Monday, July 11, 2011

Embarrassing Anecdote and a diatribe on Fad Diets.

So I tried today but I pushed myself a little too hard trying to make my routine more challenging and ended up hurting myself. Nothing major just embarrassing and it reminded me of something I want to talk about. I warn you the following concerns the uncomfortable subject of bodily functions and why eating right is really really important.

I was lazy last night after two days away from home sleeping on a terribly uncomfy couch so I just tossed some sauerkraut and pork shank in the crock pot when we got home in the afternoon and fell into a deep nap. Under ordinary circumstances, served with green salad this is a perfectly healthy meal. Pork shank is lean and kraut is a low fat flavoring with all the nutrients of cabbage. Unfortunately my body was stressed from lack of sleep and trying out some new workout moves. (Seriously reverse squats are evil but they get some hard to reach muscles in the quads, glutes and lower back) and when my body gets too stressed it doesn't digest things very well and I end up bloated and with diarrhea. Cabbage can cause such a reaction on it's own so my body was in for a double whammy (what is it with cabbage and beans, some of the healthiest things out there but they are so bad for bloating!)  So I had that unpleasantness and when I was finally recovered enough to work out (I thought) I started doing some of the new squats I added to the routine and I felt a terrible pain. I went to the bathroom and  was bleeding from my anus. (tried to warn you this was embarassing) I had torn it from the stress of the morning and the new moves. It's nothing serious but the little stuff like this that no one talks about it why it is so important to plan ahead and really think about what you are putting in your body. I know it's not fun to think about but the fact that people don't talk about this stuff is part of why extreme weight loss fails so often. This embarrassing and painful kind of experience is really discouraging if you don't realize how common it can be. The solution to this is of course more fiber and smaller portions of foods that cause me distress before I up a workout difficulty level. But it's annoying that I had to derail a day of progress for a dumb mistake.

Now, onto tonight's rant on Fad diets. When I was 17 a doctor got on my case about my weight because I was about 180 with a 32" waist and 42" chest and hips. (in short about where I am trying to get back to now.) I was in colorguard so I was dancing and marching and running to workout. I also worked as a CNA after school so I was on my feet a lot. I really wasn't unhealthy. A size 12 is hardly obese. But my BMI said differently so the doctor put me on the South Beach diet. The handouts she ended up giving me were so confusing that I ended up eating pretty much nothing but iceberg lettuce "salad" , celery and grilled chicken since it was a low carb based system. I lost a ridiculous amount of weight (about twenty pounds in just over a month) I got compliments left and right and I even went to prom with the guy I'd had a crush on for months (despite the fact that he had consistently not shown interest before.) But it was a terribly unhealthy way to function especially went I started taking an insane short term college class that had me waking up at 5AM to work 9 hours straight. The boy dumped me and my body pretty much just shut down on me. So I went back to eating the way I had been before which made me gain it all back plus some. Then college hit and so did cafeteria food and sedentary student life so I just kept getting bigger.

The Truth about Diets
[Via: Weight Loss for Lemondrop]

That's an extreme example but the concept is the same. When something offers you insane weight loss in exchange for paring your menu down to a single foodgroup or item. Avoid it like the plague! Your body is a finicky machine that needs a huge variety of different foods. While the old food pyramid was a little miss-stacked it was a good idea of how many different things your body needs to thrive.
Also, as I've said before anything that promises a result to good to be true, isn't. Weight loss is a slow grinding  process that takes commitment and serious, all around change. You can't just pick up a diet until you're where you want to be and then go back to your old life. It just makes it worse. That being said, remember this is a lifestyle, not a diet.
What the food pyramid should look like (No one ever remembers legumes) 

No comments:

Post a Comment