Sunday, October 26, 2014

Crash diet -

Will getting a puppy make you lose weight?  Will a crash diet work for you? The answer to both questions is.... Maybe.
Not the right answer I know. But the truth is - if you work it right - the answer moves closer to yes. But cocaine also helps you lose weight, and so does having cancer, and so does having your jaw wired shut - but I am not into any of those things. So just because something works doesn't mean it's good.

That aside I recently got a puppy - and hoped that my CONSTANT and CONTINUOUS care (panicked movement and unending walks) would do the trick for my lately- more-chubby body. It did not work that way, and somewhere after getting Teddy and before writing this post I accidentally (ate two hotdogs a day and) gained more weight. Crap.
I'll skip the part where my clothes were tight and I got motivated - who cares about that.  I decided to try a crash diet for the sole purpose of not having to buy new work clothes. I was attending a conference and needed to squeeze my 10 pounds of sugar into the 5 pound bags that made up my work wardrobe.

I developed a plan, had 13 days and went for it.  Did it work? The answer is "kind of."  I lost some weight - about 3-4 pounds on the scale. Not enough to make my work clothes fit the way I want. So in that sense - no it did not work,  BUT what did happen was I felt less puffy and ultimately better about myself.  That actually counts for a lot to me. It also jump started my body in to the idea of getting so fucking serious about losing this weight. I can cuss when it comes to this stuff.

That conference is over now, but I still have some weight to lose before the clothes I already own, and like, fit me the way I want.  So I will keep going in a less drastic, but equally focused way. I have embraced green smoothies and when I return from my current business trip I am going to do a 10-day green smoothie diet. 

Is this pathetic? Yes. 
Is this the right way to live - to pig out and then starve yourself?  Absolutely not.  But it is what it is and it's happening.

My plan to lose weight on my crash type diet was basically this: Weight Watchers on acid. 

I get 24 or 25 points a day on WW, So I decided I got about 13 points on this crash diet. Just slashed the shit out of it.  
- I had a green smoothie (recipe below) for breakfast that would total about 4-5 points. 
- Then I ate a slightly bigger lunch as that is my hungriest time of day. Something like chicken breast, spaghetti squash (recipe here) and steamed veggies.  Very few points there. 
- A snack of  raw almonds (I like these) - probably a bigger bulk of points. 
- Then for dinner I would drink a glass of veggie juice I made and eat a little bit of roasted chicken breast again.  
A few things varied but that was basically it.  There were a few meals where I had to cheat and a few times I chose to cheat.
I had my cycle during these 13 days which really cramped my style - no pun intended. It made me hungry and made the scale not go down. But whatever.

Here is a list of my crash diet tips:

1. Don't exercise too much. I walked Teddy the usual 2-3 times a day but I skipped running on the treadmill and definitely skipped swimming and working out. I did not want to make myself hungry. These two weeks are NOT a way of life - to be clear - just desperate measures to drop some weight fast.

2. Shop (when possible). It kept me entertained and busy. I tried on clothes in the size of my work clothes - not some dream size, but realistically what I wanted to be in time for the conference.  This is good practice because the clothes in that size were cute and too tight. So I couldn't rest on my laurels even when the scale seemed to go down. Made me keep going.

3. Sleep a lot.  Go to bed early, get up late. Obviously as much as your life allows.Take a melatonin to sleep if needed.  I had a couple of mornings where I got up super early and it threw off my non-hungriness - I was starving.

4. Don't drink too much alcohol. As soon as I had a drink I lost my willpower. It wasn't like I started to rationalize eating something I shouldn't, it was more like I made immediate bad choices. Like putting cake in my mouth. If you decide to have a drink while crash dieting I have heard that vodka and water/club soda is the lowest calorie alcohol. Throw in a twist of lime, or a flavored vodka instead. 

5. Eat not much, pretty often. Be careful not to eat much pretty often. A snack a fraction of your normal size will do and have that eensy snack every few hours.  

 6. If you mess up or lose willpower don't worry about it - just keep going. Like on Weight Watchers I envisioned my points starting over every day. No guilt. 

7. La Croix and Club Soda saved me - felt like I was having a snack and made me feel full.  Carbonation bloats you though so its a way to feel full, but don't overdo it. 

8. Stay away - from the kitchen, the grocery store, TV during the dinner hour when they advertise PIZZA! (those jerks). Enlist the help of your spouse or fried to feed your kids, etc. Let the people in your house know to go easy on you. Demand it. If they have to eat friend chicken then they need to stay in the car and do it. Seriously.  It's only temporary.

9. Know that this was hard for me. I can type all this stuff easy, but eating this way sucked. And I am not done yet.  Bleh.

Please understand I don't actually think this is a great idea. I am not a doctor or nutritionist, please don't sue me or hurt yourself.  I am just sharing something I am doing. 

My favorite green smoothie recipe - (I like this site too)   
Two or three handfuls of raw kale or raw spinach. Switch up your greens every few days.
1 cup almond milk - I get the unsweetened vanilla. 
1/2 cup egg whites
1/2 cup water
Blend all of that together - use a handheld mixer, a vitamix, a magic bullet thingy - whatever you got.
A great site to get you started - Simple Green Smoothies
Then add one frozen banana (I peel and break them up and store in the freezer in a butter dish).
Bunch of frozen or fresh blueberries OR a bunch of frozen or fresh black grapes.
Then blend all that up.
This makes two servings - so two breakfasts, or one smoothie for you and one for a spouse, or one smoothie for breakfast and the other for dinner.
You can also add a scoop of all natural peanut butter if you want to bulk it up or want to use more of the imaginary points this way. I skipped the peanut butter during the crash diet but usually add it in on Fridays as a treat.  My husband is just so lucky right - with a surprise of a scoop of peanut butter one day a week. 

How I roast boneless, skinless (practically tasteless) chicken breasts - 
Preheat oven to 400 - 425  degrees - depending on how hot your oven is.
Line a brownie pan with foil, spray with olive oil Pam.
Rinse and dry chicken breast and place in pan.
Pour some (not too much) olive oil on chicken breasts, then sprinkle kosher sea salt on them. Then take your hands and rub the olive oil and salt all over the chicken - covering them in oil and salt. 
Wash your hands with soap.
When oven is ready throw them in and cook for about 25-30 minutes.  
I take them out and cut them - you can always put them back in - but not having them over done is the key to being able to enjoy eating them and not gagging down. 

Anyone have a Tired Girl worthy crash diet tip?  Don't you dare write me and tell me I shouldn't have gotten chubby in the first place or I should love myself no matter what. I shouldn't have and I do.  I just want to fit in to clothes I already own. 

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

6 steps to being new anywhere -

I work from home and I have no children. So when Joe and I moved to a new city this summer I knew I would have to work hard to meet people and connect to my new place. I would have to take off the pj's, put on makeup, wear real clothes, head out in to the world, and talk to actual humans.
This is not me.

Just to be clear, the term "pj's"is an umbrella word to mean "all clothes comfy and not appropriate for the public."  I don't actually wear pj's all day. Since I walk Teddy the dog 27 times a day I wear walking type clothes most of the time.  Just wanted you to know that.

I moved to a new city about every two years growing up thanks to my dad's job with Westin Hotels. So I've done this before.

Here are a few Tired Girl tips for being new, making friends, surviving, and thriving (ish).

1) People don't come to you - you have to go to them.
That's just true about life in general. People won't just be so thrilled that you are new to the neighborhood, school, work, gym, etc. that they flock to you and ask you to lunch. But if you are new at a workplace, for example, make friends with anyone sitting at a desk, go to other teachers rooms and say hey, sign up for the Christmas party committee, send a friendly email to new co-workers.

2) Say yes.
When invited to do something - go to lunch, go to a party, go for a drink with the gang, whatever - say yes if possible. You may not like the exact person that is asking you, but it gets you out in to the world. I do like you though Cindy and Ghada. You can always politely distance yourself from some weirdo later, if needed. This is different from a date - don't say yes to any romantic type situation that comes your way for goodness sakes - that's a whole other issue, but just say yes to friend/work/neighbor/kids friends invites.

3) Be cool. 
Don't say yes too loudly, don't go to people too aggressively. Don't freak people out. Don't tell people you are "new" - ewww - no wants to feel responsible for you. Don't be a hanger-on. Don't be needy. Bleh.

4) Join a bunch of groups/clubs. 
You won't like all of them and you will probably only really enjoy one or two of them, and in those two you'll meet one or two nice people and will go from there. You can politely distance yourself from groups you don't enjoy later. 

5) Take comfort in the usual.
Make your family's favorite meal, watch your usual TV shows (Seinfeld and Friends episodes make me feel instantly at home wherever I am), put some of your favorite and comforting things around you. I had the same wallpaper on my computer for years. As soon as the photo popped up on my computer at my new job, I knew I was good. 
Crooked, blurry and orange - this photo was home for me whatever job I had.
It is Joe and me in Eleuthra, Bahamas - long time ago. 

6)  Get ready for the plateau.
When you are first new somewhere it is pretty exciting. Even if it's scary or miserable, it's definitely exciting - adventurous even.  But in a few months the newness/excitement wears off, but the comfiness hasn't set in yet. You still aren't real close with anyone, you still don't quite know where you are going, etc. It's the moving plateau. It can sneak up on you and it can suck. It's okay - it's temporary.
This is Elizabeth Bennett in Pride and Prejudice on a plateau in the opening credits.
I pretend it's me sometimes. Mr. Darcy will be played by Joe.

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