween candy stash is not safe unless cleverly hidden from my casual observation and we just don't keep chips of any kind in the house because I will eat the entire bag.  I favor fatty meats, rich sauces, and vegetables roasted in loads of olive oil and salt.  I love to cook and I will spend hours preparing a meal just because I had a craving for something very specific like thai green curry or pecan pralines.    I once ate an entire pound of duck liver, all by myself, over the course of week.  And I'll probably do it again this year.  I love duck liver.  (Humanely raised and slaughtered of course, but that is a different topic entirely.)

Unfortunately, I don't even always make superior culinary choices when my diet goes horribly sideways.  When I first learned to lift heavy, I would return from those training sessions so hungry I would often just walk into the pantry and eat whatever was in front of me.  Saltines with honey poured on them, chocolate chips out of the bag, handfuls of cereal, one time, a piece of beef jerky dipped repeatedly in rasberry jam.  Lately, my biggest mistakes have been, and yes I'm serious, forgetting that I've already eaten lunch and going for a second round.  And its not like I'm eating salad.  I once accepted a lunch invitation from my husband for Mexican food after finishing a turkey sub with a quarter pound of meat on it.  And I ate a two burritos.  And then three hours later, I also ate dinner.  A big dinner.

Bacon wrapped stuffed and grilled jalapeno peppers
 from my garden. What are they stuffed with?  Bacon.
It has taken me years and a lot of self-control to overcome these tendencies, but I still screw up from time to time.  The really big stupid comes out when I put in a half-hearted effort to eat better.  I've learned that this just doesn't work, but I always end up here from time to time.  It starts something like this:  "I'm going to eat a big breakfast, a smaller lunch, no snacks, and then I'm going to have a light dinner."  Sounds like a great plan, doesn't it?  But, when I put it into action, my brain, which has no sympathy for my stomach, makes it something more like this:  

7:00 am  "I sure do want to lose weight fast.  I'll just reduce the amount of this breakfast and get a head start on the calorie reduction, its not THAT long til lunch.  I'll just eat half the oatmeal and make up the difference with blueberries.  That will be good for me."

10:00 am  "Holy crap I'm hungry.   Maybe I'll just eat lunch now and then I won't be as hungry later.  I'll just eat half a turkey sandwich and an apple, that'll be healthy."

1:00 pm "I'm hungry again, but I already ate lunch, I'll just have some cheese or maybe a yogurt.  Or maybe just a banana, with peanut butter on it."

4 pm  "I'm so HUNGRY!  I'll eat a little snack so I can get a handle on this and then I'll eat a good dinner.  Wow, those crackers are good, maybe I have some cheese . . . ."

6 pm  "I ate too many snacks, I'll just eat a little bit of vegetables and I'll be good to go til bedtime."


Sound familiar?

It should.  A lot of you do this.  Do what exactly?  Starve yourselves all day and end up snacking  between meals and at the end of the day.

Well, doing the exact opposite is actually what you should do.  And by that, I do not mean start your day with an ice cream binge.  You may notice from the above description that I didn't really eat that much actual food.  What I actually stuffed myself on was snacks.

Its not all bad, fresh figs off my fig tree are one
of my favorites.
So, instead of telling you how awesomely well-behaved I am on a regular basis, I'd rather tell you how it often goes horribly wrong.   Mainly because its funnier and makes for a better story.  However, I am going to try and be an actual good role model here and set a goal for myself over the next four weeks.  The main part of this goal is to not gain any additional weight.  The second part of this goal is to actually lose a few inches off my waist.  Although I weigh myself every morning, I'm not going to focus on the number on the scale because I am lifting and might actually get heavier.  However, I currently have a 31 inch waist and 42 inch hips.  I'd like to keep the hips and lose about 2-3 inches from the waist.  Most likely, I'll lose an inch or two on the hips in the process, but we'll see.

Over the next few weeks, I'm going to practice what I preach, write down what I eat, and keep track of my training and see what happens.  This could prove enlightening (for you), embarrassing (for me), or most likely, a good bit of both.

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