Counting Calories sucks…but it seems to be working. Figures.

A few weeks ago, my son went to a sports physical. The doctor signed off on her okay for him to play sports, but she said, he really needs to shed some pounds. I kind of needed to lose some, too, so we opted to do it together. His father vowed to help on his days as well and, so far, he’s lost several pounds!

As for me, I needed to join in the fun because the old ‘muffin top’ was getting a bit too inflated for my liking. I had one pair of pants that fit. One.  And I refused to buy bigger clothes when there were perfectly good pants just waiting to be worn… if only I’d lose some weight.

The pant size progression. I’m coming for you, size 10!

When I started this a few weeks ago, I was the heaviest I’d ever been at 158. When I was in college, I was 120. Now, I know I’m not going to get back down to that 120 simply because I like food too much and hate all things related to exercise so that number was out of the question. But, 120 wasn’t my goal. Fitting back into my pants was.

Because I knew I wasn’t about to start an exercise routine, I figured cutting calories was the next best thing. I did some research to find out how many calories a woman of my age and ‘active’ level should consume and started a food log.

It’s only been two weeks, but I’ve shed about 5 pounds, so far. Not too shabby.

The log, while being a big old pain in the butt, has also helped me discovered a few unpleasant things about my eating habits:

*I was drinking a lot of my calories, be it coffee or iced tea, or, gasp, wine. I couldn’t figure out why I was gaining weight when I ate so little until I started writing those drink numbers down. Since giving up coffee and wine were out of the question, I compromised. One cup of coffee in the morning, (gasp again) seltzer or water during the day (before this I drank very little water) and one glass of wine at night (two, if I had remaining calories left).

*Calories are in everything! Condiments, oils you cook with, and even the god awful veggies!

*Chips, while delicious, are a lot of calories…pretzels and popcorn have become my friends.

*Cheat nights are needed. I need to have one night where I don’t count. Where I can have my pizza and my chips and two glasses of wine if I want. On those days, I do try to go to the YMCA and walk to try and make up for some of it.

*Logging what you eat makes you think twice about if you’re really hungry for a snack or just bored.

*Logging is a pain in the ass…but it’s helping so, win?

Now, I’m not trying to get a ‘beach-bod’ or anything like that. I just want to fit back into my clothes again. Charting my progress is helping me see that I can reach that goal, so long as I pay more attention to what I’m putting on my plate, or in my case, filling my cup with.


Danielle Bannister, author and begrudging calorie counter 


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