It'll Be A Cold Day In Hell...
...before a lot of things happen.
Before I become a vegan.
Before I admit soccer to be the superior sport.
Before I re-join Facebook.
Before I think denim on denim looks good on anyone.
Before I am caught up on my laundry.
Before I go back to eating the same way I did for years.
I don't believe you can change people. Change - real change - all comes from within. Self-improvement requires change while complacency maintains the status quo. I have, fortunately, always felt I can improve myself as a person. I don't understand those who resist change, and those who don't bother to self-improve. I do not believe I am perfect, and I think of myself as a realist. I have the goal of who I want to be, and who I am now. I believe in self-improvement. But, I like to know exactly where I stand and I like to know my limits.
The Backstory PT 1
I grew up in the height of the low-fat craze. I also grew up with allergies. Around my kindergarten/1st grade years, my mother's friend offered me a Red Vine licorice. I, being the little sugar-grubbing kid that I was, took it greedily. Apparently, based on my mother's facial expressions, I had grown a second head. Or I had blown up with hives. It was the latter. I don't really remember how it was deduced, since no tests were (or are) available, but I was diagnosed with being allergic to artificial food coloring. I became fantastic at label reading. I would find the ingredients I was allergic to in seconds, even after others had completely read through the list and deemed it okay. Now why was I reading through a bunch of lists? Oh, right, because it was the pre-packaged food era. Time went on, and I didn't eat artificial food coloring.
In my elementary school years another thing happened that changed my life forever. My mother had a stroke in her early 40s. She survived it, and without going into too much detail, suffered brain damage. It was very tough on our family, to put it lightly.
I started making my own food at a pretty early age. Leave it to a nine year old to fix food, and what do you get? Pizza bread. Yep, sourdough bread, Ragu sauce, and grated cheddar cheese. Microwave, and bam, dinner. I don't remember preparing a lot of meat. I didn't like to handle it, or wait for it to cook, so I veered away from it. My dad, a former chef, didn't really like preparing "gourmet" meals. It was a lot of Minute Rice, and those frozen chicken breasts from Costco. The ones that don't even look like they came from a chicken. I guess I ate those sometimes. Mostly I enjoyed my pizza bread, chips, pasta with sauce and cheese, and any candy or baked good I wasn't allergic to. I became the chubby kid (I wasn't the really rotund one, but I was heavy); add chubby to weird and you get social outcast.
My body image was terrible, due to a number of reasons I won't go into. I wasn't skinny, I didn't have good skin, or nice hair, or style, or social skills. I counted the days until I could graduate high school. Sure, I had friends - fellow outcasts, but I don't think I was popular, even amongst them. During my final year at high school and into my first few years of college, I was at a low. I was overweight (like always), I wore baggy, oversized t-shirts, jeans that were too big, and pulled my hair back into a bun or ponytail, and wore glasses that didn't flatter me. I rarely wore makeup, except for foundation to cover up my constantly broken out skin. The summer between my junior and senior year of college I was shamed/forced into losing weight. I was 20 years old. I lived off of Lean Cuisines (but was shamed into eating only once a day). I worked out 5 days a week. I used the elliptical for at least 30 minutes, then did a round of weight machines. Sometimes my meal of the day was steamed vegetables with mustard. Yum.
Well, it worked, essentially. I lost weight, and was at my lowest adult weight - around 150-155 lbs. I'm a 5'9" woman, and I was skinny-fat. There was no definition and plenty of jiggle. My parents bought me a new wardrobe once I fulfilled their expectations, and my senior year of college was a bit different. People I knew before noticed my weight loss and asked me if I had given up the Lean Cuisines. I told them, no, that's what I eat all the time. When asked how I did it, I gave the platitude of "I ate less and exercised more." I was clearly an encyclopedia of information. Still, my far skinnier and cuter roommates put me to shame. Why didn't I look like them? I struggled to stay in the 150s. I mean, I could not eat if I wanted to stay in the 150s. I figured this may just be what I look like, forever. I tried this one site called Personal Dietician. You answered a questionnaire about your eating habits and they gave you a "personalized" plan. Basically a sheet with food category bubbles to mark off each day. Not-so-amazingly, it told me to eat MORE servings of bread and pasta. You know, those healthy whole grains. I thought I was eating plenty of them. I would fix myself whole wheat pasta, with different types of sauces, and maybe a few vegetables here and there. Can you guess if Personal Dietician worked? I thought I'd give Weight Watchers Online a try. I signed up for a good 3-4 months. I logged everything, I stayed within my points. I didn't lose a damn pound. I still kept with my exercise regimen. I eventually settled into the 160s. It was easier to maintain here, and I did, for a while.
Last edited by ampespidi; 05-05-2014 at 11:52 PM.
"We really shook the Pillars of Heaven, didn't we Wang?"
"No horsesh*t, Jack."