Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Dieting and Disney

Gonna take a break from my best of Disney trip countdown to address an immediate problem I have...that's right...its VENT TIME!

No qualms about it, I am fat. I was born fat and have always been so. This post is gonna be pretty brutally honest (and probably downright mean to some, I'm allowed to be critical of the obese since I am one, and technically I'm considered morbidly obese by the medical community), but I'm trying to psych myself into a new plan (since I have an appointment today), and this is the best way to do it...more on that later.

I've never really minded being big...keeps people away and adds to the wallflower-power. The general public either don't notice fat people or make fun of them (I experience both daily). I'm a very healthy fat person (apart from the brain tumor, the keratoconus, the history of cervical cancer, and the numerous mental health issues). My cholesterol, blood pressure, sugar, and all other "fat markers" are always normal.

But, when it comes to Disney World, being fat is hard. Not because Disney doesn't accommodate larger people, they most certainly do! You see all shapes and sizes on rides and walking around and some on ecv's...which I totally disagree with. Ecv's are for physically disabled people who can't walk. If you don't need a wheelchair, you shouldn't get an ecv. I do, believe it or not, think obesity is a choice for 98% of the population (I do understand there are exceptions). Strange opinion for a fatty, but if you wanna go to Disney, lose enough that you can at least walk around...you know months in advance you are going, start walking around your neighborhood to prep! Besides, I've never seen anyone on an ecv who wasn't eating while they are trying to drive those bloody monsters. A fat person will rarely rent a wheelchair (because of the embarrassment factor), but absolutely LOVE ecv's, they just don't realize EVERYONE knows they only have them because they are too fat to walk (which totally escapes me because I would be super-self conscious about it). But I digress.

There is so much walking and standing in Disney, extra weight is downright painful on your feet and legs. It's hard to do airport things as well, you spill over in the seat (which I why I like the window seat so I have an Amber-buffer between me and another person...I don't mind invading her space). Plus, at least on some airlines (which I don't fly, so that's good), another few pounds and I would be forced to buy two seats just for me. I've tried numerous things throughout the years to combat this issue, but the only thing that really works is cutting down my weight. Problem is, I never cut it down enough.

I keep a set of "vacation clothes" that are a particular size. I only wear them to Disney, so I know that I have to lose down to at least 230 for them to fit. This past trip, nothing worked and I didn't make that goal (I got down to 238). But between the yoga and walking, I managed to change my shape enough that they still fit comfortably. Problem was, my feet didn't get the memo and I had the worst ever foot problems.

As a "pooh-sized" girl, I have obviously tried every diet ever known to man. Never stick to them and most don't work anyway (plus, since Disney is my only real motivation anyway, why bother?). I lose the weight I need to for Disney, then promptly gain it back (plus some) all over again. Next trip, same cycle. It's old and boring and I want to fix it.

I mentioned a couple of months ago, that I was trying a new diet. Of course, it didn't work. I have a boss who was insistent that I try the diet he was on (and he's been pressuring me to diet for years...bad side effect to working in a small company with people who have known me since I was born). He saw that movie, "Fat, Sick, And Nearly Dead" and decided it was the answer to not only his problems, but mine as well. After months of, and there isn't an easier word, harassment, I finally bought a juicer (and not the expensive one he was pushing...my bosses are doctors, they can afford more than I will ever be able to) and started the juice diet. I did the solid juicing for four days and lost 15 lbs in those four days. Scared the living be-jesus out of me...that is too much weight too fast (although I didn't have the typical side effects of headaches, lethargy, and extreme hunger...my brain just couldn't process the fact I was only drinking an average of 350 calories of liquid a day and having nothing else). I switched to replacing my day meals with juice and eating a light (very light...typically salad) supper. I never gained the 15 lbs back, but I barely managed to drop anything in the 10 weeks following.

For those that don't know, juicing is extremely expensive...over $120 a week and you end up throwing most of it away since you are only extracting the liquids. It was just too much for such very little results. My boss did the juicing for two months (yes, you read that correctly). He did lose a ton of weight, but he now has to have gallbladder surgery, his skin looks appalling (and for an older man, he has always been VERY ticky about his appearance...chemical peels, botox, etc), and, worst of all, his hair is falling out. Plus, he just got back from vacation and he looks as though he's gained 30 lbs since the last time I saw him. Some diet, but he's back on it with a vengeance...even with surgery looming (and no, his personal doctor doesn't know he's juicing, he's too scared to tell...really professional behavior for a physician, even if he's a pathologist).

But back to me, eventually the financial burden got too great and I had to stop (not that I could afford it in the first place and I managed to almost completely charge up a credit card I had just paid off). Juicing did afford me one new trait...my sudden craving for healthy food! You wouldn't guess it, but I'm a VERY picky eater. Typical fat-causing foods are not in my diet...I don't like bread, I rarely eat sweet stuff (except at Disney), I hate fried foods (I'm convinced I can feel the grease congealing in my stomach), and I have issues with any food that is white and creamy (it's a texture thing). But I also don't like vegetables (except spinach). My weaknesses are cow in all forms, especially flesh and cheese. I have actually found myself wanting more vegetables since juicing (and don't get me started on my fruit cravings, but those are pretty much nature's sugar, so no help there).

I decided that simply eating pretty much what I wanted in extreme moderation has always worked in the past, so back to that plan I went, especially with my new veggie love. But it barely worked this time. I am convinced that the juicing screwed up my system. After 11 more weeks and only 4 lbs of weight loss, I was freaking out because I knew my vacation clothes weren't gonna fit. For the first time in my life I was eating healthily and it wasn't helping!

When in trouble, go with the old tried and true 3-Day Diet. Sure, it's only good for about 3 weeks, but it has ALWAYS worked in the past and you lose on average 5-10 lbs per week. But again, not this time. After the 3 weeks, only 1 lb lost. I broke down and tried on the vacation clothes at this point and luckily they did fit, so I wasn't as worried. The foot issue I encountered in Disney World, however, I wasn't expecting.

My sister has been seeing a bariatrician (basically, a real diet doctor) and has lost a lot of her weight. She was skinny her whole life until she got married, so her weight issues are relatively a new thing. I have always been big, so it will be harder for me, but I think I'm ready to give it a go! Or at least I better be...I've gone through the initial blood work and EKG, and I meet with the doc one-on-one today. Scared? Of course! Social Anxiety Disorder, remember? But not exclusively for the SAD reasons, I'm not sure I can convince him I'm serious since I'm not sure how serious I actually am. There was a ton of initial paperwork and you had to list all kinds of goals and what-nots. My ideal goal weight? I am tall, big-boned (and not just my Cartman excuse), and have muscle tone, so 160 lbs would put me in the "skinny" range. Do I actually want to lose down to 160 lbs? Another whole issue entirely.

I don't think I would be conceited to say that I am not an unattractive girl, just fat (not admitting to gorgeous, or even pretty, but I do agree with cute). How do I keep up the air of wallflowerness if I'm thin? Every single fat person I have ever known who has lost a massive amount of weight ALWAYS looks 10 years older in the face. I have NEVER seen a person look younger after losing it (although they may look better from the neck down). "Normal" people only see the whole picture, Asper's notice everything and the face is the first thing I notice. I'm also a very young looking 43 year-old (again, not conceited, just fact). Do I really wanna actually look 43? Then, there is the hanging skin issue. I already have the problem from years of yo-yo dieting. I can't wear cap-sleeved or tank tops now. Shorts are very much out of the question now just like they always have been. That problem is only gonna get worse with weight loss.

Which brings me to the elephant in the room...breast size. I come from a family of large-breasted women, a trait that skipped me entirely. At the weight I'm at now, I'm barely a C cup (and that is one C). I wear very heavily padded boosting bras to simulate the size I should be (and do you know how hard it is to find a 42 C that is padded? You can't...I wear 38's with strap extenders). Where is the first place I always start losing weight? Bust...every.single.time. I wouldn't have a face lift, but if I could afford it, I'd have breast implants in a heartbeat!! A strange thing to worry about, but I do!

So, how do I convince a doctor to help me when I'm not sure how much help I want? Asper's are really good fakers...we're trained in the art of simulating normalness, but we're horrible blatant liars. I can even guarantee myself that I won't go back to my normal ways after Disney in December, much less guarantee a trained professional. Yes, Disney is just on the horizon again and I have gained 7 lbs since I've gotten back from the last trip. I'm a bit desperate right now (hence the ability to even go to a doctor for help). I don't want the foot issues I had to happen again (especially since I won't be on my own this time and will inhibit the fun of others if I'm limping and waddling at a snail's pace). Will it be enough to assure someone I'm excited about being 160 lbs? Doubt it. Maybe I should just be honest and lay it all out there on the table, "look dude, I need to drop 20 lbs before December, get me through that and we'll talk afterwards"...yeah, I wouldn't buy it either.

But I've gotta think of something...less than two hours to go before judgement day!

No comments: