Why I’m mad at food.

“Worries go down better with soup.”  ~Jewish Proverb

Well, at first they do. Then you might as well staple that soup to your rear end, because if you find yourself in middle age (even slightly so, as I am) that’s where it’s headed anyway. 

I used to be an athlete. I got up at 5 a.m., jumped into a pool, whined my way through 2 1/2 hours of swim practice, showered, went to school, and went back to swim practice. Every weekday from when I hit puberty until graduation from high school, that was my life. The best part about that life was I could eat whatever I wanted. Even better, I could do that well in to my 20’s and 30’s! I loved food. Delicious, warm, inspired, fabulous food. And it loved me.

Until this year. I gained 10 pounds in the past 6 months so I went to a friend’s fitness diagnostics facility recently to do her very scientific resting metabolic rate test. It told me I can’t eat more than 1400 calories a day at my current activity level if I want to continue to fit my clothes. Do you know what it feels like to go from eating 2200 calories a day to 1400? Like you’re starving all day!

Stupid food.

Here’s the deal: I’m raising 4 kids. Two have special needs and require a lot of emotional energy, not to mention time for regular specialist appointments. When I’m not working my tail off with them, I do things I love – things that keep me healthy and sane. Things like writing, teaching, being outside and being with friends. Cooking is a distant 39th choice on my list. And no offense, but crafting low-calorie, super-green-organic-high-maintenance meals is not my thing.

Here is where I need YOU. What have you found that works for eating well, not spending much time on it, and still enjoying food? Because we’ve all got our worries, I like my soup to get through them, and I can’t spare an inch in the clothes I’ve got. 

Be blessed,

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  1. says

    @Andrea – that smoothie sounds great! I make one with kale and orange juice, but no yogurt. Maybe that extra protein would kick up the “don't feel starving afterward” effect 🙂

  2. says

    My advice: Get rid of that dang scale. Or maybe you're just guessing you've gained weight based on your clothes?
    At any rate, you're right. 1400 calories is NOT enough. Green smoothies are my new fave. Ice, 2-3 cups of raw spinach, strawberries, milk, spponful of yougurt, banana and blend. You can't taste the spinach and there's your veggie intake for the day. (B/c who eats 5-7 servings a day anyway?).
    That's all I got! 🙂

  3. says

    @Alycia I know what you mean about kids running from apples :). I put out a plate of beautiful cut fuit and veggies every night for when they get snacky and they still sneak over for the crackers and granola bars in the cupboard!

    You're going to love Friday's post here if you're looking for more concrete help. And I'll be posting blogs from people I know with good healthy cooking ideas throughout the week on my FB life coaching page. Thanks for stopping by and sharing your heart with this!

  4. says


    I'm very interested in finding the same tips you're looking for. With four kids in the house who cringe every time I say, “Have an apple,” I don't have a ton of time for the kitchen, either. And who can resist those Girl Scout Cookies? I think I've gained 5 pounds this month alone! 🙁

    So, I too am looking for tips and a desire to cut back on the cookies and stick with the carrots…it's quickly becoming a spiritual thing as well as a get-back-into-shape thing!

    Can't wait to hear more about healthy dinners for the big ol' fam!

    ~ Alycia

  5. says

    I'll be 46 this year and yes, things are really different now! I also went though that, “young athlete who can eat anything” phase, so accepting the difference took time. Speaking of time, there is no way around that you need to spend time making whole, nutritious food (not processed). But there are many tricks available, and the more you do it, the easier it gets, promise!!! On the strategy part, I snack on vegetables a lot more now, and have just accepted that as the way it has to be. Sometimes I just want to EAT, so I spend 5 minutes and lots of chewing time consuming a carrot. It seems to satisfy my urge to consume something. Or when I am getting the munchies in the late afternoon while making dinner, I purposefully cut something up to snack on…an orange, radishes, jicama sticks, or even leftover cooked string beans(they are really sweet). See, my desire to chew is fulfilled, and I am getting great nutrients at the same time. Well there is a lot more to say…it is a long conversation!

  6. says

    @Casey – those are such empowering ideas. I can do oatmeal. And I never thought of adding a green banana to reduce sugar! In terms of protein sources, it's so in the prep time. We go through 18 hard boiled eggs in a few days here. I think it's going to be about me just getting more disciplined in prepping things…

    Thanks for your comment!

  7. says

    @Katie – we LOVE our crockpot. But you're right, even that can be overwhelming if we're “attempting to be perfect about it.” Love the leftovers idea and will check out that site!

  8. Casey says

    I love food, have a huge appetite, I don't like being hungry, but I like looking fit. My tips: make a pot of coaches oats oatmeal in your rice cooker (mine has a porridge setting) eat for breakfast and then anytime of day snack. Slice a banana on top to make it a little sweeter… Make sure the bababa is almost all green if you don't want the sugar. Use a toasted slice of Ez 4:9 sesame bread as a base for any snack… Top it with one over-easy egg, a little butter & cinnamon, cream cheese, canned salmon mixed with capers, butter & banana, or anyrhing. Make a big green salad and keep it in a shallow dish in the fridge. The shallow dish will keep it fresh longer. For lunch or a snack just top with a hard boiled egg, grilled chicken, and an over-toasted slice of Ez 4:9 broken into pieces. I keep hard eggs, grilled chicken slices, pre-made salad, egg salad, & tuna salad in my fridge at all times. Cottage cheese with any topping is also a great high protein yummy snack.

  9. katie crawford says

    I'm glad you are on this topic. I think it will be interesting to hear from people! I really like this lady's blog. She is hilarious, and spontaneous in her cooking. It makes me feel more courageous to get in the kitchen and throw my leftovers together (rather than make 3 trips to the store, in an attempt to be perfect). http://crockpot365.blogspot.com/

  10. says

    I would sooo love to be a help to you! But, I spend a ton of time in the kitchen (I even make the dogs food from scratch). In September of 2010 my mom was diagnosed with stage 5 kidney failure. She went on dialysis 7 days a week the first week in December of 2010. Learning how to eat different hasn't really been a problem for me (I was a vegetarian for over a year), but for my mom it has not been easy. She was brought up in the old days of meat, potato, bread, bread, bread! Her diet now needs to be protein/veggies and NO processed food. I was working 12-14 hours a day, so processed, convenient foods became the norm. Its a hard sell for her. I have tons of cool and wonderfully good recipes (that really don't take too long -some in 30 mins or so), but with 4 kids, it may take longer than you have. I also cook and freeze. I have some really simple dishes for this.

    I also have a love/hate relationship with food. It has ALWAYS been my comfort. Did I mention ALWAYS? In Sunday School on Sunday I leaned over to my sister-in-law and told her I was sure I had eaten enough food for three people between Friday and Saturday! (mom has been pretty sick and this no job situation and unemployment reaching 6 months is really starting to wear on me) pass the cookies please!

    I pray Peace for you. And breathing room.