Recently I went on a diet. Like most diets this one was scheduled around a major life event. My daughter's wedding. There would be no shopping for a mother-of-the-bride dress until the pounds came off.
Typically I go on a diet on Monday and by Wednesday I've folded beneath the weight of a German chocolate cake. I've been hijacked by as little as a stale pink sugar wafer discovered in the dark recesses of the bread drawer.
But this time things were going to be different. I could tell as I went to get the mail and discovered the first crocus of the season.
Life was looking up. Even though an icy rain began to fall, my spirits weren't dampened. Not even when huge drops pelted me on the head and I had to dash inside.
My latest plan would revolutionize dieting. If it worked for me it would work for the world. I smelled a book deal. I could see myself all made-over and liposuctioned sitting between Oprah and Dr. Oz.
It was full speed ahead. Gone were those complex menus. This plan called only for counting the calories of every morsel in my house that I did not eat. That's right. It wasn't what I ate that was important here. It was what I didn't eat.
I eliminated counting the calories I took in. The calories, or bonus points as I called them, would be converted to cash and spent however I desired. My reward would be a shopping spree at the local mall.
That very night I omitted biscuits with dinner. Thus, I avoided serving the leftovers with eggs the next morning. A quick bowl of Toasty Postys and I was out the door.
I worked up a sweat on the treadmill after work, walking to the tune of Ba-ba-ba, ba ba-ber-ann-oh-ba-ber-ann by the Beach Boys and made mental lists of all the foods I would eliminate in the coming days.
The next day I shelved the lemon meringue pie I'd planned and served a sugar cookie. The number of calories I managed not to eat at the end of that meal amounted to a tidy sum.
While doing dishes, I polished off the cookies in the box. My points were in the second bag I'd stashed in the cabinet and hadn't eaten. My bonus cup runneth over. I felt so ahead of the game I watched Oprah and planned my Chicago trip. I added a dollop of melted Land 'O Lakes to my popcorn.
Tiny mother-of-the-bride dress, here I come.
Everyday I drank at least eight glasses of water with lemon. Cheese cake in a glass. Well - almost.
I was building up muscles carrying in groceries. The more food I had in the house the more calories I counted as ones not eaten.
I made potato soup and eliminated the butter and cream. I threw in some low fat Parmesan. So, I had an extra bowl. I watched Oprah and took note of the colors of her set. My television debut dress would match to a tee. LATEST DIET BOOK AUTHOR would have nothing on me as I held up my new diet book.
Then something happened. My food bill tripled. And one tiny problem arose. The actual weight-loss part of my plan wasn't working. I still had to lie flat to pull on my old jeans.
What did work was the bonus part of the plan. My cupboards were overflowing with gobs of calories I hadn't eaten and I'd amassed enough points to spend an afternoon at the mall.
And in spite of the failure of my revolutionary new plan, I did lose some weight before the wedding. The thought of lighting unity candles in front of a huge congregation made me heave for a week before the big event.
Well, another major life event has passed and I have a brand new dilemma. I can't get into my Easter dress.
As I worried, another theory lit on my shoulder. It wasn't the food that was adding the weight to my body. It was the heavy air I was breathing. Would an air cleaner lighten things up? Or new furnace filters? How about dusting?
After I have a cookie I'll give this plan some thought and get right back to you.
This was written a number of years ago when I actually did go on diets.
Bless you for reading. Comments or your diet stories welcome.