Monday, January 02, 2006

HAPPY NEW YEAR! I'm back to blogging... well, sort of. You see, I guess I'm ready to return to blogging but the problem is I'm burned out on knitting. This happens to me every January so I anticipate light posts this month. It will give me more time to read and comment on everyone else's blog- how about that?

Holiday (i.e. deadline) knitting always runs me down. My hands, wrists and head are tired of knitting. I tried desperately to motivate myself by starting a new baby cardigan and knitting continental style instead of English, but I got bored. Since I can't knit much, I've been spending my time reading, sleeping and doing the NYT crossword puzzle. My LYS had a huge sale all last week and I didn't even poke my head in. I ought to regret that later but my stash is just fine, thank you very much! This was made clear to me over the holidays when my sister-in-law came to visit and wanted me to teach her English knitting because she hates the continental way. She asked if I had spare yarn she could practice on. I think she went home with 4-5 balls! I hope she keeps it up. She absolutely adores scarves and I think she'd enjoy making some of her own. Besides, as we all know - knitting is great stress relief!

Also, I'm returning to a "diet" (poor word choice since it's more like a lifestyle) I followed this summer, a slightly modified version of the McDougall Diet. I'm not trying to lose weight - I just want to eat better. The basic deal is that you eat only fruits, veggies, high-fiber starches, no oil and nothing made with refined flours. I modify it a little by adding lite soy milk and soy yogurt. I don't particularly care for fake meat, seitan or tofu unless they are very well hidden so I get my protein in fake dairy, tempeh and beans. McDougall is not much of a departure from my regular diet since I'm already vegan, but I have a bad habit of letting breads and vegan sweets sneak in, leaving me feeling lethargic and sluggish. I've noticed a lot of us in blogland have the post-holiday blues (what I call a massive sweets hangover).

I don't recommend McDougall for the casual dieter because it is a real commitment, especially for non-vegans who aren't used to living without animal products. As far as weight loss is concerned, I swear by Weight Watchers. I lost almost 30 lbs on WW a few years ago and I think their carrot-and-stick approach is a winner. There was nothing like having a mean and cranky old lady ready to weigh me at the scale every week to motivate me to forego the cookie. Over time, I learned to control myself without the cranky b*tch. ;-) One thing you can't really count on WW for is exercise. They really don't emphasize it enough but then again, that's probably how they entice new members. Successful members learn pretty quickly that they can eat more if they get out and move.

Best of luck to you dieting bloggers and remember - each day is a new day. If you fall off the wagon, you just get right back on - no guilt required.