If at first you dont succeed, you are running about average.
- Dian Ritter
They promised, Youll lose weight, but, oh, how they lied; oh, how they lied to me.
With apologies for dismembering a sad, old love song, they were the initialed, acronymned, mass-marketed diet sellers in all the towns Ive ever lived. But finally, after years of depression and dieting defeat, I found one diet that really lives up to its claim. With some politically-correct manipulation of the numbers, TOPD - Take Off Pounds Digitally - really works, as I discovered the last time I weighed in.
Wow! my nutritionist, Pollyanna Stringbean, squealed. One point, one-tenth pound in only three weeks? Tell us how you did it.
I beamed as I told my worshipful peers about resisting cream cakes and seafood casseroles, while carefully neglecting to mention I had skipped the last three meals to compensate for the resisting I hadnt done.
The wows continued as each member of the flab set made the long, faltering trek up the aisle to the rooms gleaming centerpiece, the mammoth, step-on scale.
Three-tenths of a pound five-tenths well, maybe next time you can do just a teensy bit better than one-tenth of a pound, Polly commented in her unique, encouraging way as each persons weight flashed across the red-lettered screen, and the proud loser bounced back off the scale.
See what I mean? If youre going to count your losses in tenths of a pound, how can you lose - I mean, not lose? Forget about counting calories, exercising til you drop, and leaving the sugar out of your coffee. Cut the project down to size, think small, and be grateful for the little things which, if you live long enough to see the project through, will produce the desired results.
Now if youre ready to jump on the TOPD Express, too, let me help you achieve the greatest - sorry, that should be least - results possible. Remember, its not whether you win or lose, but how you play the scale game. So before you weigh in each week, just follow my 10-step, half-ounce of prevention list below and I guarantee youll hear Polly squeal with delight at your progress, too.
Floss your teeth; better still, get your teeth professionally cleaned. (All that tartar must weigh at least .03 of a pound.)
Blow your nose, sneeze a few times, clean the wax out of your ears and the lint out of your navel. (You're looking at a full tenth of a pound here.)
Wash your hair - cut it if possible - but dont use conditioner, mousse, or spray until you get back home. (If youre a man, shave as you drive - closely.)
Dont use perfume, after-shave, body powder, hand cream, or more than a quick dab of deodorant. (The others wont notice; theyre following this tip, too.)
Wear no makeup whatsoever. (Can you imagine how much all that foundation, seven-step eye shadow and mascara must weigh?)
Take a cool, sponge bath instead of a shower. (Hot water settles in your pores.) No soap, either, because of the weighty film it leaves on the skin - especially after a sponge bath.
Dont even think about wearing jewelry, not even your watch. (Ask someone what time it is if you need to know.)
Wear clothing without buttons, zippers, snaps, belts, pockets, or elastic in the waist. (Small, gold safety pins dont weigh much if used sparingly.) Choose only lightweight fabrics and cut out all those tags at the neck. (Memorize washing instructions first.)
Forget hose, socks, or shoes with heels, strings, buckles, straps or insoles. (Velcro is OK.)
If youre wearing a cast, wait until you heal.
(Barbara Seaborn is a still-overweight, local free-lance writer. E-mail comments to seabara at aol.com.)
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