Life in the Judy Lane

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August 2012: Survival of the Fattest

Posted on August 18, 2012 at 5:05 PM

The next time somebody tells me that they have lost serious poundage in record time by “just giving up soda!” I’m going to crack them over the head with said soda bottle.

The only thing I’ve ever lost by giving up one simple item was my mind. It’s like pyramid schemes. They only work for other people, not me.

Back in the day, I used creamer in my coffee. One morning, as I slurped my morning brew and licked my chops, a co-worker stopped me.

“You know how many calories are in those? You figure you drink 2-3 cups a day…you’re adding 200-300 calories just in your coffee!”

I wiped the donut crumbs from my double chin and made a commitment to drink black coffee from that day forward. Days went by, weeks, months without my beloved creamer. I lost the taste for creamer, but nary an ounce. Fifteen years later, I still drink my coffee naked and can serve up a cup or two on my well-rounded, ever expanding rear-end.

Apparently, I’m not alone in this phenomenon. There was a segment on Oprah about a husband and wife who were serving as missionaries in a third-world country. They were captured by rebels and held prisoner for months. Tragically, the husband didn’t survive due to an infection from injuries suffered in the incident.

“We were given a cup of water and one bowl of rice a day,” the wife tearfully explained. “He was so weak. He lost 30 pounds in a month.”

“And you?” Oprah asked softly.

“I didn’t lose an ounce!” she exclaimed.

Yes, yes, I know what you’re thinking. She lived! Her body went into survival mode. But, is that really what’s happening to me in my cushy middle-class, suburban life with a nice job and all the comforts of home? I turn on the morning news and my brain sends out an alert to my body?

“What?! Traffic is tied up on the freeway?! Batten down the hatches! Store up the fat! We’re all gonna die!”

A friend of mine “just started walking” a month ago and apparently she’s lost 30 pounds. She’s somewhere in Texas now, but apparently very thin.

I walk, too. I don’t lose weight. But, I suppose I would be Gilbert Grape’s mother if I didn’t.

“Atkins Diet!” said another friend. “That’s the way to go. Give up the carbs and watch the pounds drop.”

Thirty days ago, I gave up bread, pasta and cereal and the only things dropping are my chins and breasts. My bra size is a 40 long now.

All right, I admit, I’m down six pounds, but I know I could easily put that back with a visit to the movie theatre. What to do?

Perhaps I can incorporate the walking—round trip—and just easing up a little on my beloved carbs and see how that goes. And, maybe I’ll give up the ice cream. And the cookies. Oh, yeah and the extra glass of wine, and the…

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