November 23, 2013

#15byChristmas, How to Lose 15 Pounds by Christmas, Day 20 Update

Twenty days ago I posted an article about losing 15 pounds by Christmas. I never once thought I couldn’t do it. I semi-started on November 4 and officially buckled down on November 11. Even with the seven day false start I still had plenty of time, 46 days, seven weeks, two pounds a week, 15 pounds gone by Christmas, easy as that.

It’s not that it’s hard. It just takes discipline and that is probably where most people stumble, with the discipline. One thing I’ve learned as I get older is that the outcome of anything is all about the choices we make, and our mindset with regard to the situation; this applies to every single aspect of our lives.


#15byChristmas food and drink diary

#15byChristmas was a decision I made, it was no different than making a purchase at a store; I need milk, go out an buy a gallon. I need a jacket, shop around, find what you like, what you can afford and buy it. Losing 15 pounds, alter your lifestyle. Eat less + exercise more = losing weight. It was going to happen and that’s it.

It sounds simple and possibly trite but really that’s the answer. Decide you want it and go get it. Have an idea how to get there, don’t be imprudent and not have some semblance of a plan but don’t over think it either. My partner in crime in #15byChristmas, Tricia and I do not have some well thought out plan or diet, we’re just committed to making this happen, we know what we have to do and we do it. Every morning on our walk, we ask each other what did you eat yesterday? We keep each other in check.

Here’s exactly what I’ve been doing for the past 20 days:

I walk/run 6 days a week. I drink a gallon of water [or more] every single day; I know where every public restroom is within a two mile radius of where I am at any given time, (this is the inconvenient downside). I keep a diary of every single thing I eat. I juice. I cut out alcohol, pasta, bread and cheese. I eat salad with protein and cooked vegetable dishes with protein every day. Sweets, fried food and snacks are not a problem for me, so there’s no need to cut them out because they’re not a temptation to begin with.

limes for water

limes for water

In my initial article #15byChristmas, I stated that eliminating wine, bread and pasta was going to be a hurdle for me. It actually hasn’t been. And I find that interesting. Very interesting. Maybe I needed the break and my body just doesn’t want it. I will say, there also has not been any remnant of carbs or grape juice in my house to tempt me either.

To date there was one event that I participated in that concerned me; I was a judge at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino/Burger Beast Top Turkey Food Truck Challenge. Myself and three other judges had to taste 22 versions of a Thanksgiving Dinner. The key to being a food judge is not to “eat” everything but taste it. I tasted. I was professional, I remained as committed to #15byChristmas as I could under the circumstances. To this day, 10 days later, there are a few dishes I still think about and so want to inhale for the lack of a better word. Here’s the key, I just have to stay away from them. That’s the magic answer to dieting. I could make a zillion dollars within the weight loss industry with that statement alone. Funny thing, even though everyone knows this, most are searching for the pill, the drink, the injection to make it quicker, easier, faster.

Kale Salad with Peanut Vinaigrette

Kale Salad with Peanut Vinaigrette

Some esoteric revelation has happened to me, then again maybe I’m delirious from a lack of solid food and all that juicing, who knows, but we’ve all heard or been told that exasperating saying “it’s not the end result so much as it is the journey that takes you there”. Yeah okay, well if you need or want to accomplish something the last thing you need to hear is some motivational, abstruse mumbo-jumbo.

I’m finding that this particular journey is giving me experience and knowledge. Don’t get me wrong, I want the 15 pounds TO GO AWAY RIGHT NOW! and I want a fabulous glass or two of my favorite Pinot Noir. I feel as if I have the answers to the test but armed with those answers, I still have to work at  filling in the blanks and in this case the blanks are eat less + exercise more = losing weight. This may not be what you want to hear but it’s working for me. This morning I stepped on the scale. Actually I stepped on the scale six times because I couldn’t exactly believe what I was seeing. I lost nine pounds. Now, here’s the reality check, I’m sure most of its water, listen, I’m drinking a gallon plus of water daily, I’m purging the toxins and filling myself up so cravings don’t overtake me. I still cannot get into “that dress”; well I can, but I look like sausage meat being stuffed into its casing. I noticed a difference in my skin earlier this week as I was putting on my makeup, it’s all glowy and my eyes are sparkly. When you put good in, good comes out. Thursday night I met a friend for Happy Hour; I ordered club soda with lime. I thought it would have been more tempting to order a cocktail but it wasn’t. I remember thinking to myself, “Its not worth it. This is not worth the splurge.”



Thanksgiving is Thursday, we have multiple vegetable dishes planned for the menu. I’m not sure about dessert and wine. I want to make apple pie and serve sparkling wine and a killer pinot noir but I don’t know if I’ll be able to resist overindulging. That is my issue, why do when you can overdo. Moderation doesn’t seem to be in my vocabulary and that is something I have to work on.

Juicing recipes and more #15byChristmas articles



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  1. a charmed life

    BRAVO! my friend. Hey, I saw all those juices on instagram. ugh! you’ve really got to be kidding me. that green one would have been the death of me. I don’t know how you’re doing it. but good for you….

  2. SFLFoodandWine Editor

    Thanks Joan. All weekend I kept thinking about apple pie, specifically the silver palate sour cream apple pie, I make it every year. But I know me, I’ll eat 3/4′s of it and I just don’t want that setback right now. So I was trying to figure out a dessert that I wouldn’t feel so ‘badly’ about after eating it. I like your idea. Thanks!

  3. jp1002

    22 THANKSGIVING DINNERS?????????? no wonder you were concerned no normal person can do that!!!

  4. ingrid

    great idea writing everything down. and you don’t have to make a big deal about it but getting bogged down with details.

  5. food-lova

    I’ve got to hand it to you Christine, I’m sure this isn’t easy. But you’re right, you decided it’s want you wanted to do and you’re doing it. By the way, you do look great, all glowy and sparkly!

  6. caroline

    I’ve been following you since you posted your first article #15byChristmas, I follow you on Instagram. You’ve inspired me. I don’t know about the 15 by the end of the year for me. But you’ve got me being more award of what I eat and I just want to thank you for that. Caroline

  7. bobby d

    I don’t doubt for one minute that you’re delirious! I’m delirious just reading that your not chewing food!

  8. attnyatlaw

    good for you. you’re right, anyone could do this, it’s the lack of discipline. I for one fall in that category.

  9. You really seem motivated … Congratulations on your stick-to-it-idness.

    How about a really delicious baked apple with raisins and nuts for Thanksgiving dessert?

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