In 26 years, I’ve never done a diet, until the last two weeks. I never tried Slim Fast, Weight Watchers, Atkins, fasting, you name it. Although at times I’ve wanted to lose a few pounds or tone up to fit some pants more comfortably, dieting hasn’t just been my style — I prefer eating more healthfully and working out.
But when a friend on my Costa Rica trip told me about how South Beach had worked for her, another friend and I decided to test it out when we got home. No carbs, no sweets, no fruit, no alcohol…how hard could it be? Again for me, it wasn’t about the weight. I set a 5 lb. loss goal, but the real goal was to get me out of the rut I had gotten into before my vacation, eating too much bar food, drinking too many beers in a week. Those who know me know that I cook healthy food at home, and work out several times a week. But we all get into a rut, and I’ve been in mine. So the overall goal was to kickstart me getting back into a good routine, and to make me more aware of what I was eating. Not as many “real things” as DC health and fitness guru Chad Hamilton might say.
So it was on. I stocked up on a ton of veggies and made my egg quiches to get the first week started. My friend and I emailed each other our daily diary of meals, cheering each other on through the headaches, and fatigue, giving each other tips for recipes, and reassuring one another when we had a cheat night coming up. My friend celebrated her birthday in the midst of our diet, and I had already made plans to go to my favorite Cajun restaurant — I wasn’t going to cancel that.
Near the end of the two weeks, I was craving bananas and bread and feeling the effects of the diet through Charley Horses, a rumbling stomach, and little energy to work out. But despite the hiccups, I had turned down on multiple occasions: cupcakes, donuts, sandwiches, nachos, beer, and more. My slips came at the end of the two weeks, and my friend and I both have said that the goal wasn’t to kill ourselves over a few pounds — it was to be aware of what we eat, how often we eat, and why we eat it.
Yesterday I had a sandwich. Today I made banana budding and fudge. It’s a treat, but it won’t be a habit. I’m stocked up on veggies again, still have plenty of nuts and protein in my fridge, and am not running out to eat a loaf of bread anytime soon. I also made some pretty darn good recipes in this experiment. In the end, I think I have what I wanted out of a diet…a lifestyle change that will make me feel good for more than just two weeks…hopefully for a long time.
Big thanks to my friend E.B. for going through this with me!!
Have you tried a diet or a lifestyle change? What were the results?