When’s the last time you ate a burger? Seriously, I’m curious.
I can’t remember the last time I ate a burger and fries. Eating chicken burgers with my dad was basically a family past time when I was growing up. If you dangled a $100 bill in front of me as reward for citing the last time a king beef sandwich touched my lips, I’d have $100. But only because I ripped it out of your phalanges and ran down the street. Point is, I can’t remember okay. Stop yelling at me I don’t have your money! Can you spot me a Large meal deal with extra sauce on the side please? It wasn’t long before my penchant for the takeaways got way out of hand. You know you have a problem when you drive the suburb over so the pre-pubescent teen at your local drive-through doesn’t recognize you for the third day in a row. So I gave up the stuff cold patty. I started swimming (backstroke only. With flippers), joined a gym, cleaned up my nutrition and over the next year I lost 28kgs.
I bet you want to know how I did it huh? The secret tricks, the diet I followed? Sorry champ, that shit doesn’t exist. It’s just: eat less, exercise more. Sad right? It wasn’t so bad.
I’ve never been someone to do things in halves. I’m either all in, or go fuck yourself. I decided I was going to loose weight, and pretty soon my whole life revolved around that one goal. Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t go wild and stop eating gluten or anything (kidding guys, GF is a totally legitimately choice). I worked out four to five times a week and ate a diet of mainly veg, greens and meat…groundbreaking. At work when the corporate office equivalent of a crazy cat lady wheeled out the birthday cake, sometimes I ate it, other times I swerved that white chocolate ganache. From the outside, it seemed like I’d got my shit together. I looked better than I had ever looked my entire life. Babe Ruth got more strikes than I did on Tinder. I had dudes come up to me at the gym and even my barista who I’d be crushing on for months asked me out. Living the (former chubby girl’s) dream.
At the time I felt invincible. I don’t know if it was the exercise, the steady diet of 1500 calories or the strong cold and flu tablets I was taking, but my new lifestyle was making me high. To quote Elle Woods, “Exercise releases endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people just don’t shoot their husbands.” Now calm your tatas, no one shot anyone’s husband. But if my former weight of 83kgs were a husband, he had been shot in the arm to never return again. Or so I thought. Soon enough, after being made redundant and a stint at an advertising firm left me burnt out, anxiety riddled and a pancake of a human the weight crept back on. Now here’s the secret, it’s not about losing weight. That’s the hat. Everyone can wear a hat. I bet you’ve done it. The trick is keeping it off; that’s the rabbit.
Which brings back me to burgers and fries. Seems like a big ol’ B&F would be tantamount to NOT loosing weight, right? Wrong. To keep it off, I needed to fix my psychology around food and nutrition. While my body had changed, my mind had not. I’d learnt to push my limits, manage my cravings, and achieve things with my body I never thought possible. But I hadn’t learnt moderation. I hadn’t learnt acceptance. I hadn’t learnt to enjoy food without fear it would ruin everything I’d accomplished. I was afraid of ‘bad’ food and based my happiness solely on the new body I’d sculpted. Burgers had no place in my life; a modern western tragedy.
Today I sit 10kgs heavier than the week I won the World Baseball Classic of Tinder, swinging right and pull hitting all over the dating field. I’m well on my way to shedding the extra weight, but this time I’m not willing to sacrifice so much mental space for a near-impossible ideal for the genetic majority. Of course I want a tiny waist, long lean legs, toned arms and an ass that jiggles even after I’ve stopped shimming down the hallway. But at what cost?
The cost of this burger; $18.90 to be exact. A cost, I’m not willing to cop. I want to work out three or four times a week. I want to eat boiled eggs, kale and quinoa most meals. I want to achieve the best body within my personal realm of genetic possibility. But bitch, I want a burger and fries too.
Now excuse me while I wipe the cheese off my plate.