Recipe for low-fat zucchini fries from Weight Watchers: Staying on the theme of finding guilt-free alternatives for comfort foods like fried
Then you have to figure out what to do with it. Or maybe it is saying yes to the “Do you want a bakery item for 99 cents?” question at Panera. In a moment of weakness you are confronted with a craving and then need to decide how to do damage control.
There is another type of craving though. This is the kind that lingers but you are strong enough to avoid until you can really satisfy it properly. Instead of having a moment of weakness you go into a situation planning to indulge in your craving from the beginning. And so I bring you The Tale of the French Fries
The Tale of the French Fries.
Here is the thing about French Fries. I love them, but 99% of the time I am disappointed by them. When you get the perfect batch of fries there is almost nothing better, but that perfect fry is allusive. It doesn’t matter if it is McDonald’s or some hoity-toity restaurant, I will judge you by how well you can make fries.
*Healthy French Fry Hacks (3 Unfried Fry Recipes)
The perfect McDonald’s fry – hot, crispy and salty is great, but most of the time they just fail to live up to expectations. So when I started craving fries I knew that I was going to have to do some work to meet the craving in such a way that didn’t make it worse.
You see, sometimes if I give into a craving and it doesn’t satisfy me I keep searching for the solution that will satisfy me. So when I am craving fries I don’t want to give in to the craving 4-5 times in order to find the particular fry that satisfies. Which is one of the reasons that this particular french fry craving I had for nearly a month before I chose to eat some french fries.
Last week I ended up having an impromptu lunch with Erica at a restaurant called Yum! – They have excellent food and I happen to know they have amazing fries. The kind served in a newspaper cone with aioli dipping sauces. I also knew that eating a whole order of these fries would completely trash my day. So there was only one option – split the fries with my friend.
I think that sharing food can be the best way to deal with cravings ever. First of all you won’t eat the whole thing that way. Portions are way out of control when eating out, whether it is fries, desserts or appetizers. Sharing allows you the taste of things that you are craving without the temptation to eat them all.
Secondly, you are not eating alone! I don’t know about you but eating alone can turn into a binge very easily, especially when it is something that you are choosing to indulge in. If I was alone at Yum! I wouldn’t have ordered fries because I knew I would eat them all.
Instead, we split the fries and I relished each one. I used the dipping sauces because that was part of the experience too. And we chatted and had a great lunch together. It is always good to have someone to chat and share with and since Erica is working on weight loss as well (100+ lbs lost – GO ERICA) then I know that we were both indulging responsibly.
Best of all is that I haven’t craved fries, or even deep fried food since. It took care of my craving and I could move on. So I tracked my fries, and my grilled mahi fish tacos and went back to work satisfied. That is the biggest thing to cravings – how can you eat it successfully (not going over calories or points) and in such a way that satisfies you.
If I had given in and had drive thru fries earlier I would NOT have satisfied my craving. Instead it took a place that really had great fries to satisfy me.
Consider a craving you have right now? What would it take to indulge responsibly and to satisfy you completely? If you can do those things then why not indulge. We need to learn to not let food control us, but that also means that we need to learn to listen to our bodies and make good choices about foods that we love.
I don’t think it is bad to love french fries, but it would be bad to eat them everyday. So I am trying to learn how to indulge cravings well. As always it is a work in progress, just as I am a work in progress.
*4 Ways to Outsmart a Craving – Prevention.com
Starting weight: 251.0
Previous weight: 236.0
Current weight: 235.0
Week 16 Loss: -1.0
Total Loss: -16.0
I’m pretty happy with a one pound loss considering the previous week’s events and calories consumed. We attended a lovely and fun wedding, where I made no real effort to track Weight Watchers points for how much beer I drank (a lot) and as a result, had a killer hangover the next morning. That was my first hangover since 2010 and let me tell you, it was a doozy. Oof. Friends were in town from out of state, so the next day, some of us decided to have brunch and hang out a little more.
I don’t know if all of you are familiar with Eggspectations, but it is the place of hangover-cure dreams. It was hard to choose what to get – their menu is probably bigger than that at Cheesecake Factory – but I decided on Eggs Benedict crepes and enjoyed every single bite.
While I ignored calories and Weight Watchers points at the wedding, I did make a very conscious effort to make up for it with workouts and better eating throughout the week. I guess that counting points is the Achilles heel of the whole WW Online program. It does take discipline, and if you don’t track points daily, you’re going to have a hard time losing weight.
I decided to amp up a workout by doing walking lunges on the incline treadmill at the gym. If you’re not familiar with the incline treadmill, let me tell you just a little bit about it.
It inclines. A lot. It inclines up to 30% and there are handlebars that you have to hold onto so you don’t tumble backwards and fall off of the machine. Kind of like this, but ignore the smiling woman on it and pretend she’s grimacing and gripping the handles for dear life:
My old trainer (hi Leigh-Anne!) showed me how to do walking lunges on the incline, so that was part of my workout last Wednesday. I warmed up with regular walking and gradually increased the incline. Once I got to 18%, I started alternating very slow walking lunges with regular walking. I’d lunge for 30 seconds, walk for 30 seconds, up the incline, and repeat.
I was really struggling once I got to 27% and didn’t want my heart to burst in my chest, so I did 15 second intervals for the last two inclines. I won’t bore you with the rest of my workout, but I will say that I shouldn’t have jumped right into so many lunges. I could barely walk for two days and even felt it a bit when I took an easy 2 mile walk yesterday. (Is this what I have to look forward to when I start 30-day Shred? Hold me.)
I’m fairly certain I would have lost more weight if I would have had only a couple of drinks at the wedding and had egg whites and turkey bacon for brunch the next day, but I have no regrets. I enjoyed the drinks, the food, and the company, and really have no guilt about any of it. I’m happy with with a one pound loss, proud of myself for stepping up the workouts, and feel good about striking some sort of balance.
All that being said, this week will be somewhat of a repeat of last week since I was at my parents’ house in Pennsylvania all weekend. I did take a nice walk with my mom and the baby yesterday, but I don’t think I made a dent in the amount of calories and carbohydrates I ate.
I went to a cousin’s baby shower where I’m pretty sure I didn’t see a single fruit or vegetable in the buffet line, went to a spaghetti dinner benefit lunch for an old friend’s father who was in a very serious car accident, and to top it all off, had McDonald’s for lunch on my way home this afternoon.
My justification for stopping at McDonald’s was that they have kid’s meals and Syd could play in the kid area for a bit after two hours in the car. Of course the one we stopped at had no play area and of course my kid taught me a lesson by refusing her cheeseburger and wanted only apple slices. Just in case you’re wondering, I had a Big Mac and fries, but this time, I do have major regrets.
I could have had a salad or grilled chicken sandwich, but I chose not to and I’m not even really sure why. It’s like I didn’t even think about it which blows my mind. So again, I will be working out more this week with a goal to do two workouts a day from Tuesday-Friday. I have no big weekend plans coming up that would involve celebratory eating and/or drinking, so I should be safe from the Indulgence Monster for a while.
Do any of you just eat whatever you want on the weekends and make up for it during the week or do you treat the weekend days like every other day? I know different things work for different people but look forward to hearing how you balance indulgences, planned or unplanned.
It feels great to be home and I can’t wait to get my workouts in this week!