How A Frosting Fanatic Stays Relatively Fit

January 02, 2014

When I was 17 years old I was 30 pounds overweight. My two best friends were 60 pounds overweight so I always felt like the skinny one. I look back at prom photos now and I can see myself inside that heavy girl. Like I’m wearing a fat suit. It looks like I ate myself. I got so hungry one day that I just ate my entire body. Four years later I was sitting behind locked doors at New York Presbyterian Hospital, 30 pounds underweight. My weight has fluctuated—maybe like yours, or maybe more extreme than yours. I’ve struggled, I’ve suffered, and I’ve succeeded in finding what works. For me. As the New Year kicks off I’m faced in person and via social networks with mass amounts of weight loss resolutions, diet transitions, and talk of how to lose, lose, lose. I’m sensitive to the constant weight talk because of my history but just like you, I desire to keep my weight in check. And finally after all these years, I think I’ve figured out how to do that. At every book signing for The Dollop Book of Frosting at least one woman approached me and asked me how I stay skinny while eating sweets. It’s no big secret. And most importantly, it’s not about being skinny. The second it becomes about being skinny is the second that I fall off the wagon and into the depths of the disordered eating cycle. I’m not giving you advice. This is not an advice article. I’m not a nutritionist, a personal trainer, nor a coach. I’m going to tell you what works for me. If it strikes a chord with you, maybe it will work for you too. I gained weight when I had my cupcake shop. I didn’t realize it much at the time because it wasn’t an inordinate amount of weight, but as I look back at pictures of myself from last year, I see it. My face was rounder. Puffy. I was eating cupcakes everyday. I wasn’t sleeping. I was stressed to high hell. The only reason I didn’t gain more weight is because I was exercising everyday and pacing the cupcakery floors for time. Several months after I closed my shop everything changed. It takes that long to recover from a massive life flip. The stress dissipated a bit. I moved out of my tiny apartment/office where sleep eluded me, got off Ambien, and discovered my gluten intolerance, which was my most significant change. When I discovered that it was humanly possible to not be bloated after eating, a new world opened to me. You may have trouble believing this but I never understood how people could eat in the middle of the day and go about their work being so bloated. I assumed based on my experiences that all people were bloated after eating. It was a life-changing moment when I discovered this not to be true. After cutting gluten from my diet, food began to become more about feeling good than about looking good. I don’t mean “feeling good” in the sense of immediate gratification. “That slab of cake will taste good so I’m going to eat it.” No. It’s about long-term gratification. And not in the sense of, “if I starve myself I’ll lose weight and feel skinny in the long run.” No. I’ve tried that and I promise you that does not work. You will not feel good if you starve yourself to skinniness. So what do I mean by “feeling good”? Strong. I mean feeling strong. I reached a place where I began eating for strength. Eating for performance. Eating for life. I had been doing CrossFit for quite some time but not until recently did I start taking it more seriously. I resolved to focus on lifting—building strength and form. And that’s when it all clicked for me. These days I eat a fairly “clean” diet 6 days out of the week. It’s not Paleo because Paleo didn’t work for me. I tried it. I felt weak. And the philosophy behind the diet just it didn’t make sense to me. If I can’t understand and comprehend the why of a diet than I sure as hell am not going to be able to stick to it. I’ve slimmed down. My back squat has gone from 155 pounds in June to 205 pounds today. My bench press has gone from 115 pounds to 130 pounds and my deadlift has gone from 275 pounds to 310 pounds. All because I’ve changed my internal focus. So what am I eating?
  1. Quest  bars pre-workout and Gnc Pro Performance Amplified 100% Protein Drink with unsweetened chocolate almond milk post workout.
  2. Eggs some days.
  3. Snacks of raw vegetables, leftover meat, sweet potato chips, or fruit.
  4. Dinners of rotisserie chicken or ground beef and tomato sauce.
  5. Vegetables with every dinner, sweet potatoes with most.
  6. Blueberry muffins made with coconut flour, topped with butter for dessert.
  7. A glass of red wine.
  8. If I go out to eat I’ll get steak, chicken, or BBQ with potatoes and vegetables. I’m a little obsessed with Chipotle. And on Saturdays I eat all the sugar in the world.
I’ve been doing this since September. I haven’t stepped foot on a scale in almost 10 years. So have I lost weight? I have no idea. I’m told I have. I feel good (most days). Will I need to change this lifestyle? Maybe. Probably. But for now it works for me. My CrossFit gym is starting a Paleo-Zone challenge next week. Am I going to do it? I’m not sure. I have a bit of FOMO but I also know that strict Paleo doesn’t work for me. Plus there’s that fear of tail spinning into unhealthy diet mode in order to “win” the challenge. You need to find what works for you. Try things. Reflect on things. Research. Don’t hop on bandwagons. Don’t resolve to lose weight. Just decide to feel healthy and strong.  

Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.