Monday, September 29, 2008

Life is Good my Friends!

Life is just Good.

Yes. Capital G.

As a matter of fact, I believe that September has been great. And that this year, although similarly full of ups and downs, has truely been great.

I have a new job. I have a new home. I have a new life!

Who wouldn't want a new life?!

Not that the last one was bad.

I saw my parents, brother and an aunt for lunch today. Dim sum, in the capital of Chinese restaurants in BC, Richmond. I do have to say that Richmond is really the mecca of Chinese food and Chinese products. I was thinking about getting cheap Horlicks or Ovaltine or even specialty pocky (Almond Crush pocky, Green Tea pocky, Creme pocky anyone?) in my neck of the woods, and I had to come up empty. It is surprising how that area of Burnaby is devoid of a good local Chinese place. :( I mean sure, there's the whole slew of Chinese markets along Hastings (Triple A Market, Donalds Market, Red Apple Market) but they're almost more old style and don't have the fancy new city-folk Amenities like the Lee Kum Kee Hainanese Chicken mixes, or the Horlicks Malted candies, or even the Okinomiyaki-flavoured potato chips.

I kind of miss that stuff.

But for the meanwhile, life is good. Really good.

Have a good Monday, and a great week!

Friday, September 26, 2008

10 Reasons Why I Gain Weight.

Kris at Cheap Healthy Good just posted a list of why she gained / gains weight. I've been following her blog for a while - she has a posting schedule of recipes interspersed with foodie-licious articles and links.

While the recipes usually make me stop by her blog for a gander, her list / posting above is probably one of the first times I've commented on her site.

You see, I am an average sized girl. But I've always been made fun of for my weight. As an Asian, I was always taller and bigger (boned?) than my counterparts. Yes, by North American specs, I'm probably average sized, but I've always felt bigger than most as my relatives would poke at my flesh and make me feel ashamed of my body. It doesn't do good either, when, as a developing adolescent, my mother would tell me that she was "never as big as" me when she was younger.

As an adult, I've come to terms with my body, but at the same time I am still guilty of neglecting my health and weight. It is said that the average weight gain for North Americans is 1-3 pounds a year. I can say that much is true; I've gradually gained weight as an adult.

Why? Here we go:

I gain weight because:

1) I live with a man who *needs* to have meat with every meal, or at least, every day. And none of that "white meat" either. He means business, meaning bbq ribs. Steak. Brisket. Bacon. Sausages. The only substitution for any "meat" is with cheese.

2) Cheese? Did you say Cheese? As a child, I *hated* cheese. It felt heavy, was plastic-y, and turned crispy black when my mother or brother made "grilled" cheese sandwiches. As an adult though, I've grown to love cheese. Real cheese. Give me gouda. Gruyere. Brie. Cheddar with ale. Cranberry camembert. Cream cheese with mixed herbs. Goat cheese with poppy seed or nuts. When I was living in Victoria, my roomate introduced me to pate. We would literally survive for days on nothing but cheese, crackers, and pate. Oh, and the odd grape thrown in for good measure. I kind of miss those days.

3) I feel that I deserve it. I've commuted a lot in my adult life. At the end of the drive, what's fast and easy and portable is an ice cream cone. Or a container of fries. And Bob as my witness, after that hellish traffic jam, I deserve it!

4) I believe that I can lose it later. I took up running three years ago. I loved what it did to my body, but more what it did to my eating habits. I could eat whatever I wanted, and I would just burn it off!! What's bad is when I take a break after the marathons or 10k races and kept on eating the same. I can honestly say that for the past three years, I spent the first half of summer feeling and looking great, then the remainder feeling bloated and sad because my body morphed back into its former self.

5) Eating is a social thing. Birthday party = dinner. Mothers / Fathers day = dim sum and / or dinner. Hockey game? We'd watch it over greasy pub food. UFC Fight Nights = fattening potluck food. Happy hour? Sure. Oh, and when me and my friends decide to celebrate something by going dancing? We end up drinking. A lot. And girly cocktails are empty calories. Might explain the most recent weight gain.

6) I love cooking. I love cooking for other people, I love cooking for myself. That, combined with the fact that I was raised and trained not to waste food, causes me to overeat a lot of the times.

7) I have a fear of going hungry. I think in every stage of my life - high school, college, office life - I had this fear of my stomache growling and that being rude. Subsequently, I'd "over pack" my lunches and snacks. Where it allowed, I'd even keep extra food in my locker / backpack / cublicle / drawer to snack on so that I wouldn't go hungry. That access has probably provided me with extra calories that I could do without.

8) I try to eat like the boys. I was a real tomboy growing up. I hated being ridiculed for being inferior - so I'd try to eat like a boy. I've gotten a little better as I've grown up, but I notice that I do try to match portions with M, who is 6' and ~200lbs. I am 5'5" and about 75% of his weight, and he has more muscle mass than me. I`ve also tried going beer for beer (or drink for drink) with the boys, which had bad results. Again - empty calories.

9) I've worked in the food industry for my entire adult life. This means free food, free samples, trade shows with free food and free samples, and a some of taste panelling. Not good.

10) My mothers' love of deep-frying as a form of food preparation has somewhat been genetically passed on to me. Not only was this bad when I was younger (sometimes we'd eat nothing BUT fried food for dinner...eww.), but now that I'm older, I fall into the same trap as I like the texture and convenience of fried food.

Where does this leave me? At least now I can identify why I gain weight. Now to correct some of my bad habits.

- drink less
- portion control
- be conscious of what I eat
- stop the lose / gain cycle
- keep healthy snacks in the car and at work
- freeze leftovers!
- stop when I'm full.

Let's see where this gets me.
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