And so…man’s eternal battle of the bulge rages on

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Kevin Chiri

We’re a week into 2008, so how have you done trying to always remember to write “2008” on things, especially on checks.

That is just one of the things we always have to work on for the New Year, and of course for many people, it also means a new resolution to lose weight or get in shape.

I’ve always done pretty well in that area, since I began exercising many years ago and have been pretty consistent at it my entire adult life. And the older I’ve gotten, I have tried to be conscious of not over eating and just being reasonable with my approach to food.

I’ve always liked the idea of feeling like I could eat anything, as long as I did it in moderation. I also have heard the theory of being so aware of what you are eating that you always stop as soon as you don’t feel hungry anymore.

My wife, being the good stay-at-home mom and wife that she is, always has a nice supper on the table for us each evening. And it is the joke of the house that I probably eat less at dinner than anyone else. Even as I try to never stuff myself, I frequently leave a few bites on the plate if I get to the point I’m not hungry anymore.

I figure if you think about what you eat, and always try to immediately stop when you are not really, really hungry anymore, then the result should be a few bites each meal, which can add up to a lot of calories over an entire year.

This approach has always worked well for me since I’ve maintained a weight around 155 for many, many years.

But surprise, surprise about a month ago when I got on the scale and it said 160. And then it went up to 162 a week later.

I thought, “oh my gosh, what the heck is happening?”

There are various reasons I figure I started putting the weight on, none of which made me feel very happy about it all. So I announced to the family that I was, in fact, for the first time in my life, going on a diet.

The laughter immediately began from everyone since I still look fairly slim and they just think it is ridiculous for me to suggest I need to go on a diet.

But I wasn’t kidding. I mean, I have always been the one to talk about the importance of watching what you eat, and making sure to exercise, and especially to tackle any weight gain as soon as you see it so it doesn’t go from 5 pounds to 10 pounds to 20, and then off the scale.

So dieting I began a couple of weeks ago, and now I am really finding out first-hand the challenge of sticking to some of this stuff.

I mean, I think I definitely was doing what I preached to others all along. I always tried to eat in moderation, and I certainly was good at exercising. And maybe that’s why I still am so aggravated with the pounds that suddenly showed up on my scale.

But now I’m checking every package for the calories of things. I’m trying to cut out every little calorie I can, hoping that it will help me figure out why my normal eating schedule for decades suddenly wasn’t working for me anymore.

I’ve always heard people talk about getting older, and how easy the pounds appear. And I did believe that there was some truth to metabolism slowing down, and that definitely being a part of it. So now I think I’m experiencing it first hand, and I can see even I have to tackle the problem in the same way I’ve always tried to say it could be done.

Of course I keep getting ridiculed at the house every time I ask how many calories are in some kind of food, or I mention to “get me that fat free salad dressing for supper” since I figure I can cut out some calories like that.

I know I’m not overweight just because the scale went up to 162, but I wouldn’t mind it so much if the weight seemed to appear in my arms, shoulders or chest from lifting weights, and I seemed to look a little more buff. Oh no, that isn’t where it looked like it went. I could tell my belt was just a hair bit tighter to buckle a couple of weeks ago, so of course you know where the pounds appeared.

So I’ll keep you up-to-date about whether “Kevin’s Big Diet” actually achieves the desired results.

After my daughter lost 30 pounds through this kind of approach, I figure I am really under pressure to do as well as she did. But don’t worry. I’m not looking to lose 30 pounds.

Sonya Aucoin from the Southeast Louisiana War Veteran’s Home sent me an e-mail asking for some help in publicizing a need at the home for the vets there, for their first annual upcoming Mardi Gras festivities.

Sonya, the activities director at the home, said she is putting together a parade, and actual ball of sorts, where a king and queen will be crowed.

But she needs some beads, maybe some crowns for the king and queen, and any kind of Mardi Gras decorations you might be able to help them with.

I know there are plenty of bags with beads in houses around here, so go grab a couple and drop off to the home out Airline Highway in Reserve. And hopefully you also have some of the other things they need.

If you want to talk to Sonya, call her at the Vet’s Home at 497-4080.

Kevin Chiri is Publisher of L’Observateur and can be reached at (985) 652-9545 or at