The recently revealed Robert Wood Johnson Foundation National Obesity Map. Congratulations, my fellow Americans: We are all officially fatter than we've ever been. Any resemblance to the 2008 Electoral Map is pure coincidence...or is it? See below. Meanwhile, go play with a fascinating...and depressing...visualization of our increasing fat-assery since the 1980s.
Oh, stop it. Just stop it.
Don't be clicking into headlines like that expecting The Secret! to quick-and-easy, painless, joyful, satisfying weight loss.
There's no such bloody thing. You know it. I know it. The American People know it.
And yet, those idiotic headlines and ads are everywhere (she said, eyeballing the sidebars). Browse the magazines at checkout stands. Every huckster in the world keeps promising that somebody somewhere knows something you don't know about how everybody can be skinny without effort. Even if they (like me) were born with a whale-like metabolism that is constantly seeking to sock away blubber for the long winter.
You don't just "lose" weight the way you lose car keys.
You banish weight. You evict weight. You tell it to get its ass off your ass, and you mean it. You put your foot down. You get pissed at it. You look at photos of yourself and ask, "Where the FUCK did my jawline go?" You get tired of sizing up and pretending you aren't. And one day you finally decide, that's it. It's time to do this thing.
Anybody who says they've lost weight without trying (AND YOU CAN TOO!) is running a scam. Hear that, sponsors? Scams. Every last one of you. We all know it.
So, yeah, I've lost 17 lbs. in the past couple of months. You know how?
I stopped fucking eating so goddamned much, that's how.
There. That's the big secret. And I reveal it to you for free!
No need to pay $49.95 for a fat-burning solution, or $129.99 initiation plus meals, or $600 for an annual gym membership, no need to strip down to your underwear for a weekly weigh-in at that place that feels a lot like a 12-step meeting.
No, my friends, I am a generous and kind sort of blogger, and so I've cut through all the crap for you. I guarantee my system to work. It comes with a 100% money-back guarantee.
I've read all the 14 Diet Tips and 7 Ways To Lose Weight Fast articles that are evergreen mainstays of women's magazines (and have been since I started leafing through my mother's 1971 Ladies' Home Journals.) If any of them worked, we'd be a nation of Claudia Schiffers and Justin Timberlakes by now.
Now, I know what the nutritionists say. Six small meals a day, snacks, fruit, whole grains, vegetables, count calories, exercise, blah blah blah.
Tried that approach: Diet Fail. After about the fifteenth carrot stick, my teeth wanted to tear into something real.
Pretending to eat all day (which is what that approach is, really) just made me focus on the fact that I was kind of, sort of eating, but not Eating. Not eating what I wanted to eat, at least. No, I was eating what somebody else told me to eat (now, I know it may come as a surprise, but VR does in fact have a wee problem with authority sometimes, and eating what somebody else tells her to eat tends to elicit a giant psychic "Fuck You" followed by a dive into the ice cream end zone.)
No, to lose weight, what I need to do, my friends, is just stop fucking eating so goddamned much. So, here it is.
The Stop Fucking Eating So Goddamned Much Diet. FREE!
- Breakfast: Don't eat one. Just order a nonfat latte at the coffee cart and call it breakfast. (Well, OK, this one's easy for me, because I never have eaten breakfast....so now I really don't eat breakfast.)
- Snack: Snort. Yeah. Right. Have some tea or broth if you must. Chew a few pieces of gum or suck on a Certs. Nosh an apple or somesuch if you're the kind of person who can eat one without wanting to devour an entire buffet an hour later. (I am not that sort of person, so I stick to tea.)
- Lunch. Here you have a choice, and I'm not going to tell you what it should be. If you want pizza, have pizza. If you want a cheeseburger and fries, have that. But: Eat no more than half of it. If you're good at estimating calories (and aren't we all, we ranks of repeatedly failed dieters?) try to keep the total under 500. This is important: Throw the rest away. Banish the sound of your grandmother's voice in your head that's telling you how awful it is to waste food. Learn to take pride in the resounding "Thunk" of the remnants of your order of chicken fingers, or your pastrami sandwich, as it hits the bottom of the garbage can.
- Snack: More tea, more gum, another mint, or even (heaven forefend) a bite (just one!) of something you actually like. 1 exquisite square of high-quality chocolate, maybe. Not the whole bar.
- Dinner: For me, this one's easy. I've made it through most of the day on fewer than 800 calories already, and psychologically speaking, I'm not about to screw it up now. So most weeknights I have a bowl of soup, or a half-cup of lentil stew, or a very small serving (the size of one fist) of whatever it is Mr. Remedy's having.
- Bedtime Snack: Bourbon. On the rocks. Plenty.
What I've learned as I've designed my amazing weight-loss system is this: My body needs far, far, far fewer calories than most people's bodies.
Finger-waggy "I studied nutrition" types will doubtless tell me I've "put my body into starvation mode!" and that I'm "not eating healthily!" but you know what? See the above reference to my Inner Rebel.
I honestly don't care. I've been dropping a couple of pounds a week this way. Not running. Not lifting weights. Not weighing ounces. Not going to meetings. Not doing weigh-ins. Not balancing my plate. Not Dealing-A-Meal. Not calling Jenny.
Not doing anything other than one simple thing.
Stop Fucking Eating So Goddamned Much.
The 2008 Electoral Map. Just in case you wanted to cross-reference Obesity with the Tendency to Vote Conservative and Oppose Government-Paid-Healthcare. It's curious that the states with the biggest waistlines and cloggiest arteries seem to be the ones most dead-set against universal healthcare, even though (once again) they'd be the ones making out like bandits as the rest of us bail them and their broke-ass, overweight states right the hell out.