struggle to lose weightThey say the struggle to lose weight becomes more challenging as you get older. I wouldn’t know. For me, older and the battle to stay thin started the minute I graduated from high school.

According to one online writer facing the struggle to lose weight:

Brain cells die.

Skin cells die.

Even hair cells die,

but fat cells must have accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior because they seem to have eternal life!



That one Thing

You know all those Facebook posts that start out saying, “I changed one morning routine, and it changed my life?” I’m a sucker for those ads. I’m always looking for that one little thing that can help me keep the weight off and not return to the size I was several years ago. I’ve lost hundreds of pounds over the course of my life – 25 pounds due to a long illness, 50 pounds after the divorce  (250 if you count the ex), and 75 pounds with the keto diet.

But alas, none of these—illness, stress, or keto—gave lasting results. Each time, the pounds slowly crept back, and the clothes got disturbingly uncomfortable.

So I’m always looking for that one thing that will make all the difference in my struggle to lose weight.

Yeah, I know the rule – burn more calories than you take in. But I take in surprisingly few calories, no pasta, potatoes, or bread. Rarely do I have my favorite former foods. It’s been years since I’ve had a good old-fashioned Pennsylvania whoppie pie ( ). I hit the gym, ride my bike, or swim laps as frequently as possible.

I still need that one more thing.


Failed Efforts

I’ve checked out the ads and even watched the videos all the way to the sad end, where it says, “For only $59.99, we will send you a unique dietary plan designed just for you and a link to our expert nutritionists.” I’ve sent the $59.99. There was no link. There were no nutritionists.

I’ve even bought the green, pond-scum-colored powder that one famous actress claims resolved all her digestive issues. It didn’t work. It didn’t taste good, either.

In my struggle to lose weight, I’ve worked to eliminate unhealthy and unpronounceable additives in my food.

I’ve tried intermittent fasting. Unfortunately, the poster says people of my gender and age group should eat only between the hours of noon and 4 p.m.

Without success, I’ve searched the internet for the right dietary plan for people over sixty or a website of experts who can explain how my body shape, sleep habits, brand of toothpaste, and earlobe size can create a better weight loss plan.

I’ve tried high-protein, high-fat/low carb, high-carb/low-fat, drink your weight in water, more fiber, less sugar, more fruit, less fruit, lemon water, walking, running, and crying. I’ve tried being happy with who I am. I always go back to walking, running, and crying.

The sad reality is this: there are no skinny genes in my family closet.


Richmond’s Relaxed Rules for Dieting

Therefore, I’m going to revert to Richmond’s Relaxed Rules for Dieting and stick to them. At least I can stop crying.

Rule 1: Your carbs don’t count if you paint a house, bathe a dog, or try to assemble a preschooler’s Christmas gift using instructions written in hieroglyphics.

Rule 2—If the person sitting next to you at the table is thinner than you and has more calories on their plate than you have on yours, deduct 50% of your calories.

Rule 3 – If there is anything green on your dinner plate, you’ve earned an extra dessert with no foreseeable weight gain.

Rule 4 – When the sticky buns are all stuck together, they only count as one.

Rule 5 – If you don’t finish all the food on your plate, you don’t have to count half of the calories.

Rule 6 – Calories eaten at your retirement party do not count against you. (I’m really hoping this one works. The cake and cupcakes were delicious!)

Rule 7 – You don’t have to count the calories if you can’t spell the ingredients.

Rule 8 – If someone takes a bite out of your cookie, it’s a calorie-free snack.


Rethinking the Problem

Two other pieces of advice may help my situation. I’m going to give them a try:

weight loss strategies


Do not wash your hair in the shower! Since the shampoo rinses from your hair and runs down over the rest of you, this is a dangerous thing to do. The wording on the shampoo bottle clearly says, “For extra body and volume.” Instead, use dishwashing soap in the shower. These products claim to dissolve fat and otherwise hard-to-remove substances.

In the meantime, I’m back to counting calories and estimating how many calories I burn a day. When the numbers don’t match, I shake the daylights out of that movement-tracking device until they do. If that doesn’t work, I’m going to invite all my thin friends to join me for lunch (see Rule #2). They can at least listen to me complain about my struggle to lose weight. 


For more stories about the struggles of daily living:

Challenges Crossing the Stream

Age and Beauty – Thoughts On Growing Old

Is It Time For Another Birthday Already?

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