Sunday, January 31, 2010

Feeling My Weigh...

Weekly weigh-in: 198.8
Loss: -0.5
Total loss: 92.7 lbs.
Emotion: More smarter

I know how this thing goes: good habits become sorta good habits become okay habits become decent habits become kinda poor habits become bad habits. I’ve been down this road often enough to be able to spot the road signs that lead to Obese City, so this week I put my food under a microscope.

What did I learn? I learned that it’s really, really messy to look at food with a microscope. Mashed potatoes get stuck in the little slider doohickey and greek yogurt runs through the cracks…

Once I took a good hard look at what was going down my gullet, I realized that my portions are creeping back up. Not by a lot, but it doesn’t take that much to make a meaningful difference over time.

I’ve been having a cup of no-fat Greek yogurt with a sliced banana in it for an evening snack. Somewhere along the line, it turned into more like two cups with a banana, a handful of raisins and a handful of chopped pecans. And sometimes some grapes tossed in there, too. A hearty snack, indeed. Last week, I ran the numbers and saw that, while my snack wasn’t necessarily unhealthy, it was topping 600-750 calories.

And I’ve caught myself a couple of times snapping up leftover food off my daughter’s dinner plate or grabbing a bite or two (or twelve) while preparing dinner. It’s just so easy to drop the ball, to tell yourself you’re doing all the right things when what you’re doing is some of the right things.

This week I came to the realization that this journey, for me, will require keeping a watchful eye on what I’m doing. It’ll require me pulling back on the reins from time to time, to make a course correction when stray winds blow me off my chosen course. I discovered that I have the ability to manage this process and not give back what I’ve worked so very hard to win for myself.

And lastly, I learned that microscopes are not dishwasher-safe.


  1. Love it!

    I caught myself adding a few more flakes (i.e. another half-cup) of granola to my yogurt this morning. The sad part is once I caught myself I tried to reason with myself about why I had done so.

    No more!

    Time to "pull back the reins!"


  2. Progress is a squiggly line, for sure. A course correction here; a course correction there. All a learning process to keep one's feet on a very slippery slope.

  3. I guess that's why they say maintenance is harder than losing...
    I've come to grips with the fact that I will ALWAYS need to be focused on my eating someone with an addiction, I don't think I'll ever be able to truly relax. But that's okay - now that I know it's forever, I can deal with it!

  4. Jack I hate Obese City. It sucks donkey balls.

    I'm proud of you for being aware of what's going on and making a change.

    I think you're doing everything right and I'm proud of you. :)

  5. Portion control - that's always been my nemesis. Always had an appetite like a heifer. Just have to know that I have to be vigilant FOREVER. Great argument for NOT going on a diet ... something to go off and on. For me, it has to be the long haul.

    No, you're right, keep the microscope out of the dishwasher. Cascade scratches the parts, you know.

  6. Great post. It is insidious... how those little bites of food creep up on us.

  7. Congrats on yet another loss. Still ticking down.
    It's like a sub-conscientious thing! The adding of more food! Somehow I've convinced myself that if it's good for me, it's low calorie. Sadly, not the case.
    I learned this week I have to monitor me. All the time. I'm a sneaky one too so it's not going to be easy!
    Thanks for the reminder.

  8. I am nearing the maintance point now. One thing that I have found is that working out sometimes makes my appetite sore.

    Thanks for the reminder that we need to think about what we're eating and why from time to time. Food scares me more now that I have lost so much weight than it did when I began.

  9. I noticed a similar trend in my eating about a week ago, (I call it dietary creep), mine was more about calorie density going up, quality going down, convenience slipping in too much. I do think you and I and everybody else who wants to maintain long term weight loss will continually need to monitor behavior. This is why I step on the scale frequently and will continue to do so forever.

  10. Good for you for getting it in check. I had a WW leader once who referred to those things as BLTs--bites, licks, and tastes, and how they all add up . . .I have to watch the damned refined breakfast cereal. . . I still find it the easiest to grab, but I tend to keep adding just a bit more. . .wonder if I could go off cereal for a week . .. test my addiction??

  11. Damn Jack, I just posted on my blog how I let myself gain over the past year and then read your post, which talks about what I did. Great post!

  12. Hmmm same thing happened to me. First it was oatmeal with a little fruit. Then it turned into oatmeal with fruit, some nuts, a little brown sugar-Splenda....When this happens in a few different ways, its time to look at the big picture in addition to the microscopic view.

    Congrats on that loss, Mr Weight Loss Machine!

    I'm not whipping out the microscope, but I need to st

  13. Sorry, that whipping out the microscope part was supposed to be erased...

  14. Hats off to honesty Jack..awareness is a huge part of the battle. Do a U-turn, as Dr. Oz calls it. You can do it!

    Carry on Captain!

  15. Good wake up call Jack. Thanks for the info- we all deal with this and man is it tough!

  16. Point noted about the microscope mess - I will try to remember when I feel like doing this.

    I love how honest you are on your posts...another good example to us all, you have spotted what you are doing and now you can try to change it.

  17. i expect to have these bumps in the road myself. I already caught myself doing a few things like thinking about adding more raisins to my oatmeal then necessary. As the goal weight get's closer there will be a temptation to add foods here and there and the mind will say "I lost a lot of weight I can afford a few more calories..." but they add up and you have to stay diligent. BTW.. I'm talking to myself in the comment!!

    Note to self... count every calorie!


  18. So very true - while you can being a lot of the BIG things right, even doing some of the small things ran can be enough to derail you.

    The one I'm guilty of the most is taking bites of my 2 year old son's leftovers. He often doesn't finish everything on his plate, and when I'm cleaning up it's tempting to not take a few extra bites. Depending on the food, those couple of extra bites could be 50-100 calories.

  19. If Ishmael drops by ask her where you can get a Vigilance Cape. I find it very helpful.

  20. In our house, we call grazing on another person's plate "paying the tax". Well, taxes always get ya in the end, making you realize that you won much less than you thought...
    So, write-off the spend in the past, and good luck reducing them taxes Jack! Great Post!


  21. Jack,

    That is how my past backslide started. Innocently enough all the while telling myself that my hikes and cycling was more than making up for it. That allowed 60+ pounds to come back on from my all time low.

    I am a believe that my current habit of measuring and weighing my food IS a LIFESTYLE that I'll always have.

    You have a gift for conveying these concepts very simply and concisely.


  22. You got it right as usual jack....I think the only thing we can do is be pro-active and catch that creeping-crud of portion sizes/mindless snacking early and nip it in the bud before that precious ground we work so hard to gain is lost (er, the fat we worked so hard to lose is gained? hehe)

  23. It's like we all have this self-sabatoging part of our personalities, but I think you're right that awareness is the way to kick it. Great post Jack!

  24. Sounds to me like you're hungry. Hungry always wins. Up the fat, reduce the carbs. Even the real Biggest Loser plan includes about 4 T. of fat/day. It's satiating.

  25. Wow, that's a pretty high calorie snack.

    Yeah, I have to track what I eat because it's just so easy to take a nibble here and a lick there. It does add up.

  26. Jack, good for you for checking that! You know I have written so many posts on this & my challenge to count those little things we put in our mouths that can add up. It is never fun doing it but it sure tells us alot why things are not working the way we want them too.

    Yup, life long process! Always something to learn! I congratulate you on doing the hard work!

  27. Food is so sneaky, it trys go get in our mouths...

    Guys are sneaky like that too ha ha.

  28. It's always that whole "til death do us part" schtick that gets tricky, I think.

    Glad that you're staying vigilant!

  29. Yep! The price of slimness is eternal vigilance!

  30. Thank you soooooo much for this!!! It is exactly what I needed to read today.

    I have really been becoming lax with portions, taking bites of this and that..justifying that "oh it's healthy"

    It really is important to constantly be on the alert!


  31. Two steps forward, one step back, four steps forward, seven steps back. So the dance goes.

  32. A fear that every person losing weight/maintaining a goal has. Good for you noticing it and for a loss as well!

  33. I really need to re look at my food. I have noticed extra bites here and there that I think would add up to much but in reality I know they do. Or I wouldn't be where I am


    Yes. Thank you very much. This will work quite well. Now, how to keep it from happening when I am down for the count. (Attack of the killer life you know.)

  35. It's beyond awesome that you decided to examine your food intake BEFORE you had a slight gain. Kudos for that one! You're doing great. :)

    P.S. Me and Tina (Fat Girl Dives In) talked about you at lunch today. :)

  36. Two things:

    1. By Obese City, are you referring to Nashville?

    2. Microscopes are dishwasher safe. i have been washing mine for two years.

  37. Ohhhh...I totally do this. :o(

  38. That slippery slope is...well, slippery. It's easy to do, but at least you caught it and realized you sliding back into the slipperiness of it all. Good for you for putting your sticky shoes on!

  39. Um, that should have read "you WERE sliding". Please forgive my typo. :)

  40. I am changin my mindset for february.
    Up till now it was "how much can food can I eat and still stay within my calorie range.
    This coming month I 'll be experimenting with halving the portions I've been eating and seeing how long it keeps me full.
    I'll be keeping my calories above 1200....but below 1400. I want to see if I am eating because I am hungry, or because i can.
    This should be verrrrry interesting.
    Good job on catching yourself Jack.
    main dif between this time and last time...
    you noticed.

  41. I have gotten waaaay complacent on my food portions. It's not a good thing. I'm letting myself and my healthy lifestyle go. I needed to read this. Thanks.

  42. It's always a good thing to re-evaluate your plan and make sure you're on track.

    Have a great week!

  43. It's easy to do, congrats on your loss this week though! I am trying to be more organic about it and eat intuitively, but there is eating mindfully for health and then there is eating just whatever the hell you feel like. I'm going for the first one but some days I occasionally end up in the latter. :)



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