Monday, April 26, 2010

In Which The South Beach Diet Fails Me Again.

When I'm chatting with friends, two of my go-to phrases involve the "definition of insanity" (doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting a different result) and Sisyphean efforts. Probably because half the things I do in life tend to fall into these categories. Dieting has always been one of my Sisyphean standouts. Which brings me to the South Beach Diet, which I always think is going to work (and sometimes it does) but usually is just a big pile of fail.

I first tried the diet at its peak in 2003, a few months before my wedding. Actually, Tom and I both tried it. And we were cranky bastards the entire two weeks where you cut out sugar and fruit and delicious carbs. It's a wonder we still got married. Weeks three and onward were fine. Although honestly, I should have known that anything that tells you that cocoa powder, Splenda, and RICOTTA CHEESE make a delicious dessert is not to be trusted. Ever.

I've been dancing with SBD ever since -- whenever I get it in my head that I need to drop weight fast, I head right for the SBD.

Last week I was in Nashville for a client conference, so the week involved a lot of meals out, desserts, lemon drop martinis, etc. I came home and knew I needed to get back to my better-eating ways so decided to do SBD for a bit to "get back on track." Today's lunch? Spinach salad with carrots, tomatoes, and shrimp. I decided that I didn't need salad dressing -- oh no, just a spritz of lemon for me!

Yeah, it was bad. And served as a reminder that I am not going to lose weight for the long haul if I keep making myself eat stuff that I can't tolerate for an afternoon, much less forever. This might be the fastest attempt at SBD in my history. Sure, it seems like some dressing could have solved the problem, but I think the biggest issue was convincing myself that this was going to be good enough to get me through the afternoon until dinner. It so was not.

It did impart a good lesson though - sure, make your lunch (cheaper and better for you anyway), and include lots of veggies and good protein. But make it tasty, put some care into it. Add some carbs to lunch as long as they're not full of empty calories. I need to keep on my 30-Day cleanse, which was about making better choices, not dieting per se. I dropped almost 10 pounds that month, so why did I panic and go with SBD?

Old habits die hard, I guess. Time to start rolling that rock up the hill again ...

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

August 7

Remember when I said I was taking the GMAT this year? I just made my appointment for August 7.

It's on!

(I will not freak out, I will not freak out, I will not freak out ...)

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Feel the (Fat)Burn

In my last entry I wrote that I missed running. I did, to a point; I guess more than anything, I missed *moving*. Being active, feeling good and not like an asthmatic 90-year-old.

So I got back on the treadmill. And immediately hated running again. It's just my nature: miss something, get nostalgic, take it up again and realize I stopped for a reason. Kind of like that time I thought I could wear jelly shoes in high school when they came back in the mid 90s. Yeah, not so much.

Anyway, my realization about hating running did not deter me from trying new things on the treadmill - mostly, the Fatburn program. In addition to the hopeful-sounding goal of the program, I'm enjoying the challenge of walking fast enough that I could run, but have to walk because my incline is at 6 or 7. I've even worked in a bit of jogging into the routine. Leg muscles I didn't know I had are sore after doing this program; overall this feels harder than jogging/running on a 1 incline, but I enjoy it so much more. Leave it to me to like something more difficult. That's also my nature.

The lesson learned? Branch out; don't feel like you have to subscribe to an exercise or plan because everyone says that's the fastest way to reach your goal. For the longest time I pushed myself to run because I thought that's what I had to do to make progress. Turns out it's a lot more effective to do what I enjoy and I'm more likely to stick with it. Why has it taken all these years for me to realize this?? I'm a little stubborn sometimes.

This realization has kick-started a movement for me in pursuing other goals as well - I'm more willing to look at alternatives to accomplish what I want rather than hold on to a notion of how I'm "supposed" to do things. It's quite freeing (and scary and kind of stressful, but I'll go with "freeing" for now).