Saturday, January 24, 2009

An Intervention About Food with Myself

It is sobering to see how much becoming friends with fellow foodies has been a catalyst to gaining weight. In fact it has resulted in my gaining twenty pounds since the end of my vacation when I meet up in person with some of my fellow Houston Chowhounds. I would not trade these new friends in, in order to lose weight, but I have to figure out a better way to share my passion for good food with them besides over indulging.

Let me make something very clear from the start - they are not fault. It is I, who knows that keeping my weight in check requires some vigilance on my part and certainly portion control. I know that making an exception with my eating habits just this one time has led to a succession of exceptions. It is just that they are so much fun to be with, to talk about food with, to get their recommendations about places to eat and then to eat there and share my experiences, and so on, and so on, and so on. Besides that fatty foods taste better and eating to much refined sugar leads to craving even more sugar. I had to stop and figure something out, or I could buy some new clothes in a larger size.

It is my obsession with eating flavorful and interesting food that has gotten me in trouble. When it tastes good, I just want to eat and eat. So I have, ate and ate. In fact I apparently increased my sugar intake dramatically without even realizing it.

It is also my lack of exercise that has contributed to my weight gain. I have not paid any attention to exercising. In the summer I would swim or do NIA almost every day. As soon as September rolled around, I stopped swimming. I stopped doing NIA except on the weekends and even then maybe only once. I fooled myself into thinking that it would be alright. My clothes got tighter and I pretended not to notice.

Between you and me, I even pretended to be watching what I was eating. Pretended to myself? But I wasn’t watching anything. I was eating three squares a day and snacking.

While I continued to eat lots of whole grain foods and fruit, I was eating lots of fatty and sweet foods as well.

How do I know this? I put myself on a 1600-2000 calorie a day diet a few days ago. I found program on the Internet called Calorie Counter. Calorie Counter is a great way to track what I am actually eating as I enter in everything on-line that I eat. The program is especially helpful for people who eat processed foods, as much of that information is already loaded into the system. Since I do not use much processed food, I do the best I can to put in all the ingredients I use to make a dish to get an accurate view of what I am eating. The program also rates the healthiness of the food.

In top of that, I am entering in my daily exercise. It is sobering to see what I am doing versus ignoring what I was not doing. The first day, I was so over the top, I decided to throw out that data.

After a few days I am getting the hang of using the program and I am already tweaking my habits, eating and exercise wise, to try to lose at least 15 pounds in the next few months. I know I will be successful with this program, because it shows me what I am and I am not doing well.

Does this mean the end of my food adventures? No way! I have not stopped eating or cooking. In fact, I will be cooking more as I need to have fresh, healthy food on-hand to eat, so I can get slimmer.

Please join me on this voyage, I need all the help and support I can get.


Houston Foodie said...

Food Princess - you are not alone. For those of us in our group who are - ahem - older and wiser, a bit of extra effort must be made to keep the extra poundage in check. A while back I faced the same problem and wrote about it. There's certainly nothing original here, but following all these tips in combination seems to have gotten things under control for me.

Food Princess said...

Thanks J.C., great reminder of some of the fundamentals of eating healthy and in control.