Thursday, May 31, 2007

McDonald's is safe again...

I've always had a great relationship with Ronald McDonald.

I first fell in love with him when he added a carousel to the McDonald's near my childhood home. Talk about a happy meal--french fries and a horsie to ride? When you're five, isn't that the definition of heaven?

Over the years, my relationship with Ronald only got more serious. Eventually a Happy Meal became just a taste. Happy Meals became double cheeseburgers, which became gigantic-o Big Macs. With fries.

By the time I got to college and discovered you could get cheeseburgers for 39 cents on Sunday, my relationship with Ronald was serious. And on my end, practically exclusive.

I couldn't help it. I was hooked. But I was also fat.

And since I no longer want to be, I broke up with Ronald.

It's been hard.

I still miss his french fries, his crazy red hair. I wonder if his Big Macs still taste the same and if he still wears funny white paint on his face. Every time I pass a McDonald's, even as I struggle to lose weight, I get an insane craving for the junk he peddles so easily.
But I've made passing up on the Golden Arches a sport...(My route to and from work does NOT pass a McDonald's. Pretty amazing considering there are 30,000 McDonald's on this planet)

You can imagine my reaction when I heard someone raving about McDonald's newest addition to its "healthy" menu--the Southwest Chicken Salad. I scoffed. It's got to be loaded with fat, calories, sugar, sodium...after all, everything else on the menu is!

But the salad did sound good. And I'm a sucker for any food with a Tex-Mex, Southwest flair. So I looked up the nutritional information.

Not too shabby. A little high on sodium but for 420 calories (INCLUDING dresssing, I might add!), it wasn't the nutritional landmine I thought it would be. So I bought one.

And guess who's hooked on McDonald's again?

The Southwest salad has some kick--the chicken (they offer both crispy and grilled--we both know what kind is better!) has a lime-glaze that really, makes the dressing almost unnecessary. The little tortilla chips give it some crunch without adding major fat and there's a good mix of lettuces to keep the whole thing interesting (with some fire-roasted veggies to boot.)

All in all, it's become one of my favorite lunches although like I said--it's a bit too high in sodium to enjoy every day. But for me, it's made McDonald's safe again.

On top of being a good lunch, the salad's taught me the art of self-control. To walk into a McDonald's and smell--but not order--the fries is a major victory.

I can't help but toast myself with my bottled water as I walk out feeling good about my choices and how I'm learning to pass up the bad stuff to get the good instead!

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Inspiration TV!

When NBC's The Biggest Loser became all the rage a few years ago, I made a point not to tune in.

After all, when the numbers on the scale are going up (as they had been for me while the show was on), the last thing you want to do is watch a television show where people twice your size lose tons and tons of weight.

I knew if I watched The Biggest Loser I'd have to face up to the fact I wasn't taking care of myself, I wasn't healthy and that it was up to me to change things.

Two years ago, even one year ago, that wasn't something I was ready to do. So when everyone around me started chattering about this great, inspirational, oh-so-motivating television show, I'd change the subject.

Or roll my eyes and say things like "Well, if I lived on a ranch for three months straight and had nothing to do but workout with a personal trainer, I'd lose weight too..."

But as if to prove that divine intervention exists, the morning after I re-joined Weight Watchers, I was flipping channels and guess what happened to be on Style Network? The Biggest Loser.

Instead of rolling my eyes and flipping past, I stopped. Before I knew it, I was sucked in. Over on the other end of the couch, my husband gasped every time they'd show the before and after shots.

Style Network loves to do marathons of their shows and for three hours we were mesmerized, watching as these people exercised, ate, cried, laughed and lost weight. I finally understood why so many people I knew had been so into the show when it premiered a few years ago.

It was inspiring. It proved that if you were willing to work at it, you could make changes in your life...if you were willing to sacrifice, you could lose weight.

Since that Sunday morning, I became addicted. And yesterday, true to Style Network form, they had a Biggest Loser marathon. And Mr. CCC and I watched just about every episode.

Wanna know why we skipped two of them?

We went to work out together! On Memorial Day. How's that for dedication? (Both in terms of television viewing and exercise.)

That marathon of Biggest Loser couldn't have come at a better time for me. I was still incredibly upset over my Saturday weigh-in. I'd whined about it to Mr. CCC, I'd pored over every page of my journal looking for snacks or points I could cut out; I'd decried being a woman and all that entailed (including that whole bloating thing.)

I was beating myself up mentally and on the verge of doing so physically when I sat down to watch hour upon hour of The Biggest Loser.

And as I watched the contestants challenge themselves and occasionally come up short on the scale it hit me--there are going to be bumps in the road.

There are going to be weeks where I will work hard and I will push myself and I will pass up goodies and the scale won't budge. Just like there are going to be weeks I slide a little and don't gain.

Here were people whose sole responsibility was to lose weight and on occasion, they failed. But they picked themselves up, kept going and realized one week, one weigh-in, does not a failure make.

That's why as we watched hours of Biggest Loser, I grabbed Mr. CCC and said, "Let's go exercise! I know the gym is open!" and it was. And we went.

And I felt good afterwards--like I had accomplished something. (Or, if you want to get really cheesy and listen to The Biggest Loser theme song, that I'd done something to make myself feel proud.)

But more than getting on the StairMaster (and the treadmill...and the elliptical trainer...), my hours of television watching on Monday helped me push through my mental roadblock and keep going.

I've been eating my veggies, drinking my water, staying on program because I know if I do all those things, if I continue to work, I will get over my disappointing weigh-in.

So maybe I'll cue up some Biggest Loser re-runs to watch when things get tough again. I'll tap right into that inspiration, but next time, I won't watch it right before working out.

Because let's just say running from the treadmill to the bathroom to lose my lunch was not the kind of exercise I wanted. I guess that's the result of a little too much inspiration!

Saturday, May 26, 2007

I knew it was coming...

For seven weeks, my effort to lose weight has been nothing short of amazing. Good losses, positive changes. My mind was committed, my body was committed.

I was cruising along on a sea of weight loss bliss.

Well, the ship hit the rocks this morning.

You know how last week I blogged that I was expecting the weigher to ask why I had gained weight and she never did? Well...she asked today.

Up 1.4.

Can you say OUCH?

Even though for the most part, this has been a great week on program, this morning, I had a feeling I was in for it when my wedding rings, which have been happily moving around my fingers for about two weeks now, just wouldn't. Go. On. I pushed, and pushed and pushed and finally had to shove them on.

I knew at that moment that odds were, my weight was going to be up.

I know I'm probably retaining water. My period is due in a few days. I had a drink and some grilled shrimp last night. The last time I had grilled shrimp the night before a weigh-in, the number went up as well. So it may be a sodium thing, even though I know shrimp is healthy. It could be the fact that I've upped my workouts and my intensity and maybe my muscles are sore.

See? I have a million explanations.

Or, it could be that I haven't been following my plan the way I should be. Have I really journaled every point? Have I really weighed and measured everything? Have I really been pushing myself as hard as I thought in my workouts?

That's the thing about gaining weight--it forces you to stop and analyze things. To examine what you're doing and make sure you're really doing it right.

Instead of considering this gain a set-back, I'm viewing it as a chance to learn and to stop and think. And while yes, I was very disappointed with the number--AM very disappointed with the number--I know I have two options.

I can either keep pressing on and put this week behind me or I can quit and watch the number go up.

Quitting is just not an option right now. I won't let it become one. I'm going to use this upcoming week to really measure what I've done, to really analyze what I eat and I know the number will go down next week.

Without a doubt, it's not the progress I'd like to be making, but let's face it...I can't afford to stop trying.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

A donut can't fight cancer...

I've been talking a good talk since I started my blog and my WW journey.

I've been writing every point, working out, exercising, telling myself to make better choices. It was all pretty good.

Until last night.

To understand what last night was to me, you have to know about my grandfather. He is one of the loves of my life. Every day, he used to pick me up from school when I was a little one and take me to the park and play. Sounds like routine grandpa behavior, right? Well, not from him.

To everyone else, my grandpa is the strong, silent type. He's your typical Cuban man. Nothing ever gets him down, no one ever gets too close. Until I was born and that went out the window.

I was the apple of his eye, the pride of his world. He took me everywhere with him, showed me off to all his friends. Afternoons in the park with a happy meal and a push on the swing made my days so blissful. He'd take me to the bookstore and buy me all the books I wanted. Would let me sit in the kitchen and watch him cook. He taught me about baseball, about who my family was and where we came from.

I was his world and he was mine.

When my parents divorced, I always liked to say my mom became my mother and my father but as an adult, I realized now she had a whole lot of help from my grandparents. Everyone worked to try and make life as normal for me as possible. My grandparents became second parents.

My grandfather became my father.

A few years ago, when he was diagnosed with both prostate and skin cancer, my world was shattered. I still remember sitting in the hospital as he went through treatments to overcome them both. When he did, more than ever, I knew he was my hero.

He nearly cried when I asked him to walk me down the aisle when I married and to this day, one of my favorite moments of the day was how as he guided me to the altar, he looked to where our family was seated and gave them a thumbs-up sign.

Just as he had made my mother a strong, independent, incredible adult woman, he knew he'd done his best to make his granddaughter the same.

Do you have a picture now of how much this man means to me? To my family? Now you're able to understand why last night, it seemed as if my world screeched to a halt and the only consolation I could find was in an old friend---food.

I was at my mom's helping her pack for a weekend away when I decided to call Abuelo and see how he was doing. He was frustrated. The Marlins had managed to score four runs in the bottom of the ninth to tie their game with the Phillies only to blow it an inning later and lose.

Baseball's a religion to him and for a few minutes he went on about how the Marlins could do that, almost as if it was a personal affront. But I wanted my real questions answered...he'd had a doctor's appointment earlier that day to gauge how his cancer had progressed. He, and eventually we, had learned it was back a few weeks earlier.

I asked how it went and he dodged the question beautifully. But that's how he is. He'll tell anyone but me if something is wrong.

So I knew something was wrong.

I handed the phone to my mother who a few moments later was biting back tears and trying to control her anger. His PSA levels were elevated. His doctor wanted a biopsy. Now. My grandfather....did not.

When she hung up and I probed for answers, she shared that information. My grandfather, at 84 years old, didn't want biopsies or surgeries. He had already undergone a certain kind of radiation that could only be done once, so it wasn't an option now. His doctor, after trying to change his mind, finally resigned himself and told my grandfather they would just have to monitor the situation and he'd have another series of tests done in a few months.

I was livid.

Cancer is cancer, people. We all know when it comes back, it's usually more aggressive. His PSA levels, though not as critically high as they could have been, were elevated and had risen enough in the past month to alarm his doctor. I couldn't accept that my grandfather was giving up. That he didn't want to try and fight this time.

Before I knew it, I was standing in my mother's kitchen ripping into a chocolate glazed donut as if my teeth were personally attacking my grandfather's cancer. I was angry. I was chewing furiously. I was about to dig into my second chocolate glazed when I stepped away from the box.

No donut was going to cure his cancer. No donut was going to make him change his mind about treatment. No donut was going to make me or him feel better.

I guess it's good that I realized that and that I didn't blindly blow through the dozen. But I still felt terrible and helpless.

And for a moment, I felt like a diet failure, even if my diet wasn't at the front of my mind.

I've had time to re-assess and gauge why that happened and I still don't have any answers. Other than the fact that when times get tough, all I want is food. Preferably sugary and high in fat.

That has got to change. If I'm going to make the effort to become a happier, healthier person, I have to find ways to deal with my feelings. I have to find other ways to feel better. I can't find support from a Dunkin Donuts box, comfort from a Pillsbury chocolate chip cookie.

I have to find the strength in myself. I have to know eating when upset won't do much of anything to change the world around me.

Breaking 28 years of bad food habits isn't going to be easy. I realized that last night. But I still would like to think I've made some progress.

Because had this been a year ago, it would have been one dozen donuts. Last night, it was just one.

I need to keep making strides here because I have a feeling the next few months are going to be difficult for me and my family. And beyond that, life will always have challenges.

Food won't solve any of them.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007


Another food review for you...and I wish I had more good things to report.

But I don't.

I'm a sucker for chocolate chip anything. Cookies, muffins, cupcakes...if it has chocolate chips, I'm all over it.

So when I saw these TastyKake chocolate chip bars in the store, I was intrigued. I was even more intrigued when I pulled out my WW slider and saw they were two points. Into the cart they went.

But whoa...were they just not for me. They just didn't taste like anything. Not buttery like you might expect with the cake and the chocolate chips didn't taste like much either. It was very blah and boring, and let's face it--when every point counts, you want to make sure it's good stuff.

These, sadly, did not fit the bill for me.

Better luck next time, TastyKake! You definitely get kudos for trying with a low-fat item, that's for sure!

My deal breaker? Shallow people!

If I'm blogging, you know that means I'm playing around on other internet sites and today, on one of those, one of the hot topics was weight.

Someone brought up a radio show where a man called in to say his girlfriend had gained weight and his "blood no longer boiled for her." He wanted the radio station's listeners to weigh in (ugh, bad pun!) on whether or not he should say something to his girl.

As interesting a topic as that is, what got jumped out at me was this response to the question...

"I think in this particular case, where the woman gained 50 lbs, that could be considered a deal breaker. And the boyfriend is perfectly justified in saying someting to her about it as long as he goes about it in the right way and is not insensitive or hurtful.

People can't help what they are attracted to physically. It would be one thing if she was overweight right from the beginning, but gaining 50 lbs during the course of a relationship is a lot. That completely changes a person's appearance...."

For the record--let's start by saying there is no polite, thoughtful way to tell someone they've gained weight. We may be fat, but we're not stupid. We see what's happening to our bodies, we can tell our clothes are tighter. But nothing anyone says is going to change that. We only change and lose weight when we want to change and lose weight.

I was stunned to read that a woman, yes a woman, would say something like that. Aren't women supposed to be the compassionate ones? The understanding ones? Hell, we're the ones that gain weight during pregnancy and struggle to get it off. That doesn't breed loving people for who they are?

Apparently not.

My first instinct was rage. My fingers started flying in a response that was almost as child-like and shallow as the post that got me that upset. And then it hit me...this isn't someone worthy of anger.

It's someone to feel sorry for.

Why? Because people who create "deal breakers" based on personal appearance are cheating themselves out of knowing what love really for themselves, and love for someone else.

I have no doubt it's been hard for Mr. CCC to watch me battle my weight. In the course of our relationship, I have gained and lost 60 pounds. Yup, I said sixty.

He's seen me at my highest adult weight and he's seen me at my lowest. And he has never stopped treating me the same. He's never stopped wanting me. He's never stopped loving me.

He's been supportive and encouraging. He's been a partner in the truest sense of the word, sharing my joy when the number goes down, sharing my frustration when it doesn't. He's never said a thing to be about my weight--probably because he knows that I know what's happening and saying something and hurting my feelings wouldn't be of any help to anyone.

I'll be the first one to wonder if he's less attracted to me than he once was, but whenever I ask him, he says I'm still as beautiful as I was the day we met and that he won't stand for me calling myself names. Is he telling me a little white lie? I don't know. But I do know that his answer means he knows me, understands me and loves me.

As I re-read that comment above, it hit me that people like that, who value physical appearance so much, aren't worth my frustration or my anger. They'll never really know what it is to be with someone who loves them for who they are. They will never understand what it is to have someone love you through your faults and the changes in your appearance and that's sad.

Because it is in loving someone for who they are--not what they look like--that we truly experience what a fulfilling love is.

I wake up every day and know Mr. CCC wants to be with me for the person that I am. I have no doubt. And I am grateful that I was blessed with a love that strong, that unconditional, that supportive.

He is for lack of a better word, simply amazing. (And I need to remember that the next time I find myself nitpicking at him!)

Now, let's not tell Mr. CCC I wrote this. He doesn't need his fabulousness going to his head or anything like that, okay? ;)

Saturday, May 19, 2007

See that thing in the trash can? It's my scale...

Like most people who battle their weight, I have a love/hate relationship with the scale.

There are times the little piece of glass sitting in my bathroom has made me smile. Other times it's made me ecstatic. Other times, the scale has made me cry. Or left me frustrated and baffled.

It's been an exhausting roller-coaster relationship, but I couldn't break free. It's strange because I know that if a man, friend, boss or any other human treated me that way, I'd end that relationship and move on.

But the scale cast a spell on me. I was powerless to free myself.

Today though, I did. I finally tossed the scale away and it will torture me no more.

I know what you're thinking...CCC, how can you stay on track and try to lose weight without a scale? Here's how...and more importantly, why I need to do it this way...

Whenever I've tried to lose weight, I become obsessive about the scale. I'd hop on every morning and the number I'd see would dictate how I felt that day--thrilled, content, depressed, frustrated. Since re-joining Weight Watchers, I fell right into that behavior pattern and this past week, I realized it was just no good.

I missed my weigh-in last week because I was out of town so I figured I'd be making stupendous progress and my weigh-in today would be fabulous. But the scale in my bathroom refused to budge. One especially gloomy morning (okay, yesterday), the scale had the nerve to tell me I'd gained weight. It paid dearly when I kicked it, screamed at it and banished it to the bathroom cabinet.

But this morning, I dragged my dear "friend" out, almost apologetically and stepped on, hopeful that pound would be gone. It wasn't and suddenly, I was fighting back the tears convinced I was a failure and that once again, an attempt to lose weight would be foiled by a plateau...and one that came so quickly to boot.

I tried to console myself. I overanalyzed every bite I'd taken over the course of the past two weeks and wondered if I had some mysterious medical condition that was causing my body to latch on to fat.

After all, my scale kept telling me that fat wasn't going away, right? I struggled internally with whether or not to go to my Weight Watchers meeting and face the music on their scale. I decided though that I would go...and continue trying to work through my issues.

I got to my meeting, stepped on the scale and sighed, preparing myself for the inevitable, "What happened?" question. I refused to look up and see the number myself.

But the question never came. Instead, the weigher was almost chipper and said, "Hey! You had a great week! Good job!"

I looked up and there it was...I number I hadn't seen in months and one that was a few pounds lighter than I'd seen on my own scale. I was ELATED.

I had lost weight. While eating out. While celebrating my anniversary. While not working out the week I was gone. My hard work, my self control, my efforts--they paid off.

As soon as my Weight Watchers meeting was over, I called Mr. CCC and immediately shared my news. And I told him before I got home, that I wanted the scale gone. Not hidden under the cabinet. I'd look there.

I wanted it gone, gone, gone. And Mr. CCC, ever the supportive husband, dutifully complied.

The abusive relationship is over. I'm free.

From here on out, I'm following Weight Watchers to a tee--and that means weighing myself once a week. I understand now why that's what they recommend. Far be it from me to question their wisdom...

(And for the record--I lost two pounds since my last meeting. That brings my five-week WW total to 8, but more importantly...means I've FINALLY lost 20 pounds since I first started trying to lose weight a few months ago...Hooray!)

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Excuses, excuses...

I was out of town last week on business and while I'm sharing my weight loss journey with all of you (and my close friends and family...what can I say? I have a big mouth!), I really was trying to keep my efforts under wraps in front of my colleagues.

Mostly because, well, I was the only woman there and I certainly didn't want any jokes.

Eventually though, my secret came tumbling out. It happened over dinner at Applebee's when everyone looked at me like I'd grown two heads when I ordered from the Weight Watchers menu (A genius invention, by the way...)

Everyone at dinner had multiple glasses of beer in front of them. They were noshing on french fries, ribs, chicken fingers, and burgers while I picked my way through my meal (I say pick not because it was bad but because it was good...and I wanted to make it last, ha ha!). And of course, soon the question came up.

Why was I eating off the Weight Watchers menu when there were so many other yummy things to tempt me with?

I had to stifle my urge to say, "Are you kidding? LOOK AT ME! I should've been eating off the Weight Watchers menu the moment I switched off formula!" but instead I bit my tongue and said I was trying to lose weight for Mr. CCC's and mine's upcoming trip to Hawaii.

I got lots of understanding nods. Because even though they were all men, I'm starting to understand that "swimsuit season" freaks them out as much as it freaks women out. But then I started hearing the excuses...about how my job--therefore my lifestyle--made it difficult to lose weight. We all had such demanding schedules, finding time to work out was tough. Constant road trips and eating out meant havoc for the waist line.

For a moment I was tempted to agree. Heck, I've used those excuses for years. And then it hit me. It's not about excuses.

It's about choices.

Of course, traveling makes it harder to lose weight. No doubt about it. We all know restaurant meals can be dangerous but that doesn't make it impossible. I made the choice that night to drink Diet Coke instead of a cosmo or margarita. (Okay, I ordered the cosmo and it tasted so bad I switched it to Diet Coke). I made the choice that night to eat the Weight Watchers chicken dish instead of the burger and fries. I made the choice that night NOT to order dessert when everyone else did.

And as I looked around the table, I realized some of my colleagues were overweight. They were the ones most loudly blaming their "job" and their "lifestyle" for their lack of success.

It made me kind of sad for a moment because I know what it's like to be there. To feel like you can't control anything. To feel like you're just supposed to be overweight. I heard that resignation in their voices.

And then I got upset. Like me, those colleagues have friends and family who love them and have probably encouraged them to become healthier. They've chosen not to.

Staying on track is hard. Oh my goodness is it hard. As I'm blogging right now, my tummy is rumbling, I'm out of healthy snacks and I know the vending machine has all kinds of evil goodies for me.

I could just go over there, get some cookies, blame it on another late night at the office and say I'll do better tomorrow.

But I'm making the choice not to.

You aren't going to hear any more excuses from me.


(Unless you're my husband and you're asking me to explain why I bought another pair of shoes. I might have an excuse then....)

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Everybody loves chocolate...

I've got to start my blog today with a confession...

Last night was Mr. CCC's and mine's 3-year anniversary. Like most of those battling their weight, to me, a good celebration includes good food. Since it was a weeknight, we didn't make it to our usual place, but we went to Grand Lux near the house.

Had a great, great meal...roasted chicken with veggies (yes, I even ate the broccoli and snap peas. Aren't you proud?). I stayed away from the bread. I only drank half of my glass of wine.

But there was something I couldn't pass up--the molten chocolate cake with ice cream. It was one of the baked-to-order desserts and let me tell was so heavenly even Mr. CCC, a man who can take or leave sweets, was scraping the plate for the last bits of chocolate. It was wonderful and well worth all 30 of my remaining flex points.

For the rest of the week, I'm going to have to make sure I exercise and am obsessive about my points. After all, Saturday's weigh-in day will be here before I know it.
But the chocolate craving will re-emerge. I know that. So I'm preparing adding Hostess 100-Calorie Pack Chocolate Cupcakes to my grocery cart this evening.

These little treasures have small packets with 3 small chocolate cupcakes. Add a cup of skim milk and it's the perfect dessert...especially since 1 packet is just one point.

No, I'm not kidding. One point. (They're super high in fiber!)

A much more reasonable indulgence than the aforementioned molten chocolate cake, but I must admit--last night was one of those nights that reminded me why I love Weight Watchers. I was able to really enjoy a special night out and know I didn't blow my weight-loss efforts.

Gotta love that. Now off to find me some teeny tiny cupcakes...

Saturday, May 12, 2007

The Secret? What secret? I have my *own* secret...

So Oprah's hyped up another book--The Secret.

Everyone I know is reading up on The Secret. They tell me to visualize, to think positive, to see myself losing weight. Sounds feasible enough but I know myself.

Thinking positive isn't going to be enough. I need a little bit of fear, maybe just a touch of negativity. But more than that, I need action.

Wait, that sounded bad...

What I mean is that I need to be pro-active about my weight loss. And that's why I'm loving my own secret discovery--a book by Lisa Delaney called Secrets of a Former Fat Girl

I know what you're thinking. You're not about to walk into a bookstore, pick up a book that has "Fat Girl" in the title, and pay for it. Heck, I thought the same thing. I can't buy a book about fat girls.

But let's be real.

The person behind the counter knows what I do--that I'm fat. I can wear all the makeup I want, do my hair as nicely as possible and wear the cutest clothes I can fit into. But there's no hiding the fact I'm fat. And instead of running from that word, I'm choosing to embrace it. Because I'm not going to be fat much longer.

What I've really loved about the book--and I admit, I'm not finished with it yet--is that it's very real. It's very and the author has been there. She's overcome her weight issues, lost the pounds and isn't afraid to talk about the struggle.

There's something to be said about candor like that and reading Secrets of a Former Fat Girl has taught me that losing weight is something I have to challenge myself to do. I can't think the pounds away. I can't dream them away. I have to chase them away.

The only way to do that is to suck it up and work hard--sacrifice and fight through cravings. Pass up the greasy, unhealthy food. Exercise. Realize it is within my control.

Hey...was that positive thinking? Am I visualizing myself thinner? Maybe I need to go get that other book after all...

Friday, May 11, 2007

Hello? Hello? Anyone out there?

I hope so.

Cause I am...

There's always been so much I've wanted to do with my life...wear Manolo Blahniks every day, write about something other than sports (which is what I spend most of my life writing about), lose weight.

On this blog, I get to do two out of three. And if I don't mind wearing the same two pair of shoes, I can shoot for that first goal too.

In all seriousness...I've been the chubby girl all my life. You know the one--the one you always wanted to sit next to in class because she'd have all the right answers. And most days, she was nice enough to share.

You called her a friend, you invited her to parties, and felt COMPLETELY comfortable letting your boyfriend talk to her....but deep inside, you always thought she was a little off...I mean, she was FAT. (Hence why you knew your boyfriend was safe with HER!)

Well guess what...I'm tired of being that girl. (Although I promise, you can still let your boyfriends/husbands/girlfriends talk to me. I may be chunky, but I'm not vicious. And I happen to be happily married myself....)

For as long as I can remember, I've been trying to lose weight. My mom has been yanking cheeseburgers out of my fingers since I was 7. By the time I was 10, I'd already tried my first diet. By 14, I was a Weight Watchers regular.

I knew how to lose weight. What I didn't know--and frankly, didn't really CARE--to know, was how to keep it from coming back. Until it hit me, right before I got married, that never in my life, had I known what it was like to be thin.

I hadn't put on a two-piece bathing suit since I was a toddler (when belly fat was cute). Tank tops...I would never wear tank tops. Maybe that seems minor, but I was born and raised in South Florida. I think it's a requirement you spend half your life unclothed down here.

So 14 months before I walked down the aisle, I joined Weight Watchers. Again. And wow oh wow, did I make it work. I lost 60 pounds. When I got married, I looked about as good as I could remember. My wedding pictures were FABULOUS.

But I came back from my honeymoon so blissfully happy I forgot to get back on my diet. And for three years, I barely thought about it or the fact the pounds were creeping back on.

Not true. I thought about it often, but while my mind worked, my body was determined not to. I convinced myself that crying on the bathroom floor after seeing an ugly number on the scale would cause the weight to magically come off.

Ha, guess not. So I half-heartedly tried the South Beach Diet. Gave Weight Watchers another crack. Got desperate and told myself pre-packaged meals from Jenny Craig were the answer. I lost a few pounds, but it wasn't the progress my body (or MIND!) needed and eventually, I realized it was going to take actual work on my part (who knew?)

So I re-joined Weight Watchers. I dusted off my sneakers and got to exercising and here I am, down 6.5 pounds in three weeks.

Sure I've still got a long way to go, but I figure with a little encouragement from you (and my mom, and my husband, and my friends and anyone else willing to offer it!), this time, I'm going to make it work.

And I promise. I'll even wear a tank top when it happens...