Friday, August 28, 2009

The Myth

This week in Time there is an article about exercise leading to weight loss being a myth. They say that diet matters so much more.
Yes, I could have told you that. After doing P90x for six straight weeks this summer and seeing zero actual weight loss, I told my Ted's breakfast sandwich that he wasn't doing me any good. And why not? He's yummy, and protein filled, and packed with fat. After my discussion with him, I looked at my glazed doughnut right in the eyes and told her that if she did not get herself worked off by the end of my hour long squats session, I would be annoyed, and may not come see her again for at least two weeks.

The only one who listened to me at all during my 6 weeks of P90x was my shoulders, who decided to pop up out of nowhere and slink back into nowhere under my shirt sleeves. What good is having shapely shoulders if they don't connect to shapely biceps and forearms?
I'll tell you. No good.

Then we hit my 2 week vacation, on which the second half my P90x dvd's were temporarily stolen. Then I got back and started school.
I tell you. Working is an exercise killer. Because work is work and exercise is work and if you're going to drop one work, you're certainly going to be dropping the work that doesn't work at all.

So now that everyone and their mother and Time magazine is telling me to stop visiting Ted's for breakfast, and stop looking at Tastespotting on fast sunday, and stop going to birthday parties, I want to throw out a few other myths regarding dieting.

Eating a big breakfast does NOT make you less hungry at lunch. If your name is Mariko and you are eating a big breakfast, you are halfway starved by lunch. And if you eat a big lunch, it does NOT make you less hungry at dinner. Oatmeal has got to be the least sticking breakfast there is. My stomach can metabolize oatmeal in 30 minutes.

Stopping when you are "satisfied" does not leave you full 15 minutes later. My brain is quite hungry 15 minutes later.

Eating a piece of fruit or drinking a glass of water when you are hungry does NOT stave off the beast. Total LIE! Not only do you not care about eating a piece of fruit when you are hungry, but if you do force yourself to eat fruit instead of a Nutella sandwich, you are so about to eat a Nutella sandwich 5 minutes later. So not only have you consumed a Nutella sandwich, you have eaten the sugar from a piece of fruit. Actually, you have already eaten the sugar of 5 pieces of fruit, because getting full off of fruit is the biggest lie there is, but you were trying to believe in it anyway. And yes. You are still going to be hungry for dinner. In fact, you are probably going to be hungry after dinner too, because you tried to make part of your dinner a salad.

Exercise combined with eating less is supposed to work. Problem is, there is no way you are exercising when you feel like crap from eating less.

And the last myth. The killer. The one where people tell you you look fine and you don't need to diet. I know. People with eating disorders never believe it either. But when you weigh 20 lbs more than you did before you had a baby and don't fit your clothes without sporting a muffin top and people ask you all the time if you are pregnant...

The only thing about dieting that is true is that you're sick of talking about it, thinking about it, and doing it, and so is everyone else listening to you. But you can't stop anyway, even though you aren't looking for sympathy. When you're hungry, the only thing you're thinking about is food. And not eating it. And pretty soon you're Cathy Guisewite. You even look like her.

So I guess I'm about to eat another piece of canteloupe.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Standing My Ground

The one problem with living in Hawaii is that you always have to say goodbye to people. It's more than just transience. It's people you love that are wanting to stay forever (or at least say so) who decide to pick up and leave.

People who live here are always talking about the situations that would cause them to leave. When you leave the universe door open to "if..." it's bound to happen. While they leave their hearts in Hawaii, they take their bodies to Utah. It's pretty hard to have a heart to heart with a bodiless heart.

Then you're tortured by a promise that the person will never love their new home as much as they love Hawaii, and they will try to come back as soon as they can. They even say things like, "I wish I was in Hawaii", but then they continue to revel in the benefits of being on the mainland that they swear they will never care about as much as living in Hawaii. If they come to visit, they casually mention they have a new house, gallons of milk for $2, and schools with toilet paper in the bathrooms.

Pretty soon their hearts are packing their bags. Worse, when I make fun of their newfoundland, they get annoyed and defend it.

I'm tired of being left behind. When people leave, they always act like it's about new progression and new beginnings and new opportunity. I wanna know. Just what the heck was wrong with the old one? Not only that, if those people come back to see what you're doing, and you happen to be living the old opportunity (however well you happen to be living it), they seem to feel like everything is right where they left it. In a bad way. Sure, I don't really want to make new friends because I'm waiting for the old ones to come back, and sure, my circle dwindles. But wouldn't it seem worse for you if I had moved on since I haven't moved?
Is it progression if I move to a place with 4 bedrooms and a dishwasher, cut off ties with the old friends, and start scrapbooking with my new crew?

I want to make a strong argument for Hawaii that I believe is air tight.

1. Owning your own house is totally over rated. What you are earning in equity, I am earning in peace of mind that I will never have to take care of my own plumbing problems. I think it's much better to concentrate on goals that require little upkeep but also signify "arriving" in terms of adulthood, like "owning a set of plates that all match and are not remnants from previous renters at the last three apartments you have lived".

2. So what if strawberries cost $1 a pound--You have to buy nice furniture to serve them on for your guests that you have to invite over with invitations made with little arranged pieces of paper cut out with a Cricut. Why not live here, where you eat mangoes dripping from your elbows while sitting in the yard with the people who happened to come over and ended up staying for dinner?

3. You will get at least 3 extra days off of school a year due to flooding, which is way better than a snow day (except in the event that it actually floods--and if that happens, you will probably get at least 5 days off). Plus some days are so nice that no one will begrudge you a surf vacation day occasionally.

4. I think I have to say it again in case you missed it: MANGO. So many that there are two huge tupperware of cut mango in your fridge and 10 more fruits on the counter ripening, not to mention the trees sagging with ripeness in the yard. I'll let that sit in your mind while I touch briefly on the words 'Mountain Apples'. That should be sufficient.

5. Good service is a myth. People who are polite and helpful in service related jobs are really just spitting in your food before it leaves the kitchen, or grumbling about their customers on their own personal blogs. It's much better to live in a place where everyone knows where they stand: that customers are really just a hassle, money made from this job is a necessary evil for idyllic island life, any pleasantries you would exchange are totally disingenuous anyway, and rather than bug the secretary you should probably just be more self-sufficient. I truly think it makes everyone happier at the end of the day to realize this and get on with the real relationships you have rather than worry about the fake ones that require pre-made conversational tools.

Now, I don't want everyone to come rent up all the remaining vacancies on my side of the island, but if anyone who has already left or is planning on leaving wants to stick around, I think we'd be happy to forgive and forget and make some room--

Maybe I could even spare a few mangoes.