This photo was taken when we were both down about 10 lbs.
Mike and I came home from a road trip after Memorial Day weekend and went on a diet – both of us. I don’t think we have ever dieted at the same time before. In the past I would go on a diet and he would lose weight. Mike’s dieting experience is that he loses 10 lbs. in two weeks and quits gaining it all back within the next month. But this time we were both successful—doing it together may have helped. 10 weeks later I have lost 21 lbs. and Mike has lost 16. And no, no one has asked me if I have lost weight but they have him. Do I sound a little jaded here? Well, maybe I am. Dieting with a man makes you realize how unfair the eating situation is between men and women.
Dieting is 95% will and determination. My clothes were getting tight and trying on "my size" was not working so I was in the determined mode. Mike was looking at a larger size pant so he was there also. In the first 2 weeks Mike lost 10 lbs. and I lost 3. We were not on the same diet but that wasn’t really the problem. Women have to starve to lose weight. Mike’s diet consisted of a protein drink for breakfast and lunch, except on T, Thurs., and Sat. when I made him a salad at home, and a "sensible dinner, " which included a couple of pieces of corn on the cob, mashed potatoes and gravy and such. But he also ate watermelon, Creamies ice cream bars and other cheats, which I shall disclose later.
My diet routine was protein for breakfast and lunch and a "very sensible dinner", no sugar in any form. I mostly ate 1/3 C. cottage cheese and a few walnuts for breakfast and a small salad with chicken or shrimp for lunch and half what my usual dinner would have been. Instead of two tacos I ate one, or a small serving of whatever. I also fasted one day a week. This worked for the first 8 lbs. but then I went several days without losing and so for the next month I eliminated carbs. It started to feel like I was in a contest with my body. I was determined to show it that I would win. Although I lost 20 lbs. in 10 weeks this was not a 2 lbs. a week loss. Bodies are very illogical in the way it responds to dieting. You can starve for 4 days and lose nothing and then lose 4 lbs. the next 3 days. Or you can gain a pound when you starved all day and went to bed hungry. None of it made much sense.
When I was down 16 lbs. I went on a 4 day cruise with Maren. We tried to be careful and even worked out on the ship but there were those molten chocolate cakes at dinner and tempting food everywhere all day. I mostly resisted but came home up 4 lbs. I was able to get it off in a week—of starving. Now I would feel bad if Mike was home dieting but he was eating out at his favorite burger and fry joints while I was gone.
The worst part about dieting is going somewhere for dinner, like to one of our favorites, Market Street Broiler, with friends. I was good and had a salad. Mike ate clam chowder (40 fat grams worth) and the early bird halibut special with lots of French bread and ice cream at the end. I ate no bread. Then there was the family home evening where he ate 2 ice cream sundies for dessert. I had salad. And can I forget the box of Hostess cupcakes that I got for Michael. He ate one and Mike finished off the box to the tune of 3 before that evening was over. I could write another page about his cheats but you get the picture. Now tell me, is this fair?
Because of Mike’s hip replacement he was unable to exercise much during our dieting. I walked for an hour in the hills 3 days a week and biked 10 miles the other two. The exercise didn’t seem to make much difference in what I could eat.
On Friday night we celebrated our weight loss at Roosters. We had their wonderful bread pudding for dessert. The next day I was up 1 ½ lbs., not Mike. Will I ever eat again? It is no wonder we give up and decide that maybe it is not worth it. I wasn’t really that fat in the first place. But I am determined and hopefully I can stay that way. Mike seems determined too. He is even talking about losing another 5 lbs., but when you can eat like he can, why not.
Here is one last little diet secret that I picked up from Maren: if you are in a diet slump eat nothing but 5 apples in one day—every 2 hours from 10AM to 6PM. You can lose 2 lbs. in a day. It worked for me. Dieting is pure misery when you are a woman but it is also a conquering challenge—Women, charge on because in the end I lost the most.