Friday, April 29, 2005

Passover and the South Beach Diet

Every year Rich observes Passover, which means he spends ten days not eating bread, grains, products with corn by-products, and not drinking beer! (On a side note, he'll eat shrimp, which is not even kosher, but I've given up why he'll eat this but not the whole wheat matzoh that is marked "not for Passover use." Hmph.) I figured this would be a perfect time for me to start the South Beach diet. We'll spend an almost equal amount of time being restricted by what we can't eat, and since Rich can't go on the diet with me for moral support because if he lost any weight he'd disappear, this will be the closest to moral support I will get.

Most days, I don't let outside factors hinder my ability to enjoy food. My lack of money, for instance. True, I can't go out to restaurants every night, but I can try to cook something yummy at home. And I definitely make cooking a priority - when I was weighing new clothes over a food processor, the food processor won. Other days, however, I realize I can't just eat whatever I want with reckless abandon. And it is reckless - I'm not the girl who can just savor a small sliver of tart, I have several slivers. I can't just have a normal portion of manchego, I have three thick slices. Maybe I was always like this but my metabolism just kept up. But lately it's rebelling. After I ran a marathon last August, I noticed that I had suddenly gained 10 pounds. And several inches around my belly.

I can't just cut back my food and start exercising more - I need structure. So I enrolled in a 6:30am boot camp and borrowed my mom's SBD book and prepared myself for two weeks of no bread and fruit and sugar (wah!!!) My friend said "You love food! How could you just go on a diet that won't let you eat bread??" And I haven't figured that out yet. I think it's because as a starchmouse, I'm controlled by my need for bread and sugar. And I'd like to get to the point where I truly enjoy it, but don't need a "fix." And when I go to my cousin's wedding in May, I would like for the first words out of all my aunt and uncle's mouths to not be "you gained weight!" Koreans have a habit of pointing this out first before saying hello.

Anyways, it's been 6 days since I've started, and I'm pleasantly surprised that I haven't been climbing the walls for bread. I did have a huge sugar craving the other day - I caved in and had some sugar-free frozen yogurt. Ew. I'm definitely eating more veggies than before, but the amount of protein and low-fat cheese I'm consuming is mildly freaking me out.

My last meal before the diet was at Passover Seder. So much food! Rich and I spent 6 hours in the kitchen tending to the brisket...

What a ridiculously fatty cut of meat! I wish we had had more time - we made about 10 pounds, and I think only 6 of those pounds turned out truly tender.

Mike on the other hand, spent four hours brining his turkey and then eight hours drying it out before he roasted it, and it was spectacular...

More pictures here.

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