Hummus in the car and a Burger at the Chateau

I ordered a salad instead of fries – honest.

The day started healthily enough – I pawned off the rest of the buttermilk pie on our neighbour before heading up to Lake Louise for the Ski for Heart event – a fundraiser for the Alberta Heart & Stroke Foundation – with enough well-thought-out rations in the car to keep us sated for a week had we ended up in a snowbank.

I made hummus (it was supposed to be green pea hummus – add about a cup of thawed frozen peas to your usual hummus mixture – but we were out) with toasted whole wheat pitas, and a banana loaf loaded with flax and a handful of raisins. One of the most important weight-loss lessons I’ve learned was from Girl Guides: Be Prepared.

But by dinnertime we had enough snacks and the boys were tired an needed a regular meal. I had an event at 6, so we ordered room service (cheaper than most in-hotel restaurants anyway, and W could have the run of the room). Honestly – we were just going for bang for our buck here. I adore the Chateau Lake Louise, but the food is pricey, and the Gouda burger was a steal at $17. I truly did order it with a salad, and it arrived with fries. Not my fault. The burger was spectacular. Totally worth every bite. We shared it, on the white-clothed table they rolled into our room with china and flowers, along with a 10″ thin crust pizza, saving a couple slices in the mini bar fridge for tomorrow. So between the three of us, portions were under control. And we ate pears for dessert, and drank water. And I didn’t even say to myself, self – you had burger and pizza anyway, you might as well have some of Mike’s chocolate stash and then really hunker down tomorrow. Or rather I did, but just didn’t listen.

I am not a believer in the concept of cheating in relation to food – there is nothing good that can come of it. How do you feel about yourself when you cheat? Terrible. Guilty. Small (and not in a good way). Guilt is a terrible motivator, and sets you up to believe you are weak-willed and incapable of accomplishing exactly what it is you’ve set out to accomplish. I reminded myself of this for years before I cut myself some slack, and it made all the difference. Rather than berate myself for my obvious lack of willpower (another word I have come to strongly dislike) I find it somehow makes it easier to acknowledge how difficult it is. There is nothing more natural than to get hungry and crave food – particularly high fat, high sugar, high calorie, tasty food. Do we feel guilty about feeling tired and giving in to sleep? Being hungry and loving to eat is not a character flaw.

I’m sorry I haven’t exactly been forthcoming with the healthy recipes yet this year.

And I think if I am going to do this right I should get over mydamnself and give up some numbers already. I might have been procrastinating until after I lose a few pounds. (Which sort of defeats the purpose, no?) Or hoped maybe you wouldn’t notice. It’s easy to hide behind my laptop and deal out healthy recipes and snippets of advice, but if we’re going to talk about it, lets talk about it. Walk the walk and all that. (Or if you don’t much care about this stuff, I wouldn’t be at all offended if you skipped through to another food blog.)

210 this morning. Although I spent much of my life at over 300 pounds (and I still cringe to share this, knowing that so many opinions of me change upon hearing it), 200 still seems like such a big number to be on the wrong side of. (I am close to 6′ tall.) As many of you know I lost half my weight – 165 pounds (from 330 = 165 pounds) by eating properly and exercising. As you can imagine, it’s a long story – I’ll spare you the details for now, but might as well get all these numbers on the table.

After being pregnant for what amounted to an entire year (52 weeks – I lost the first baby at 3 months and got pregnant again almost right away) and having W, and all that comes after that (you lose weight breastfeeding my ass), it nudged its way back up and has hovered around 210 for the past couple years. Still a long way from 330, but uncomfortable nonetheless.

Last Sunday I was 218, but as you know I jump-started the week with a bout of stomach flu that made it a little easier (in the worst possible way) to get quickly back on track. (You always see a quick drop at first, so don’t think I’m crash-dieting my way into those skinny jeans at a rate of 8 pounds per week.) I would be happy to make my way back to 170, and tone up a bit – increase my muscle mass again in the process. (Considering muscle weighs more than fat, 170 with no muscle tone looks and feels very different than a fitter 170.)

Wow, you’d think I had at least half a bottle of wine on board with that ramble. Sorry.


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81 comments on “Hummus in the car and a Burger at the Chateau

  1. Donna
    January 9, 2009 at 11:36 pm

    Friday’s supper – Hamburger Pie, mixed oriental veges and cheese.
    Last night (Thurs)I made banana bread. By using your recipe from Starting Out I used half the sugar and half the butter as in my old family recipe. Yea Julie.
    By making changes like that along with good food choices and more activity we can make “healthy” a habit.
    I need to drop a few sizes, too.

  2. Heather
    January 9, 2009 at 11:53 pm

    Last night – no lie – I made your chili rubbed salmon (didn’t make the fruit salsa tho) recipe. 😀 Served it with rice and peas (the peas were the vegetable not mixed in with the peas).

  3. Natalie
    January 10, 2009 at 5:20 am

    Chicken tortilla soup….didn’t have the chips — although my husband hadn’t gotten home with them yet:) but still I didn’t eat them when he did!

    I’m sorry for your lost pregnancy… I had a similiar experience. It is very difficult on all fronts….

  4. Lauren
    January 10, 2009 at 5:35 am

    I made a whole wheat, veggie and chicken pizza (squash, olives, artichokes, romas, chicken) with fontina and homemade caesar salad. For dessert? Your carmel corn and puffed wheat squares. YUM! I have 8 weeks to go in my pregnancy, so I am trying not to gain too much more weight. Eek! 🙂

  5. Leo
    January 10, 2009 at 5:47 am

    I had a doctor’s appointment yesterday, so I know exactly what I weigh: 258 pounds. That’s with me shoes off, but change still in my pocket and my wristwatch on.

    Last night I had another helping of Turkey Enchiladas (an old Better Homes and Gardens recipe), which I always make with leftover turkey breast. It’s lasts Elizabeth and I about four meals.

    Reading your blog is a daily pleasure for me. Keep up the good work!

  6. piccola
    January 10, 2009 at 6:07 am

    I had a vat of veggie hot & sour soup, half a bagel and a couple mandarin oranges. A bit of a mish-mash, yes, but it hit the spot.

  7. Joni
    January 10, 2009 at 6:32 am

    I’m so happy you’ve kept your blog going Julie. I get excited every day when I log on and there’s a new post!!

    Dinner last night was salad and my husband’s Mom’s “hambuger pockets”. Simple, fast and yummy.

  8. Cheryl
    January 10, 2009 at 6:38 am

    Friday night supper – Pork and Tomatillo Chili. We’re vacationing in Arizona right now and I was intrigued by these gorgeous tomatillos in the supermarket. Fired up the laptop to find a recipe that was relatively straightforward and didn’t require a million ingredients. A pound of tomatillos ‘sublimated’ (is this a real word?) away into nothing, but added a subtle ‘Mexican’ flavour to the dish. It was actually pretty good — especially after sprinkling with cilantro and lime juice! I’m not a big pork fan, but this dish was healthy, low fat, high fibre, and interesting. If you’re interested — check it out at:
    Julie, your struggles with your weight resonate for many of us….ironic that foodies have ample and first hand knowledge to make those healthy food choices, but also must wrestle with the continual temptation that a fascination with food brings! It’s taken me over 25 years to finally get the fat monster under some semblance of control, and my motto is ‘everything in moderation’, less ‘whites’, and lots of walking! Don’t lose sight of the fact that you are a beautiful human being — inside and out — and the number on the scale is only a number! Have a blast in Louise!

  9. Christine
    January 10, 2009 at 6:46 am

    164lbs… there you go… (i have been on ww close to a year now to get to my goal weight and still have around 10 to go, i have lost 30, so its been a long hard road to get here) food just gets in the way!! i like too many things especially creme brulee!!

    last night supper was roast chicken, mashed potatoes, carrots and peas and some gravy. pretty normal stuff, but the chicken was the last item of meat in our freezer, so that is what was calling to cook, would have much rather ordered in pizza, but since it was out, had no choice.

    now favorite wine… i love louis jadot pinot noir, it goes great with steak and a green veg.

    now, if you are in lake louise, have you tried “the station” restaurant? i love it there, a little fancier place, but great food!

  10. ladyloo
    January 10, 2009 at 6:46 am

    Kind of embarrassing, but I actually was inspired by your post and made chicken quesadillas, black beans, and raw broccoli & dip.

  11. susie
    January 10, 2009 at 6:52 am

    I had Giada’s Winter Minestrone with all of my edits, so I guess now it’s Susie’s Winter Minestrone. I originally made it with no-knead rosemary lemon bread, which is an internet legend, and discovered I am allegic to fresh rosemary pokes in the lip….I guess I’ll masticate (I know this isn’t a dirty word) more thoroughly in the future.

  12. pauline
    January 10, 2009 at 6:59 am

    Hi Julie, I hear you. I could write a book on my weight struggles too. Up and down up and down goes the weight. I have now said to myself self you are never going to be 140 or even 150 again I would so settle for 160lbs. The gym ha yes the gym I have given that up now after going 3 days a week for 3 years I hate it yep I hate it. I know I gave it my all but for the last six months I had to force myself to go. I felt like such a looser when I stopped going but have now forgiven myself. I love to walk and do so almost every day with my beagle diesel.But this darn cold weather has almost put a stop to that. roll on spring, so walking cutting down on portions and not eating junk food and no snacking at night is what I have to do. Diet’s don’t work for me. Yep and I am now 184lbs. ouch and only 5ft 7 inchs there I said it too Julie I am going for 1lb a week sounds so easy but it is so hard to do. My weight hates to detach its self from me. Monday is the start of getting healthy AGAIN….
    dinner was your Roasted Red Pepper and Tomatoe soup with cheese and crakers, and wine. Have a wonderful time in Banff Julie, sorry for babbling on so much.

  13. JuneyB
    January 10, 2009 at 7:08 am

    mmm…dinner last night was a glass of wine and half a package of frozen gnocchi with gorogonzola (added spinach & nutmeg) …Steve is away so no need to cook & he certainly wouldn’t have eaten the spinach anyway. Yeah, I know, not so healthy, but back to the no carb kick today. Its sad how weight can be such an obsession.Personally I just ignore the middle number & celebrate the zeros as the weight goes down. Of course that is assuming that it decreases. Most times I’m yahooing when it stays the same. I also believe in the old adage “never trust a skinny cook” so you can be sure that I’ll ALWAYS be trustworthy. Make some snow angels & have fun with your guys. That’s the important stuff.

  14. supersu
    January 10, 2009 at 7:17 am


    i am NOT almost 6 feet tall so for me this is TOO much…

    thanks as always Julie for putting down on paper exactly what I seem to be thinking too! you are awesome!
    have a good weekend- i will look forward to further posts and recipies

  15. elektra
    January 10, 2009 at 7:26 am

    dinner: ww pasta in a pesto sauce (1 tbsp pesto mixed with 3 tbsp cottage cheese–it stretches the pesto without the fat); roasted peppers; sourdough bun from the farmers market; one scoop of ice cream (controlled cheat)

    wine: i’m digging spanish reds these days. cheap, given the economic armageddon and really, really good. tastes even better with latin music blaring on the stereo.

    weight: 182 pounds this morning.

  16. Brigitte
    January 10, 2009 at 7:32 am

    I made it home at 5:00pm and made a favorite 10 minutes meal ; shrimps cooked in a little bit of butter with garlic , lemon zest and juice served with hot linguine. A salad on the side is always nice. I always have a bag of frozen shrimps in the freezer and they are the best for a quick and yummy meal. Have a good time at the Chateau.

  17. margaret
    January 10, 2009 at 7:54 am

    Friday is usually home made pizza night but last night we ordered from the local pizzaria. An extra-large cheese for the kids and an extra-large vegetarian for the adults. Eating too late (starving!) meant consuming more pieces than my New Year’s resolution allowed for. Something to remember for next time. Weight? About 145. Ten or 15 pounds over what I should be but never motivated enough to actually lose it. Hoping to find the willpower in the upcoming months.

  18. Amy
    January 10, 2009 at 8:03 am

    Dinner last night was the Crockpot Lady’s chicken curry with brown rice. And it is so nice to see you still blogging!

  19. nang
    January 10, 2009 at 8:17 am

    Frozen pizza and salad — too tired to cook after a long week…

    stumbled across your blog and love it — i’m always trying to find ways to make recipes healthier (i’ve been known to throw flax and salba into everything), so your recipes are great! thanks!

  20. Anne
    January 10, 2009 at 8:36 am

    I got up to Rocky to visit my mom and she had made a most wonderful beef short rib stew and a green salad.
    Picked up some sushi at the Sobey’s here in town and a bottle of red wine (Cawarra Shiraz Cabernet)and we settled in for a nice visit.

    Thanks for keeping up the blog Julie!

  21. Erin
    January 10, 2009 at 8:47 am

    🙂 235 last time I went to the gym…unfortunately that was before the holidays but I do have an elliptical at home and have been using that.
    Favourite wine right now is Yellowtail Shiraz.
    Dinner last night was homemade chicken fingers(lightly breaded in my own mix) with snap peas and dip. My little guy likes anything you can eat with dip haha.

  22. andrea
    January 10, 2009 at 9:00 am

    Julie, why would you think people would think less of you for your struggles with your weight? Please stop beating yourself up. Look around the mall for gosh sake. So many of us are in the exact same boat, myself included. I’m 5 foot 1 and 143 lbs (eek) In my case there are lots of reasons including: a life ALMOST as busy as yours, with a high stress oil industry career that is not ever 40 hours a week, kids ages 6 and 3 still up 2 or 3 times a night, a chronic running injury, and I’m Italian – ’nuff said, right? I LOVE to eat. It’s a life I choose, of course, and so no whining allowed. This year I’ve been trying to weigh daily, keep track of what I eat & practice portion control, move 30 – 60 min a day and keep at it, even the days I just scarfed down a half a bag of tortilla chips and salsa with guacamole after getting home from work and had no time to get to the gym at noon. Is anyone else a stress-eater? I’d love to know how you manage that tendency. A

  23. andrea
    January 10, 2009 at 9:07 am

    Oh yes I almost forgot – dinner:
    Steamed broccoli, Spolumbo’s chicken apple sausage browned in a skillet and a cottage cheese potato perogy (my son’s favorite food)
    Wine: I love red of course, Wild Horse Canyon shiraz is yummy and good value and made in BC from BC and US grapes.
    Julie, I’d rather not win. If I come home with another cookbook my husband may divorce me…

  24. Avery
    January 10, 2009 at 9:12 am

    Ugh! Post-pregnancy pounds: “you lose weight breastfeeding my ass”… I couldn’t agree more. My biggest mistake is often just not drinking enough water… I can go hours, like a camel (but not as efficiently). I’m trying to take the advice I give to my own clients (9 months on, nine months to get it off), and truthfully I’m *almost* back to where I was just before I got pregnant… unfortunately that was last December when I was about 8 lbs heavier than I would’ve liked. Believe it or not, having the Wii Fit helps (otherwise I’d never do cardio) and doing Pilates using Ruby as a weight (16 lbs!)… when Spring has sprung maybe we could form a walking group of some sort…

  25. Elsbeth
    January 10, 2009 at 9:28 am

    Dinner last night was your sausage and lentil soup which I’d made last weekend and frozen. We were going to have salad with it but sometimes I just can’t do cold-crunchy with warm-satisfying so I added kale into the soup. Very good.
    Served with fresh bread from Cobbs (for the others) and some veg and hummus on the side because the kids can’t go a day without this lately. They call it “a feast” when they get to have lots of small things.
    Current weight:157lbs down from 181 last July and 204 when I delivered baby #2 in Feb ’06.
    While I’m pleased to have lost weight (and the internal and external feedback that comes from that) I’m feeling insecure – it seems tenuous. Still not sure what the goal is and looking for ways to stick where I am.
    As for the cook books, the family would love more brownies (and I might need to make sure I plan for the indulgences).

  26. Pat
    January 10, 2009 at 9:45 am

    I am not ready to put my weight “out there” yet, but as of this morning I have “dissolved” 120 pounds on WW since November 2007. (I say “dissolved”, because if I say “lost”, I may start looking for it!)

    Julie, I still think we should get a group of “losers” and support each other and then go on the Ellen show with our total weight loss!!!!, with you as our guru!

  27. Heidi
    January 10, 2009 at 9:50 am

    We loved you before – we lurrrvvv you now!
    It took 5 years for me to lose 99 lbs.; 2 lbs away from goal, then it started glomming back on and after spending all of 2008 trying to get it off, this morning I weigh 166 lbs. (11 lbs away from goal. 155 is still too much at 5-5) Topped out at 256 and have spent most of my adult life morbidly obese.
    Eat less, eat smarter, move more – no magic bullet.
    It’s no surprise that weight loss statistics don’t go beyond 5 years, by then everybody has gained it back plus more!
    I eat for a dozen reason, not one of them is hunger. The very act of chewing provides comfort; the fattier and sweeter the better.

    for dinner: 1/3 cup Raisin Bran cereal with 1/3 cup Chocolate Silk due to overly large Japanese lunch.
    Wine= migraines.

  28. Jessica
    January 10, 2009 at 10:03 am

    Friday night supper was Thai chicken salad, sadly without the noodles. I got a george forman grill for christmas and grilled up some chicken on thursday and had one left over. So chicken and salad for dinner, It was statisphing but when all my girls were over for Friday movie night eating there choosen fast food meals it just didnt seem fair.

    I swear all my girlfriends have been skinny always, Im 27 and the only one of my freinds that has trouble with gaining wieght. So having girls night comes with load of junk food and i totally caved after a few hours when the chips and dip and wine came out! Julie if you love white wine please try EVOLUTION I dont have the bottle around anymore but its from cali.

    I just have to say i love your website i’ve been reading it when you were about half way through your year of blogging. I love trying new things and love to cook, your blog is one of my favorites! I’m currently trying to follow WW and weigh in at 160 …usual wieght is 145…..

  29. V
    January 10, 2009 at 10:03 am

    Actually I didn’t have any lunch or dinner yesterday. I started the Alternate Day Diet 2 weeks before Christmas to see if I could do it and planned to start after Christmas, but this diet is so easy I kept on it only falling off one day (December 26) Yesterday was a down day with a 500 calorie ceiling so I ate a late breakfast and snacked on a handful of almonds around 11 pm with a coffee. Today is an up day – I can eat whatever I want 🙂 I am going to try that berry smoothie from the other day. Weight 160 or so and 5’5″

  30. Mimi
    January 10, 2009 at 10:11 am

    Yesterday, for breakfast I have Timmy’s coffee. For lunch, I decided to have cereal. Too busy to make lunch 🙂 For dinner, I was suppose to make chicken wraps but didn’t get home still late. So my bf and I decided to go out and eat. We had Vietnamese Pho. Just what we need it. I stepped on the scale this morning weighting at 106 lbs. Gaining 6 lbs over the holidays @_@

  31. Shobha
    January 10, 2009 at 10:51 am

    143….. this after struggling for a very very long time with post baby weight. My baby is almost 4. I have worked very hard over the past months and I am thankful that it paid off. You can do it too. I have relied one smart cookie to get me through! You have helped so many people. Let people help you! You are doing great.


  32. Mary Ann
    January 10, 2009 at 12:18 pm

    Last night’s dinner was whole wheat spaghetti topped with a veal and tomato meat sauce, oven roasted vegetables (garlic, onion, carrot and red pepper, cut into 1 inch pieces and tossed with olive oil, salt and pepper) with a grating of fresh parmesan cheese. Hearty and healthy. Nearly five years ago, I lost more than 50 pounds. Big changes in the last year have resulted in a considerable weight gain (not all the weight, but some), but it’s been a good week. I hope to stay on track (fingers crossed). I agree, it’s not easy. It gets easier though. Good luck Julie!

  33. Lisa
    January 10, 2009 at 12:21 pm

    At weigh in this morning (joined WW last week), I was 182. Down 2 lb from last week (yay!), but simply huge for my almost 5’2″ frame. Going by BMI, I shouldn’t be more than 130. The tough thing for me is that I haven’t really battled weight (a bit here and there at the end of high school/beginning of university), I eat pretty good, but the weight post 2nd pregnancy is KICKING MY A$$! I lost all but about 5lb from first pregnancy (still breastfeeding when I got preggers with #2), but I had about 25lb on me that I gained due to some not-so-nice medication about 4 years ago. It’s just really frustrating for me and I can’t stand how I look! I am going to get moving, but my pelvis is still a bit unstable from these pregnancies, so I can’t get running again, but I will walk! I found running to be my answer to the gym routine. With 2 kids under 3, I simply don’t have enough hours in the day to drive to gym, do the workout and get home. Shortly before my 2nd pregnancy, I took The Running Room’s Learn to Run class. It is just EXCELLENT! You only have to run 3 times a week and the fitness results you get are amazing. This way, I just have to throw on my shoes and go out the door and I can get in a great workout. And the class is so cheap – $69.95 for 10 weeks. Even if you count a new pair of shoes and a bit of clothing (with the right clothing, running in the winter is FINE!), it’s such good value. And I was in BAD shape at the beginning of class, so don’t let that discourage you!

    Sorry for the ramble!! No need to enter my name in the contest since I’m a recent winner, but my dinner was Julie-inspired, so I’ll share. I made your tuna noodle casserole (with whole wheat egg noodles) plus some veg and it was a tasty *and* low point dinner!

  34. Jackie
    January 10, 2009 at 1:16 pm

    Hi Julie,

    Friday nite dinner was homemade oven chicken fingers and fries — the fries got made into shack fries with some chili and grated cheese I had. I too am trying to watch what I eat and lose some pounds (I’m 158). Hence the oven made vs fried stuff but I gotta say the fries in the oven were great and hit the spot. Hope you have a good weekend.


  35. Janeen
    January 10, 2009 at 1:37 pm

    Hey Julie,
    Last nights supper included cajun rubbed tilapia, brown rice and roasted sweet potato.

    I’m really inspired but with the stories others have shared on here!

  36. terry
    January 10, 2009 at 1:46 pm

    Dinner last night was not the usual Friday night pizza, we had leftover salmon, with this awesome smoked paprika glaze. It was SO easy to make to, just lemon juice, olive oil, honey,s&p, smoked paprika and some coriander. It really took well under 30 minutes, and not 30 ‘Rachel Ray’ minutes, but real time! that and leftover rice.
    I am so glad this blog is still going onthank youthank you Julie!

  37. sue.d
    January 10, 2009 at 2:44 pm

    Had Indian buffet for lunch, and arrived home completely unhungry. Had 1 Amy’s spinach pizza between 3 of us around 8pm and some thawed frozen shrimp.

    Also fair bit of wine…I’m really liking Pascual Toso Malbec (Argentina).

    My primary strategy for eating reasonably is to eat what I like as long as I have loads of unadorned fruit and veggies first. Then I just don’t have much capacity for high-gratification/low nutrional quality stuff.

  38. Annie Luidhardt
    January 10, 2009 at 5:17 pm

    We had french toast, hashbrowns and oranges! Simple but good! My kids love it! I really like your blog and look forward to trying your recipes more this next year!

  39. Britt
    January 10, 2009 at 5:43 pm

    I had roasted veggies and chickpeas on red quinoa. I have recently discovered roasting chickpeas and they are absolutely delicious! As for wine, I have been enjoying Coppermoon Cab Sav from BC.

  40. Lisa
    January 10, 2009 at 6:31 pm

    Not an inspired night for dinner – toast with jam, (but both were homemade – does that counter the fact that I’m turning into my grandmother…?) a banana and a tomato drizzled with olive oil and balsamic.

    And a glass of malbec. Brownies and/or creme brulee would have been a nice addition…

  41. Dana mccauley
    January 10, 2009 at 6:39 pm

    I just haven’t been able to get myself organized to go on a diet yet this year. I did lose 2 pounds just from being less of a couch potato.

    Enjoy Lake Louise!

  42. Nancy Gibson
    January 10, 2009 at 6:51 pm

    …oooh I LOVE cookbooks! I have a cupboard full of them–kind of an addiction I guess!
    I don’t own a scale so that solves the weight struggle. I think I’m around 1351bs but I guess I’ll never know for sure unless I invest in a scale!
    Friday supper…egg bagels with ham and cheese and clementines for dessert. It was quick and my husband made it so that in and of itself made it taste great.
    So glad you have kept this blog rolling!

  43. Cheryl A
    January 10, 2009 at 7:00 pm

    Me too! Not on the burger for dinner, but the number on the scale. I stepped on it the other day and that’s what it was.
    I try not to weigh myself anymore though. I only did it once a week as I tried to peel off baby number 2 weight. But baby number one started wanting to weight herself all the time. NOT GOOD. So no more scales for any of us.
    Dinner last night was the stew I’d made the night before. With the leftover bits of apples and pears that the Monster didn’t eat.
    As for wine, I prefer heavy but drinkable reds. But a nice semillon is nice too.

  44. Vivian
    January 10, 2009 at 7:19 pm

    Ah yes, Julie, the eternal anxiety over weight. For me in 2000,at 213 lbs. it was more a health concern than looks that got me going. I thought I could avoid medication (high blood pressure & cholesterol) by dropping 40 lbs. The Carbohydrate Addict’s regime sounded interesting and I gave it a try. The 40 lbs. melted and I’ve made it this far with but a 13lb. return. May try the same routine again to rid myself of that. I found it helped to visualize the fat as lbs. of yellow butter laid out and piled high to represent the 40 lbs. Dinner last night was a store-bought BBQ chicken breast with, I admit, the scrumptious skin, green beans and pecans and steamed sugar snap peas. I do dearly love watching “The Main” and would love the cookbook also.

  45. Jenn
    January 10, 2009 at 7:21 pm

    I’m glad you’re still posting, Julie. Dinner was rigatoni and Italian sausage thrown together with tomato paste and sundried tomato dressing.

  46. Tagyn
    January 10, 2009 at 7:35 pm

    Hey Julie,
    Good for you for being so brave!!! If you ever want to come to a Ripped class at Talisman with me let me know- an awesome workout everytime. Also, if you need a goal I have done the Weekend to End Breast Cancer for three years in a row and you have to get out and walk or you really pay for it. I walk around the reservoir every weekend and love the fresh air and exercise.
    Last night my husband made duck with orange sauce for the first time and he felt it was a lot of effort for very little meat. He liked the sauce and thought next time he will cook a turkey with the same recipe. Tasted good to me.
    Diego says hi and he is on his way to bed!
    Keep up the good work.

  47. Rebecca
    January 10, 2009 at 7:40 pm

    Dinner last night was leftover Chicken Fajitas using the super yummy wraps from the Mexican place at the Farmer’s market. As for wines, I love wines from Spain – so good and pretty cheap (not as good or as cheap are they are in Spain but still…). I’m currently 6 months pregnant so can’t drink wine or disclose my weight. Before I got pregnant, I had lost 25lbs and I think that I have gained a good portion of that back. I don’t want to think about the weight gain until after I have the baby. There is little that I can do about it right now (I have worked pretty hard to not buy into the “eating for two” mentality) but I do hope to work hard post-pregnancy to lose the weight. No need to enter my name for the cookbooks – I already have more than I need!

    Good luck on your journey – it’s all too familiar to me and many others on this blog.

  48. Rhonda
    January 10, 2009 at 7:42 pm

    Due to the flu and a stormy/flooding week I resorted to the crock pot! Chicken chili,cornchowder,curried chicken legs and beef stew. Last nights dinner was pizza ordered out!! I don’t believe in diets,”everything in moderation”!! I don’t eat after 6pm,(but I live 5mins from my home) that’s pretty well impossible for people who work in the city and don’t get home until late. I would love to be able to go to the gym but two very busy boys do not allow it!! I walk, walk and walk….borrowing the teenagers ipod helps, probably not a pretty sight (a 45 year old woman beebopping her way down the sidewalk!!).

  49. Rhonda
    January 10, 2009 at 7:45 pm

    Whoops!! Correction “Work 5mins from my home”!
    I love reading your posts and look forward to new recipes and funny stories!!

  50. robyn
    January 10, 2009 at 7:51 pm

    Dinner: chicken, rice and numerous veggies
    Favourite wine: (ok, favourite CHEAP wine) Obikwa shiraz
    Weight: 179

  51. robyn
    January 10, 2009 at 7:57 pm

    V! What is an alternate day diet? And you could only have 500 calories yesterday? I don’t want to judge how you live your life, but that doesn’t sound too healthy. Could you maybe do 1200 a day instead, and try to stick to that everyday? I know it’s easier said than done, but wow, 500 does not sound good!

  52. Erica B.
    January 10, 2009 at 8:29 pm

    500 cals? I couldn’t do it my blood sugar (and mood) would be a mess.

    I need more shelf space rather than new cookbooks but in the spirit of things (and because they say confession is good for the soul right?):

    Dinner: Chicken with roasted parsnips,yams& carrots
    Fave wine: Quails’ Gate Old Vines Foch (OVF)
    Weight: 193lbs this morning 😐

  53. V
    January 10, 2009 at 9:07 pm

    I know it sounds weird, but it’s only one day then the next day you can eat whatever you want. You lose 1 pound a week – easy. It resets something in your metabolism, I have tons of energy and feel great. I don’t know if it’s the lack of carbs and sugar or if it’s all the vegetables I’ve been eating but I haven’t felt this good in years.

  54. Sarah
    January 10, 2009 at 9:37 pm

    Hmmm, alternate blog idea: The weight-loss support group?? Or meeting in Calgary once a month for those interested to share healthy recipes (and eat just a little bit, of course)? After 3 kids and an extra 10+ pounds per child (youngest is 12, so no excuse for not losing it yet)I have realized that a love of food (even healthy food-give me brown rice and salsa or sushi any day of the week)coupled with a love of reading and a disinclination to exercise make for no pounds shifting. Have just started SlimStyles here in Calgary(have 40lbs to lose), no nasty processed food to buy, just healthy carbs/lean meats/no simple sugars (basically the “duh” diet)with the added incentive of weekly weigh-ins and an initial blood test to see whether your thyroid is functioning properly, and to check glucose tolerance. However, the idea of posting your weight on your blog is probably incentive enough to skip the pumkin lattes! Keep up the great blogging, love reading about your food adventures.

  55. JulieVR
    January 10, 2009 at 9:40 pm

    Sorry, but there is no way eating 500 calories a day (and in doing so skipping lunch and dinner?) is healthy! And although it might sound very scientific and believable, you can’t “reset” your metabolism by starving one day and then going to town the next. And there is no one formula that would make everyone (at every size, every activity level) lose exactly 1 pound per week, across the board.

    My guess is that it’s the eating a ton of vegetables and not as much sugar that is making you feel great. On the free-for-all days are you generally eating better than you used to, just by virtue of being on this diet?

  56. V
    January 10, 2009 at 10:55 pm

    It’s alot more complicated than the couple sentences I posted here. I haven’t received the book yet so I am only going by the 2 message boards and the authors website and putting things in my own words which in retrospect maybe I shouldn’t have.

    The author has a calculator on his site that tells you exactly how many calories according to your height/weight/age/activity level and weight loss percentage, plus he explains the science behind it, which I didn’t post here because I didn’t want people to think I was trying to boost his book sales or advertise another site, I just wanted to enter the contest and explain the reason I missed dinner. 500 calories is the figure that the majority of the people on the diet use according to the message boards. I chose that instead of the 340 that the calculator suggested for me, which I think is insane.

    I am not moody or light-headed, no headaches and my arthritis isn’t bothering me half as much as it usually does but then it’s only been 3 weeks – so time will tell.

  57. Amber
    January 11, 2009 at 7:14 am

    Hi Julie first of all let me say how brave you are for two reasons, first to continue to post and give us Julie blog addicts something to read everyday, and second to tell us your weight! I too am struggling with getting my weight back down. The culprit for me was a 3 cottage and a camping trip summer (you need bailey’s in your coffee when at a cottage or camping it is the law!). Like many people I was just too discouraged with myself to get the extra weight off till now. I don’t know what is it about January, but some how it is so nice to have a whole new year to work on things that are important to yourself. So I have very modest weight loss goals. Like you I have found that losing weight slowly without depriving yourself makes for a more sustainable weight loss without the weight gain later. So although I won’t post my weight I will say that by FEB 7. I want to lose 8 pounds.
    Last night for dinner was at our wonderful friends who are wonderful cooks. A Turkey dinner and Port and a wonderful aged cheese for dessert. I am pleased to say that I eat in moderation didn’t have seconds (ok maybe a second splash of port) but I left the table content but not stuffed and proud of myself.

  58. Nancy
    January 11, 2009 at 7:39 am

    Friday night dinner, stew with garlic mashed potatoes and chili, since some of the members in my family don’t like chili. Imagine — some day they will be starving students and will eat anything.
    Weight” 139 = should be 10 lbs less so I can get into my bathing suit in Mexico next week, but I keep watching “The Main” while I’m cycling at the gym. My god I want him to come cook for me. Wine – Gray Monk at a SAIT dinner this week, it was yummy like Mr. Main.

  59. Cecily
    January 11, 2009 at 8:46 am

    Friday night dinner was turkey tacos…. nothing fancy.

  60. DJ
    January 11, 2009 at 9:11 am

    …I am somewhere around 180lbs and 5’7″. I say “somewhere around” because I am too scared to step on the scale and find out that I am actually more than that now! Last nite we had roast chicken with carrots, parsnips and potatoes all cooked in with the chicken. Total comfort food. Favorite wine: the Blackberry or Cranberry wine that my dad makes. i think it’s the love that makes it taste so good 🙂

  61. Andrea
    January 11, 2009 at 9:31 am

    Hi Julie! Dinner was tomato lentil soup with a cheese scone. My favourite wine right now is Elderton Barossa shiraz..yummy!!

  62. glenda
    January 11, 2009 at 12:33 pm

    Julie – thank you for your honesty, your courage and your healthy, common sense approach to food and diet.
    I embarked on a doctor supervised weight loss program a few years ago and went from 234lbs to 165lbs – 70 lbs!. Over the past year, I have let that creep up again – 25lbs – for a variety of excuses, but only two real reasons – I eat more and exercise less! Although I have studiously avoided New Years resolutions (just because I don’t like the band wagon), this year, my body is telling me that it’s time.
    So January 5, at 190 lbs, I started back at the gymn, and tomorrow I restart the food journal. There, the numbers are out there for all to see. Looking forward to the journey….

  63. Sue (London)
    January 11, 2009 at 3:36 pm

    Thanks for your honesty Julie. It is refreshing and bold and I know it’s a huge help to the rest of us who are trying to deny it and get back to healthy eating. I NEVER weigh myself. Ever. It just frustrates me so I gave it up years ago. I totally rely on how I feel. I know thats not helpful to everyone who is addicted to the scale but it never did anything positive for me. So I just try to eat well, exercise regularly and when I get off routine, I feel it immediately in all my clothes – even the stretchy ones.
    Dinner last night was a delicious chicken something-or-other made in a crockpot by my sister-in-law – who by the way lost 30 pounds last year. I’m happy to say that today I made shepherd’s pie for dinner tomorrow and lasagna for dinner later this week. Tonight my husband is making his delicious steak sandwiches!
    Those cookbooks look amazing. Count me in for the draw! And thanks again for all you do for all of us!

  64. Sandra
    January 11, 2009 at 5:59 pm

    About 8 years ago my weight had increased with what I call bad timing and a need to stress eat.
    First I quit smoking (that was great) but also at the same time I came off HRT (all the bad publcity about that) and retired. Seems like overnite I gained 30 lbs. This last year my husband is no longer able to eat food and is on a tube feed.So there’s not to much cooking going on here.. and I so much loved to experiment and try new recipes all the for dinner tonight it was take out chinese food.
    I do love reading about all the new trends in cooking and all the different ways to make good food.
    Really do enjoy this blog and so so glad thats it going to be here for us to enjoy.

  65. Melanie
    January 11, 2009 at 6:03 pm

    Is it okay if I talk about what was on the menu for last night instead of earlier in the week?
    We travelled up to visit family and celebrate my dad’s birthday. My mom treated us by buying us a 4-rib Prime Rib for dinner but given she had a busy day, left me a sticky asking me to find a recipe and throw it in the oven. I’ve never in my life cooked such a big hunk of meat!!!
    But you’ve gotta love the Food Network. In no time I had a recipe for the prime rib, a potato gratin, and roasted red onions. Despite the fact that I aimed for us to eat at 5:30 and the prime rib wasn’t close to ready until 7 pm – it was well work the wait and we had a great meal completed by my dad’s yearly birthday cake request – chocolate pie with whipped cream. Good food, great family, and lots of laughs…. A great night.
    That meal was not likely good for the hips though (given I ate two pieces of pie too) but I am pregnant – is that a good enough excuse? My biggest concern is that a recent trip to the doctor’s office showed I had gained 8.6 kg in the three weeks around Christmas… Could that possibly be right??? I still fit in my pants and my blood pressure is fine. Must have been an issue with the scale… One can only hope!
    Thanks for continuing with the FSF’s! Such a fun idea!

  66. Kathy
    January 11, 2009 at 7:33 pm

    Thanks Julie for your honesty. I have spent the majority of the day beating myself up for having Red Lobster’s Crab Cakes for lunch with a small bowl of their clam chowder and a biscuit. The crab cakes alone have 31 grams of fat (I swear, I had no idea, I thought that I was eating something relatively healthy). I feel like crap actually. Yesterday we ate out as well at Broken City’s jazz jam. Honestly I think the main reason that I have lost approximately 30 pounds over the past few years is not eating out as much, and watching my portion sizes and fat intake @ home, plus exercising 2 – 3 x a week. I fell off the wagon this weekend that’s for sure. A back injury in the fall made sticking to my exercise program tough but I am back on it now that my back’s better.

    Last time I weighed myself a month or so ago I was 182, still 20 pounds or so too much for my 5’6″ frame. Hopefully most of it is muscle.

    I just wish I could stop torturing myself for my eating this weekend. I could totally relate to your comments, Julie, about guilt.

  67. JulieVR
    January 11, 2009 at 8:15 pm

    Please promise me you will stop beating yourself up for something so silly – and so natural – there is nothing positive that can come of it. Would you ever hold it against a friend if she ordered crab cakes? Next time, think wow – those crab cakes were bloody fantastic. Too bad I can’t order them all the time! And remember how they made you feel – like crap – for some reason I never seem to remember that part…

  68. Camille
    January 12, 2009 at 1:37 am

    I can’t remember as far as Friday, but yesterday night was yummmy lentil tacos on the couch while watching a movie, thus trying to eek out the last few hours of the weekend before getting back to work! (And working out, although that depends a bit on the healing progress of a foot injury. Nothing is more frustrating than trying to work around an injury.)

  69. Natalie
    January 12, 2009 at 5:15 am

    Well, considering that Friday was my birthday, I had Birthday cake for dinner! And then I had pizza for dessert. It’s my birthday, I can eat my meals in whatever order I want! However, we did go out for pho for lunch. Pho is healthy, right?

  70. Natalie
    January 12, 2009 at 5:23 am

    Just reading back the last few posts… I’ve had injuries while trying to work out as well… I had this knee thing – “an irritated miscus”, and it really held me back, but I found it helpful to go to a physical therapist and asked him the safest way to build my strength back up without adding to the injury. It’s just too hard for me to take a whole month off working out, because then when I do go back to the gym, it’s like starting all over again! My best advice is to work around the injury, until you are feeling better!

  71. Carol
    January 12, 2009 at 5:30 am

    Sadly, Friday night dinner was crackers and cheese….oh and possibly a glass of red wine. I had a largish late lunch (pad thai – very yummy!) and couldn’t stomach anything until about 9pm, I figured crackers and cheese was probably safer at that point.

    My weight – a little less than you, Julie, and my height – a little less than you too. The height is here to stay so I guess I have to work on the weight. My roomate can’t have dairy or sugar (her naturopath says), you’d think we’d lose weight but you’d be amazed at the junk food that doesn’t have one or the other in it……

  72. Jen T
    January 12, 2009 at 6:52 am

    I was risky last night and made creamy carrot soup. I figured my hubby wouldn’t eat a bowl of it, but he actually had two!!! I was craving carrot soup – as I had some made with rice once before, but I only found this recipe made with instant potatoes. I had to add a bit of maple syrup to give the carrots some kick, but it was healthy nonetheless. Ya me!

  73. Kathy
    January 12, 2009 at 6:54 am

    Julie, the kicker is, the crab cakes weren’t even that good! more’s the pity.and the clam chowder tasted like it came out of a can. i mean if i’m going to indulge, it should at least be something good !

    thanks for the encouragement Julie.

    re injuries & working out – I went to physio for a while until it was better and I go to massage and chiro regularly too. I have fibromyalgia so it is important to work out within my tolerance for that as well as general overall health. I have taken physio’s advice and modified how I do some of the exercises (no more bridge position on the fitness ball for example – too hard on my lower back which, it turned out, had a bit of arthritis).

  74. Barb
    January 12, 2009 at 7:28 am

    I had Teriyaki Sole and your Brown & Wild Rice salad.
    I can’t tell you my weight because I don’t have the courage to say it out loud. Good luck to you on your wight loss journey. I may see you along the way. I too have been there many times.

  75. Diana
    January 12, 2009 at 9:28 am

    Friday nights dinner was also inspired by you from last weeks blog. Quesadillas with salsa,mushrooms, black beans and some cheese, and a big salad with lots of veggies. Sunday nights supper was curried chicken I made for company, and roasted carrots, cauliflower and broccoli.

  76. Lana
    January 12, 2009 at 1:20 pm

    I just feel like a whole bunch of people I don’t know (other than Julie and Robyn) just bared their souls to me. What a privalege. You are all beautiful and brave and perfect as you are.
    Do your best, that’s all you can do. Give yourself the gift of good health, and lose the guilt. One day at a time. My mantra is from FINDING NEMO…in the words of Dory..”just keep swimming, swimming, swimming..” as in don’t give up, just keep on keeping on.
    I have joined a fitness class at my work’s gym and start tomorrow. Have not done anything like this since Uni and I am 40 now. Talk about intimidation. Did I mention I work at a University? Can you see the young, fit bodies around me?
    Meh.. my body is beautiful and capable and gave me two children and lets me hold and love my husband and my friends and my family.

    Dinner on Friday night: the caramelized onion/mushroom/chicken and boursin cheese pizza I told you about, Julie (OMG So good) and a green salad.

    Favourite Wine: Yard Dog from Australia but I can only get it in BC. Sucks when you live in Ontario.

    Weight: 195 on a 5’7″ frame. I carry it well but would like to carry it less.

    ALL of you have inspired me.
    Big love to each of you.

    WOW. I can’t believe I put my weight on the internet.

  77. Buddiegirl
    January 12, 2009 at 2:13 pm

    I had a late lunch on Friday so I wasn’t really hungry for dinner. My husband and I shared some leftover chips and my daughter had popcorn at a movie with friends. Not one of our better nights, but sometimes that is what happens and I can’t dwell on it.

    My friend and I were talking last week about our weight yet again and she told me she would be happy to get back to her pregnant weight (when she delivered her daughter). Not pre-pregnancy, just delivery. I had a laugh about that one. I would be the perfect weight if I was about 6’4” and played football, but alas, I am only 5’1″ and do not like playing sports.

  78. Isabelle
    January 12, 2009 at 3:29 pm

    Not sure how long this freebie thing goes on for but…

    We’ve been eating a lot of salads lately for supper (working our way through Deborah Madison’s book). Last night I made corkscrew pasta with cauliflower and mustard vinaigrette. Quite good, really tangy, and the cauliflower are only blanched so they stay nice and firm. It was delicious for lunch today too!

    As for wine…I must admit I don’t really have a favourite yet. I just don’t know enough about it. Hopefully someday.

    I try not to weigh myself very often. Right now my goal is just to get fitter and feel better!

  79. Isabelle
    January 12, 2009 at 3:30 pm

    By the way, the star cookies in your new header photos look De-licious.

  80. Evelyn
    January 13, 2009 at 1:25 pm

    Since you are almost the same size and weight as I am, I think I’ll try to follow your weight loss as well.

    I’m 6 ft. and 206 lbs. I’d like to be 175-180 lbs which means that I’ve got a fair bit to lose. Exercise alone never does it for me and the call of the Cheetos is LOUD! I’ve been pretty good about going to the gym 3x each week (except over Christmas), so I’m hoping that there is some muscle under the warmth layer. And that layer needs to be shed. Keep posting healthy, tasty recipes as inspiration and I’ll try to silence the junk food screaming from the pantry.

  81. Suzanne
    January 13, 2009 at 7:29 pm

    Dinner on Jan 10: Leftovers from my daughter’s b-day party catered by Fresh Litchen.
    Fav wine: Profile from Merryvale Estates
    Weight: 155 lbs.

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