“You Going to Eat That?”

The dinner table… No matter the size, style, or location, is a place where conversation and the social scene thrive. Families come together and catch up on the events of their day over the home cooked meal, or takeout, on the plate before them. Coworkers or business acquaintances gather together over a delectable five star meal while debriefing, networking, or closing deals. Friendships flourish over food, drinks and laughs.

Food has become a key aspect of our social behaviours. Conversations of many discourses take place in the presence of food.

But what about when the conversation turns to the plate? I do not simply mean commentary on the succulent deliciousness of the meal itself, or the aesthetic construction of the food on the plate. I’m referring to the food on the plate in relation to the person before it, and the subliminal social messages that can be derived from a variety of these scenarios.

Scenario 1: At the buffet, you load your plate with more pasta than any other selection

Someone responds: “WOW! You must REALLY like pasta!”

Possible Meaning(s): -They’ve concluded that you do really like pasta.
OR   -They are insinuating you eat a lot and this was a more than helpful serving
OR   -They suspect that you are a picky eater as you have mostly helped yourself to pasta
OR   -They believe that you do not like the food prepared at this particular buffet and pasta is usually a safe choice

Scenario 2: You help yourself to a small portion of food

Someone responds: “That’s all you’re going to eat?”

Possible Meaning(s): -b***h must be anorexic
OR    -omg not another “diet” chick
OR    -You’re a picky eater

Scenario 3: You load up your plate

Someone responds: “You must be hungry”

Possible Meaning(s): -Wow. You’re fat.
OR    -You’re eating so much more than anyone else here… it’s kind of embarrassing

    

Then there are also those scenarios where you are eating out with a couple of people, and the comparison of what is left on the plate. Is the person who eats the least the one with the most will power? The skinniest at the table? Obsessed with their body image? Is the person who eats the most a pig? The fat one? Do you ever find yourself checking out what is left on another person’s plate and catch yourself thinking or making the comment “you didn’t eat much” or “you must have been hungry”?

Let’s face it… The thoughts people have when examining the food on another person’s plate are barely positive. The thoughts or comments usually have some sort of critical undertones. I am definitely both victim and perpetrator of the above; however, I have never really thought anything about it post-comment… until it happened to me recently. The comment really struck me especially because I am currently undergoing this huge journey towards a healthier lifestyle change.

I was at a neighbour’s BBQ this past weekend, where a spread of healthy BBQ favourites were out for self-serve. There were lemon seasoned baked potato wedges, chicken kabobs, garden and potato salad, and garlic stuffed vine leaves. We all went to serve ourselves. Back on the patio furniture I was about to dig in, when another female at the party looked over at my plate and made the comment, “…that’s all you’re going to eat?”

A surge of thoughts immediately drowned my mind:

 

… She’s still looking at me. Quick! Say something!

“…I’m just tring to watch what I eat and how much I eat” (not a great response, I could have come up with something better… she didn’t need to know that). I thought the conversation would end there, but then came the rebuttal, “It’s all healthy food. Live life, eat well and enjoy food.” I then referred to my raspberry/banana smoothie on the table (that I had originally fooled everyone into thinking was an alcoholic beverage), and noted that I didn’t have a huge appetite. Instead of leaving the conversation at that, she began to tell me of a really good diet I should try, “but it’s not really a diet, it’s more of a healthy lifestyle thing…”

I’m sorry… what’s your name again? I seriously didn’t remember.

The nerve! Why do I need to explain myself to some stranger? Why is what I put on my plate of any concern to anyone else but myself? I was quite annoyed to say the least.

This prompted me to think about all of the times I had made comments like this, not thinking about the many and various meanings that another person can derive from such a comment- no matter what the intention may have been.

Afterthought: After publishing my post today, I began to think about what I had just written. I was reciting my post over and over again in my head. I originally thought that the main purpose of today’s post was to vent about an uncomfortable situation that had occurred; however, I realized that I have a bigger issue to deal with than someone simply commenting on my food portions. I have an insecurity with people taking notice to and pointing out my weakness: food, weight, health. Today’s post has revealed to me how heavily I weigh the opinions of others about myself. It’s something that my mother has always told me… “you care too much.” But I always saw it as a positive, and never really understood the negative impact this has had on me. Re-read my post… The inner dialogue I have when it comes to weight and food is so painfully negative. All of the “meanings” I listed behind the food directed comments others make were incredibly  judgemental and negative. Today’s “vent” was a really influential awakening for me… an important realization that, I believe, will help me along in this quest for health journey. I knew I needed to be more active. I knew I needed to make healthier food decisions. I knew I needed to better portion my food. I didn’t know that I was sabotaging all of these efforts from the inside out. I think the journey began in the wrong direction… one of those forks in the road… but I may be headed somewhere now.

Day of Reckoning

Today is the day… one week since my first weigh in.

Over this last week I can definitely say that I haven’t been doing all that I can. I have been going to the gym, but not much has changed in terms of diet or use of my downtime at home.

I woke up this morning unsure of how confident I was feeling, preparing myself for the weigh-in I was about to do. I began to go through various scenarios in my mind:

I know what you’re thinking… What the heck is with the bacon comment? Is she deliberately trying to sabotage herself? Don’t judge me… I’m working on it. CLEARLY not there yet.

I began to make the long walk down the stairs to the scale. Weigh-in morning. Gah… Not my favourite. I stopped half way down the stairs, where the swirly mirror from IKEA is hanging on the wall, and lifted my shirt half way up. I checked out my morning abs: You know, that tight feeling in your muscles you feel only in the morning… fooling you into believing some sort of six-pack has emerged. Something was wrong with the mirror because I couldn’t find any abs.

***Note to self: Windex the mirrors in the house***

There it was… the scale… face-to-face with my fr-enemy. Our last encounter was daunting as it mocked me, flashing my weight back at me, over and over again. I stepped onto the scale… 156.6lbs. This would mean that I am down 1.2lbs in weight.

I should be happy about this? Right? It shows that although I haven’t been doing much at least I’ve been doing something… No… Not happy. Feeling a little defeated, actually, and nauseous. But, as I promised myself, the scale was down… So I fried up some bacon 🙂 It was a bittersweet celebration, though.

Time to make a change, any kind of change:

I went to the gym today, as well… but I’m going to end it at that. I came home with the same nauseous feeling I woke up with this morning. I attempted to make some sort of dinner but ending up violently vomiting instead. Yeeeeeah. Bedtime for me.

“Predator” – (My post in honour of Shark Week)

It exists as it always has, in a sense of calm that every day routine brings, not aware of the premeditated attack soon to be upon it.

It is now being watched.
It is now being hunted.
It is now… prey.

The predator is known for its size, its ferocious bite, and its endless appetite. There are a number of competing theories about its feeding behaviour. Many have failed to thoroughly grasp and understand the behaviour and social structure of a beast that has both ruled and threatened a natural hierarchy in the food chain.

The predator is most feared for it’s carnivorous appetite, but has often been found to devour objects that it is unable to digest.

The prey is not granted the natural fear that consumes before it must succumb to its end, as the predator is an ambush hunter- hunting when visibility is poor.

Attacks have been well documented, raising both the fear, status and, ultimately, developing a business empire of all avenues profiting from its relentless size, appetite… and mystery.

The predator relies heavily on its senses for a successful hunt. Be weary of:

  • the colours you display
  • the way you smell
  • the extent of your movement

and

  • the amount of attention you draw to yourself…

for it will attack… When you least expect it!

Sweet Potato Fries often swim in packs- a mentality derived from a safety in numbers approach to survival.

This unsuspecting group of Sweet Potato Fries have no idea that they are being watched… they are being hunted… they are now… prey.

Their predators keen sense of smell has alerted it of the packs presence.

…..

……

Exclusive footage of the predator… mid-attack!

It is not reported what happened to the others in the pack. All that is known, is they vanished… without a trace…

Vanished… Without a trace…

So… uh… What’s the plan?

Since I started this blog I’ve been prompted to think daily about the choices I am making, why I am making them, and why my journey to a healthy lifestyle has been such an exhausting round of yo-yo. It seems as though I am finally beginning to understand and really grasp the core of my issues, my forks in the road, when it comes to getting organized, getting “on-track,” and getting healthy:

  1. Boredom: I am used to being a busy person, overly busy, always on the go. During the summer, when I have any kind of downtime or when I’m not stressing over the next thing that needs to get done, I get bored. When I’m bored I eat. It seems as though I thrive on the stresses of a busy “on-the-go” kind of lifestyle;
  2. My ongoing love affair with food: It honestly feels impossible to end my ongoing love affair with food. I just can’t seem to kick the junk. Like I’ve mentioned in previous posts, it’s an abusive relationship that I have with food. It stalks me, haunts me, doesn’t let me hang out with the good/popular kinds of food… it’s everywhere! Always trying to corrupt me! Even when I try to prepare a healthy meal, I black out and when I come to I am grating cheese over my healthy plate of food!
  3. Queen of Excuses: I am probably the Queen of Excuses as I can usually convince myself out of things quite easily: but I worked hard yesterday; I have a sore _____________; I didn’t overeat today so I don’t need to workout; I deserve a day off; I deserve a few days off; I’m on vacation; I’ll start on Sunday; It’s the holidays, though…
  4. Risking Failure: This one was kind of hard to admit. I don’t like to disappoint. My worst critic is most definitely myself; but, I can’t stomach the idea of failing in front of someone else and therefore failing myself. Why try if I won’t succeed. What a horrible inner dialogue to have. I feel sorry for myself right now…

Okay… I’m done… Pity party is over.

The recognition of these roadblocks is a crucial step towards making positive changes; however, there is one very important factor missing thus far in my journey towards living a healthier lifestyle- a plan of action.

It’s one thing to recognize and complain about all of the flaws in my journey towards achieving a healthier lifestyle, but I haven’t really considered, yet, conjuring up any kind of plan of action for myself. I come across so much literature, both online and in my daily life, about getting fit. There are always different workouts being suggested, different meal plans or foods to implement. I brush them all off. I guess I can add a 5th point to my list of road blocks:

I always want to do it my way, figure it out on my own. I hate it when perfect-bodied people are telling me how to get there. Sounds like a completely backwards way of thinking, doesn’t it!? I should listen, as they’re clearly doing something right, but I begrudgingly let it all fall upon a deaf ear.

“Leeeettttt meeeee doooooooooo it”- I have a lot of Stuart moments from MadTV:

I read a well-written blog post by Rachel today, who wrote about BER [Binge Eating Recovery]. Her post had a clear message, with a great picture (just in case I didn’t fully grasp the message the first time). This is exactly what I have been doing: trying to “out-exercise” my “bad diet.” This is also a primary contributor as to why I have been yo-yo’ing with my weight so excessively throughout my life. I don’t have a plan of action, yet, but it’s time to develop one. I assume that would also mean that it’s time to hear what others are saying about this healthy lifestyle thing… and really listen.

Where do I go from here? What’s my first step? Any starting points or suggestions would be great… and they won’t fall upon a deaf ear.

I am a Dorito

A little drawing I did while reflecting on today’s blog post

If what they say is true, ‘you are what you eat,’ then today I am unquestionably… a Dorito.

Thoroughly and with complete dedication, I started my day passive with just the right amount of sulk. I awoke from a dream that I had won $90,000.00, to be exact, from a Bingo scratch ticket. Realizing it was all just a dream I decided to roll over, flip my pillow to the cold side, and dive back into the life of the rich and famous.

Finally deciding that I should start my day, I hesitatingly rolled out of bed around 11:45am. I sank into my butt groove on the chaise as the Keurig was brewing a perfect French Vanilla for me in the background. Is today going to be the day? You know, the day I have been talking about: the day I get organized, the day I get “on-track,” the day I get healthy. No. It won’t.

Seeing how I already missed breakfast I decided to get right to lunch. Hmmmm… yogurt? Boiled egg and toast? Soup? Nah. Two pizza pockets were nuking to perfection in the microwave. There’s a lot of quality television on a Sunday. I took in a few episodes of “Four Weddings” (eating only a handful of Sweet Chili Heat Doritos, because I’ll only have 6 and be satisfied), then watched four consecutive episodes of some guys flipping houses (now standing in the kitchen and slowly eating one Dorito at a time from the bag, because if I only eat one at a time instead of a bowl or handful it won’t count as that much), only to move on to the three final episodes of “Launch My Line” (finishing the bag of Doritos).

Dying now on the couch as I am overfull and have consumed far too much salt than is good for an army of people I sulk: Whhhhyyy? OH WHY do I do this to myself. Maybe I’ll just stop blogging about it. Maybe I’ll open up the bag of tacos and melt some cheese onto them. The gym closes at 8:00pm on Sunday. It’s already 6:00pm. I don’t even have time to go. 

But WAIT! A quote, yes, an actual quote I had once read online by Horace has come to mind: “Rule your mind or it will rule you.” Well said, Horace, well said. I packed up my gym bag and was on my way (avoiding death en route because of an impatient driver passing traffic while driving in the oncoming lane). Despite all of my bad decisions today, despite the pizza pockets, and despite the bag of Doritos (OK… and a nanaimo bar that I forgot to mention), I decided to go to the gym. Honestly, I felt like crap my whole workout- but I did it. I pushed myself to the verge of vomiting. 

As it turns out, I am not a Dorito. I just ate a lot of them today, and I most likely won’t tomorrow (because there aren’t any left in the house). I am someone on a weight-loss journey that doesn’t always make the best decisions; however, every once in a while I surprise myself and make a good one 🙂

My Abusive Relationship… with ‘Food’

***Please note: this video clip contains coarse language***

Jenna Marbles; more Marbles at: http://www.jennamarblesblog.com

Uhhhhh YES! Now we’re getting somewhere. In my last post I began to ponder the reason why I decide to torture myself in this traditional “yo-yo” weight game?

  • No– I am not trying to look like any particular celebrity.
  • No– I do not spend majority of my life on camera and therefore have to worry about the camera adding 5 or 10lbs.
  • No– I have not been influenced by all of the airbrushed nonsense on the front pages of magazines.

However,

  • YES– I have been participating in an ongoing love affair with… Food.

Jenna Marbles (featured in the video clip above), an online phenomenon (as far as I am concerned), has very accurately portrayed myself on a diet. Every time I think about dieting or start a diet, whether it be day 1 or 7, I find myself craving everything. No literally… EVERYTHING. When I am dieting or on some sort of a health kick, I begin to crave foods that I wouldn’t even normally go to.

Ending the relationship: This sounds a fairly simple concept: If I want to lose weight and stop this yo-yo’ing for good, then stop going to the junk. Ummmm, not quite that easy. Although I have been participating in this love affair with food for years, it is not a healthy relationship. Food is abusive, controlling, and a stalker… really. It doesn’t matter where I go or who I am with- there it is, staring back at me, all like “you can’t hide from me.”

Examples:

  • I go inside the gas station to pay and there’s Zesty Cheese Doritos: “heeeeey you, I know you want me- come and get it.”
  • I go to the mall and barely step two feet in the door and Cinnabon is just screaming at me: “I’m hot and fresh, baby, and… I’m cheap!”
  • I open the fridge to grab a yogurt and there’s Thick Sliced Bacon: “Let’s get fried”
  • EVEN CRACKERS: “Got dip?”

The Answer: The answer? My goodness. If I had the answer then I wouldn’t have the problem- and therefore, not this blog, either. I’m not one of those girls with a metabolism-through-the-roof-and-can-eat-anything-I-want-and-not-gain-a-single-pound (or so they claim). I AM one of those girls that decides “Hey, I’ve been working hard. I’m going to treat myself to a bowl of chips today”- then 5lbs later I’m logging onto my blog and crying about my last date with the scale.

We will see- time will tell… I’ll figure it out I’m sure. I’ve been seeking counselling with a great professional by the name of “Gym.” We’ve been working hard together. I leave every appointment sweaty and sore, but I heard Gym knows what it’s doing.

I Keep Losing Weight… But it Keeps Finding Me!

I open my eyes. Yes, today is the day. TODAY will be the day that I get organized, get “on-track,” get healthy. My feet find the floor and I wash my face, brush my teeth, pull my hair back, and give myself a smile in the mirror- acknowledging that feeling that this will, indeed, be a productive day.

It’s 8:20am… Whaaaat? There are absolutely no worthwhile tv shows on before 9:00am. I roll back into bed and play the 10 games of “Draw Something” that await me on my phone.

9:00am: Caramel drizzle coffee is brewing in the Keurig. I feel as though I have a new air of confidence accompanied by a tingling sensation that this is going to be a successful day (or it could have been the sensation in my arm from contorting it awkwardly as I completed my Draw Something games in bed).

A decision: I’ve made a decision. I should probably weigh myself. The last date I  went on with the scale, I was 153lbs. I have now been going to the gym approximately 3 days a week, and have significantly cut down on my snacking (sort of)-I am expecting to be around the same weight, or hopefully less. I made sure to weigh myself pre morning coffee and post morning poop. “Let’s Make a Deal” is on in the background… someone just won “Mayonnaise Mouth Wash”… haha, funny show.

Noooo! Up almost 5lbs!

Failure: AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH NO! ….. WHY am I blogging about this? The scale blinked my weight back at me a couple of times, a feature I didn’t realize it had, as if saying “YOU SUCK-YOU SUCK-YOU SUCK”… What a jerk, I had just windexed the scale and put it back onto a nicely polished powder room floor. Bitch don’t deserve my TLC.

This is not the first time I have been disappointed on the scale. The scale and I were at our lowest point in our relationship when the highest number I have ever seen appeared before me, approximately 2 years ago, at 169lbs. Thank goodness, for my own sanity and confidence, I never broke into the 170’s.

Yadda Yadda: I have lazily followed the popular discourse relating to weight, body issues and the number of health problems extending from these topics. I suspect I am not far off to suggest that we have all, at some point, succumb to some sort of mindless projection of these issues onto the celebrity/media kind: They cause it, it’s their fault, they’re too skinny, they’re too fat, they… they… they…” I stand before you, nay, write before you- that I could care quite less about “they,”… pardon, them. It is integral that I figure out why I decide to torture myself in this traditional “yo-yo” weight game. I have participated in pageants where I showcase myself in bikinis and high heels in front of audiences of people- feeling more fabulous than is healthy for a young woman’s ego. I have, in the same breath, lost myself while wandering down one of those “shit happens” paths (reference my header at the top of the page) and found myself swimming in oversized hoodies and sweat pants. Back and forth, back and forth, back and forth- have I mentioned that even sitting on a swing set gets me nauseated!? I am, nauseated, at this morning’s discovery that I am back again, or forth, depending on how you’re looking at it.

Making healthy decisions!

What to do, what to do? I did grovel in self-pity for the rest of “Let’s Make a Deal”… O.k… AND “Price is Right”; however, I then decided to pour a bowl of Vanilla Almond Oatmeal Crisp! This is a step up for me as majority of my breakfasts as of late have been that of 4 strips of bacon, 2 fried eggs, and hashbrowns… Fine… 6 to 8 strips of bacon.

To the gym: I may have grovelled in self-pity, only momentarily, after wiping down the mat I was about to do my abdominal workout on, but then rose to the occasion and KILLED it. After my cardio, I walked back to the change room and passed the confused glares: Why would she jump in the pool and then walk around? No no. I did not jump in the pool… It’s all sweat baby. I killed it! Only to sweat it out some more in the steam room later! (NO NAKED PEOPLE TODAY!!)

OH P.S. You dirty, dirty women- if you have your rags, fine, that’s life, but would you do me a favour and clean your sanitary napkins from the shower stall before you exit!? Much thanks. 

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