About two months into my plan, and things are creeping along at a snail’s pace. I now weigh in at:
118 pounds. But considering I fell utterly off the gym wagon for two weeks and we just had Easter, I call it a win.
I continue to feel completely unmotivated when it comes to dieting. But that’s because I feel like I already eat pretty well.
Besides my 478
rules internal guidelines, there’s the fact that I really don’t eat much junk food, nor do I eat out very often. I actually just got rid of my Eat This, Not That books because I didn’t eat any of the “this’s” in the first place. Of course there’s always exceptions, like the bag of potato chips I inhaled at Mellow Mushroom on tech Sunday when my main dish was late in coming.
Still, there’s [a giant, ballroom-sized] room for improvement. Back when I was seeing the acupuncturist, she advised me to always eat protein and fiber at each meal and snack. I’m pretty sure she meant like, green beans and unsalted almonds, or at best apples and peanut butter. But my interpretation is usually something along the lines of Triscuits and cheddar, or avocado (oh, who am I kidding– straight up guacamole) and those seedy Crunchmaster things.
It seems all in all, my daily diet isn’t the worst. But I wanted to put it to the test, so I took the Eat Pretty Quiz. If you don’t mind registering for yet another username and password, and painstakingly entering the food you ate for a whole day, you can take it too. The quiz is supposed to analyze what you eat to see how it impacts physical traits other than weight, such as hair, skin, and nails. My thought was that it would be a good measurement of micronutrition (vitamins, minerals) if nothing else.
I was a little annoyed to find that some of my foods were not even an option, so in those instances I had to choose an approximation. But in the end it was pretty close. Here is what I put:
Disclaimer: although this is accurate in terms of foods I eat often, it would be what I call a Halo Day, and one where I’m not consuming any alcohol, which I do 2-4 days a week.
whole wheat english muffin with cream cheese
hard boiled egg w/ salt and pepper
coffee with half and half and Truvia
can of vegetarian chili
Triscuits (7? 8?)
turkey burger with cheese, lettuce, tomato, dijon
sweet potato fries
steamed broccoli with butter, salt & pepper
2 squares of dark chocolate
So my score was *drumroll*…..61 out of 100.
The overall calorie count was really low, which made me think I was definitely lowballing the portions. They said my fat content was high, but I already told you why I’m not concerned with that. My sodium intake was through the roof, probably because of the canned soup (although for the record, I usually eat Amy’s low sodium version, which was not a choice on this quiz). But one neat thing this quiz provides is a chart of what nutrients you’re getting and where they’re coming from. This is my nutrient breakdown, according to what I entered that day:
My worst nutrient is vitamin D, but that’s kind of #DUH. It doesn’t occur naturally in many foods, which is why dairy products usually have it added. Living in the South, I think I get plenty from sunshine.
So that’s great and all; in terms of health, I seem to be getting what I need. But of course, most Americans are not vitamin and mineral deficient, yet many of those same Americans are still struggling with weight. I might enjoy shiny hair, but my waistband isn’t budging*.
*BTW, this was a fun twenty minutes: One day I was feeling really skinny after rehearsal so I decided to take my waist measurement. And it was a whole inch less! I was congratulating myself all the way to work when, PSYCH. Turns out I just forgot my prior measurement. Fortunately (or unfortunately) I had written it down and discovered it was in fact the same. However, I can say with authenticity that it is a much looser 28″…really almost 27 3/4″! That counts as something, yes?
Here is another fairly typical weekday of eating:
pack of instant oatmeal with some frozen berries
hard boiled egg (yes, I love eggs)
coffee with Truvia and half & half
whole wheat english muffin with hummus, tomato, and avocado (yes, I love english muffins)
tilapia, broiled with mayo and breadcrumbs
steam-in-a-bag mixed vegetables
1 glass of wine
chocolate frozen yogurt
Aaaand….This is me right now:
Of course, weekends look totally different, and totally not as good.
two eggs scrambled with cream cheese and basil
whole wheat toast with butter
two pieces of bacon or turkey bacon
small Starbucks or McDonalds latte. No whip cream, but not because I’m virtuous–I hate the stuff due to an Expired Reddi-Wip Incident.
When breakfast is big, I usually end up scarfing something like pita chips and hummus or tuna fish around 3:00. Maybe with some cut fruit or an applesauce thrown in as a nod to vitamins. But probably not.
Homemade pizza: thin crust premade from Aldi, with marinara sauce, cheese, mushrooms, green peppers, and ground beef or turkey sausage. Probably a whole quarter of a 12″ pizza.
1 or 2 beers
Sneaky bites from T’s Easter bunny
So as you can see, not too much junk food. But as I was taking the Eat Pretty quiz, I recognized one of my big pitfalls: quantity. The quiz wanted you to enter exactly how much you ate. Not just how many crackers and fries, but measurements like tablespoons, cups, etc. of things like butter and the weight of things like burger patties, whereas I usually just eyeball them. I feel like my portions are decently sized, but how can I be sure without measuring? Other factors are at play here too, like how I often forget to take my thyroid medication, and the fact that metabolic rate decreases by about 1% a year after you turn 30 (some sources paint an even dark picture: this one says its starts at age 25!) .
So what do you think? Is it time for me to break down and buy a food scale, or start measuring my meals? One thing’s for sure, I’ve got figurative and physical miles to go before I sleep.