Gratitude for a Pinch of Hunger

my life is great, waking up hungry in my world is a privilege

I am so lucky because a pinch of hunger is all I feel and it is self induced hunger.

A few weeks ago, I started the practice of not eating after 6 PM.  This is not because I believe that 6 PM is some magic number that will help me lose weight.  I stop at 6 PM because on most days I consume 1,400 calories by this time of the day.  Based on my lifestyle, 1,400 calories is what I should eat each day in order to lose a pound a week.  Since stopping at 1,400 has not worked for me; I have set a schedule and stick to it.  In the past few weeks, I can stick to the plan 5 out of 7 days which does reduce my consumption.

My body seems to be good with the plan.  I do not go to bed feeling hungry.  If I do feel like I need a little something, a glass of water or a teaspoon of honey into a cup of tea is satisfying. I wake up in the morning ready to eat but not uncomfortably hungry, my body just lets me know it is time to eat.

Through it all, I cannot help but have gratitude. I need to lose weight because there is so much food around me. I need to eat less and exercise more because I am privileged to work inside sitting at a desk with air conditioning instead of wearing out my muscles in physical labor.  I am privileged to only feel a small pinch of hunger that is easily remedied.

I continue on my health journey but am grateful for the life I lead.



Diet while Visiting Mom

Two weeks ago, I got very serious about my calorie count.  When I hit 1300 calories in a day = That’s It!  No more food or drink goes into my mouth.  It has not been super hard, although in most cases it means I am done consuming by 6 PM.  However, yesterday, I flew home to visit my mom.

My mom loves to take care of her kids.  She bought special food for the house so I had my favorite things available.  I told her about my diet and she changed up plans so we would have less calories.  Somehow though with freshly grilled chicken, delicious cheese and a huge salad with olives and walnuts and so many good things, I am already at my calories for the day.

I know that I should be focused on my #longtermgoals and should walk past but how can you do that with fresh food made by mom?  Short term happiness is sometimes the key to long term satisfaction.

I will just try to eat smaller portions.  🙂

Dry January = Over

November and December are crazy months of eating and drinking.  When I was in Spain I learned about a thing from the UK: Dry January.  On the day I read about it, I was recovering from too much wine after the completion of our last graded class, so it was particularly apt.

person pouring wine into wine glass
Photo by on

Starting on January 1, I stopped drinking alcohol for the month.  Health wise, it was very easy.  My body easily fell into the groove.  Sleeping improved – my watch tells me I went from an average of 6 hours of sleep to 8-8.5 hours a night.  Although, that might have happened because my MBA was over and I wasn’t staying up late posting and writing.

I did not lose any weight but I heard that is a side benefit for many.  At 3600 calories a pound that is around 30 drinks so I can see how that would not be a weight loss differentiator for most.

For me the hardest part was social. Alcohol helps my extroverted talkative side come out. However, it was easy enough to fall into listening instead of talking. It was good to listen to people and hear their stories. So, bonus points for learning that my introverted self can survive parties just as well.

I do not plan to continue with the absolutely no alcohol rule. Reduction is good though, and I intend to maintain a new lower limit.  I learned from a friend that she only drinks once a week and special occasions. That sounds doable and healthy.



“To Blog” is Technically Interesting

First thing of the day:  Experimenting in the Kitchen!  First vegetable pickling attempt!

The world of blogging is an interesting place. This afternoon, I am trying to add a post from my Hootsuite login. Theoretically, this allows me to also post this to other social media as I so desire.

Since I was last here, it was very interesting to find out that the rules have changed on posting to Facebook. A few years ago, I used Hootsuite to schedule and post updates to all of my personal social media accounts to save time. It let me work ahead without overflowing my social network with a ton of information just because I happened to have time to post photos and share stories.

Fun stuff working through all of the tools.

Spanish Ham and Weight Loss

I am closing out my two weeks in Spain.  Graduation is just two days away.  It has been a fantastic journey with a fantastic class.  Our classes took us to Madrid, Los Angeles, Singapore, Sao Paolo and then back to Madrid for graduation.  15 months and done with the MBA.  What’s next?  IDK.  I’m not lonely as many of my classmates are also trying to determine the next step to take.

On that note, I have not been tracking my calories while here in Madrid.  I have not been trying to pull back on eating or drinking either.  I have ate my feel of the delicious meat and cheese plates that are served at seemingly every meal.  I have definitely had my share of red wine as well.  However, the amazing thing is that you can walk EVERYWHERE so it doesn’t seem to matter.  I am happily walking 5 miles a day just to get from place to place.

My gratitude for being able to do this is so high.  I know that this is a privilege.  I am not sure what I am going to do to repay the greater world but I will think of something.

assorted color ceramic tea set
Photo by Lina Kivaka on


Tracking Calories

Step 4 with Real Appeal:  Track your calories.  “Studies show that tracking your food intake can actually double your “weight loss” efforts (this is a stat worth repeating!).”

They really do write in the book “(this is a stat worth repeating!)”

I think anyone that has a weight problem has experienced ups and downs.  I myself have tried multiple diets some not so good for me.  Normally when I diet, I start using MyFitnessPal which is very helpful for saving meals and creating recipes.  It is also nice because it is free!  It was also easy to tell when I was on a crash diet because it would let me know I was not eating enough.  The app is not happy with full day fasts or juice cleanses.

So anyways, I am back on MyFitnessPal and trying to track my calories.  The deceptively “simple tricks” described by Real Appeal are:

  1. Log every bite, lick or sip – In other words, don’t lie to yourself.  Don’t eat it if you can’t make yourself log it.
  2. Specify type and quality – Once again, don’t lie to yourself.  Get to know how 1/2 cup of rice looks versus 1 cup – it’s a difference of 100+ calories (5% if you are 2,000 calories/day).
  3. Log it ASAP – The longer you wait, the more you will forget and the higher chance that you will pass your calories before you realize it.
  4. I don’t like their phrase on this one so I will rephrase it to:  “Do your best” – do not allow inaccuracy concerns to keep you from tracking

Visualize Weight Loss Goals

Real Appeal Question:  What are the goals you would like to reach with the Real Appeal program?


  • It is November 2018.  By my anniversary in February 2019, I want to have lost 10 lbs and be solidly at or below 175.  This is 2 lbs/month, doable even during the holiday season.
  • Starting now, I will increase my exercise level so that I am working out at least 5 times a week with a mix of strength and cardio.


  • My goal weight is at or below 150.  I know this will be a struggle as it has taken me 10 years to get to the point I am now and I need to go back and change lots of habits.
  • I want to complete another marathon.  I want to train correctly and I want to finish strong.  The first one I did was good but I fell apart in the last two miles.  I can do better.
  • I will be an example of a healthy, athletic, strong adult for my children and I will support my husband in everything he needs to be healthy and meet his goals.130434-751-016f