Monday, January 7, 2008

Dieting in Middle Girth, A Hobbit's Tale

The scale has reached its Gandalf fighting the Balrog in the Lord of the Rings moment. I stepped on it this morning and declared "YOU SHALL NOT PASS!"

Being American and naturally impatient, I opted for the promised immediate gratification of Atkins. So far, I had remained faithful to my carb free lifestyle for eight hours.

It has been a long day.

I ate two eggs for breakfast. I hate eggs.

Being a hobbit (I'm very short), eggs with toast and orange juice and butter and strawberry jam, I can deal. Just eggs with pepper and hot tea. Sigh. When is second breakfast?

I had two slices of Canadian bacon too. I am convinced that Canada produces Canadian bacon so that we will never be tempted to invade. Between the food, the weather and the moose, it just isn't worth it.

For lunch, I got a drive thru version of a Chicken Ceasar Salad. I didn't finish. Why? Because I'm already disturbingly bored by my options. Adkins just markets don't eat sweets or fried foods via a specific dietary regimen. If I was able to deny myself pasta and bread and ice cream and maple syrup and yes, chocolate, I wouldn't need to be on a diet.

I'm currently dutifully baking chicken for dinner. Normally, I'd be psyched that I already have dinner half way done, but I'm looking at the box of couscous that will be a side and feel a desire to eat the box. “We’ve had nothing to eat but meat and salad for three stinking hours!” Half way through the day, I'm thinking...maybe I'll switch to South Beach.

The fruit is calling...Sherry, don't you want some HEALTHY fruit? Healthy. Nice little fruit. Just one little fruit...I feel my resolve failing, just as surely as the carpet cleaner of the same moniker did to erase the three swipes of blue on the rug in the guest room. Grabbing a string cheese, I diligently eat and remember the scale. Focus on the BAD number. Anyone who says weight doesn't matter is either among the 2% whose natural metabolism keeps them fighting trim past the age of 40, or lying. I finish the cheese stick. I'm still hungry.

My children's sugar frosted cereals that I never eat, start to look appealing.

I start considering what if any options I might have. You see, I know the numbers game. 21 carbs is all you get. 21 precious carbs. IF and if is a big word in this sentence, I don't eat any OTHER carbs, I....can have a dove bar. A dove bar. Don't think about it! No. No. No! Think Big number No. Have another piece of cheese....yum yum...doesn't that taste good? No. It does not taste Dove Bar good. It does not even taste Nacho good because it isn't melted with jalepenos on top of chips. My inner Borrimir is thinking of staging a rebellion.

I drink a diet coke. Then, to be sure I don't impulse eat, I open another, this one with lime.

Just as I successfully beat down my id's desires, the children arrive to undermine my discipline. My toddler brings an apple. He's eaten half of it and is "finished." I can 1) throw away the leftover, 2) cut away the eaten part and cut the remainder into bits for his sister or 3) Cut away the bad and dip that sucker in hot carmel to snack.

It's fat free....I start to move towards the apple. I know how Eve must have felt. I personally would never have sold out for just an apple, well maybe, if I had been on Adkins and chocolate hadn't been invented yet. Original sin for a piece of fruit. Eve should have at least held out for something choice. Frodo is fingering the apple when fortunately for me, the toddler asks for it back.

I give the toddler the rest of the apple. My older daughter, eyes bright, brings home "an extra snack." meaning, someone in her class had a birthday and passed out hersheys with almonds and she saved it "just for me." Meaning, she doesn't like chocolate with nuts. "Thanks honey." I say, taking the bar. "I'll put it in the freezer for later."

The kids relay eye contact to each other that translates, "What's happened to Mom?" as they back away quietly and announce unprompted, "We're going to go do our homework."

When they come back to state, they've cleaned their rooms, practiced their instruments and want to know what they can do to help with dinner, I finally ask, "What's going on?"

"Well, you refused the chocolate."
"No, I just denied myself it now. I'm keeping it safe, I'm keeping it secret." I explain.

"That means you're on a diet."
"Yes. So?"

"It means you'll be grumpy soon."

"I'm a hobbit, not a dwarf!" I explain. She gives me a look of bewilderment.
"No, I'm just starting a diet and Hershey bars aren't on the menu yet."

The kids know the numbers game too. She scans the bar and says, "You can't have this, too many carbs." and with that, whisks the bar away to bring to her older brother. I want to protest, "My Precious! It's mine! It came to me! You tooks it!" but I know better and so does she.

Now my eleven year old knows I'm on a diet. She'll food police me Samwise style until I reach my target number and cast the ring into the fire of Mount Doom or snap, whichever comes first.

It's been ten hours on the Adkins diet. Have I lost any weight yet? No. Takes a shower, shaves legs, brushes teeth, blow dries hair, exhales. How about now? No? Rats, I'm still stuck in the first part of LOTR when they're mucking around the swamp with Tom Bombadil who no one understands or likes.

It will be a long first two weeks.


Diesel said...

Man, I love my carbs. It's a good thing I've got one of them fast metabolisms. Good luck. :)

Christine said...

My husband loved the Atkins diet. But then, he would gladly just walk up to a cow and bite it, I think.

Good luck.

Jeremy said...

Best of luck, Sherri. I did the Atkins in 2000 and lost 40 pounds (although I was REAL sick of beef jerky by the time it was done)

I never considered the trials equal to LOTR, but you make it fit quite well (an personally, I loved Tom B in the book!)

Leaving a comment is a form of free tipping. But this lets me purchase diet coke and chocolate.

If you sneak my work, No Chocolate for You!