eat, move, think, feel



Ignorance is Not Necessarily Bliss

First of all, I want to thank EVERYone for the wonderful words of support in my time of distress earlier this week. I can’t tell you how supported I felt, and how very moved. Thank you. Newsflash from the offspring is that the fever has broken, and doctor has cleared her to return to classes. Which is a great relief. Yay!

I went to my awesome trainer this morning and was flooded with beautiful lifesaving endorphins. It felt so so good. I’m back, people!!!

I wanted to write a bit about food logs, tracking etc. I heard someone say this week that they do not keep food diaries because it would make them too “obsessive.” I hear that. I think that some people could get carried away. I am not one of those kind of people. I am the kind of person who is more likely to say, “Oh, it’s fine! It’s not that much! It’s healthy!” and think I am doing JUST FINE and then be all baffled because I am not losing weight. Or gaining, in fact. My natural state is to be the Queen of Denial.

A few eye opening things this week. One, I was teaching late. There happens to be a California Pizza Kitchen right next to the building where I teach. I got out of class around 9:45 and was hungry. I just wanted something “small.” I was wavering between a salad and a cup of soup. Well, guess what? This incredible CPK has their nutritional info in a little bound book, right next to their wine list! Which is kinda of shocking because really, if people KNEW, would they eat anything at all?!? Well, I took a browse though that and my eyes just about popped out of my head.

MOST of the salads were well over 1,000 calories. Each. Now I know, or I’ve heard, that these restaurant salads are often 10x worse than many entrees, but still: I was like, WHOA. Are you serious?? Grilled Vegetable Salad with Grilled Chicken Breast: 1044 calories. (doesn’t that sound HEALTHY?!?) BBQ Chicken Chopped Salad: 1257 calories. Cobb Salad: 1070 calories. Caesar Salad with chicken breast: 787. “Thai Crunch Salad” : 1155. (beware the crunch!)  Miso Salad: 1146.

I got a cup of “creamless” asparagus soup: 106 calories. Very very good!! And it was excellent. And very filling. I threw on a bunch of buttered croutons (what the hey!) for another couple hundred cals, probably. Living it up! It was the perfect late-night dinnersnack.

And to think I’d been believing that a salad or a soup would be sorta equivalent. Um. Not. I think that soup is almost always the better option. The largest-serving (bowl) of the highest calorie soup (Chicken Tortilla soup) is only 541 calories, which is miles less than any salad on the menu. And the pizza.

The thing is, most of the pizzas are between 1200-1500 calories. But I often don’t eat a whole pizza at CPK. I might eat a slice or two, which would be 300-400 cals. Which is not bad. In the past, though, I might choose the Caesar Chicken SANDWICH because in some universe, a “sandwich” is better than “pizza.” But that SANDWICH is 1051 calories! And you can bet I’d eat the whole thing.

Just sayin’. It is a good thing to be aware of what one is eating. Not to be obsessive, but to be aware.

In my WW meetings we have a little tradition called the Group Tracker. It is a 3-month food journal that is being passed around the meeting. Members volunteer to take it for a week, track their food and then report back and pass it to someone else. We’ve been doing it for a month now at two different meetings. Which is 8 people. And guess what? Every single person has lost between 2.5-3.5 lbs WITHOUT FAIL the week they have the tracker. Is that amazing? We call it the Magic Tracker. But that is what being Aware, and accountable, can do.

I’ll be honest. I do not write down every single morsel, every single day. But I do try my best to be honest (with myself) and aware of what I am putting in my mouth. And when I bother to really check it out, and get a reality check, I am often very, very surprised.


Interesting day today, foodwise. I got up and did my 5k lake walk/run this morning, then went to my regular WW meeting (as a member, not leader). I thought that today MIGHT be the day I achieved “Lifetime” status (ie, maintaining goal weight for 6 weeks) but since I missed a week while at camp, it’s not till NEXT week. I weighed in at exactly the same weight as last week, so was happy that this low has carried  over. I was feeling good.

A few blocks away, there was a great street festival going on. I thought I’d stroll over there and check things out. It happened to be on the same street as this AWESOME bakery/pizza place. Not just regular pizza, but amazing gourmet pizza. I had not had this kind of pizza in months. MANY months. I wanted it. I thought, OKAY, it’s weigh-in day, you’re doing awesomely, you just did a 5k run/walk, it’s OKAY! I walked in.

There was a long line. For people who are trying to eat mindfully, long lines can be a good thing because they provide a nice pause, a “do you really want to do this?” pause. I stood in line for about five minutes. Then I walked out. I walked around the festival, checked out some great crafts, ran into some friends, chatted. I was walking back to my car and I walked back IN to the bakery. I reallllllllly wanted that pizza.

Guess what. They don’t make pizza on Sundays! 😦

I drove back to my own neighborhood where the farmers’ market was running. By this time I was getting SUPER hungry. I thought, I’ll get some nice roast chicken. (they have an awesome rotisserie on wheels there) But I did not want chicken. I wanted PIZZA. I distracted myself by wandering through the fruits and vegies, and tasting peaches and other good stuff. But pizzzzzzaaaaaaaaa was calling my name.

Luckily, there happens to be ANOTHER gourmet pizza place right next to the farmers’ market. I felt sort of weird going to this mecca of fresh produce, and eating… pizza.  I went in. The pizza smell knocked me out. I ordered a slice of vegi pizza (artichokes, olives, pesto). Sat down in front of the tomato-and-basil stand and.. Enjoyed. Every. Bite.

I was so happy to eat that pizza. And I didn’t feel guilty. And I didn’t feel sick! I just loved it. It was so delicious.

And it made me really happy, although it was interesting that it took me ALL DAY and circling around pizza places like a shark before I finally “succumbed.” I think yes, I should think seriously and not be impulsive about it, but yeah, I can enjoy a piece of pizza if I want. I’m not going to instantly gain 25 lbs or fall down any Slippery Slope.

So all these big food “taboos” are crashing down. Macaroni and cheese, brownies, and now pizza. It’s not the end of the world, or my health, if I sometimes choose to eat these things. Yay.

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