Check Your Own Pretty Price. (Here is the Fun New Thing!)

So as you know by now, I was so into the awesome sharing that went on when we talked about our weight the other week. And thus, I’ve been brainstorming ways we can have more great conversations like that here on the blog. Because I really like talking to you. You’re so interesting and smart and pretty!

Shameless flattery accomplished, here is the plan: Every week (or thereabouts/when I can be asked), I’m going to pose a Check Your Own Pretty Price Question, hopefully inspired by some newsy price check bizness or maybe just my own internal musings. And you are going to answer and we are going to discuss!

So here we go:

A Wakefield Research survey* of 1,064 women revealed that 50 percent of women have tried five or more diets, while only 18 percent claim never to have dieted. I guess I’m not so surprised by this, because the women in my life are forever hopping on and off of diets, cleanses, what have you. But when I started trying to count up my own dieting attempts, I realized that I don’t fall into that 50 percent group — which means, maybe you don’t either. Or maybe you do, but I bet you have a pretty interesting story about the whys and hows.

Here’s my diet tally:

1. There was the sort of accidental diet that happened in the fall of 2005 when I left my office job to go freelance and suddenly had time to exercise and make my own lunch. Plus I was wicked stressed about self-employment and thus, burning some extra “Oh God, how will I pay the rent?” calories. I actually lost twenty pounds over the course of the next year, and another ten when I decided to run two half marathons in 2007 (though that was about running, not a diet) making this my only ever “successful” diet attempt. But I am going to be veryveryvery quick to emphasize that fear of eviction is not a dieting strategy I’d endorse today.

2. There was a five day cleanse that an old personal trainer talked me into during the summer of 2008, after I stopped running due to a stress fracture, gained those ten pounds back (plus maybe a couple of their friends) and got all up in my head about it. I cleansed for 1.5 days before I realized I was super f*cking hungry. I am just really, really not cut out for cleanses. Unless they let me have an amazing turkey sandwich from my local bodega for lunch. Which is how I broke said cleanse and immediately felt like a whole new human.

3. There was some pre-wedding closet diet attempts that quickly turned into deliberate non-dieting for the last month or two before my wedding.

4. And then there was the diet I started in January to lose my twenty pounds of beauty school weight. I lost ten-ish (some weeks it’s more like 12, some weeks, it’s more like 8) and I’ve called it a day. I’m learning how to practice Health At Every Size instead — because I think, in the long run, it’s going to give me better health and greater body peace at the same time — and I’ll have more thoughts for you soon about how that’s working out in reality.

So there you have it. Less than five, and three of the four abandoned in favor of turkey sandwiches and peace of mind.

Check Your Own Pretty Price: What’s your diet tally? And how do you feel about it — accomplished, exhausted, somewhere in between?



 *Full disclosure: Wakefield Research is a PR research firm for whom I do some occasional consulting work. (As part of that whole “don’t get evicted/foreclosed upon” strategy, see diet #1.) But I was not paid or perked to link to their survey — they just happened to post these stats and hello, they’re kinda in my wheelhouse. So that’s what inspired this post.



Filed under Check Your Own Pretty Price

5 responses to “Check Your Own Pretty Price. (Here is the Fun New Thing!)

  1. Laurin

    hmmm I’ve been on one real diet – I’d never even weighed myself regularly but was feeling uncomfortable so felt that i should lose some weight. I’d fluctuated pretty often before that, but it only became important to me in 2008. Did Weight Watchers for 18 months and lost about 19kg (like 35 pounds?).. most of that has come back on but i dont want to diet again, trying to treat my body respectfully which for me involves *not* dieting cos it stuffs my brain around.

  2. Marian

    Think I have only deliberately dieted twice in my life. Once tried Atkins for about 2 days. Couldn’t handle the constipation and missed the fruit and veggies. Second time met with a nutritionist and went carefully by eating healthily and watching portions. Sometimes I am better at that than others but overall that probably meant losing about 12 lbs for a constant loss and I just try to remember that I don’t need to feel guilty if I don’t clean my plate. So the second diet just became a healthy way of life.

  3. Maggie

    I’ve never tried any named diets. I’ve tried counting calories/food diary stuff a few times, but that amounts to too much work/guilt. These days I try to focus on keeping my body healthy by staying reasonably active (working out is booooooring) and cooking for myself often. The cooking thing mainly started as a way to save money, actually, but I’ve lost about 10 pounds in the past year. At this point I’m a little stuck between wanting to lose more (it’s hard to ignore all the “you’re so skinny!” praise) and not wanting to focus on weight as an accomplishment. At this point I’m trying to focus on maintaining habits rather than weight.

  4. I’ve never been on a named diet, as the commenter above me described them, or done a cleanse or anything like this. However (and it’s quite hard to admit this to myself) I’ve been going back and forth between ‘watching what I eat/sometimes counting calories’ and ‘thinking fuck it and eating everything in sight’ for about the past seven years of my life. I’ve stopped seeing food as the enemy but I’m still trying to find the right balance. It’s hard.

  5. I was 35 before I dieted the first time. A series of major life changes (I went from running my own small non-profit to full-time grad school for starters) coincided with my metabolism slowing down and before I knew it I weighed 200 lbs. I did SlimFast — two meal replacement shakes or bars a day, plus “a sensible dinner.” I ate that way for two full years and slowly but surely lost 45 lbs.

    Since then I’ve settled in at around 160 but I have to confess I’m still in love with my original goal of 145. After coming back from my vacation last month and weighing in at 165, and then getting my annual physical results back and finding my cholesterol elevated for the first time, I’ve gone back on the old SlimFast and added exercise (walking/running 4X weekly).

    I don’t mind it — I think I even get off a little bit on the discipline of it. I do miss eating whatever I feel like, but the cholesterol thing kind of freaks me out so I’m okay with it. I have a feeling I’m going to be eating like this on-and-off for the rest of my life.

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