My doctor had recommend I see a nutritionist due to my body habitually experiencing blood sugar crashes. He felt this was a "fast track" to diabetes and prescribed I lose 10 lbs. Really Doc? Like I haven't been trying to do that since I was 14 years old.
Prior to seeing my nutritionist I visited Texas and added an extra 6 lbs. Sweet. So now I have to lose 16 lbs. Also while away, my husband threw my scale away.
"Where is it?" I asked upon realizing that it was gone.
"Where is what?"
"My scale. Where did you hide it?"
"I didn't hide it."
"No. Tell me you didn't... Did you throw it away?!"
He smiled and laughed. I laughed too but not because it was funny. More because I was freaked out. How will I know if I gained? Rather how would I know how much I gained? Or lost.
The 6 lb gain was confirmed for me at the nutritionists office. She instructed me to record my diet daily on http://www.sparkpeople.com/. I am to keep my caloric intake for each day at 1600 calories. .com
"What can you do for exercise?" she asked me.
"Well, I'm dancing in a production of Evita so that will be good exercise...."
"It will be great but what will you do when the show is over? Is there something you can guarantee yourself to do every day?"
"I can walk 3 miles. There is a loop in our neighborhood that is 3 miles long. I could do that with my dog every day."
"That would be wonderful for you! The fastest way to lose weight is to work out the largest muscle in your body and that would be your legs. So keep track of what you eat on sparkpeople and walk 3 miles. This will be an excellent start. Come back in 2 weeks and we'll see how you are doing."
During that first week my friend Lesley was with me. She was faithful to walk with me every morning. In addition we hiked, paddle boated, and ate healthy every day. The following week I was on my own. I did not walk 3 miles every day but I did manage to get out there 3 or 4 times that week.
The day of my appointment, I was so excited to get to weigh in. I had lost 3 lbs!
"That's very good in two weeks," she said.
We reviewed my diet. She asked what I learned from recording what I ate every day.
"I don't eat very many vegetables," I observed. "And my eating picked up when my friend Lesley left."
"Why is that?"
"I was bored and lonely. My husband was out of town as were many of my friends."
"So you are an emotional eater. You eat for entertainment at parties or to cheer yourself up."
"Yes, I do. I like to "set the stage" and food is usually involved. I make it look pretty and inviting and then I eat it. All."
So my mission for the next three weeks was to add vegetables ("Buy pre-cut veggies or the steamers in the frozen food section") and to pay attention to my emotional eating. I was supposed to "score" it and decide if the food would really make me feel better or not.
"Sometimes eating to cheer yourself up is OK but sometimes the need is not that great and/or you intend to cheer yourself up but instead make yourself feel worse with guilt for over eating."
Problem: During this three weeks I would be spending part of the time in NY followed by out of town company.
"You can still do these things despite all of that," she said. "See you in three weeks."
Three weeks with no scale.
I could tell I was gaining though. My shorts were too tight.
How is this possible? I've walked all over the city of New York. I've been hiking and horseback riding almost every day!
But I knew. I felt fat every day in NY but one. The morning after that I asked Aaron, "How could I feel so great one day and the very next feel like a Texas Cow?"
He too was baffled as he always is by my self image. God love him, that man adores me and he loves the way I look.
"You don't need a scale to tell you if you look good or not," Shalah told me. "Just ask your husband how he thinks you look."
I tried it.
"Baby, I feel like I've gained weight. I feel disgusting and gross. How do you think I look? Do I look bigger?"
Wrapping his arms around me he whispered in my ear, "I think you look like a woman should. I think you are a Hot Mama!"
"You are amazing," I told him. Why couldn't/can't I believe him? It's easier for me to believe that he is delusioned and biased by his love for me then for me to believe that I am the one who is delusional.
Back to school shopping with my friend's young ones, we stopped at a bra store. My sides were bruised from the under wire in my bra and I wanted to get remeasured. I was appalled when the sales lady handed me a certain size bra to try on.
"Is this for me?" I asked. She confirmed that it was.
With young women present, I realized I had to be careful of how I responded to my new size.
"I pretended that it didn't really bother me," I told my sister. "Though I wanted to cry and protest."
"Sissy, it really makes me sad that you have to 'pretend' to like your body."
Today I weighed in with my nutritionist.
"How do you think you did?" she asked as I stepped on the scale.
"I think I gained. My clothes feel tighter."
"Well...you're right. You gained two and half pounds this week."
"So I'm basically back where I started."
We sat in her office while she gave me a pep talk.
"It only takes about 600 extra calories a day to put on 2.5 lbs in 3 weeks. That's not a lot of food. Being on vacation and having company....that will do it. Things were not typical for you."
"But they won't be. My brother and later my brother-in-law are coming next month, then it's the Holidays...'Untypical' is more the norm."
"It is for many. That's why Americans keep getting overweight. We are waiting for this or that to start or stop for us to be able to manage our weight."
"I'm tired of that though. I'm tired of my weight being such a big deal for me and of eating right and exercising and the results being thwarted in so little time just due to some small life event. I don't think my habits are all that bad..."
"They're not," she agreed. "We need to work on your expectations and we need to plan better but all in all you live healthy and you look healthy. What we are doing now is a preventative against diabetes. We are not trying to improve your look so much as your health."
"I want both."
We talked about making a plan for when company is in town or for when I go out of town or for when I'm bored. It's ridiculous. I have an excuse to eat for every situation I'm at in life.
"Basically you need to realize that this is not going to happen fast for you. You need to know that and accept that reality. You were not recording your diet while traveling and while company is in town. Let's do that again for a month. Get back to walking the 3 miles. How about I see you in 2 weeks?"
I blinked back the tears, frustrated with the weight gain and unhappy with not having a scale.
"One week then? That way you can see how you improve this week and be encouraged."
She's sure I'm going to lose weight this week.
I IM'd Aaron when I got home:
"What goes up and down more then the stock market?" I asked.
"Ah...how'd it go today?"
"I gained 2.5 lbs."
"It seems I'm destined for fatness."
"Yah. In fact, I may adopt a fat German lady accent. How else can I sexy this up?"