Monday, October 31, 2011

Same old story, but with a sweet(less) twist

Okay, I'm not fishing for compliments. I think I look fine (not fine as in "Oh, Mickey, you're so fine" but fine). I've looked better. I've looked worse. I'm not anywhere near crisis mode about my personal appearance. That being said, I like to be able to button my jeans and pants and still feel like I can breathe. If possible, I like to put some jeans on and not have excessive spillage of the muffin top variety.
If you find that a good three-fourths of the pants in your closet are feeling too snug for comfort, one solution is to purchase some new bottoms. And, yes, I did that.
But I was also considering another common solution to the breath-constricting-pants problem: lose a few pounds.
In an ideal world, I would combine good (or even just reasonable) food choices and some exercise and kiss those pounds goodbye. But whenever I think of weight loss, my mind does not head straight to "balance and moderation." I think: I need some rules. I need a program. I need a plan.
I have a legal document box full of diet books that could attest to how well this train of thinking has panned out for me. And yet.
And yet, a few weeks ago, I found myself reading this book.
Not too bad as diet books go. Indeed, the author's suggestion for transitioning back to normal-non-diet eating after weight loss made a lot of sense to me. I had the feeling that if I could stick with the program, I could lose five or ten pounds and maybe keep it off.
But here's the thing, even if I possibly could stick with the program, I don't freaking want to. I got about three-fourths of the way through the book, flipped through the recipes and menu suggestions in the back and thought, "MEP, who are you kidding, you are not going to make yourself a fancy French pancake out of egg whites, yogurt, and oat bran every day." No, just no. NO.
I don't want to make that galette every day. I don't want to give up my obvious carby friends or slowly introduce vegetables and fruits back into my life after a period of eating lean, almost-pure proteins. I really enjoy the varieties of Greek yogurt with fruit on the bottom, but I am unwilling to buy into a lifestyle that considers such yogurts to be treats. I'm not saying this diet couldn't work or that it's bad or crazy (I've definitely read and tried worse). I'm just saying, I'm not interested. And yet.
And yet I do need some rules. I do do best with a little structure. So I came up with one rule that I thought I could follow and that might make a difference.
Stop eating candy.
Yes, I'm thirty-six years old, and I am on a no-candy diet.
No reaching into the hiding spot thirty times a day for some peanut butter M&M's. No buying Reese's Pieces at the checkout at CVS or Jewel or Walgreens or Home Depot. No eating a miniature Snickers for dessert ... after breakfast. No eating whatever other candy crosses my path--even if it's just a dum dum here or a Skittle stuck in a car seat there--just because it's there. Not no candy forever because I really love candy. Just no candy for now.
And, guess what, three weeks now with no candy and I think it's helping. Our scale needs a new battery so I can't get that kind of progress check, but my pants are a bit looser, despite having had access to two birthday cakes and a container of extra homemade buttercream frosting. As it happens, when you make one good choice, you are kind of motivated to make others. Sure, I ate some cake and frosting, but it could have been worse.
I had plenty of opportunity to make poor choices or start a bender while passing out Halloween candy, but I didn't and it wasn't even that hard. So now I feel kind of strong and proud of myself, NTB.
So, there you have it, thirty-six years old and on a no-candy diet. For now.
Before you know it, I will even be exercising twenty minutes a day.
Baby steps, you know, steps the size of peanut butter M&Ms.

Any M&M-sized or King-Sized Reese's steps you're taking to achieve or maintain a healthy weight? Please share in the comments.

Notice the badge in my sidebar? I'm going to make my annual attempt to participate in NaBloPoMo, the nationwide movement of bloggers who pledge to post every day in November. Please check back and comment if you have the time. I'd love the encouragement, especially as I've had difficulty making time for blogging this Fall. Thanks!

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