The Return to Real Life

I’ve been pretty absent from my blog–my last post being almost 2 months ago. But I’ve found little motivation to post anything despite the multitude of new recipes I’ve tried and photographed, as well as the interesting encounters I’ve had over this time period. The fun in “funemployment” was fizzling out and becoming more frustrating than anything else. I was tired of looking at the walls in my apartment. So I went home for a few weeks, hung out with my parents, helped them around the house, and thankfully, that phone call I’ve been waiting for with a job offer, finally came.

Now I’m back in New Orleans, first week at the job, trying to get adjusted to having a regular schedule. The time change and this cold snap isn’t helping any, nor are the impending cluster of holidays, which inevitably makes trying to find my place within academia even more complicated because school’s about to be out. I take it one day at a time, navigating in this newness. But I can’t complain, it’s a good problem to have, and one I’ve been praying for all these months.

Of course, to make this time more interesting and complicated, I’ve given myself yet another challenge. I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t. So there are lots of short-term diets and fasts out there, some with only raw foods, some with only juices and soups, the master cleanse, magic pills, etc. I’m well informed on the fact that none of them are good solutions to weight-loss, some of them may be dangerous for certain people, some of the more restricted ones are just not feasible and will make you crazy in the meantime. Most of them have no real scientific data behind them as to whether they are cleansing or detoxifying. But I like to look at some of them as a good way to press the reset button on my eating habits. I love to eat, I love to cook so that I can eat more, but not everything I cook is the healthiest for me. I also want to lose weight, and knowing how unhealthy ballooning up and down in weight (even marginally) can be, I try and avoid anything that’s too restrictive because I get moody when I’m hungry.

Anyway, I’m saying all this, but still embarking on this 13-day diet. If you haven’t heard of it, google it. It’s supposedly a diet that “resets your metabolism.” I don’t know if there’s any research into the specific combinations of foods on this menu that backs that claim, but based on my own knowledge, there are a dozen or so other (better) ways to work on increasing your metabolism that are more long-term and sustainable, even though this claims not to be a crash diet. Amongst its other claims are that after the 13 days, you can return to eating normally and not gain weight for two years (or three depending on the website) and that this diet isn’t to be repeated until that time frame is over. There is plenty of variation in the rules and menu items depending on whose website you visit (I don’t think there’s an official version of it, at least not one that I can find): salt or absolutely no salt, no sugar or a cube with coffee. Given all this variation and the shaky ground it stands on as far as scientific backing, I’m going to follow the rules that make the most sense to me and embark on this 13 day plan.

Overall, the rules make a lot of sense. If you go with the no sugar rule (which I am), getting rid of refined sugars for two weeks, diminishing your taste for it, is really only a positive thing given how much sugar is in the typical American diet. You have to drink at least 2 liters of water a day and most of us don’t hydrate enough. It cuts down grain consumption considerably, outside of toast for breakfast on certain days. The only thing that probably concerns me the most is the disproportionately high protein intake and the few vegetables outside of lettuce/tomato/carrots/cucumber. Eggs, steak, chicken, ham, fish…my grocery basket looked a bit crazy.

Anyway, I’m in the middle of day two, somewhat contemplating wanting to quit already because it’s cold and I want some soup or chili or gumbo. But I will push on. OH! As for the amount of weight they claim you’ll lose, they say at minimum 9 kg (about 20 lb.) if you follow the diet strictly, which is an incredibly large amount of weight within a 13 day period. I’m not sure I even have 20 pounds to lose (although those highly inaccurate BMI charts would say otherwise).

I started at 173.2, so we’ll see in 13 days what I weigh. That is if I can resist ditching the last day and going to Po-Boy fest instead, hmmmmm…..