Monday, December 7, 2009

Weighty Issues

I am a short and stout woman married to a tall and skinny man. You'd think that was no big deal... but sometimes I think it's like being a Mormon married to a Jew... it can work out, but it takes some work!

Add to that these facts:
1 - I come from a family that struggles Greatly with weight... I won't blame it entirely on genes or bad metabolism (though I like to think that is a factor) because I'll be honest - I didn't learn good eating habits from a father who thought it was okay to serve dinner by having the kids parade by the stove and spear a hot dog or three with a fork. Seriously - he called it "meat on a stick" night... when money wasn't so tight we might get a pork chop thrown in the mix. (still speared on a fork - Dad was all about saving on labor by not dirtying any plates) Mom's meals were more "complete" as far as the food groups were concerned - and I know that she tried to force us to eat our veggies... (just ask my sister who I think is STILL sitting at the table because she won't try her spinach) but the words "portion" and "control" were never uttered in the same sentence.

2 - Man Of The House comes from a family that has no weight issues. Seriously - his mom had 11 children and in the photos of her holding new baby - she's still a size 2 or 4... granted, a size 2 or 4 with glasses of varying ugliness, but tiny nonethless. His sisters have followed in her footsteps and are all tiny things... I would hate them if they weren't so darn nice. Do they eat well??? Well, they eat their veggies - but as far as whole grains and sweets go - it's amazing to me that a family that keeps M&M's in their bedrooms for quick treats can look so amazing!

A few years ago I looked at myself and decided that my own eating patterns had to stop. On July 1st of that year I started to write down everything I ate and limited calories/fat/sodium/etc... to a reasonable level. This was a MAJOR struggle for me.

I've always been "small" - I mean, I'm only 4'11" so a few extra pounds show up pretty quickly - I wasn't looking to lose a LOT of weight - I was pretty sure I was only 10-15 pounds over... (more about THAT later)

At first I didn't tell anyone - it wasn't hard for breakfast or lunch because I was pretty much on my own for those meals. Nixing between-meal snacks was a killer - and dinner... well, I spent two months being pretty creative about replacing our pasta with whole grains - cooking with ground turkey instead of ground beef - and all those little changes.

I'm not sure which change Man Of The House noticed first - my waist line or the grocery bill (hey, eating healthy ain't cheap!) but I'd like to think it was my body... and from then on I involved him in my struggle. I don't know why I didn't do it before because it got SO much easier! He certainly didn't have any weight to lose - but when we made it about eating more healthful meals he jumped on that bandwagon!

Of course... he was a little upset when he found out I'd been substituting ground turkey for beef without telling him (trust me, nobody noticed the change - I started with using both meats, then went 100% turkey - adding a little beef bouillon powder for the flavor if needed).

Working together made it a lot easier.

But wait... this isn't about successes - entirely... because what I neglected to do once I lost (way more than 10) a whopping 35 pounds is remember to keep up the portion control. So I'm starting over - and the first thing I did this time was to recruit the man... he doesn't wonder at all when I get up first from the dinner table. He doesn't complain at all when he needs to put away the leftovers (because I REALLY don't have that willpower yet). The best thing ever - he actually goes out of his way to make sure that there's a well prepared vegetable on the table and while we're making the kids eat it - I eat it too... someday I may actually grow to like it???? (My sister however will never learn to like them, so please Mom - can she finally just go to bed???)

by T - and T stands for Turkey burgers :)


Anonymous said...

I remember when my mom tried to switch to turkey. My dad had a cow!


I know around our place that snacking is the killer. We have one meal where we all sit down together. As the schedules around here vary over the course of the week, it often comes late. So snacks, which aren't really snacks but mini-meals, can ruin the balance provided around the table.

It's a constant battle . . .

Cajoh said...

I think that our problem is that I always like to treat my wife. And because of that we are not eating as healthy as we should. I know that I am overweight and my wife is always saying that she is overweight as well.

Anonymous said...

portion control is my problem. I figured this out when I ate a whole box of Snack well cookies. The bride said low fat doesnt mean eat all you want.

I do everything in portions of all I want!

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

Lol T. I remember when my parent did that 4 me!!!

I also have genetic issues and I cry foul! It sucks bad.

But with all the exercising I do, I have realized that it is most definitely what u put in ur mouth!

That sucks also...dang it.

Vegetables and fruit just doesn't taste as good as the frozen yogurt or the cheesy breadstick.

But I found it was definitely harder when having to do it on my own, when my guy got on board that is when I catapulted with my weight loss!

You go girl! Good luck!

Hubman said...

Veronica and I work pretty hard to help each other out- we've both been a bit heavier at different times in our lives. Teamwork is the key!

Becky Andrews said...

Agree - it helps when you help each other out on the healthy eating and exercising part. I have a sweet tooth and am amazed at Steve's ability to drive through for me to get an ice cream and he gets nothing. We love to tandem bike, hike, and walk together -- that seems to be the best way we support each other.

Just Jules said...

great post. I do without and it works for me. I find as winter sets in though the body tends to want to add "insulation" on it's own. survival I call it :)