So I'm making an effort to lose a few pounds. News flash: it's NOT ALL THAT FUN. But then, neither is not fitting into my pants. It really wasn't an option.
I've never had to diet before. I mean, sure, I've thought it would be nice to drop a couple of pounds, and I'd decide to do it by eating less and not drinking Cokes, and then the weekend would come and I'd eat my weight in Mexican food and chocolate, and I'd forget about getting smaller because (another news flash) FOOD TASTES GOOD. Fortunately for my undisciplined self, my metabolism would keep me about the same size I've been since high school. (Please do not throw things. I know I am lucky.)
And yes, I know dieting doesn't really work. I'm not on anybody's specific diet, but I know what to do. Eat more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Eat less sugar, refined carbs, and meat. And the portion sizes. Dear God, the portion sizes. How I miss the days when I could eat a slab of steak that covered my plate, plus a baked potato with cheese and a salad and several pieces of bread spread with butter. My beloved late FIL used to say he'd never seen a little gal eat so much. (In my defense, he always saw me eat when we were visiting Louisiana, and I adore Cajun food, so I ate more there than usual.)
So now I am plugging what I eat every day into sparkpeople.com, which says I need to aim for 1100--1300 calories per day. When I started last week, I was hungry. I mean, go-to-bed-hungry, think-about-food-as-I go-to-sleep, wake-up-starving hungry. (Hunger does help the cardboard cereal taste better.) I hadn't really thought I was eating that much more than recommended, but I must have been wrong. I think the problem is that I graze off the kids' leavings--eat a handful of goldfish crackers, polish off the remaining few bites of mac & cheese. It adds up. Plus, I tend to think of unhealthy food as a reward. I ate my veggies--now I want dessert! It's the weekend and the kids are still alive--ice cream for everybody!
Here's something I found yesterday--a link to a basal metabolism calculator. It tells you how many calories you'd burn if you did nothing but lie around in bed all day (where do I sign up for that gig?) That gives you an idea of how many calories you need to eat once you factor in your level of activity. Mine was 1330--hey! Since I'm only eating 1200 a day, plus I am WAY more active than lying down all day, SURELY I will conquer the battle of the bulge in this brave new world of my thirties.
In fact, I will probably be forced to eat a milkshake every now and then to keep you all from being afraid that I have anorexia. I'll do it for my readers, so that you don't worry about me. You're welcome.