Friday, July 30, 2010

Food Court: Dieting

I've been working out at the gym for well over a year. I'm in fair shape --still a bit too heavy, but thanks to the regular health scans at the plasma center, I know my blood pressure is very good -- slightly less than 120 over 80. My pulse resting is 70 and the stuff in my blood is just fine -lots of iron, lots of protein.

I lift pretty close to the range of some of the more experienced muscle-heads, I show up, follow a routine, take notes and seem pretty serious about it, but the results around my midsection are slow moving, indeed --and I guess, a few people are paying attention.

"What kind of diet are you on?" The muscle-head asked.

"Um, not really much of any diet," I said. "I'm trying to watch my carbs, but that's been harder lately."

Harder, because I've been taking lunch at a soup kitchen and carbs figure prominently in the meals, even if I turn down the bread and the sweets, which I do most of the time.

He nodded. He had not come to judge, merely to offer some advice.

"You need to cut out the carbs and stick almost entirely to lean proteins." He looked me over in a way that wasn't the same as when the old gay guy does. "You do that and you'll lose around the middle."

I listened to him, but I think it's more complicated than following a diet. I've had issues with food since I was a teenager and developed new ones as an adult. Going to the soup kitchen, for however long, may actually be more helpful than I thought.

As crazy and as shallow as it seems, when you eat as poorly as I have been eating (and really, I think, I've been in denial about that) and are presented with something other than the same thing you've been eating twice a day for months on end you might overreact. This might be why I tend to binge whenever alternatives are offered. Hence, why my weight hasn't changed in months --since things got really hard toward the end of winter.

Something I've noticed in the last two weeks since I stopped bringing my lunch and started mostly eating at the church, I'm not binging in the evenings --even if all I'm eating is beans. I'm not panicking about being hungry. I'm not rifling through the cabinets looking for anything, even things I hate because they're different than what I'm subsisting on. I'm not racing to beat the dog to my kids' scraps or looking for ridiculous ways to make what I eat taste different (ever try blue cheese dressing on beans? How about maple syrup?).

No, mostly, it's all very much in control. I feel more in control.

So, I told the guy I'd look into it. Eventually.

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