Tuesday, January 21, 2014

My Fat Fatwa: Episode One

To start off my blog again, to return to the blogosphere in a dramatic style, I would like to announce that I joined Weight Watchers.

This all began innocently enough. I was watching television with my family, and my dad pipes up and recommends, out-of-the-blue, that I should join Nutri-System.  I pointed out that I didn't think they would have the selection of frozen, pre-packaged foods that I would totally be on board with.  Every commercial featured a cheesy, dairy-filled commercial with milkshakes and the whole nine yards.  As a member of the lactose intolerant this would wage unmitigated gastrointestinal blitzkrieg.  And I'm pretty sure that the selection, while good, isn't good enough to keep me satisfied in the long term.  And I know that the transition from pre-packaged food to real everyday eating habits can often cause issues.

So I pointed out that if I was going to do something like that, I had been more thinking about joining Weight Watchers.  It had worked a little at one time when I attempted it before. Before life got even more complicated, stress had piled on, and everything changed again. 

And so it began.  I thought about it, and decided that I would take advantage of sign-up fees being waived and try to plow into the whole weight loss thing again.  I signed up, and am now in the midst of trying to completely readjust my life.

What I had found most frustrating lately, is the ads, magazines and such. All of the success stories I see on television talk about how easy it was with their plan.  I absolutely refuse to even try Jenny Craig, not only because it doesn't seem any different from Nutri-System, but also because the women look worse than they did when they were heavier.  The after person is supposed to look gorgeous, vivacious and healthy, and invariably the people they choose look less healthy and attractive at the end.  No thanks.

That's awesome that your plan helped you lose 20lbs. Even 35 lbs. Awesome. Actually, you looked great before you lost weight. Now try needing to lose more than 50lbs.  That's where I am.  That's where most of the people I know who try to lose weight are. 

Can we get real here? Weight loss isn't easy no matter which plan you choose. One year I tried doing the South Beach Diet, and felt like I was in an uncomfortable, fatigued fog all the time.  It was awful. Your shake, even if I am lucky enough to be able to consume it, will not bring about lasting change.  

Even calling it a "lifestyle change" seems misleading to me.  Let's lay it all out here on the line.

Weight loss is more like trying to win the Iditarod in a self-made sled made of Churros powered by squirrels.  Or attempting to climb Mt. Everest in a bikini with suction cups on your hands. 

If you watch a show like The Biggest Loser you find people really brutalized in order to lose a bunch of weight.  Guess what? Even if you're not in a gym for hours with a personal trainer and abiding by their plans, it's going to feel like you are being brutalized.

And here I am, by the way, a few days in. If you are like me, are you going to be a happy camper a few days in? I think if you're doing it right, no.  And by the way, this idea that if you just follow this thing or that thing that it will absolutely work.  You know what I think works? Is finding what is closest to something you might kind of be able to do.  That's the best we get. The best we can hope for. Is something maybe that we can do.  Maybe.

I don't think I'm alone. I think the only avenue for change is a glimmer.  Not much to hang our hat on, but let's give it a go.  


  1. It's really tough. It is a battle. Find a routine. If you can win the day, you can take on the week. If you make it 3 weeks, you have not only lost 6 lbs, but you have earned some better habits. I have to make it a near obsession. Which is sad, but I just feel horrible when I get heavy.

    1. I had forgotten how obsessive I have to bein order to accomplish anything. And how cranky I feel when I am endeavoring something this dramatic.

  2. Change can be hard but weight loss is a science. Find an activity you like. That is as important as identifying what you are doing that is causing you to gain or not loose excess weight. It could be under eating. It could be drinking your calories. It can be a little tricky to figure it all out but it is doable. http://toscasac.blogspot.com/2011/12/eat-well-for-life.html