Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.

Weighing In


I think I mentioned that one of my goals this year is to lose weight. *sigh* I haven’t decided yet what weight loss program to use, but I’ve been checking.

I know I shouldn’t need help. It’s just logical, isn’t it? All I have to do is burn more calories than I ingest, and all the extra uglies should melt away.

But since logic doesn’t have a lot to do with why I don’t look the way I want (emotional eating, anyone?)  I’ve been looking for help online.

Weight Watchers is $20 (or so) a month.

HCG injections cost around $6-$7 a day. (The drops are less expensive, I believe, but have been told they don’t work as well.) ($180/mo)

I read someplace that Jen and Nutri can cost up to $500 per month. (They supply the food so you don’t have to be tempted at the grocery store. And with an empty wallet, you don’t have to worry about stopping by Mickey D’s.)

There are a few freebies out there. I found several Pro-Ana sites. Those are websites that promote anorexia nervosa. How not to eat. How to fool your parents.

Here are a few tips and tricks I found. Some are good ideas, some aren’t.

Good ideas:

    • Water, water, water. Drink lots of water.
    • Keep a food diary. Statistics prove that people who keep track of everything they put in their mouths lose weight in just a few days.
    • Exercise every little bit, several times a day. You’ll burn calories and it’s hard to eat while you’re working out. (If I’d just work out every day, it would help!)
    • Peppermint is a natural appetite suppressant. (Try peppermint tea between meals insteady of candy.)

Not such a good idea, but made me grin:

    • If your parents insist you eat, get up before they do. Make toast, crumble it on the counter tops and in a plate, put most of it down the garbage disposal. Leave a mess, they’ll never guess. (This supposes that the parents are too busy or stupid to notice rib and hip bones sticking out.)
    • Eat in front of a mirror. Or eat in front of a mirror with your clothes off.   (Warning: This might be frowned upon in public.)
    • Smoke instead of eating. (Is anyone really that stupid? After a while, they wouldn’t have to worry about calories because they’d be too busy having chemo.)

I said they were b-a-d, didn’t I? 🙂

Happily, I found a another website called Hungry Girl. Check it out. She knows her healthy weight loss stuff!

HG has some wonderful suggestions about how to order at a fast food restaurant. Here they are–

I copied this from Hungry Girl. HG has a lot of healthy information about weight loss as well as a blog, books and recipe cards you can order. If you’re interested please pop over and see what she had to say.

HG’s TOP ATE Tips for Fast-Food Trips!

1. Think before you order. You’d Google a blind date, right? Google your meal for need-to-know stats!
2. Value menus aren’t valuable to your waistline. Don’t just get it because it’s cheap and easy to order; you’ll regret it. And bigger pants cost more in the long run…
3. Salad isn’t always the best pick. The dressing, the cheese, the croutons… Don’t assume the greens make it “safe.”
4. The fries? They have more calories than you think. Even a super-measly small order averages 300 calories and 14g fat. If you’re putting together a low-calorie meal, they should not be included.
5. LOOK OUT for mayo! Seriously, heavy mayo can sink even the most friendly grilled chicken sandwich. And it isn’t always listed, so say, “Hold the mayo,” just in case!
6. Beware of the limited-time-only offers. The nutritional stats are often MIA. (How convenient.) That special super-stacked burger? It’s not worth it.
7. Chicken and fish aren’t smart if they’re fried. If you bypass the burgers for one of these, make sure it’s grilled. (We doubt you’ll find grilled fish, so just skip it altogether.)
8. Don’t stress too much or feel bad if your meal isn’t as low in calories as you’d like. Hey, stopping for fast food is hard to avoid sometimes! Just do the best you can.

Great Picks

Totally trustworthy finds from popular fast-food joints…
McDonald’s Fruit ‘n Yogurt Parfait PER SERVING (1 parfait): 160 calories, 2g fat, 85mg sodium, 31g carbs, 1g fiber, 21g sugars, 4g protein — PointsPlus® value 4*
This is listed with the desserts on the menu, but we consider it a great breakfast, side dish, OR dessert. Also lumped in with the sweets, but good anytime? The Apple Dippers with Low Fat Caramel Dip — only 100 calories and 0.5g fat (PointsPlus® value 3*)!
Subway Egg White Muffin Melts (Most Varieties) PER SERVING (1 sandwich, excluding Mega and Sausage varieties): 140 – 210 calories, 3.5 – 8g fat, 490 – 940mg sodium, 18 – 20g carbs, 5g fiber, 0 – 1g sugars, 12 – 19g protein — PointsPlus® value 4 – 5*
The lineup has expanded! Now your options include the Egg White & Cheese with ham, double bacon, or steak (or sans meat); the Western (ham, veggies, and two types of cheese); the Breakfast BMT Melt (ham, salami, and pepperoni with cheese); and the Sunrise Subway Breakfast Melt (turkey, bacon, ham, and cheese). WOW and YUM! Just steer clear of the fattier Mega and Sausage Melts. (Not worth it.)
Taco Bell Fresco Chicken Soft Taco PER SERVING (1 taco): 170 calories, 4g fat, 680mg sodium, 22g carbs, 3g fiber, 3g sugars, 12g protein — PointsPlus® value 4*
Want to enjoy a whole meal from TB without swallowing too much fat? Get two of these with a side of Fresco-style Pintos. Your filling meal will come in at about 470 calories, 10g fat, 14g fiber, and a PointsPlus® value of 11*. Not too shabby!
Burger King Whopper Jr. without Mayo PER SERVING (1 burger without mayonnaise): 260 calories, 10g fat, 460mg sodium, 29g carbs, 2g fiber, 6g sugars, 13g protein — PointsPlus® value 7*
“Hungry Girl! I require a hamburger!” Not a problem; this pick is totally acceptable. Add a crouton-less side salad dressed in fat-free ranch for 100 calories, 2g fat, and a PointsPlus® value of 2*.

Honorable Mentions…

KFC Grilled Chicken Breast PER SERVING (1 breast): 210 calories, 8g fat, 460mg sodium, 0g carbs, 0g fiber, 0g sugars, 34g protein — PointsPlus® value 5*
Carl’s Jr. Hawaiian Grilled Chicken Salad PER SERVING (1 salad without wontons or dressing): 260 calories, 8g fat, 560mg sodium, 34g carbs, 4g fiber, 17g sugars, 22g protein — PointsPlus® value 7*
Wendy’s Small Chili PER SERVING (1 small order): 220 calories, 7g fat, 870mg sodium, 22g carbs, 6g fiber, 6g sugars, 18g protein — PointsPlus® value 5*

Super-Scary Items to Avoid!

Taco Bell Chipotle Steak Taco Salad PER SERVING (1 salad): 900 calories, 57g fat, 1,600mg sodium, 68g carbs, 8g fiber, 6g sugars, 28g protein — PointsPlus® value 24*
Wendy’s Baconator Double PER SERVING (1 burger): 980 calories, 63g fat, 1,830mg sodium, 46g carbs, 2g fiber, 9g sugars, 58g protein — PointsPlus® value 26* Burger King Triple Whopper PER SERVING (1 burger): 1,140 calories, 75g fat, 1,110mg sodium, 51g carbs, 3g fiber, 11g sugars, 67g protein — PointsPlus® value 31*

Answers to Burning Fast-Food Questions!

Q: If Hungry Girl were at a fast-food restaurant, what would she order? A: A grilled chicken sandwich without condiments or a bun OR a grilled chicken salad without croutons or cheese (preferably from Burger King).
Q: How can I make guilt-free swaps for fast food at home? A: Click here for a SLEW of recipes for slimmed-down junk food, including a massive section of fast-food makeovers!
Q: Why are those drive-thru speakers always so hard to understand? A: We don’t have the answers to everything, people…




Author: Susan Shay

For as long as I can remember, I've loved two things--reading and people--and that led me to become a writer. Many of my stories are set in Small Town Worlds. I'm a wife, mother, sibling and an aunt. I have a deep faith in God, and an exciting life in Christ. Maybe I shouldn't be (after all, he's God!) but I'm constantly amazed at the things He's up to. :)

4 thoughts on “Weighing In

  1. Weight Watchers is a wonderful way to lose weight and keep it off!! You have to learn how to eat before you can keep it off, as WW say, it is not a diet but a healthy way of eating, a lifestyle. I have kept mine off for 32 years and WW was the way I lost my weight!! I worked for them for 5 or 6 years which helped me keep mine off because as an employee, I had to weigh in for my bosses every month!! You really feel great when you eat the right foods! Just a little hint from one who had been there!! Good luck Susan!! Prayer always helps everything but I know that you know that!! haha

  2. Tips from your fitness/nutrition expert 🙂 I help people every day who are trying to lose weight. The key is diet AND exercise. Strength training is vital since a muscle that is in shape will burn more calories at rest. So, as we age, lifting weights is just as important as cardio. Also, eating more protein is important, as our bodies need more protein and are not as beneficial at burning off carbs. I usually work out in the morning, then have a protein shake for breakfast. That keeps my body in an anabolic (or muscle building) state for a longer amount of time. Any time I am building muscle, I am burning fat!!!!!!
    Women are not capable of building huge muscles, as we don’t have enough testosterone to bulk up. So, strength training will help you have a lean, sexy body. Don’t be afraid to lift heavy weight, I promise you can’t look like Arnold even if you tried.

  3. Yep, I know. You’re right. You’re rigiht. You’re right. It’s just that I’d rather write than lift weights. 😦
    As my fitness/nutrition expert, maybe you’d like to donate exercise equipment to me. 🙂
    BTW: I hate those three words, “As we age.” Can’t you think of a sweeter way to put that?

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