Wednesday, April 2, 2008

All Things in Moderation

My new year's resolution was to lose weight, and to do this, I've joined Weightwatchers to help with the diet and Curves to help with the exercise. Thanks to the glorious rear-end collision in early March, the gym has been put on hold, but the diet is going.. well.. not strong, but still going.

I'm overweight, and the reason for that is simple mathematics. From 1998 to 2008 - a whole 10 years - I have eaten more calories than I have expended. The weight gain has been slow, and somewhat yo-yo like in the past couple years. I started out around 140 pounds, when I first moved to Edmonton in 1997. At my heaviest, in 2000, I was more than 280 (how much more, I don't know. I avoided the scale.)

My name is Robbi, and I am a chocaholic. I love food. This is partly nature and partly nuture. (No, Mom and Dad, I'm not blaming you. Read on.)

I am genetically hardwired to love food. And I am what is known as an "easy keeper". I can pack on weight just SMELLING French fries.

Growing up, food was both comfort and reward. A scraped knee might be treated with a band-aid and ice cream. A good report card could mean dinner at my favorite restaurant. My mom is a great cook, but her baking could tempt a saint. Mom makes butter tarts to die for. Her black forest cake is soaked in cherry whiskey and covered with real whipped cream and chocolate. Even her fruitcake is good!

Some of my fondest memories (even recent ones!) involve food. Each birthday meant a homemade shaped birthday cake with buttercream frosting - I recall Mickey Mouse, Holly Hobby, Garfield, a rainbow, a horseshoe (darned useful U-shaped pan, that one), a Smurf, and several others. Yummy!

Road trips meant toast and coffee on the road and usually lunch or dinner at a truck stop - I have never met truck stop food I didn't like. Camping meant smokies and smores over an open fire, and mac and cheese cooked in a pot on a Coleman gas stove somehow tastes better.

So, what to do? These days I'm still finding reward and comfort in food. I'm just making different choices - berries and yogurt soothe skinned knees just as well as a cookie, and my niece had an angelfood cake with strawberries for her birthday that was pretty tasty indeed. There will still be summer smokies over campfires, but I think I'll limit my intake.

I wouldn't trade those childhood memories of food for anything. Fighting the battle of the bulge might be easier if the war wasn't being waged on so many different fronts, but it also wouldn't be nearly as interesting.

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