Sunday, June 27, 2010

Let the Weight Gain Begin!

As those of you who read my most recent Lost post know, I shed ten pounds over the last few months while I was finishing up my manuscript. It actually was as much as thirteen pounds at one point, but my eating escapades detailed below have helped me regain some footing.

At first I thought it was just the stress of the writing process that was causing the number on the scale to continue to drop. Then I realized that the situation was more likely caused by my switch to a mostly dairy-free, gluten-free, low-sugar, low-carb, high-protein diet. Those of you who actually know me realize that this undertaking basically meant that I was changing everything I eat. As my husband pointed out, I probably shouldn't have attempted such a drastic overhaul while I was also under the gun to meet my deadline. Because I was already grumpy enough as it was. Then I took away bread and pasta and cheese and ice cream, the four staples of my diet for the past several decades. Dumb move!

Anyway, for about two weeks I was really strict on this new plan (which I did for a combination of reasons I won't get into, but it was advised by a doctor and was NOT done in an attempt to lose weight because I was already right where I should've been... I have never, and will never, go on a "diet"). Those first two weeks were when most of the weight came off and I was a tad alarmed. Then I started hating on almost all of the stuff I'd switched to. Teff quesadillas? Rice cheese? Gluten-free pasta? Soy ice cream? Sorry, but those things are NOT substitutes for the real deal, and I got sick of all of that crap fairly quickly.

Now I've found a nice balance -- I'm still pretty much dairy-free (though I did get a huge waffle cone of ice cream yesterday), but simply cannot stay away from most bread products. At least I always try to choose high-quality 100% whole wheat options.

Since I don't care if I get back to my normal weight, I've been going a bit crazy lately with random treats. On June 11th, the toughest part of my manuscript was behind me and I only had a few smaller sections (About the Author, References, etc.) still hanging over my head (those were due on the 15th), so on the way back from running errands I stopped into Molly's Cupcakes. I quickly spied what I wanted: the Mixed Berry cupcake. And so I got it, as you can see to the left. Unfortunately, the cake part turned out to be a blueberry muffin, but the cream on top was still awesome.

Just a few blocks down the very same street is The Weiner's Circle, a notorious hot dog stand in the heart of the Lincoln Park neighborhood. Now, I don't usually seek out meat -- much less any kind of hot dog -- but on that day I just had to have one. So yes, I ate dessert first and then got my actual meal about 15 minutes later. Which was a Char Polish, and it was excellent.

I found myself craving another one this past Friday, but my husband and I were out in the suburbs, so we went to Hot Doug's instead. Since this "gourmet" hot dog joint was featured on Anthony Bourdain's "13 Places to Eat Before You Die" a while back, there's now always a huge line. My husband waited for 40 minutes in 90-degree weather to get me my polish dog (I was in the air-conditioned car, hee hee); he got a chicken rosemary dog, as well as the famous foie gras dog. Yuck!

We also went out to Red Lobster not too long ago, which was a real treat because -- believe it or not -- there's not one in the city. I used to go there all the time when I lived in Michigan, so I was missing it something fierce. We didn't have a car up until this February, and now we just got a GPS system, so all we had to do was type in "Red Lobster" and then off we went! I truly, truly love their cheesy bread rolls (does anyone NOT love those things?) so of course I ate three of those, got the shrimp-three-ways combo and then we also got some really great mixed drinks -- mine was some sort of mango-berry thing (in the forefront). I was surprised at how tasty it was.

This coming weekend I will continue my quest to regain some poundage as my friend Nerdy P is once again making the trek to Chitown, and we will be continuing our almost-annual tradition of going to the Taste of Chicago. I've written about our past exploits at this ridiculous food fest a few times before (my post about my '09 experience has links to my '06 and '07 trips). Now we are bringing her young son along for the ride for the first time, and her parents, so it's gonna be fun. It's quite a crazy event to witness -- especially if you've never been surrounded by millions of people all crammed into a very small area while trying to eat as much as they can before they pass out from heat exhaustion. I can't wait!

- e


Sherylm said...

I loved this post! And I would kill for those Red Lobster cheese bread I've put that on my list of things to do the next time I'm in the States...eating them, not killing for them, of course ;-p

Kelly, UK said...

Hey! I totally agree on two points - I am not a big meat lover and also I will never diet! But I can't really relate to most of the post, being un-American. I do have a friend in the States who brought me some chocolate back, since I was curious to see if it tasted the same. Baby Ruths I loved (choc and nuts is one of my favourite combinations), but Hershey bars - no no no! Didn't like them much. Here we have Cadburys and Galaxy, and I guess what you've grown up with is always going to taste best to you. So for me the English versions are the best. :)

Dr Eric Berg said...

love your post. it inspire people that being over sized body and over weight i not that bad. you just to simply enjoy it. thanks much for this. hope you inspire more people. good luck.