Take it off | Week 42: Advice - The ugly Christmas sweater of dieting


It's the most fattening time of the year!

Hold me back people! The cookies have started to appear in the office. Candy, fudge, caramels, cookies with nuts, sprinkles, chunks, flavored popcorn. So much temptation! Then there are the parties, client lunches, dinners with friends, food gifts and eggnog.

mmmmmm eggnog.....just give me a moment....mmmmm
I cropped this picture. You're welcome.
What were we talking about?

Oh. Yeah. Holidays and diets.

So how do we, as dieters, avoid all this stuff? 

Bad news kids: we don't. I mean really, unless you plan to not leave your house until well after January 1, you can't avoid this stuff. But you can decide to not eat everything that comes across your path and that is what I am going to do. I am going to choose my treats wisely. Because even though I'd like to pretend that holiday cookies are calorie free - cuz you know, they are made from magic and good cheer - alas they are not. What's worse is that even though all those goodies look mighty tasty, let's be honest, most of them are not that great. Most of the junk that ends up at offices and parties are all factory manufactured junk full of fillers that aren't really that yummy. 

I could give you a bunch of tips for eat this vs. that at the holiday parties, but you know what you need to do. Let's get real people, if you've ever been on a diet, you know what to avoid. And if you've never been on a diet and you are suddenly finding yourself overweight, you know how you got there. It's really as simple as just not putting it in your mouth. 

Doesn't it seem like the simplest solutions are always the hardest to put into action?

Personally I put too much thought into Thanksgiving and I feel like that was part of my downfall. Despite being able to report a loss, I still overindulged. So I am going to treat Christmas a little differently. I'm going to treat this holiday as I would any other day. I'll bring a dish to dinner that is weight loss friendly. As far as other foods go, I'll weigh my food (yup, bringing my food scale to Christmas dinner), record it and let myself enjoy small portions. If I happen to indulge, I'm going to make it worth my while. It needs to be fresh and it needs to be homemade and it needs to be in moderation.

But if an extra cookie or two happens to fall into my mouth, I am going to be okay with that too. That's my Christmas present to myself: allowing myself to recognize an issue and move on.

The other issue I've run into during this holiday season is commentary. Even though I am on the verge of losing 100 pounds, for some reason people still feel the need to police my eating habits. I recently attended a holiday party at a restaurant. I ordered a salad and in the process of ordering I neglected to ask the waiter to swap out the breaded chicken for grilled. I didn't realize my mistake until the food came to the table. I made a mental note to eat only half the chicken in an effort to cut down on the carbs. I was annoyed with myself for the mistake but feeling comfortable with my decision on how to handle the problem. Then from across the table I hear 'That doesn't look very healthy!'.


I could feel my face turning red. I was embarrassed and felt like everyone in the room was watching me eat my way back to 240 pounds. I'm 34 years old and I felt like a kid with their hand caught in the cookie jar. 

I suppose that's the danger of being so open about this journey, you invite others to feel a sense of ownership in this process. I get it. People have invested their time, energy and emotion to follow me in this process and support me. But should I feel the need to announce 'Hey, I made a mistake when I ordered and this is how I am going to handle it.'? Should I have tweeted so that the public at large knew, yet again, that I had a misstep? Should I have commented on the mound of deep-fried mess on the plate of the food police?

Instead I just smiled and said 'I've lost 67 pounds since March. I think I can handle it.' 

This is something that I run into quite often though. People want to shame me for having a treat. I'm not sure what their motivation is either. But I have advice for both parties.

For the dieter
It's not likely that you can convince this individual that you have things under control. So you have a few options. 
  • Ignore them and change the subject
  • Thank them for their concern, assure them that you have it under control and change the subject
  • Tell them to bug off with a smart ass retort
  • Take both hands, grab a huge chunk of cake (or treat of choice), smash it all over your face, mouth and chest and yell 'mmmmm! MOMMY LIKEY! GET IN MY BELLAH!' Then flick the leftover crumbs that are stuck to your hands in their face and stare at them until they either cry or back away slowly.

For the well-meaning advice giver
If you think you are aware of our eating habits, I can guarantee you that we are hyper-aware. We appreciate your concern and don't really need the extra advice during what likely already a stressful situation. But I want to present you with several ways for you to express your concern.
  • Keep your mouth shut
  • Shut up
  • No seriously. Shut.the.fuck.up.
  • Enjoy your cake crumb face splatter.

Above all else, enjoy your holiday. Its not about the food, it's about the gathering. Don't let the food ruin all the good feelings this time of year should bring. And don't beat yourself up if you lose your way a little. Every new day is a chance to start over.
• • • • •
This was another good week for me. I'm down 2 pounds. I'll be (painfully) honest with you. I had a small gain mid-week. I sampled too many of my WTF cookies last week. But I got myself back on track, lost the extra and then two more pounds in addition. God I love this plan. It so easy to forgive, forget and get back on track. I've been religiously tracking every single thing that goes in my mouth too. This has really upped my level of accountability. 

I also passed a milestone, I broke 70lbs lost. Look, I know I get all amazed and all 'look how close I am!' every time I hit a milestone. Its very The Girl Who Cried Mallomars. But check out my chart below. Twenty nine pounds till goal! 

::spins around the room like a ballerina::

I need to come up with a goal reward. I really have no idea how I want to celebrate. What do you think?

Month One: -16 lbs
Month Two: -5 lbs
Month Three: -6 lbs
Month Four: -6 lbs
Month Five: -6 lbs
Month Six: -8.5 lbs
Month Seven: -7.5 lbs
Month Eight: -5 lbs
Month Nine: -2 lbs
Month Ten: -5 lbs
Week fourty one: -2
Week fourty two: -2

Total: 71 lbs gone forever!
Current weight: 169 lbs
Distance from goal: 29 lbs!!

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*FTC Disclosure: Medifast provides their products for my personal use for free. I am not paid or compensated in any other way for mentioning their products. All thoughts written here are mine. I love complaining so I would tell you if I didn't like something in the program. :)

~*Stephanie aka Goober Monkey*~
~*Jenni aka Jenni From the Blog*~
~*Eileen aka Bringing Up Bronwyn*~
~*Laura akaWho you are is Enough*~