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Happy Day

An incredible thing happened yesterday. A milestone passed, if you will. I was at work, slinging lattes in true 'barista aficionado' fashion, when one of my regular customers commented that I looked noticeable thinner. Hooray! One small step for man, one giant leap for Tawny-kind! Someone who didn't have previous knowledge of m diet noticed and felt compelled to comment! So excited. NOW I feel like my hard work is paying off. When I said that, he said 'it is. its hard work and sacrfice.'

It IS sacrifice. And more than just the sacrifice of foods that are fun to eat or to treat yourself to. Its the sacrifice of time. Preparing meals beforehand in advance, planning everything I'm going to get before going to grocery store, getting up earlier so I can make sure I eat breakfast AND pack a lunch.  Its the sacrifice of convenience. Gone are the days of convincing my hunger pains to subside by simply reaching into the pastry case on my 10 minute break. No more running through the drive-thru 'real quick' while out running errands. Not even the simple luxury of going out to Chinese food with friends.

Marathon hike sessions to continue through the week.
I'm somewhere between 15 and 20 pounds less of myself. Somehow I'm underwhelmed.

I'm still in denial, I think. I mean, the scale certainly says smaller numbers. But I feel like I look the same. My clothes seem to fit differently, but I'm pretty adept at convincing myself that my jeans are just looser because I haven't washed them, or my work pants never really fit me anyways...I can come up with lots of reasons, really. Some of my closer friends have made comments about how they can tell already, but I have to wonder if they would be able to tell if they didn't already know that I'm on a diet.  I don't know, this is something that has always seemed so impossible and completely out of my hands that now that somethings actually working, I almost need it to be more difficult to be convincing.

Anyways, so since I officially started, I think it was 6 weeks ago or 7, I've only slipped once. I freakin went on a blueberry coffee cake binge at work one day. This was at about the 4 or 5 week mark. It started with a little piece, like a CRUMB for crying out loud and then I was like, what the hell, I'm going to eat one. One turned into three and then I felt like shit and I had guilt. So I started over, two weeks of protein only....again. Still going though. One setback didn't derail me completely.

Some things I enjoy eating are eggs and turkey sausage or veggie bacon for breakfast, smoked salmon deviled eggs, garlic pepper chicken with ranch and hot sauce, Jello!, Tuna, and once I get back to being able to eat more things...celery and peanut butter, strawberries, blueberries blah blah blah. I have a guilty pleasure meal thats guilty because it calls for a red wine sauce and red wine has a lot of sugar in it and it also calls for bacon...which I shouldn't be eating really either...for obvious reasons. Its a burger made with ground turkey and mushrooms, topped with 2 slices of bacon, sliced onions that have been sauteed in a little bit of the bacon grease and the red wine sauce, which is a cup of chicken stock, a cup of red wine and a tablespoon of tomato paste, boiled and reduced down to about a quarter cup. Holy crap its so delicious.

Possibly the thing I hate the most is taking my vitamins. They make me gag which then makes me nauseous.

"You have such a pretty face..."

Possibly the most back-handed and most often heard compliment I receive is 'you have a real pretty face'. While I do see that as a compliment and most often my response is a simple 'thankyou' (or on not-so-polite days, 'shutup') I can't help but think about the rest of the statement thats left unsaid. As in 'you have a real pretty face.....but everything else below you neck is a disaster'. Ha! Compliments make me uncomfortable anyways.

And as I stepped onto the scale at the worst time to step on the scale (at night, after eating dinner and drinking a ton of water), a scary thought crept into my mind. What if this doesn't work? What if I'm trying as hard as I am to do right by myself and there are no results except that I can't eat chicken or fish for a long time because I can't take the sight of them anymore? The scale flashed while it thought about what numbers to use, my heart leapt, my mind screamed 'COME ON ASSHOLE!!' and I breathed a sigh of relief when it told me I've lost three more pounds since Saturday.

So I am seeing results, fairly quickly I might add. I have a long way to go, thats for sure, but seeing results is a good motivator to continue.  Even when people are shoving pastries and ice cream in my face all the time. I can say no! Because pastries and ice cream will always be there. They've been around for hundreds of years and they're going to be around for hundreds more! Its not a one time only chance to try the tasty treat that is an ice cream cone. No! It will still be there and probably still taste exactly the same when I decide to have one (in moderation) after I reach my goal weight.

Everytime I see one of those Hilshire Farms commercials where they say 'GO MEAT!', I have to laugh a little. Not because the commercial is funny, they are actually pretty annoying, but because its so ridiculous that thats the story of my life right now. GO MEAT!
My first week has come and gone in a flurry of chicken and salmon. I lost 5 pounds in that first week. I think I actually lost 10 pounds but theres 5 pounds of excrement lodged in my large intestine that refuses to release itself. HA! No seriously, possibly the worst thing about a high protein diet is the serious lack of bowel movements. I went from a twice a day kind of girl to a once every 3 or 4 days if I'm lucky kind of girl. I need some roughage.

I've had some mixed reactions to telling people I'm on a diet. I think a lot of peoples first reaction is something along the lines of disbelief. Like, 'yeah right, you're going on a diet...we'll see about that in a week'. Mostly people seem to make a game of what I can and cannot eat. I guess something about 'protein only diet' confuses them so they just keep coming up with random foods and asking if I can eat that. Or even worse, they question everything they see me eating. I have to stop myself from screaming, 'mind your own business!!' sometimes. 
But...everything is getting easier. Its easier to say no, in fact I don't even have to think about it really. It's easier to avoid the things I  know I can't have. The only time I really came close to slipping was when we were having a barbecue and I was STARVING, but we couldn't get the grill going and theres was all these chips laying around that people were eating and I WANTED ONE SO BAD! But it was more to do with the fact that I was damn hungry and everyone else wasn't phased by the grill not lighting because they could eat chips, meanwhile I have to wait to get my chicken grilled. I almost ate a chip! But I didn't. I really wanted to though.


Yesterday was a great day. A GREAT day! Ha. I went hiking in the morning with my roommate and my dog (Kimmay and Maizy, respectively). I enjoy hiking, the weather was perfect, I was simultaneously getting a tan, but about halfway up the mountain Maizy started chasing after shade and breathing really fast. She wouldn't take any water and I was afraid she was going to overheat and we would have to carry her down the mountain. So we cut the hike a little short and headed home. We hung out by the pool for a few hours, I went for a cruise in my new bucket (a '93 Toyota Corolla), and then we went out to see Kim's friend spin at Beauty Bar for a little while.

Now, days that I don't have to work are always easier to resist temptation just for the simple fact that I'm not physically handling pastries and creamy delicious frappuccinos all day. However, I still made a mistake. I had a drink at Beauty Bar. I ordered it, I paid for it, took one sip and then realized what I had just done. I had totally forgotten that I wasn't supposed to drink either. So I set it on the counter, thought about how I didn't want to start over so maybe I wasn't going to drink it, but dammit, I paid 10 bucks for it. So I drank it. And I'm not going to start again over one 8 oz. beverage. I just need to make sure not to do it again, even on accident. The good news in this though is that when I drank it, it was so sweet. Too sweet. And my sugar cravings, particularly in the afternoon, are noticeably subsiding. Success! Slowly killing the sugar habit.

The Plan

Here we are at the beginning of day 5. I'm still sticking to what I'm supposed to be eating and struggling with it less and less every day. I suppose thats the point.

Now here's the plan. For the first two weeks, I'm to eat strictly protein only. Making a point to cut all sugars and carbs. This is difficult because I am  a SUGAR FIEND!! I've always had a sweet tooth, my whole life. I love sugar and carbs together, the ultimate cocktail of  delicious destruction. I love cookies, cakes, ice cream, anything decadent and delicious is my downfall. I get it from my father (who still sneaks oreos out of the kitchen even after hes been diagnosed with diabetes). Add to this that I've been working at Starbucks for three years. They are so sneaky that Starbucks, theres sugar in everything! Its so easy to gradually up your daily sugar intake with a little sample here, one more pump of vanilla in your latte there. It is, afterall, my job to personally sample every new pastry that comes into our store, otherwise how can I make recommendations to innocent unknowing customers? Ha! So I've been frolicking in the sugar coated bliss that is my existence at Starbucks, tap dancing my way to diabetes and sugar addiction. Until now, that is.

The other difficult part of a strict protein only diet is that I'm not a huge fan of meat for the most part. I like chicken, occasionally I'll have a burger, but other than that I typically opt for other, less meaty options or the vegetarian version of things like bacon, sausage, etc. As it stands, I'm forcing myself to choke down 4-6 protein laden meals a day. I'm doing okay so far, but I can't wait to have some veggies!!!

I've sort of fallen into a pretty comfortable routine meal-wise. I eat two eggs over easy with two strips of veggie bacon in the morning, I take a roasted chicken patty and a hardboiled egg to work with me for lunch. Usually midmorning and midafternoon I drink an espresso protein shake that I made up at work. Its half and half, two shots of espresso, 2 scoops of protein powder, 3 pumps of sugar-free caramel and a scoop of ice blended to faux sweet, icy perfection. These really help control my wild sugar cravings while I'm at work because it tastes sort of sweet, but the syrup is carb and sugar free.  And then for dinner I'll have either salmon with a little bit of mayo mixed with lemon juice or chicken. Boring! I'm already going through my recipe book and picking out all the recipes I can make with little or no alterations once I can have fruits and veggies again. 

I wasn't supposed to weigh in until Saturday ( I'm weighing once a week for the first two weeks and then every two weeks thereafter) but I needed some kind of confirmation that I was doing this for a reason. So I weighed myself this morning and found that after 4 full days, I had lost 4 pounds already. Its a miracle!

As for today. Its morning, I have the day off by some miracle of god (not capitalized, is that a sin?) and I think my roommate and I are going hiking.

More later!

In the beginning, there was......

....me. And I was fat. Now I'm not going to be P.C. here or use any of the polite words for fat people, i.e. curvy, plump, round, robust, voluptuous, big boned. Just fat. Thats what it is and its not a word people should be afraid to use or hear. I'm not going to beat around the bush either, I've been fat for as long as I can remember. I don't even really remember a time in my life when I was skinny and gradually started to gain weight to the point that I'm at now. I was a fat kid, a fat teenager, a fat college student, and I'm now a fat 20-something in Los Angeles. Which, I might add, is possibly the worst location in the world to be fat in, but we'll get to that some other time. 

Now this is the beginning of a new story.  A new story that starts with a strict diet and hopefully ends with me being half of what I am now.

I've decided to chronicle every step of the way as much for my own benefit as for others. When it comes to others, if anyone ever reads this thing, maybe I can inspire someone or make them make a change in their life that they previously thought impossible, or at the very least just make them laugh. For me, this is an outlet for all the frustrations, challenges, doubts, obstacles and milestones.



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