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There’s a phenomenon that happens twice a year, when my husband takes the kids to Florida to visit his parents. I get five days all alone, and I crave that time. And the closer I get to the kids’ departure time, the less patience I have with them and the more I want them to go. In the day or two before they leave, I have to bite my tongue not to yell a lot. In my mind I’ve already begun my alone time.
The same thing is happening to me now with this low-carb thing. I have five full days to go, plus part of a day (I officially started this thing after eating breakfast, so I’m ending it at noon on Saturday). AND I WANT IT TO BE OVER. For the first week it was new and kind-of easy. In the middle four weeks I just dug in and I tried not to fantasize about the end too much. But in the past couple of days I’ve started really thinking hard about Saturday. What I’m going to have for lunch. Jake suggested that I make a buffet of my five or six favorite foods. But honestly, I think I just want a piece of toast. Or a bagel.
I lost another 1.2 pounds last week, for a total of 9.8 pounds in five weeks, and that’s just not worth it. I feel like this might be a good option for somebody who is totally stuck, maybe trying to lose those last ten pounds. But at this stage, when I still have another forty to lose after this, it would be completely demoralizing to stay on this plan past Saturday.
It’s Not That Hard, But It Is
I’ve been using two phrases for the past month that seem very contradictory. I’ve been saying that going low carb isn’t that hard, but then other times I talk about being miserable. And what I mean is this:
Physically, this is not hard. It really isn’t. There’s nothing to keep track of or measure. Technically I can eat whenever I want and never need to be hungry. It is not hard to make a salad (I spoil myself with expensive pre-washed mesclun mix, because an entire head of lettuce will sit in my vegetable crisper until it rots). It is not hard to sautee or roast up some veggies. The low-carb recipe I liked most is a giant pain in the ass, but other than that, veggies are easy. Hard boiled eggs are easy. Bananas with peanut butter are easy. An omelet is easy. This isn’t like some of the plans that I’ve seen where you have to make complicated recipes every day and you’re making a million dishes.
Simplicity is important to me because my family isn’t participating, so I’m usually making different meals for myself. And this was simple.
The part that is ridiculously hard is the emotional impact it’s had on me. I’m a baker. I’m a carboholic. And I feel like for the past five weeks a huge source of joy has been missing from my life. And I’ve avoided going out to eat as much as humanly possible. I went out to lunch with family the first full day of this experiment, but that was unavoidable because it was already planned. And this week I’m meeting friends for a regular monthly lunch, which will probably consist of a salad and a Diet Coke. Sigh.
I also opted for drive-thru fast food with the kids while we were on a road trip a few weeks ago, because that was easier than sitting down in a restaurant and watching them eat (I’d brought my own food in a cooler). That really sucked, because nobody should drive up to a Sonic and leave without something greasy. And I like having a nice break when driving a long distance, so that part sucked too.
So, it’s hard and it’s easy. Whatever. It’s almost over.