There is a funny thing we weight losers do.  If we should find ourselves gaining weight (and who hasn’t) we find ourselves saying “I have gained a few pounds.”  Or, we will detach the weight loss from ourselves by saying “the weight won’t come off.”  As if it is a separate entity.

So, I am here to say that I have gained 15 pounds.  Not a “few” pounds.  Not “some” weight.  But, let’s be exact here.  15.  Fifteen.  One-five.  I have decided that it is important to say that.  I know I am not alone.  I want to show some courage here and acknowledge it.
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Enough with the wah-wah “I’m not in Kansas anymore” pity party about your Italian vacation and there being NOTHING TO EAT in America.  C’mon!!!

This is how to do it:  get off your vacation exhausted duff (okay, do some yoga first).  Let the airplane headache pass and move on.  Or, just plain move.  I walked to my Weight Watchers meeting and saw that, yes, Virginia, there ARE consequences to your cornetto eating – but basta!  Enough.  Move on.

NYC Italian Coffee Bar

I walked to my favorite coffee bar in NYC — Tarallucci & Vino — a completely Italian place, I presume owned by Italians, but if not – certainly the people who work there are speaking the mother tongue.  And, their customers are.  So, too, the bambini.  I ordered un espresso DOPPIO – figured that being in NYC – I couldn’t just order caffé like in Rome and expect to get espresso.  Squisito!

Greenmarket Goodies

A short stroll away: our version of the Campo dei Fiori – without the statue of the executed guy.  The Greenmarket at Union Square.  I filled my market bag to overflowing: beets with succulent greens still attached.  Radishes, broccoli, cauliflower.  I love fall greenmarkets with its squashes, pumpkins and potatoes.

There you have it.  Pure food: the American way.  Now, start cooking.

One of my best friends implored me: “write about those last ten pounds!”  If somebody could just solve that, weight loss would be so much more successful.

I have been struggling with that assignment since that evening – over a delicious Italian meal, by the way.  Such a great question!  It is at the core of the diet challenge.

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avocado

My Saving Grace

Hail, the mighty avocado.  This one fruit singlehandedly saved me on my weight loss journey.  Did you know that it is 7000 years old?  Cultivated in Central America and brought to the New World in the 19th Century.

From WebMd:

It’s true that avocados are high in fat — one reason they’ve earned the nickname “butter pear.” A medium-sized avocado contains 30 grams of fat, as much as a quarter-pound burger. That’s why diet experts have long urged Americans to go easy on avocados in favor of less fatty fruits and vegetables. But now nutritionists are taking another look. They’re finding that most of the fat in an avocado is monounsaturated — the “good” kind that actually lowers cholesterol levels. Thanks to this new understanding, the U.S. government recently revised its official nutrition guidelines to urge Americans to eat more avocados.

I almost started a riot at my Weight Watchers® meeting when I discussed my very own “avocado diet.”

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My Favorite Stew

Lamb Stew in the Slow Cooker

On cold, frigid days like the one we’re experiencing right now in New York City, what a perfect day to stay inside, keep warm and cook up something in the trusty ol’ crock pot.  They’ve modernized the name these days to slow cooker — maybe crock pot is just too Betty Crocker® for the manufacturers.

I have been using my slow cooker for quite awhile to prepare meals on a weekend.  No effort, and they last me throughout the week.  And, not necessarily just in these cold months.  It works any time of the year.

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Pont Sant'Angelo

Bridge of Angels, Roma

There are many tools we can use on our weight loss journey.  I don’t think any of us should overlook the power of the Divine.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not preaching here.  Nor, proselytizing.  I’m just adding another layer to our shared challenge: to lose weight.  To keep it off!

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You hear it all the time when you are trying to lose weight:  drink water.  It amazes me how many people cite that as one of their greatest challenges in a new diet.  But remember,  we are, after all, made up of about 60-70 percent water.  H20, baby!

Water fills you up, too.  Right before a meal, I try to drink at least one, if not more, glasses of water.  It really stems my appetite.  And, it adds to my overall good health.

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There is this thing we dieters do in the evening, or even the days, before we start our DIET.  We eat that last supper of everything we’re convinced we are not going to eat, or do not think we will be able to eat while on the diet.  (Read more on my thoughts about being ON a diet in entry called To All A Goodnight).

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*MERRY CHRISTMAS *

These can be trying times for people trying to live healthful lives.  Notice, I don’t say for dieters.  In that the way we eat is our diet, yes, we are all dieters.  Please do not regard weight loss and living healthfully as a time to deprive yourself.  It is well-known, in the science of weight loss, that sacrifice can be your biggest enemy in this journey.

If you consider yourself ON a diet, then once you hit your weight goal, you will likely go OFF the diet. And, yes, gain the weight back.  Plus some!

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