Sunday, September 20, 2009

"So, you should post some recipes from the Fine in '09 Campaign. What were you eating?"

I started this as a comment in response to a comment on the post below. It got so unwieldy long that it's now a post. I'm not sure I'd recommend anybody actually follow my method for reasons I'll elaborate on later. But, at the height of The Campaign, I did go on a diet of sorts for about 4 - 5 weeks. I stopped eating full meals, and instead ate high powered snacks over the course of the day. Stuff like a boiled egg, nuts, yogurt, etc... Sometimes I'd splurge on a whole avocado or some tuna salad (heavy on the tuna and pickles, very light on the mayo) with whole wheat, high fiber crackers (industrial cardboard, actually). Then I'd fill in the rest of the day with fruit and cut veggies. At night - every night for the whole period - I ate a salad, mixing up the veggies for balance and interest and adding in grilled chicken and Parmesan cheese for protein. Needless to say, the kiddos were pretty freaking tired of salad by election day. The theory was to maintain a fairly constant level of input to spur my metabolism to operate at its most efficient level. In the evening, when my energy needs spiked - because that's when I worked out - I took in more food, but the rest of the time my caloric intake was pretty equalized. Also, I figured that without eating full meals, I'd avoid a lot of the extraneous crap we all usually end up eating. I didn't want anything coming in that my body couldn't or wouldn't use. There were a ton of unintended benefits of the diet. I ended up almost entirely eliminating carbs and animal fats from my diet, without making a conscious decision to do so. I'm fairly certain I would have mentally resisted such a decision. I ended up with whole foods making up a pretty significant chunk of my diet and raw foods not far behind. Meal prep time was cut down awesomely and there was absolutely no slaving over a hot stove in the middle of the summer. I think the theory is good. But, in retrospect, I don't think I needed to be quite as strict about it as I was. Toward the end of the period, I started to feel a bit weak. Actually, on the spectrum of a bit weak to straight passing out, I may have leaned a little farther toward straight passing out. Which leads me in to why I'm not sure I would recommend the diet. I don't know how healthy it actually was - feeling like you're going to pass out is probably not a symptom of optimum health. Also, while I didn't find it particularly hard to stick to the diet - my somewhat obsessive nature kicked in and I kind of reveled in the structure of it all - most people aren't weird like that. I think an extremely rigid diet only works for certain personalities. Lastly, a temporary fix like this isn't good if you need to make lifestyle changes. Luckily, my normal eating and general lifestyle are pretty healthy, so a temporary change and then a return to normal worked well for me. In fact, I've continued to lose weight in the weeks since I stopped the diet. I'm starting to cut back on exercise now, because I want to stay pretty much where I'm at. So, that's what I was eating. Or not eating.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Things I've learned on the Fine in '09 Campaign trail.

You guys! I'm ready to pronounce the campaign a success, pretty much back to my normal size and weight. Still working on firming up a few trouble spots, but just about there. I've never really tried to lose weight before, and did not have a clue what I was doing when I got started. So, here I am littering the Interwebz with what I've learned.

Exercise is key. Dieting alone will get you just about nowhere.

That said, what you eat is far more important than what you do. Think about it this way, it takes someone my size and weight about an hour of hard work to burn off 500 calories. So, that Big Mac meal you can scarf down in ten minutes...? You'll have to run pretty hard for almost two and a half hours to work that off. Want to walk it off? Get ready for a're looking at almost six hours. Much less time consuming to just not eat it in the first place.

To lose weight quickly and efficiently, recognize that your body is a furnace. Streamline your input so you maintain a fairly constant energy level, don't overload it three times a day. This makes it easier to avoid temptation and makes your metabolism work with you.

Bust. Your. Ass. I know they say to start slow and build up, but nothing is more inspiring than making serious progress. It's a lot easier to lose your focus and drift back to bad habits when you're trying to go slow.

I guess that's all I've got. Worked for me.


As requested. Excellent picture quality due to the fact that Baby A saw me trying to take pictures and insisted on wiping down the mirror for me. With a baby wipe. Ever the little helper bunny.

Monday, September 07, 2009

Bollywood is not coming to find *me*.

I mentioned to a friend that I was going to go Bollywood for Halloween this year and she sent me a link to this amazing site and specifically the beautiful dress below: I could have kissed her! How amazing is this!? Then, I could have kicked her. It's $599.95!! What is she doing to me!? Hey, this one is only $340.95. Sweet! I like it better anyway. I really need to get on the hunt for reality based items. Halloween will be here in like a minute.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

No shame in my game.

I've always found the topic of this post on Serious Eats interesting. Do girls really eat less when guys are around? It doesn't seem heterosexual men similarly constrain themselves. What about gay men and women? Do they also exhibit typical group-wide behavior? Does this mean gay women on a date generally both starve themselves? I'm curious. Apparently, I'm weird. I go the opposite direction. First, though, with the caveat that a man has to be attractive to me to in any way affect my eating behavior. I'll eat things in the company of men that I wouldn't eat by myself, with girlfriends or the fam. The last thing I want is to give the impression that I need to starve myself to look good. I want the package to appear effortless. I'm trying to decide whether that is more or less pathetic than the typical girl behavior. It may well be a wash, you guys.