A Calorie Counting Success Story

The Amazing Shrinking Woman

Exercise Walking December 1, 2009

Filed under: Walking,Weight Loss — felineaids @ 10:30 pm
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Today I had a very strange eating day.  I drank tea in the morning, ate grits for lunch, a peanut butter slug for a snack, and had a Chinese soup feast for supper.

None of it was very good.  First, the tea was bitter because I let it steep too long; secondly I didn’t have any butter for the grits, and finally my Chinese soup feast was disappointing.  I’m not sure why I didn’t enjoy the soup very much, but part of it has to be the fact that the wontons are filled with a mystery meat, and as I was about to bite into the first one, I wondered what meat it was.  Pork?  Beef?  Then my mind flashed back to a conversation with my mother several days ago in which she told me that some lady she works with adopted a Korean baby, and Koreans really do eat dogs, but only a certain dark-meat kind, and only in the winter.  (Shiver fest.  I know.)  So from then on, I’d look apologetically to my dog before each bite.  I felt like I was eating MSG-soaked dog-meat dumplings that were floating in a cesspool of polluted sea water.  I actually ended up spitting out most of the (dog?) meat and only ate the noodle part.

But that’s not important.  What is important is that I’m walking tomorrow!

I’m going to get up early and hit the freezing cold road.  Walking is very important, and the dog gets antsy when she has to stay inside all day, so it’s win-win.  I really want to invest in spandex sports britches, because the world doesn’t have enough fat people in spandex.  Seriously I want them because I think they’ll let me walk faster.  I’m sort of self-conscious of all fat jiggles as I walk.  I know that most people who see me probably think, “Good for her,” but I’d rather not wonder what they’re thinking at all.  Knowing that the jiggly bits aren’t jiggly will make it all more painless for me.

Walking is the best form of exercise for the following reasons.

-Anyone can do it.

-It can be sustained much easier than running.  (This is important because you only burn fat when you’ve already burned the sugar in your body.  In other words, your body keeps the fat for last, so you have to exercise over a longer period of time so that you can get rid of the sugar, then start melting some of that fat.  Running, unless you are a distance runner or an experienced jogger, usually results in a 20 minute or so burst of energy that only burns off the sugar.  In other words, endurance is where it’s at.)

-It doesn’t require special equipment.

-You can (and should) do it anywhere.

-It’s easy to find a partner because it’s such an accessible exercise.

-You can bring your pets!

If you can think of any of the other reasons that walking is so good for you, please share them with us all.

–Calories left today: 3.  (Shazam!)


Day 5 – Breakfast and Lunch (and the worst lunch ever) November 8, 2009

Filed under: Weight Loss — felineaids @ 2:43 pm
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This morning I woke up in a panic.  I was late!  It was already 10am and my alarm hadn’t gone off!  Church starts in 30 minutes!  I frantically tried to find something to wear, but then realized that I hadn’t changed my bedroom clock for daylight savings time.  Joke’s on me!  Duuuuh.  But the church I was going to was a long way away, and I had to stop by the store before I got there, so I left the house without breakfast.  The dog didn’t get breakfast either.

Once I got back, I made myself a tuna sandwich.  Boring?  A little.  But I dressed it up with some dry Taco Bell seasoning.  It was pretty tasty.  Since I told you yesterday about the best lunch I ever had, today I’ll tell you about the worst.

I was on low carb, and used the George Foreman grill to heat up 3 sausages, two regular, one cheddarwurst.  Now, if you’ve never had cheddarwurst, you might think that it sounds good.  I’m sure some people love it.  It is sausage with cheddar incorporated.  The cheddar melts as the sausage cooks, so when you bite into it, it oozes cheddar.  At least it’s supposed to.  Mine usually just dripped out and looked more like movie theatre popcorn butter than cheese.  Well this particular day, I had made those three sausages, and I think I put some condiment on them–horseradish maybe–and I tried to eat it.  For the first few bites it was ok, but then it began to taste like the smell of roadkill.  Ever had that?  When something tastes like the smell of something else?  Anyway, I only got through half of one before I gave up.

Now that I’m thinking about it, the real worst lunch I ever had was at a restaurant called El Paso.  It seemed fine, until about 5 minutes after I finished and had to run to the bathroom in the restaurant and puked my guts out.  It was one of those restaurants where you had to go to the front to pay, and I should have said, “I’m not taking anything with me, so I won’t be paying.”  Sorry, I know that’s a gross story, but it was the worst lunch I’ve ever had.  I think you’ll agree.

-Breakfast and Lunch-

1 can tuna –114

1 T. light mayo –50

Taco Bell dry seasoning –5

2 pieces of white wheat bread –100

1 c. home made tomato soup –198

Total for lunch –467

Remaining calories –1,341

Should I have a Chinese soup feast tonight?  Eh?  Eh?

Also, comment if you’re feeling saucy!


Day 4 – Lunch November 7, 2009

After discovering a stowaway box of Thursday’s lo mein in the fridge, I popped that in the microwave and made a turkey sandwich to go with it.  It wasn’t the best lunch I’ve ever had, but certainly not the worst.  Incidently, the best lunch I ever had was at a place in Harrisonburg, Va. called Mrs. Hardesty’s Tea Room. We sat outside, and I had a piece of quiche, bacon and cheese, I think, along with a cheese scone and “mango mist” tea.  Even though I felt a little phoney and European, it was absurdly good.  Besides, the spoonbread with lemon curd totally took away all my shame in the end.


1 c. vegetable lo mein –299

2 slices Nature’s Own white wheat bread –100

3 slices turkey –90

Hummus –50

Total for lunch: 539 calories

Remaining calories: 1,035


BOOZE! aka “Thirsty Thursday” aka Alcohol Sucks in Many Ways November 5, 2009

As I said below, I used to go crazy on Thursdays.  Here’s how it used to go: after my final class of the day, some friends and I go to a local bar (that claims to be a pub), and draaaank.  You have to say it that way when you imbibe like we did.  Draaaaank.

I’d start with a Blue Moon, no fruit (it usually comes with an orange slice dangling on the rim).  Calories?  Who cared?!  We were drankin!  (Ok so the Blue Moon has approximately 171 calories.  Oops.)  Then I’d have another.  +171.  Then my friend Zack would buy me a Guinness.  +170.  I’d buy another Blue Moon.  +171.  Another Guinness please: +170.  Dang!  I’m still thirsty… but I’m getting cheap.  Can I have a Budweiser? +145.  Another?  +145.  Another, please? +145.  The bar is getting busy.  The waitress is coming by less often, so I take advantage.  Can I get 2 more?  +290.  Zack buys another Guinness +170.  We’re slightly drunk, so we go outside and drink Rolling Rocks, because they’re the cheapest.  +360.

Then I’d come back to my apartment (we walked or got a ride), and drink more.  Seriously.  I’d usually then have at least 2 Miller lites. +192.

And only after all that would I order Chinese food and eat the ENTIRE THING.  It was a large order, usually about 4 c. of the meat part, which is about 450 calories per cup, and then I got fried rice with it, and the calorie estimates on that are between 350 and 750 per cup, so I’m going to go right down the middle with 550 per cup, and I had at least 3, which means about 1,650 calories on the fried rice alone.  Add the meat part for 1,800.

So let’s examine the number of calories that I consumed in the span of about 4 hours.

Booze total: 2,300 calories

Chinese food total: 3450 calories

Grand total: 5,750 calories

Let me repeat that.  Five thousand seven hundred and fifty calories in the span of four hours.  Nota bene:  This was NOT all I had to eat that day.  Oh no.  I had at least 1000 calories before that, because I would eat a pretty sprawling lunch, usually a noodle dish.  So I’m estimating that I consumed around 7-8000 calories on Thursdays.  That’s enough for several days.  DAYS!!!

Now how does booze play into this?  I’ll tell you.  It not only cost me 2,300 calories, but it also enabled me to subsequently consume 3,450.  Alcohol is a tricky little business.  When we’re young, we can’t have it, so we want it.  When we’re of age (finally) we use it to replace our un-exercisable urges for childhood play.  Then when we get older, we use it as a social crutch.  It’s what makes a party.  People only really start talking when they’re a smidge liquored-up, so hosts always try to provide the booze in abundance.

But alcohol sucks.  It sucks the water out of you, for one.  It’s a diruetic, which means it makes you have to pee, so when you drink , you pee out all your water and vitamins.  Dehydration results.  So when you’re coming down from your booze romp, your body is suffering from a severe drought.  However, since this happens mostly when you are sleeping, you don’t know.  So when you wake up, you are so dehydrated that your brain has shrunken away from your skull (no joke) and you have a pounding headache.

That’s not all.  Many people have observed that some drinks tend to make them more hungover than others.  Well, there is a reason for this.  What contributes to the worst part of the hangover–which is everything except the headache, because it’s easily remedied with water–are congeners.  Congeners are what make alcohols different, and they are basically impurities that develop during the fermentation.  These little beasts are also what make you hung over, allegedly.  They hang out in your bloodstream and make you feel like complete crap the next day.  It’s only until your liver can process them out that you finally get some relief.  For that reason, the only real hangover cure is time.

Which drinks are worse?  Well, if you don’t want to get hungover, go for a much distilled, much filtered vodka.  It has the least impurities and will make you feel the least bad, usually.  If you want to feel terrible, drink the cheapest thing you can get your hands on, because it’s rarely carefully filtered and will almost always make you feel like junk.  So will certain craft beers.  If they’re murky, they are unfiltered = hangover.

Hoever you can be guaranteed not to have a hangover if you simply don’t drink at all, or drink a reasonable amount.

But I’ve recently decided that drinking is never, ever worth it.  It is empty calories.  It sucks the calories out of your daily allowance and makes you fat.  It’s liquid bread.

So my advice today is, don’t drink.  Just don’t.  It’s a complete waste of time, it doesn’t even really taste good, and it inevitably leads to bad decisions, even if the bad decision is only to eat an inhuman amount of Chinese food.


Day 2 – Breakfast

Hello blogosphere.

Today I woke up at 5am, convinced someone was trying to break into my house.  I think it was probably a dream.  Whatever it was, it was scary, and I had trouble getting back to sleep, so 7am came way too early.

For breakfast I decided to try something my mother told me was a crime against the South’s humanity: making grits with chicken stock.  It was… ok.  It tasted like chicken soup grits, which wasn’t exactly unpalatable, but was certainly different.  I’m not doing it again–how’s that?  Of course it was accompanied by a tablespoon of butter, which must always be well thought out because it’s a whopping 100 calories.

So, my breakfast:

1/4 cup dry grits –130

1 c. chicken stock –15

1 T. butter –100


Breakfast total:  245

Calories left: 1,558

On Thursdays I usually go out to a bar with friends after my final class of the day.  I’m going to post today about how much alcohol sucks, so look for that.  But the real issue here is that I eat out on Thursdays.  It’s my eating out day.  It just is.  The Office comes on, and I like to lounge around as I eat Chinese food or Taco Bell.  It’s my one unhealthy day.  I used to go absolutely nuts on Thursdays, as detailed in my alcohol post.

But for now, I have quite the bank of calories to last me the rest of the day, so I think I can afford a smidge of irresponsible culinary fun tonight.

I’ll post more later as I eat more.  I think I’m just going to make new posts for each meal…