Being a woman of a “certain age,” I am forever watching my weight. From a literal 95-pound weakling in high school, I’ve grown to… well, I’ve grown.
I love food. You can take that statement to mean that I love to eat food, and that I eat LOTS of it. That’s not what I mean by it, though. I do love to eat, but mostly, I love the shapes, colors, textures, flavor, and sheer diversity of food. I love information about food. What it does to and for our bodies. What our bodies do with it.
I don’t have a degree in nutrition, nor in biology, so I won’t claim I’m an expert. I’m an interested layperson. And if you’ve read my blog for more than a week, you know I’m big on using only fresh, real, in-season food.
For some time, I have eaten a reasonably low-calorie diet. I say “reasonably” because I’m not a stickler about it. Oh, and I have no willpower. If I’m hungry, I eat, even though I know I’ve had too many calories already.
For me, that number is anything over 1500 calories. Per day.
Some of you probably had that much for lunch.
My calorie goal for each day is 1200. I allow myself a 300-calorie wiggle room because 1200 is the lowest you can eat and still maintain nutrition. And because of the lack of willpower. It means that if I must chew something now, I can have a couple of pecans. Or a teaspoon of peanut butter. But most days, I make it to 1200 or below. I keep track on a spreadsheet.
This level of food intake lets me maintain my weight. Not lose. Not a single ounce. Yes, that’s discouraging.
I don’t exercise enough, at least these days, I don’t. I’ve done exercise regimes before though, and I don’t lose then either. I’m hungrier, so I eat more. That willpower thing again. I used to walk a lot, but that hasn’t been possible lately. We’ve just joined a gym, so exercise is back on the plate. I can’t walk, but I can lift weights. I can use a stationary bike, and I can swim. I plan on doing all of that. Today is my first meeting with my personal trainer. We’ll see what they do with old ladies who have arthritis, neuropathy, and high blood pressure.
We’ve made one big change in our lifestyle that is helping with the calorie thing. My stepson told us about it. Eating every other day. I think you’re supposed to skip breakfast and lunch every other day. But I’m not going to do that. Just. Not. And around here, we both love breakfast. But my husband started skipping lunch every day, so he was eating just breakfast and dinner.
Yeah, me either. The thing is, I’m always hungry during the day, and not so much by evening. In fact, I’m sort of a hobbit. Breakfast, second breakfast, twelvsies… and then since dinner was never until 5:00 (7:00 before my husband retired), I had to have a snack about four o’clock or so. I wouldn’t really be hungry for dinner, but since I had to feed my husband – I sat down and ate too.
But we’ve got it straightened out now. We eat breakfast. Mine is is really small – about 200 calories. Therefore, my lunch is early – usually around 11:00. But my two meals equal the calories hubby has in his breakfast. I just don’t like to eat it all at once.
Then we have dinner about 3:00. I realize this isn’t for everybody, but it fits with the way my body works. I find I don’t need to eat anything else the rest of the day. I feel a lot better too, because I’m not stuffing myself at the end of the day when I’m not even hungry.
I have vague, fluttery hopes that the two-meals-a-day, along with more exercise will actually let me lose weight.