Last Friday my fiancée and I had to travel to Williamsburg, VA because someone in his family passed away. Even though I had to go out of town for work that Sunday, it was important to be there for support so after a long day of work we ventured to Williamsburg late Friday night. I made sure to pack almonds and a granola bar as I knew that we usually stop at fast food and I didn’t want to partake in any of that! When we got to Williamsburg my parents were sooo complimentary of me! They said they could see my weight loss in my face; they were just so excited for me! Also, very cool: I can tell that my weight loss effort is inspiring my father to do better with his weight. My parents have always been overweight so if I can be an inspiration (and keep with it!) I would love to do that!! I let my father know that it really all has to do with food. We can work out until we are blue in the face, until we actually start changing our eating habits we will keep the weight. My father has a sweet tooth and even when he’s not hungry he has the habit to eat, like while watching TV shows. I'm more of an emotional eater. I have had a bad day…. let me go by BurgerKing. I am stressed at work…. let me drink a bottle of wine. I am going to happy hour…. let me get mozzarella sticks and fried pot stickers... I guess that makes me an “excuse” eater.
The next day we went to breakfast and I did awesome by only having an omelette and instead of potatoes I got strawberries. (Baby steps!) Then at the repass after the funeral they had all the comfort food you can imagine: fried chicken, baked chicken, ham, macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes, green beans, and those delicious rolls churches seem to find! I had a breast of chicken (it was fried but I took off most of the skin) and green beans. I did get a spoonful of macaroni and cheese but it wasn’t very good so God saved me there! One thing I have found from being on this diet is that while I will eat, most of the time I don’t have an appetite. Sometimes I do, don’t get me wrong, but once I start eating I get full rather quickly so that is definitely an improvement. Before where I would try to clean my plate and eat everything because its so good, I actually find myself trying to leave food. I know I am going to eat again, so what is the point in binging on one meal when I will always eat more?
That night I ended up having a wrap for dinner when I got back home and went to sleep satisfied. The next morning before I left I got on the scale and I was down 10 pounds! I was so proud of myself and it gave me renewed focus to stay on track and keep going.
Staying Health During Business Trips
I knew going on the work trip would be a challenge. I packed workout clothes and the convention center/hotel is so large I knew I would be walking; however I am on a diet…. I am trying to lose weight… so even going on a work trip with that in my mind is new territory for me.
When I got there I was starving (not a good way to start the trip). I snacked all morning and on the plane but eventually a girl just needs a meal. Lol! All my coworkers were ready to eat too and they decided to go to this Mexican restaurant. I just knew…. Amber is getting a salad and I was fine with that! However, I hit a roadblock when all the salads looked strange, which just means different as Amber doesn’t try too many salads: fried cactus and plantains. I'm just not used to these things! So even though the chicken quesadilla with mango was CALLING my name... I decided to be good and get a salad. (YAY) After all, it was only lunch!
So, I didn’t order a margarita at first even though out of the 4 of us I was the only one who didn’t, again I was determined and got a water. But, unfortunately, the water was straight up tap water and just tested like iron and impurities! It makes my stomach turn even thinking about it now! So, instead of asking the waitress for a diet coke or something, I asked if she had a skinny margarita and when she said they did, I ordered one up. I felt so guilty when I got back to the room for even eating chips and queso and having a skinny margarita, I worked out for a good 45 min. It was so hot and sweaty in my room and I was trying to do this new nike fitness app so while it wasn’t as good or fun of a workout as I would like, I sweated and that’s all that mattered!
That night we had another event (I know!! All still night one!!) and at it there was a lot of fun: food trucks, trays of appetizers, and of course, open bar. The first food truck I go to has single size soft tacos with different fillings, I got a chicken one. They had kabobs, beef brisket, empanadas, make your own nachos, they had everything! Lots of it was healthy don’t get me wrong….but of course there were things I knew I had to stay away from.
I had decided to get a makers manhattan. I found out about this bourbon based drink almost a year ago. The thing I like about it is that only contains bourbon, sweet vermouth and bitters. It is a VERY strong drink. Instead of drinking 4 beers or 8 glasses of wine, having one or two of these will usually do the trick and I don’t spend as much or intake as many calories. I felt really good about barely eating (I mostly had beef and vegetable kabobs which were DELICIOUS!!) so, I had 4 drinks. That’s right…. the girl on the diet STARTED OFF her work trip with 4 drinks (technically 5) all in one day. Now they were only 3 oz drinks (bartenders can be cheap) but still…. one drink should have been all I had. Actually no alcohol would have been better.
This infographic explains why alcohol is not part of my diet plan!
Infographic from LifeHack
A Slip-up But Still Not Giving Up
So night one was done. I went to sleep feeling shitty and tossed and turned all night. The next day I woke up renewed and ready to get back on the horse. I ordered breakfast which was just eggs, bacon, and 1/2 piece of wheat toast. I didn’t eat until almost 1030 so with that plus my snacks and all the water I was drinking, I didn’t get hungry again until dinner. We had one drink at the bar before dinner (another makers manhattan) but since I REFUSED to have the same night as the night before, I only had the one drink while each of my coworkers had 3. I went to dinner feeling focused and ready to attack it. For dinner I chose a filet mignon that was DELICIOUS. I got a caesar salad and asparagus as my sides. The ONLY thing I did bad for dinner was I did have a glass of red wine. Other then that I was very proud of myself.
The next day was my last day. I was really ready to go home at this point as it had been a marathon trip and I don’t sleep too well in hotels. I had a granola bar, fruit, pecans, almonds, and cashews throughout the day. I also drank a lot of water again. For lunch I did have a breast of chicken, some salad, and ¼ baked potato (yes people laughed at me when I literally cut a corner off of the whole potatoes they had in the buffet line, but I wanted some starch just not a lot!) For dinner I went out to see my cousins. I knew there would be alcohol but again, not as much as I am used to. I had a skinny cocktail (it had some fruity name I can’t remember) and then a miller lite. I started tracking things in MyFitnessPal as a way to ensure I was tracking SOMETHING and all of it looked pretty decent. I had 2 chicken wings, ½ caesar salad and some brussel sprouts for dinner. I usually would have eaten a burger, this place specialized in pasta, but I was determined to do good. I am finally getting my eating under control and I have to maintain that as that is 90 percent of my battle. I went to sleep feeling awesome. I had conquered this work trip. I had some alcohol but nowhere near as much as I would have had in the past. I ate REALLY well and couldn’t have been happier. The next day I had to fly home, had a doctors appointment and happy hour planned with a friend (yes another excuse to drink. I honestly hadn't timed it that way so I would have some days of drinking and then would go back to no alcohol as I had done the week before).
I was very excited for the doctors appointment as it is the first time I had gone back since starting the program. I knew I had lost weight, but mostly I was just happy to speak with the doctor about some of the problems I had been having and to ask some additional questions. When I got on the scale it said I had lost 6 pounds, which was quite a blow to me. I had been doing awesome... I was down 10 pounds just 4 days before. How could this be?? The scale they use is not just a scale, it judges BMI, tells about fat in your body, it does it all. The nurse announces that I lost 4 pounds of actual fat. She said it was a good sign as if I had just lost water weight it could have shown I wasn’t taking the diet seriously. I wasn't happy.
Alcohol and Weight Loss
I went in to see the doctor and he asked if I had been working out, he asked if I had been taking the medicine and we talked about all my issues. I told him how I knew I had lost more but I had just come off of the work trip. This doctor is pretty “no non-sense” he was quick to call me out on my excuses, told me to try harder, and told me to work out. I was very frustrated at this point because I had been busting my ass! I had worked out for 1-2 hours for DAYS straight. I had completely changed my eating habits and just been doing everything I can. So for this man to seem like I was slacking, it just bothered me. My fiancée was there and he was trying to comfort me... trying to tell me we both know I had lost more, that it would show up next time, but I was just so defeated.
To be honest, I couldn’t believe that alcohol could really have this much of an impact! I knew alcohol was bad for you but I never knew it was THAT bad for you! I am on a program where I AM losing weight and this thing made me gain 4 pounds?! I guess this is the reason why when I started college I gained so much weight. I never though drinking alcohol makes you lose weight but it was such an eye opener for me to see that every time I drink alcohol I am just piling on the calories. I am just harming my body. I always think “it doesn’t have much calories, it’s a low carb beer” but in the end it is the alcohol that causes the problem…. not the additives. It's bad enough on its own!!
Even though I was disappointed…. even though I was angry at myself…. even though I felt as if I had wasted all that time being good and working out so hard…. deep down I know I can’t quit. I can’t give up. I can’t throw in the towel and just be fat forever. In the end I am making a lifestyle change. I will have hiccups, but overall I am learning what affects me and what doesn’t. I am trying different foods. I am more cautious of what I know can hurt me. I want to look awesome on my honeymoon. I bought my wedding dress so that it can show off my weight loss. No matter what the devil throws in my way I know that God is going to lead me through this journey! I have support! I have determination! I can’t let anything stop me. I won't let anything stop me.
I am kicking this fat in the ass! It’s time for its funeral. Slowly but surely I will accomplish my goals.
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