Saturday, May 31, 2008

When Sarah Met Salads...

Remember those scenes in When Harry Met Sally where we learn that Sally is a bit on the high maintenance (albeit orgasmic) side in terms of ordering her food? It made her endearing, right?

It makes me annoying. At least to myself. Perhaps no one else notices my constant "on the side"-ing these days, but as Harry says, "On the side is a very big thing for you." For Sally, it was sheerly a matter of "I just want things how I want things", a self-assured expression of her individual taste and persnickety personality. For me, it is more of a "I'm tired of being fat so just keep all the yummy stuff off of my plate, please."

This week, I had a spinach and strawberry salad, raspberry vinaigrette on the side, and a pear & gorgonzola salad, champagne vinaigrette on the side. Yes, I fully realize that the gorgonzola should have also come on the side, but dear lord people, baby steps!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Couch to 5k to bathful of epsom salt...

So, having finished Jen Lancaster's Such a Pretty Fat, and with our move to Los Angeles, the home of the oh-so-pretty-and-thin, looming ever nearer (30 days and counting), I have a renewed sense of "Ohmygod, Sarahyouaretoofat!" and have reminded myself once again that the only thing that helped me lose weight when I turned 30 was....sigh....running.

I hate running. I remember when I first moved down to DC and joined a gym. I had two complimentary training session and the trainer (tall, skinny, blonde, nightmare) assured me the fastest way to lose weight was to run. In New Hampshire, losing weight slowly was fine; well, let's face it, not losing weight at all was apparently perfectly acceptable, because it's how I spent my 20's.

But in DC, there was a boy. A tall, cute, thin boy whose attention I wanted. And I didn't think I could do it at my then current weight (which is, sadly, 10lbs fewer than what I'm carting around right now). So as much as I'd always said I'd rather walk on my hands than run on my feet and as much as I told the trainer through my huffy-puffy breaths that I was going to die, drop dead right there on the treadmill and it would be on her shoulders, if I ran for 10 more seconds (she did not bite), I did it.

I started out with my own program of counting to 100. I'd count to 100 while running, then count to 100 while walking. Slowly, begrudgingly, I built up my pace. Eventually I was running to the count of 600 (almost a mile by the treadmill's count) and damn that perky little trainer if the weight didn't melt away. From 150lbs to 135lbs in two month's time. (Oh, and the boy? I left him in my skinny little cloud of dust.)

So here I sit, still at 162 and's time. I made noise about it a few months ago and promptly went back to sitting on my ass and wondering why I wasn't losing any weight. I mean, I *did* cut out the morning ritual of finishing my kid's waffle, so why wasn't the weight falling off of me??!! (cue: Sarah smacking her head into the wall).

Today while Ethan and Husband napped, I threw on my work out clothes (after I picked a bit of cat hair off of them--they've made a lovely little cat bed for Abby for the past few months), powered up my iPod, threw on my stop-watch and started my "Couch to 5k" program ( Basically, a 30 minute workout consisting of a 5 minute warm up, then jogging/walking in 60 and 90 second intervals.

Smuggy McSmuggerson (that would be me) thought "Piece of cake!" When I started jogging years ago, I began my training with counting to 100, which takes longer than the 60 seconds this circuit was going to require of me. No problem. Embarrassing to be starting with something so EASY....that's what I said to myself as I sauntered through my warm up. I even though, "maybe I'll jog 60 and walk 60, so it's totally even. These professional trainers at "couch to 5k" can't possibly know more than me! Oooh, I like this song..."

At the end of the 5 minute warm up, I looked at my stop-watch and picked up the pace to jogging. Oh, how I want to report that I was a vision of athletic prowess, gliding down the street with extraordinary poise and ease.

I *could* report that, but I would by lying out of my fat, uncoordinated ass. Nevermind that apparently my ear holes are abnormally small and my earpods kept falling out of my head (have you ever seen someone fish around to find and reposition the earpod of their iPod while running? Aside from looking funny, it really borders on a public safety hazard). On top of that, by the time I got to the count of 50, there was a burning in my calves, but there was a serious lack of air in my lungs.

I remembered all those biology classes when the teacher droned on and on about aerobic activity and oxygen and the production of lactic acid. I think it's safe to assume that I was a vertiable lactic acid factory during the 20 minutes I alternated between walking and running.

Sadly, as I zig-zagged my way through my neighborhood, there was a couple out for a leisurely walk, CONSTANTLY zigging while I was zagging, so every corner I came around, they were turning down the same street, coming right towards me. Ugh. I hate exercising in front of other people--when I can hear my own breathing OVER the music playing mere centimeters away from my eardrums, I really don't need to be in the company of strangers. Fortunately for me, neither of them were lithe and toned. I probably could have outrun either of them, even in my only-feet-from-needing-an-oxygen-tank state. On the 3rd or 4th encounter, the man and I decided to nod at each other, as if to acknowledge the fact that we were unwittingly stalking each other. The girl ignored me, in all my fat, sweaty glory. Sadly, I wanted her acknowledgment more than his (twisted all-girl school mentality NEVER goes away, I swear). Oh well.

By the time I finished my last interval of running, my body was SCREAMING and my lungs were fully threatening to shut the fuck down on me completely. But I did it.

And, damn it, I'll do it again--once I can catch my breath and stop soaking in a tub of epsom salt.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Teensy Weensy Victories...

Yes, I got a grande skim chai this morning. But I did not get the blueberry scone that was, I swear, literally screaming at me (apparently I speak Starbucks Sconese) through the glass of the pastry case.

A week ago I would have rationalized my way into buying it and scarfing it down clandestinely on our way to play group. Today I was honest with myself (at least about the scone---baby steps, people), and just let it go.

The Starbucks thing is the hardest thing. I swear they pump vaporized crack through the ventilation system in there. I do love my chai, but I believe I could live without the drink. And their coffee, in my opinion, is so strong and burnt it may as well be a cup of battery acid. It's not the drinks--it is simply the space, the store itself. I must find myself in a Starbucks shop daily, even if I only get myself a cup of tea (like water and tea bag type tea, not chai). The goal, by the time we get to LA is to be on the water and tea bag type tea full time, with the exception of a tall skim chai once on the weekends.

But for now, I am elated that my stomach is not digesting the scone I left in the pastry case today. FatSarah 1, Starbucks 0-ish.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

It is so on...

This weekend, Husband and I decided that, as we are about to embark upon a new adventure with this whole moving to Los Angeles thing, we should perhaps try to lighten up the load a bit and take off 10 lbs a piece before our big moving date, June 27th.

That meant that on Tuesday morning we both stepped on the scale. Sigh. What do you know? 162. The same weight I ALWAYS am, no matter what I eat. As this is not Husband's weight loss blog, I won't divulge his weight, but I will say that when I told him MY weight, his reaction was, get this---"That's what I weighed when I met you."

I realize that his comment was his own lament that he is now quite a few pounds above that. Let's just say Husband gained that pregnancy weight right along with me and I was the only one who gave birth and therefore lost 20lbs of it right away...

So, yes, I know that he was thinking back to a day when he felt he was lithe and svelte (and he was, as my memory serves), but still. What I heard was, "Damn, woman, you weigh as much as a MAN."

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Lament of the Fat Chick...

I swear sometimes I think I must LIKE being fat. Because every time I work myself into a tizzy about how I'm going to lose weight and how egg whites are my friend, I almost immediately am overcome by a overwhelming neeeeeeeed for Target's brand trail mix. You know, the kind with the peanuts and raisins and chocolate chips and M&Ms. And every time, I am somehow able to find a way to rationalize it, or just block it out. "Well, each piece of the mix is so tiny, it can't possibly add up to much, right?" Even though I read the nutritional information and know full well that their 14 servings equal 3 of mine and that I'm fulfilling an entire day's worth of fat intake as I drive between Target and home, I am somehow unable to keep my hand from blindly reaching back into the bag, carefully feeling for the smooth, cool surface of M&M, because every bite MUST have the crunch of hard candy shell.

What the fuck is wrong with me??!!

This evening I dined at Cheesecake Factory with two of my friends. I should have been home eating a chicken breast, skinless and baked, accompanied by steamed broccoli, but I had a baby shower to plan with the other girls, so we opted to dine out, sans toddlers. So, I was faced with that menu--the bible of the Fattie. I no longer even allow myself to look at the dishes laden in butter and oil, dripping with cream sauces and fat. No, I go straight to the "Weight Management" section.

If you've ever dined at Cheesecake Factory, you know the menu is a short novella of choices. There are no fewer than six pages of options, the vast majority of which could easily feed a small village of orphans in Central America, and make several of them look at their profile in a mirror after eating and say, "Wow, I shouldn't have eaten all of my portion. I'm chunking up!" You've got two pages of "appetizers" (read: this will only feed 2 people, so don't rely on it for your entire meal...), followed by a page of sandwiches, a page of pastas, a page of specialties, a page of "salads" (read: a head of lettuce doused in a pool of enough dressing to drown a small child), and the list goes on. My memory is weak on this because it's been so long since I've allowed myself to peruse.

The great minds at the Cheesecake Factory decided to brainstorm and come up with tasty menu items that actually won't contribute to coronary artery disease and they came up with FOUR choices for those of us who don't want to kill ourselves slowly with food. FOUR. Four salads.

And no matter what you do, no matter how subtle you try to be about the fact that you're ordering from the fat lady's section, the waiter ALWAYS has to make a point of saying, out loud, "You want the weight management salad?" Um. Yes. That's why I asked for the Spicy Chicken Salad (which is NOWHERE else on the menu) AND why I pointed to it on the menu while ordering. But PLEASE, by all means, highlight for everyone else at my table that I am going to eat a head of lettuce w/ my lo-cal dressing on the side, while they enjoy Thai (tub o' peanut butter) and Cajun (pint o' cream) pastas. Is there a spot under the table where I can enjoy my shameful fat-girl meal in peace? Thanks.

Tonight I experimented with being very open about my fatty-fat-fatness and got all self depricating about my attempts at weight loss (what with the move to LA, the land of the beautiful skinny folk). I learned quickly that people don't know what to do with you when you make jokes about how chubby you are. Nervous laughter and another glass of wine pretty much sums it up. Oh how I love being the source of social awkwardness.

Talk about awkward, when the waiter came knocking to see if we wanted to get dessert (um, YESSSSSSS, PLEASE!!!! I love no dessert more than Cheesecake Factory cheesecake), my skinniest friend, who happened to be sitting to my right, said, almost Pavlovianly, "Banana-cream cheesecake, please," and sigh....

I had to sit next to her while she ate it. Injustice, thy name is cheesecake!!! This girl is so thin, her triceps are easily the size of my pointer finger. She has the metabolism of a hummingbird and a heart of gold. I love her, but sometimes I secretly loathe how easily she seems to be/stay skinny.

Thankfully there was nothing remotely chocolatey about her dessert or I don't know that I'd be able to report, as I can now, that I did not eat even tiny one bite (even though, out of the goodness of her misguided heart, she offered me a bite every. other. second--I think she might have offered because of all the drooling and staring I was doing?). It's actually not surprising that I was able to abstain, considering I was still feeling nauseaus from the M&M trail mix that was churning in my stomach, now mixed with lo-cal vinaigrette. Delish.

At the end of the meal, I marched out of the restaurant with my "to go" bag of salad (I even went so far as to ask for the box before my salad came so I could take 1/2 of it out of the plate before starting to eat), feeling pretty good about myself. I did have a glass of Pinot Grigio, but NONE of the tasty bread they put on your table and only half of my WEIGHT-FUCKING-MANAGEMENT salad (which is 590 calories if you eat the whole thing). I felt light and only half-full, as opposed to some of the people I saw at their tables, leaning back and sweating a bit as they tried to get through their heaping bowl of creamy pastas (you know when you have to take a deep breath and blow out through puffed cheeks that maybe it's time to stop, right?).

Of course, an hour later, I am madly trying to convince myself that since I was so good at dinner, I definitely can afford to have that vanilla slim-a-bear ice cream sandwich in the freezer that is currently SCREAMING at me. This is why I stay the same 162 pounds forever and ever. Every time I do something that MIGHT lead to me losing and ounce or two, I reward myself with a food-related treat.

Dumb, dumb chubby girl....

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Still Fat....

...that is all.