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Runner - Friday Aug 26, 2005
(Under 1600 calories)
Weight: 113.5

Slowly, slowly, I'm getting back to normal. (I hope!) I was 115 before my run, 113.5 after. (By the skin of my teeth, I'm sure!)

I wasn't perfect last night because I did some last-minute baking for co-workers, but I'm feeling a bit stressed with all the details that need to be taken care of before we move tomorrow morning.

Thankfully, the oven is packed, along with the candy. But I just know that I'll have to treat myself to some sort of dessert tonight---probably McDonald's ice cream or something. I just have that "I deserve it" feeling, and once I get that feeling, I never seem to be able to shake it!

And there's always the problem of feeling compelled to finish everything in the fridge...but thankfully, there's not much left!

I'm hoping to see 113 tomorrow morning, but I'm not holding my breath.

borntocry on 08/26/2005:
Hi Runner,

Oh how well I know that compulsion to finish everything in the fridge! Good thing you don't have much left in it. I've started trying to make sure I get my fridge close to empty well before I go on holiday, because otherwise the night before is an inevitable free-for-all!

Thanks so much for the comment you left me. It had never even occurred to me that my feelings of starvation after work the other day might be because I hadn't had any protein. I'm sure you're right about that. I have started trying to have more protein lately and I thought I had it under control but I guess I need to keep closer track of it.

I guess it's also true that it isn't necessarily higher calorie foods which make our stomachs expand. I think it has more to do with the density of the food than the weight, though. Peanut butter and candy weigh a lot but they're really dense - packing a large amount of calories into what looks like a very small amount (as we well know!). So I guess it's only natural that we don't see the effect of those binges on our waistlines right away.

It's hard to believe that you're moving tomorrow morning! It seems like just a couple of days ago that you first found out about this move, and now you're already making it. Whereas my husband and I have been in the process of moving to our new apartment for months - and it isn't even in a different city!

legcramps on 08/26/2005:
I hate getting that 'I deserve it' feeling, because I end up not being able to shake it either. You did great, good luck and have a great day today.

Runner - Thursday Aug 25, 2005
(Under 1600 calories)
Weight: 114.0

Thanks so much for the encouragement, friends. You guys are the only people who understand how I feel when the scale just shoots up overnight. Other people just don't care...and if I ever show any sort of concern about gaining weight to my friends here, they'll just give me a "look." Do you ever get that "look"? The one that says, "Oh, quit worrying about it. You're so skinny!"

I hate that "look." Because I know that my concerns will fall on deaf ears. So I really appreciate the freedom to express my frustrations on the DD's. And whether people agree with me or not doesn't matter...I feel supported and understood.

My weight was down a bit this morning...at least I didn't see 117! I was 115 before my run and 114 after. I've been eating well and just trying to be patient...I'm hoping for a drop this weekend.

And Sweetpea and mummypod, you may be on to something. Maybe I need to totally revamp my fitness routine. I'm hoping to have access to a pool when we move back to our former city. Just swimming alone doesn't feel like a great workout to me, but if I combine it with weight lifting and biking, then I usually get a great workout!

borntocry on 08/25/2005:
Hi Runner,

Yes, I get that look all the time. Like, "Why are <i>you</i> talking about weight?" But think about this - those looks are the reward for all our efforts. When you ask yourself what the point is of counting every calorie and spending so much time exercising, remind yourself of how other people see you now - as a skinny person!

Thanks for the comment you left me. I'm impressed that you made baklava yourself! It seems quite complicated. Luckily I don't really like it all that much so I've never been tempted to make it.

You're right, I am hoping that my calorie estimate was a little high. I always try to be generous with my estimates but there's more room for error when it comes to anything pre-packaged or prepared by someone else, and even more when I eat so much of it! For instance, I estimated 100 calories for each bite-sized piece of semolina cake, which added up to 700 for 7 of them - that's a lot!

Oh and no-one believes me either when I tell them how much I'm capable of eating. In fact, it gets very annoying sometimes. My father, in particular, has this ridiculous misconception that I eat like a bird, even though whenever I'm around him I'm generally pigging out like there's no tomorrow! But he insists on thinking of me as this delicate creature who barely eats anything. It's insane!

sweetpea1977 on 08/25/2005:

Even though I may not be as thin as you (yet, LOL), I can understand why gaining 2-3 pounds overnight scares you. An overnight 2-3 lb gain on a petite (how tall are you, BTW?) and fit person is a lot, since their body frame is much smaller and is much more noticable than on someone with my 5' 8" medium frame body. As for me, I assumed I can probably gain 6-7 pounds before I even notice any real physical changes in my body (tight pants are my biggest clue!).

But, as I get smaller, those noticable packed on pounds from occasional overindulging will decrease exponentially and I will have more to be worried about! So, if I get to that point, I will need your expert advice and support to keep me from falling apart. :o)

Anyway, I got excited when I read you were gonna to revamp your exercise routine. Swimming is wonderful exercise, but I agree, you may maximize your calorie burning by adding weights and a bike.

geevee on 08/25/2005:
I think it was someone in the society pages who once commented, "You can never be too thin."

And then there was an article about Nan Kempner who died a few weeks ago. She knew everyone who is anyone. She was best of friends with designers Carolina Herrera, Yves Saint Laurent, etc. I love this line - She had "a dedication to fashion so extreme that she worked tirelessly to maintain a body weight of 110 pounds, a human hanger to display couture samples."

So all these attractive, slim women we see are the way they are because they work at it! Very few people have the metabolism that allows them to eat anything they want whenever they want to.

It's that mistaken notion that staying slim is easy which causes "that look". Most people just don't know, plain and simple. We do though!

Runner - Wednesday Aug 24, 2005
(Under 1600 calories)
Weight: 114.5

Well, friends, I've had a rough 24 hours, but I'm managing! My weight went from 113.5 in the morning to 119 before bed. (due to the buffet)

I was 117 when I woke up in the morning and somehow lost enough water to be 114.5 after my run. I know I'm throwing out a lot of numbers, but I am just amazed at the huge fluctuations. I can understand a 1-2 pound fluctuation, but 5 1/2 pounds? Did I really eat/drink enough to gain 5 1/2 pounds?

First of all, if any of the buffet weight sticks, I'm going to feel like giving up. Why, you ask? Well, I spent every single spare minute yesterday MOVING, in order to burn off more calories so I could enjoy the buffet. I ran for 55 minutes. I walked to and from work three times (even during my lunch), and to and from the hotel. Total walking time: 3 hours. Am I crazy? My husband thinks so.

And then I ate a very reasonable breakfast and lunch, so I could enjoy the buffet dinner. Boy, did I enjoy it! It was truly delicious food. I concentrated on the Japanese selections---sushi, cold noodles, etc., but I also had 2 pieces of dim sum, some Indian chicken, a few bites of seafood salads, some veggies, etc. I just had bites and tastes of a lot of things---I didn't eat big portions of anything. And I even passed up some good foods that I like but can get anytime. I did eat one small piece of deep fried purple sweet potato, which was divine! And I controlled myself around the desserts, for the most part. The best one was a chocolate layer cake, of which I ate about 1/2 a piece. I also tried a few bites of my husband's desserts.

All in all, compared to my co-workers, I did the least bit of pigging out. Yet I went home feeling very full and very bloated and wasn't surprised to see the 119 on the scale. How depressing, though. And why I am I still bloated 20 hours later, even though I've had another good run and have been drinking plenty of water? Was the food really THAT salty?

I'm feeling a bit disillusioned about this whole weight loss thing at the moment. People eat out all the time and don't exercise half of what I do, and they still maintain their weight. Why do I have to spend the next week watching every calorie just so I can get back to 112.5? I'll be lucky if I get there. After seeing 117 this morning when I woke up, I felt pretty down. I haven't been 117 in the mornings for over a year.

I need a breakthrough!

I wish I could have enjoyed the buffet without having to think about calories. Although the food was great, I'm not sure it was worth it.

mummypod on 08/24/2005:
Hiya hun... boy you really do sound down!!!

Cheer up girl... I am POSITIVE you haven't gained those 5 or so pounds OVERNIGHT... it is near impossible to do that! Now if you did that amount of eating for days and then weeks.. YEP it would stay on. But knowing how disciplined you are.. knowing how you get back on 'the wagon' I KNOW you will see 113 soon.

It takes ages for weight to get on and stay on.. yeah we can easily put a kilo on in a week if we eat badly every day.. but even eating 2 days per week won't make you gain those pounds so quickly. Especially as you exercise so hard. That running burns those calories like lightening but I gotta say.. that maybe your body is used to that amount of running now? I am wondering if you need to shock your muscles into burning in a different way.

For me.. I played basketball, netball, had no car so I walked everywhere.. yet I kept gaining a kilo around every 2 months.. with no real change in my diet. I went to the gym and Mary recommended I really shock my muscles again... so I do a couple of really heavy weight sessions per week to mix it up.. IT WORKS! I still do all the other things but I added boxing and heavy weights. I haven't bulked up at all.. women don't tend to unless they take steroids and too many protein shakes LOL

Don't despair.. you will be fine... forget about that bad day and begin a new one tomorrow!!! Nobody is perfect... and people who eat out all the time might be thin.. but are they healthy???

Kim xxx

borntocry on 08/24/2005:
Hi Runner,

I know how you feel. I've been feeling a bit demotivated and disillusioned lately too. But unlike you, I don't feel like I pig out less than everyone else I know. Sure, a lot of the time I do, but then there's always those late-night baking sprees, deranged sweet potato incidents and the like which offset my good work.

Anyway, I'm sure your weight will go back down soon. Wait until this weekend! I remember when I went to my husband's friend's wedding in America, my weight went from 109.5 to 112.5 lb over the weekend. You told me not to worry because I was probably just retaining water due to all the extra carbohydrates. Well, you were right. Three days later my weight was down to 108 - lower than it had been before the wedding!

Maybe it's because we generally eat such healthy diets that our bodies are no longer accustomed to carbohydrates so they get overloaded much more easily and it takes a while to process them. You never know! But one thing we do know is that our weight does go back down again. Of course it's a constant battle - but that's because we're trying to maintain such low weights. Back when I weighed 123 lb. it was easy!

sweetpea1977 on 08/24/2005:
Hey Runner,

Everybody's body works differently, so you cant really compare yours to anyone's but to yourself. You know what works best for you, so concentrate on that and forget everyone else.

Anyway, Im sure the weight will come back off in a few days, once you get back into your regular eating habits. I think BTC has a very good point in that it probably takes longer for a discliplined body to process heavy doses of carbs.

I also assume that it is much harder for person to maintain the low end of their recommended weight than it is for a person to maintain the high end of their recommended weight (like me). I figure that once I start approaching my low weight of 130 - 145, it will become increasingly difficult for me to maintain at a specific weight.

Also, I think your body is so used to the years of running you have done. You may want to try adding some toning to your exercise (light weights, crunches, pilates) to trick your body into burning extra calories. Adding 1 hour of toning to my daily cardio schedule has done wonders for my metabolism and physique.

geevee on 08/24/2005:
You were very brave to get on the scale last night. Never, never again! I did too, just for the Hell of it and went to bed extremely depressed when I saw 133!!!

And then this morning I felt smaller and took a chance getting on the scale only to see a drop of 3� lbs. Sometimes it doesn't make any sense at all, esp. after the chocolate I ate.

I wonder if that fried purple sweet potato is the same as the purple potatoes from Peru that I love so much.

I'm glad you did so well at the buffet and enjoyed the foods you chose to eat. Think in terms of the control you exerted not only at the buffet but during the day and in regard to the exercise you had to compensate for any overeating. All in all I'd consider it a positive experience.

As for the bloating, that potato dish with anchovies that bloated me up to something like 134.5 lasted a good four days before my body got rid of the excess, so give it time to normalize.

Runner - Tuesday Aug 23, 2005
(Under 1600 calories)
Weight: 113.5

115 before my run; 113.5 after.

Bites and tastes...bites and tastes. I had a few too many bites and tastes last night, as I had some people over to my house and served them snacks. Allowing myself to rationalize that a few bites and tastes won't hurt, I managed to eat probably 400 extra calories that were unplanned.

Whether that led to the 115 on the scale this morning or not, I don't know. But I do know that I'm not going in the direction I had hoped to go.

Tonight is the big buffet...in some ways, having a slight weight gain is good, as it may keep me from going back for seconds and thirds and fourths...

I definitely don't want to see 116 tomorrow, and I can honestly say that at this moment, the idea of pigging out just to pig out isn't appealing to me at all. Let's hope I can keep that mindset when I enter the restaurant and am forced to inhale the wonderful aromas and see the wonderful plates of food.

But I have my buffet strategies! (thanks to some of you who have shared your tips with me)

1. Try the foods I really want and rarely get

2. Avoid eating the foods I can eat anytime---like fruit

3. Stay away from anything deep fried. It's really not worth it.

4. Ask my husband to get dessert; eat a few bites of his.

5. Eat slowly. Enjoy the conversation. Drink lots of hot tea and water.

6. Walk to and from the restaurant, even if it means getting a little sweaty.

7. Brush my teeth when I'm done eating. Nobody has to know why I excuse myself when I'm finished. If I brush, I don't want to eat any more.

I wish I didn't have to resort to these kinds of pep talks and strategies, but I do. Some people struggle with spending too much money or gambling; others struggle with Internet addictions; others struggle with drugs or alcohol. I struggle with food. And I can admit that openly. So when I'm faced with a huge buffet of food, it takes strategies to keep my sanity...and my waistline!

And I know that you all understand...you have your own strategies for losing weight or maintaining your current weight. I am glad that the DD's is a place for people who want to win this battle the RIGHT way...the healthy way. People who resort to unhealthy or unsafe methods of losing weight don't last long here.

So thanks for all the tips and strategies...I've learned some great things from many of you! I hope I have a good entry tomorrow after the BIG BUFFET!

jolt on 08/23/2005:
Hope all goes well at your dinner. Sounds like you have a great plan. There is nothing wrong with pep talks either. We all do it from time to time. I know it helps me through the day.

Hugs for a great day


borntocry on 08/23/2005:
Hi Runner,

I LOVE your list of buffet strategies! In fact I'm thinking of printing it out so that I can take it with me the next time I go to a buffet. I totally agree with you about avoiding things you can eat any time, like fruits. I always fall into that trap of thinking that because something is healthy, I should allow myself unlimited quantities of it. That's great on a normal day, but not on top of a big dinner! It just ends up adding on several hundred calories to my meal.

So fill up on tea and water, as you mentioned, and try to keep up your end of the conversation - that should slow you down somewhat and you'll be too embarrassed to keep eating once everyone else has finished! Eating fast is a big problem for me, too - it seems I can eat three times the amount of everyone else before they even notice I've started!

Thanks for the comment you left me - my mouth was watering after reading your description of those roasted sweet potatoes the Chinese make. They sound so good! I almost feel like making a trip to China just to try them (as well as those scallion pancakes you mentioned once - I've been thinking about those lately, too)! But I guess maybe I should follow your example and start avoiding sweet potatoes altogether, although I hate doing that with vegetables. It's really a shame that I should have to avoid something healthy because I'm simply unable to limit myself to a normal portion of it!

Soon2BThin on 08/23/2005:
I think you're so right to have a plan. You know the old saying of all dieters: If you fail to plan, you plan to fail! We all need to do that in those kinds of situations. I hope you enjoy what you do eat though--and the company.

Runner - Monday Aug 22, 2005
(Under 1600 calories)
Weight: 113.0

Thanks, Geevee, for understanding my predicament. I get weary of always having to explain myself when I refuse to eat certain foods. Since people usually have no idea how far I've come in this weight loss thing, they just assume that I'm being far too picky. But I have to avoid those trigger foods whenever I can...and I have to be picky when I eat out. I know what happens when I don't!

Tomorrow night will be the roughest day of the week, hands on. We're going to an all-you-can-eat buffet at a hotel, and I know the food will be fabulous. I pushed to eat at this place instead of doing a set meal, and my co-workers agreed. So it's partly my fault that we're eating there instead of at a restaurant where I could probably avoid a bunch of tempting foods. But it's been ages since I've eaten at a buffet, and the greedy side of me is eager to fill up on some things I haven't had in awhile...of course, I'll still aim to exercise discipline, as I know how bad it feels to completely overdo it. But I plan to keep my calories low throughout the day, get enough exercise, and take it easy this week with the sweets. Therefore, I can afford to enjoy a nice buffet dinner.

It sure does take a lot of work to maintain my weight, though! What would happen if I threw all caution to the wind? What would happen if I never exercised?

****Where is Becca27? We miss you, Becca! Please update us!

borntocry on 08/22/2005:
Hi Runner,

I can relate to your experience at the "Greek" restaurant yesterday. My husband and I have to put up with the same thing here in Europe - paying inflated prices for miserly portions of inauthentic and inaccurately-advertised food. I think you just have to accept that standards are different outside of America (for instance over here, the customer is always WRONG!) and you can't compare prices and portion sizes with what you would expect in America. My husband is always complaining about how expensive restaurants are here, and I've started getting fed up of it. Now, when he complains, I ask him, "Expensive compared to what? Name one place here that's less expensive than the one we just ate it." Inevitably, he can't - he still mentally compares the prices here to those in the U.S. But for how long are we going to keep doing that? We're always going to feel like we're being ripped off.

Anyway, thanks for your comment. I did remember that you're blond - and how strange the Chinese seem to find it! I am also a bit worried about someone seeing my picture and recognising me, though, as you said, it isn't very likely. I think I might actually try to delete it now that you've all seen what I look like!

Well, have fun at the buffet dinner - I love buffets with a passion and there don't seem to be many around here (it's that European stinginess!).

sweetpea1977 on 08/22/2005:
I think your plan to enjoy a rare buffet dinner is great. I usually follow the same plan when I order a pizza or go out for Mexican, that way I wouldnt have any regrets later. Its all about balance and moderation!


geevee on 08/22/2005:
People who haven't traveled and/or lived abroad have no idea of the importance that the food you grew up with acquires when you can't get it. It's perfectly understandable why you chose a hotel buffet which would most assuredly have a few familiar goodies that you miss. Of course you will take advantage of the opportunity and make allowances in other meals so you can once again enjoy some of your favorites. Wouldn't it be nice if they had good ice cream?

Hey! If you go overboard a little, you'll make up for it the next day. Enjoy!

Runner - Sunday Aug 21, 2005
(Under 1600 calories)
Weight: 113.0

Okay, so I saw 113 today...but I'm still holding my breath.

I was thinking more about what I said yesterday about being so picky when I eat out. The more time people spend with me, the more they notice. If I'm with a new group of people for the first time, I can easily avoid eating certain things...I chalk it up to "I don't like that very much." But if I eat with the same people over and over, they begin to notice that I'm much pickier than the average person. Now, I'm not always this way. But sometimes I get very frustrated with restaurants that have NO healthy options...and then I just don't eat anything! Yes, I may look like a spoiled brat, but I will NOT shove food down my throat simply because everyone else is. Especially if it's food that I don't want to eat.

Today was a classic example of a time when I appeared far too picky for the average Chinese person...but I really don't care. We went to a "Greek" restaurant (or so they said), and I ordered a Greek salad, dressing on the side. (I never eat fattening dressing...why should I?)

Well, first I was told that they were out of the salad...which was quite disheartening, but then they told me that they DID have the salad...but it came with dressing on it. So I asked them to take it back. The customer is always right, right? (I'm so American).

Well, they brought me back a new salad, and I kid you not---it was about 5 big pieces of lettuce, a couple of tomatoes, and probably 1/2 an ounce of feta cheese. Half an ounce? And they wanted $5 for the salad! It was unbelievably pathetic.

I refused to eat it. My poor husband had to explain to the waitress that I did NOT want the salad...of course, everyone at the table was watching me, but I was already too worked up to care. I will NOT pay $5 for a couple of pieces of lettuce. And I was expecting a reasonable amount of feta cheese---wouldn't you? I mean, it was a Greek restaurant, for crying out loud! But I needed a microscope just to see the blasted cheese!

So while I sat and fumed, everyone else pigged out on their huge pitas or whatever they got, and I picked a bit at my husband's lamb skewers. When I got home, I made up for lost time as I consumed probably the same amount of calories I would have if I'd just eaten what everyone else ate. Isn't that the ironic thing? I still ate a big lunch...I just ate it a couple of hours later. But at least I ate what I WANTED to eat, and at least I enjoyed it and didn't spend any extra money for it!

But I came off as picky and hard-to-please.

I hate it when I'm the only one who ever watches what I eat when I eat out...everyone else just eats. I mentally calculate the calories. I guess it will always be like this if I want to maintain my weight. I definitely know what happens when I don't start counting calories, and I don't ever want to go down that road ever again!!!

geevee on 08/21/2005:

Don't worry about how you come off and what people must think of you. I've gotten beyond that. It's like this is the way I am. Take it or leave it. I'm glad you sent the salad back. I am now able to do that too. I did it at a very good barbecue place with the French fries which weren't cooked long enough and were too soft, so I told the waitress and after a while she brought back some fries that were cooked as they ought to be. I no longer hesitate to do this nor do I give it a second thought or explain anything to whoever I might be with.

There were many times in Peru and Bolivia when I couldn't eat lunch either because it was the exact same meal that every restaurant in the entire country serves EVERY day and I had gotten to the point where I just couldn't bear the idea of eating it again. Sandwiches were out of the question because of the lousy bread, and I mean LOUSY! So lunch would be a couple of beers while my friend had a fit because I wasn't eating. If people can't handle my quirks, so be it.

So, good for you! I'm glad that at least you enjoyed eating later. It was well worth the wait.

Runner - Saturday Aug 20, 2005
(Under 1600 calories)
Weight: 113.5

I was 113 today, but I'm too skeptical to record that weight after tonight's dinner.

I did fine all day, and then my husband and I attended a dinner party where we paid $15 a meal. Kinda pricey for where we live, trust me. We're used to spending $3- $5 on meals out since we often "eat off the street."

But anyway...the food was okay but nothing special, and since I paid so much money for it, I felt obligated to keep eating it...even though I wasn't very hungry! But eat I did. Even though I stuck to the lean proteins and veggies, everything was still pan-fried. And I had dessert, too. Now I feel heavy and bloated, and my usual weekend weight is nowhere to be found!

On a positive note, I've only had one tiny taste of that German spread in the last 2 days.

But I'm just feeling in a slump lately with my food choices. A lot of it is out-of-my-control...at least the food that I'm served. But I guess I should be stronger and not eat so much of it. I used to be really good at just saying "no" to certain foods...but I got tired of being so downright picky. And people start to notice after awhile when you constantly refuse to eat certain things. It's so much harder here, as there is rarely a low-fat alternative. The Chinese just give me weird looks if I ask for low-fat alternatives. They have no idea what that means. And yet they continue to eat their greasy food and stay relatively thin, compared to most Americans. It's just not fair sometimes!

Umpqua on 08/20/2005:
Good job on having only a taste of that spread! We used to keep Nutella in the house back in my "fat" days, and I would eat it with just about anything. I think you do just fine with your eating considering you're in an environment where lowfat foods are practically non-existant. I read somewhere recently that the obesity "epidemic" had finally reached China - the mainland at least. The article said it was due to more availability of fast foods and convenience foods at grocery stores. I've always envied Asians as it seems many of them are genetically geared to be thin, but it just shows that culture and nutrition also play a huge role how large we are.

geevee on 08/20/2005:
We think alike, Runner. If you pay for something, you are literally forced mentally to eat all of what you've paid for. It just goes against the grain to spend so much for a meal and not get your money's worth. God, every time you mention the greasy food the memories flood my mind! That was the summer when I must have lost 15 lbs. without trying. My clothes were hanging on me. I though I was becoming anorexic when I'd declare, "Today I ate 5 peas, one sl. of tomato, a small piece of lettuce and a spoonful of whatever." Ah, for the good old Communist days when nothing good was available anywhere!

I don't have a problem with not eating when there's nothing available that I like. That long lost world in China was a wonderful motivator and I was so happy to lose weight then. Unfortunately, it was only a matter of a few years where I destroyed all the progress I had made and topped my previous high weight when I made a habit of eating at fast food joints once or twice a day.

I think there's a lot to the idea of losing momentum dietwise after working so hard to lose the majority of weight. I remember your complaining about the last stubborn 5 pounds and how it took a year to shed them. That's me!

borntocry on 08/20/2005:
Hi Runner,

I know what you mean about getting tired of being picky all the time, and people noticing how you constantly refuse to eat certain things. I've started to feel the same way recently. People at work are always surprised when I won't even taste something which someone has brought in for everyone, and my husband has started asking me why I refuse to eat something like that cherry cake which he knows I like and used to have all the time in the past. I never wanted to become the type of girl who never has dessert - you know? If only I could learn to control myself and stick to smaller portions and avoid the periodic binges on things like sweet potato, maybe I could actually eat more normally!

Thanks so much for your comment. I know you do understand my frustration - that cheated feeling - more than anyone! Oh and I really did eat over a pound of sweet potato - 560 grams, to be exact. And according to calorieking that's 400 calories. Add a tablespoon of butter, a couple of spoons of maple syrup, and a sprinkling of raisins and walnuts, and there you have it.

Well, if you don't manage to find the French protein bars at Carrefour, let me know whenever your stash runs out and I'll be happy to send you some from here! I think you'll like them... they're quite fudgy and they smell just like real chocolate!

Runner - Thursday Aug 18, 2005
(Under 1600 calories)
Weight: 113.5

Still at 113.5. Ugh. Saw 115 when I woke up this morning.

Yesterday was near-perfect with my food choices, until I bought a jar of some German chocolate-vanilla spread. (kinda like Nutella) It was on sale and was definitely a last-minute purchase...I didn't give myself time to think about whether I really wanted it in my house or not! I bought it "for my husband," or so I thought...

And when I opened it at 9:00pm, I stuck a spoon in it and discovered pure sugary goodness. Yes, I can eat that stuff straight from the jar, just like peanut butter. Well, this stuff is total fat and sugar---there's nothing nutritious in it. The first two ingredients are sugar and partially hydrogenated vegetable oil---two of the deadliest foods to consume! And yet I shoveled several spoonfuls right into my mouth. Hundreds of calories in ten seconds flat.

Sometimes I am just downright pathetic.

I'm not touching that stuff today. I made a deal with my husband---if I eat any of it, I have to do it in front of him. And if I ever sneak it, the whole jar gets thrown away.

Sounds drastic, I know, but I am fully aware of my weaknesses, and this jar of chocolatey goodness has just been added to my list of "trigger foods." I'm never buying it again.

I'd throw it out now, but my husband likes it. So I'm going to exercise restraint and keep my greedy fingers out of the jar.

borntocry on 08/19/2005:
Hi Runner,

Sometimes I can't help but wonder if we have some hidden masochistic tendencies that lead us into such incredibly challenging situations! I am the same way - just when things are going well, I decide that it would be the perfect occasion to make my favourite dessert, or bake some homemade bread, or I come up with some other equally hare-brained scheme which will only lead to certain disaster.

One thing I do sometimes when I have a particularly tempting treat in the house is tie it up in a plastic bag or seal it with tape or something. This actually started with a jar of Nutella which had a crack in the lid. I had to seal it somehow and eventually discovered that by wrapping it up in a plastic bag and tying a good tight knot in it, I'm forced to spend a few minutes thinking about the choice I'm making every time I try to untie the bag to have some of it. And those few minutes are often enough for me to come to my senses and realise what I'm doing. Of course, the only problem is that your husband might not appreciate this when <i>he</i> wants to have some of it...

Oh and thanks for the comment you left me - I think you asked me for the name of that protein bar once before, too: it's <a href="http://www.gerlinea.tm.fr/" target="blank_">Gerlin�a</a> (it's the chocolatey-looking thing on the front page), but I think it's a French brand which is probably only available here. I could send you some, though!!

aymalaika on 08/19/2005:
hey runner!

i'll put that recipe up on monday for you, not going to have access over the weekend... have a good one!

sweetpea1977 on 08/19/2005:
Hey Runner,

That chocolate spread sounds DEVINE!! I would probably eat it by the spoonfuls myself as I am a sucker for chocolate!! How is it supposed to be used anyway? Sounds really sweet so it supposed to be a dessert topping similar to frosting?

Anyway, I like your plan on how to control yourself around it in the future. Anytime you see that jar, think about how your hubby would be sad if you had to throw it away! :o)

I tend to vary my calorie intake each day to avoid a metabolism slow down. I have low calorie days mixed with a couple of high calorie days. I can easily survive on 1100-1300 calories each day without feeling hunger pains, but I make to to eat heavy on other days to keep my body from adjusting to such a low calorie day.

Thank you for your comments on maintaining. Its nice knowing that I am able to relax a little in the eating department. Im going to take advantage of this by adding light desserts (100-300cal) to my daily intake once I get my final alterations done. :o)

Have a good day and marvelous weekend!

Runner - Wednesday Aug 17, 2005
(Under 1600 calories)
Weight: 113.5

I'm back from my trip and a bit disappointed that I'm a full pound up. (Actually, my pre-run weight was 114.5...so it's really two pounds).

I know I indulged in some sweets, but I thought my exercise was enough to cancel it out...and my meals were pretty low-cal overall. Oh, well. I'm feeling a bit bloated, so I'll chalk it up to the fluctuations that are a part of my everyday life!

Sweetpea...great idea about making my own ice cream! Funny you should mention that, as a lady I work with (from the U.S.) is going back home and leaving me her ice cream maker! So I'm excited to start making my own low-fat/ low-cal creations!

My husband and I are actually moving in a week...back to the city we used to live in. We've been in this city for 8 months...and he's switching jobs, so we're packing up again! I've moved 6 times in the last 6 years. (Even though I've only had 2 jobs!) Thankfully, my company is based in the city we used to live in, and I'm looking forward to working with a lot of people I got to know 2 years ago!

And I shouldn't have to travel as much...what a relief! Those road trips wear me out.

Anyway, since we're moving next Friday, we have a lot of "farewell parties" and dinners...so the food temptations will be severe for the next week or so!

Constant diligence, right Geevee? I've got to take it one day at a time!

borntocry on 08/18/2005:
Hi Runner,

I'm sorry your weight is up. Probably just your routine mid-week high though, right?

It will be nice for you to move back to old job, where you won't have to travel so much. I'm sure you could do without such frequent disruptions to your schedule. All those farewell parties and dinners are going to be a major challenge, but I guess there's no way around it. You'll just have to make up for it later!

Thanks for the comment you left me. I find it impossible to eat just half a protein bar too! The ones I get here are just 117 calories, so I usually don't mind having a full one, but now my old favourite - PowerBar - has come to Europe and I find I can't really justify those 250 or so calories to myself. It's really nothing more than a glorified candy bar!

sweetpea1977 on 08/18/2005:
Im sorry about the bloat. I am feeling a little less bloated today, but it is still lingering. Grr! Very annoying!

Im glad you are going to be able to experiment with making homemade low-fat/low calorie ice cream. Keep me posted on your creations! Perhaps you can reveal a few of your favorite recipes, because I would love to make some of my own again. As a kid, I loved making my own ice cream...that would be a fun habit to get back into! :o)

Thats cool that you get to work with your former coworkers again. And Im thrilled that you wont have to travel as much.

Enjoy those parties/dinners by concentrating on the reason why they are being done in the first place - your departure! Everyone is going to miss you so be sure to spend time with the people who have built a friendship with you. Food comes second when saying goodbye to good friends :o)

geevee on 08/18/2005:
Son Jim commented about all the farewell dinners he was invited to the last couple of weeks he was in Japan. It sure isn't easy getting through them! Let's hope there are a lot of grease-soaked vegetables which will be a great help to you, some of those awful Chinese cakes, etc. and a poor excuse for ice cream. Nothing turns me off better than being presented dishes I don't like. Then you'd be able to pick your way through each meal. Good luck!

Runner - Tuesday Aug 16, 2005
(Under 1600 calories)
Weight: 112.5

I only have one more day until I get to go back home. I think I've done well so far...I've actually eaten less than normal due to a busy schedule. But I had a meal out today, and I'm never quite sure how many calories are in the Chinese food I eat...I mean, it's usually swimming in oil, so I have to blot it before I eat it. But I did avoid the deep-fried stuff and tried to stick to the veggies and seafood.

BUT, I got a HUGE craving for a McD's fudge sundae tonight and I could NOT get it out of my mind. So I gave in to the temptation. (It's not because I hadn't eaten enough all day...I had already eaten chocolate cake earlier!) So I gave in to the temptation...rationalizing that I deserved it, as I had gone to a gym and worked out for almost 2 hours. And then I only had some sushi and veggies for dinner, so I was very hungry by 9pm.

To my disappointment, the sundae didn't make me feel that much better. (and I was still hungry!) Sure, I liked the fudge on top...but I threw away half of the ice cream and ended up eating what I should have just eaten all along---some cereal and fruit. I really wanted to avoid the ice cream, and I should have, especially since I had already indulged in cake at lunch. I know, I know...it's only one sundae. But I allowed my "cravings" to win the battle; when in actuality, I was just hungry for some healthy food. The cereal tasted much better.

Umpqua on 08/16/2005:
I know only too well that any amount of stress or change in your life can cause these type of cravings. Even if you rationalize them later, it's still so tough to resist them! The McD's sundaes are made with ice milk anyway, right? So that should be too high in calories or fat, although I know the fudge could be. But you got your chocolate fix anyway ;) Those Skinny Cow ice cream sandwiches really save me at times like that - I was really craving a sundae last night but settled for one of those instead.

geevee on 08/16/2005:
The same thing has happened to me lately when I give in to a craving. I end up not really enjoying whatever the food was after all, like the last time I had pizza. I was so disappointed which makes me wary of the next time.

sweetpea1977 on 08/16/2005:
Thanks so much for the comment Runner. I think this is the worst bloat I've ever had, now I understand why you despise it so much!!

Im sorry that the sundae didnt meet your expectations. I really hate it when that happens. But, at least the next time you have a craving for ice cream, you will know to avoid that McD's. Skinny Cows usually solve my ice cream (and chocolate!) cravings, but Im guessing that the stores over there dont carry that stuff.

Have you ever considered making homemade lowfat/low sugar ice cream? You can probably find an ice cream maker on the internet as well as some low calorie recipes. Just a thought... :o)

borntocry on 08/17/2005:
Hi Runner,

Yes, I've had that same experience when I give in to cravings - disappointment and inevitable regret. But in my case I often do more damage when I try to ward off a craving with healthier alternatives, as I often end up giving in to it anyway and by that time I've already piled on the calories with all the alternatives as well!

Thanks for the comment you left me. I really hope you're right and that I can maintain my weight on 1800 calories a day. Of course I do want to keep aiming for 1500, and I do succeed from time to time, but not regularly enough to maintain my weight if that's what it takes to maintain it. With all the exercise, I don't think I should gain weight on 1800 calories a day, but I guess I'll find that out when I weigh myself this Saturday!

Oh and cranberry beans aren't anything like cranberries - I think they're just named that because of their colouring (which is kind of like pinto beans). They taste quite similar to kidney beans, I think.

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