"I can remember carving the first slice, taking the first forkful. The rush of whipped sugar speeding through my bloodstream. It felt like teetering on the ledge of the roof of a skyscraper, exhilarating and terrifying..."And then she ate the whole thing.
"What begins as hating the cake for all its multiple layers of lucious temptation spirals quickly into hating myself and all my fat cells. I let myself down. I lament not having more control..."It was a turning point. After many failed attempts to lose weight, after deciding to accept herself as the "fat girl", Andie made the decision to save her life. And lost 138 pounds while doing it. She also learned more about herself. I particularly enjoyed her comparison of losing weight to running a race. A long slow race. A marathon, in fact...
"Because for once, I realized that weight loss wouldn't be like taking up jogging as a new hobby...it would be like running a marathon, where miles ten through twenty-six just purely, uncompromisingly suck."She picked the perfect metaphor. And as she says in the book, once she realized this, she knew that this was going to take "real strength". But she stuck with it, and hit her goal of 133 pounds. Amazing, right?
Not so much. As it turns out, losing the weight was the easy part. Learning to live as a thin person was a much bigger challenge. To me, this was the most interesting part of Andie's story.
I've had friends who lost weight told me they still saw themselves as "fat". This is what Andie describes in the book. She describes the mixed feelings she had about being thin and being praised for that as if she was less worthy when she was an overweight person. It was interesting to me, as a thin person, to read this perspective. Because I hate being called skinny. I don't find it to be complimentary, and it bothers me that people comment on my body. You'd never go up to an overweight person and say, "oh you're so fat!" Right? Andie experienced life on both sides, and learned that being thin was not all it was cracked up to be. Plus she feared gaining weight. She also missed the reckless abandon that comes with not caring about your weight.
The rest of the book chronicles her recovery from food addiction and learning how to eat healthily. I was really impressed with her journey. Andie's story really helped me understand why people who lose weight cannot keep the weight off. There is so much more to dieting than calorie restriction. Learning to love yourself, for one. The person you were before, and the person you've become. And as Andie says:
"....fat or thin, it was me all along."Today Andie is a food writer and blogger. You can read her blog: Can You Stay for Dinner. She also has a cookbook coming out March 29 called Eating in the Middle: A Mostly Wholesome Cookbook.
Have you struggled with weight loss and learning how to live as a thin person? Do you eat to live or live to eat? How do you find a middle ground between eating for pleasure and eating for fuel? What recipe holds a special place in your heart or provokes a happy memory for you?
Here's the link up badge! You can find the link up at the end of the post. The link up stays live for 2 weeks, but the comments stay live forever! Don't forget to link back to this post, and please read and comment on the other reviews. Remember, sharing is caring! I'm so grateful to all of you who participate in the book club!
Next month we are reading what I've been told is an amazingly inspirational book! Find A Way by Diana Nyad is the story of her swim across the Florida Straits from Key West to Cuba. I cannot wait to pick this one up! The review and link up will be posted on the 3rd Friday of March (March 18). Let me know if you have any questions!
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