Pizza Buffet While Dieting, Not a Problem*

No, I don’t need a sandwich!   A co-worker teases me (I think she’s teasing?) that I’ve lost too much weight and that she’s going to buy me a sandwich.  Rest assured, I eat plenty of food and life is good.

After feasting, well, pigging out over the holidays at the end of 2011, Ray and I finally realized that the scale wasn’t really lying to us and that the pounds weren’t going to magically disappear overnight as we slept.  In the past three years ago, I’ve gained 15 pounds and he has packed on about 30.

Prior to going to New Orleans in the spring of 2010, I walked on the treadmill daily and dropped about ten pounds.  After that trip, I got lazy and gained the weight back.

In March of  last year when our treadmill died, we bought a new one.   But, weeks later, we got the diagnosis that Miss ABBA had cancer and was given two to three months to live.  I decided spending as much time with her was far more important than losing weight that many saw as “vanity pounds”.  Well, spring turned into summer, summer into fall, and fall into winter, and our little trooper never got sick.  When Miss ABBA finally went to puppy heaven almost five months ago, I decided it was time to try out that new treadmill.

At Christmas, the scale told me that I weighed 168 pounds (what I weighed in 1986 when I became a practicing bulimic for almost nine years) and Ray topped the scale at 202 pounds.  I started walking in February and shed about ten pounds.  Ray had only lost two pounds and decided that something more than walking, sporadically, needed to be done.  I agreed.

Even with walking, I couldn’t keep the weight off and then someone suggested a website called “myfitnesspal” to Ray.  You put in some numbers, how much you want to lose, add all of the calories in food and beverages you consume daily, and put in your exercise.

It makes you very aware of how many calories you actually eat daily and what a real serving size is.  Since March 1st, I’ve lost 9.4 pounds for a total of 20 pounds.  Ray has been even more successful.  He’s gone from 199.4 pounds on March 1st to 175.6 today.   That’s down 26.2 pounds since Christmas!!!  I want to lose about five more pounds and maintain that weight through the end of the year (my shirt for the Madonna concert in October allows no room for any extra baggage!) and Ray wants to lose about ten more pounds.

In his new book, “The Skinny Rules”, “The Biggest Loser” co-host Bob Harper says that you should eat at least 10 meals a week at home (we do!) and you can enjoy a splurge meal once a week.  Since I don’t watch that reality show and I don’t have his book (I read that advice in the literary Bible, “Entertainment Weekly”), I’m sure he didn’t mean buffets, but until he tells me differently, it means buffets to me!

So, what is the correlation with pizza?  When I reached 150 pounds, my first big milestone, I chose Osaka Buffet as my reward for my weight loss.  Ray’s goal was to get into the 175 pound-range and his reward was pizza.

We chose “Wise Guy’s Pizza” on East 53rd Street in Davenport, Iowa, last night.  For lunch yesterday, we ate rabbit food and a yogurt!  My colleague, Cassie Heiter, told me that Wise Guy’s is one of her favorite places to eat in the Quad Cities.

And, its website even says, “home of the best pizza in the Quad Cities”.  We arrived and we were ready to eat.  I ate a big plate of salad to make me feel full.  (Dieticians recommended that you should fill every plate of food you eat with at least 50% fruits or vegetables and I definitely do that at buffets!)

Cassie told me that I had to try their buffalo wings and “The Big Marv” pizza.  And, both were “da bomb”!

Their wings are described as “fresh chicken breaded with our made from scratch recipe”.  The wings were incredible and I ate four.  The sauce the wings were prepared with was so tasty that I skipped dipping sauces because it didn’t need it (more calories saved!).

I also tried a small piece of their deep dish pizza, a slice of East Coast White (grilled chicken, olive oil, fresh basil, red onion, tomato, and mozzarella cheese), a sliver of Reuben pizza, and some traditional slice of pizza that was boring after sampling the others!

I had another plate of salad and then it was time to try the Cassie-recommended “The Big Marv”.  Basically, it’s Wise Guy’s version of  the golden arches signature sandwich.  This pizza was made with ground beef, 1000 Island dressing, cheddar and mozzarella cheese, onion, lettuce, and pickles.  I got a small piece and from the first bite, I was in pizza heaven!   The nice thing about the presentation of pizzas at Wise Guy’s is that the slices are small and better for sampling different pizza.  I went back and got another piece of “The Big Marv”.

My apologies for not taking a picture of “The Big Marv”.  I always take pictures of my food.  Maybe I thought it was just going to be a piece of pizza and boy, was I so wrong!!!!!!!!!!!!

Overall, I wasn’t too naughty eating several small pieces of pizza, four wings, and two plates of salad until I dived into their dessert pizzas.  Those are definitely my weakness and those slices were NOT petite.

With my first plate of salad, I took a slice of apple dessert pizza and it blew any others I’ve had in the past away.  It had big chunks of apples on it.  Up next, a slice of cherry dessert pizza, and then I topped off my night with two more slices of the apple dessert pizza.  So, that was definitely my downfall.

*As we walked out of the doors, I realized two things:  I was ready to walk a lot when we got home and I was ready to make plans to visit Wise Guy’s pizza again — hopefully soon!  When we got back home, we took advantage of the warm summer night and walked for an hour outdoors and then I walked off a  few hundred more calories on the treadmill before bed.

The damage on the scale this morning after my piggy buffet night:  None.  I weighed the same as I did yesterday before the buffet!  Awesome!

Here’s proof that I’m doing the weight loss routine the right way.  After developing bulimia in 1986, I had dropped 52 pounds to a scary 116 pounds in 1995, when I went on the wagon.  I’ll always be a food addict and have to watch how much I eat and work out to keep from gaining weight and falling off the wagon.  This picture from 1994 is what unhealthy looks like!

So, I don’t need a sandwich and I’m completely in control of my weight loss.  With proper caloric intake and exercise, you, too, can lose weight or “vanity pounds” and do it the right way.

This public service announcement brought to you by….

Anthony

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