So it’s been four weeks since we left for Italy to get married and honeymoon with a brief stop in New York on the way home.
When we left, I had dropped 15 pounds and Zanna had lost 10.
Our plan for our trip was a noble one: ease up a bit but continue he to eat less and exercise more. You can read more about the planned maintenance plan in an earlier blog post.
How We Did
On the airplane ride to Italy, we continued to log our calories using the offline version of the wonderful MyFitnessPal.com program. We quickly realized once we landed in Europe, however, that without 3G on our phones and reliable and consistent access to wireless that we wouldn’t be able to use MyFitnessPal. So we ditched it.
Now, did I mention where we were spending our wedding and honeymoon? In Italy
You know…The land of food and wine. The land of amazing pasta, pizza, cheese, cannoli, gelato, and wine. Also, did I mention that we were getting married there and that some wedding cake and celebrating might be involved?
And the wedding cake we had was nothing short of spectacular, by the way. For those interested, it is called millefogile, and it’s to die for even though there was no chocolate involved!
Well, I won’t say we ate like pigs. But I have to say that we quickly dropped all pretense of being on strict diets and logging our calories. That said, we did generally try and eat smart. But let me confess it here: there was a lot of pizza, pasta, wine, and cheese involved in our diets in Italy. Furthermore, I am guessing that we ate gelato at least every other day. And we had cannoli and cake a few times too. Okay, so we were slightly refined pigs.
And once we got to NY, I’d like to say with 3G access on our phones and wireless access at my parents house, that we immediately jumped back on the diet bandwagon and MyFitnessPal. Well, I’d like to say that but it would be a lie to say that. We continued to eat pizza and even had some more cannoli at a small family reception Friday night.
After 2 1/2 weeks it Italy and 1/2 week at my parents house in Long Island, we arrived home late last Saturday night. The next morning we weighed in and were shocked to discover that Zanna lost an additional pound and I had gained one pound. Wow! IOW, for all practical purposes, we maintained our amazing weight losses.
We were astounded!
How Was This Possible?
In reality, I don’t know how this was possible and why we were so lucky. But I can speculate why. So here goes it.
- We were active. We were tourists for much of the three weeks. Lots of walking and climbing stairs. Lots of time on our feet. I think this is a big one!
- We ate mostly unprocessed and minimally-processed food.I think this was also key. Food in Italy is basic and, for the most part with a few exceptions, we didn’t have access to processed foods.Okay, one notable exception: Zanna fainted one day after a 4-hour hike in the hills of the Cinque Terre. So over the next few days, she drank some Powerade and one day bought a bag of Fonzies. Why Fonzies? The goal was to buy some potato chips to temporarily increase her salt intake but all the regular potato chip bags were huge and the bag of Fonzies was relatively small. Anyway, it was a minor infraction in the interest of health (oddly enough) and a great source for jokes thereafter. (Fonzies, by the way, we learned are a European version of the highly-processed Cheeto.)
- We didn’t snack. Other than the aforementioned Fonzie incident and the occasional dessert (also ignoring the every other day gelato habit), we didn’t snack. That is, one benefit of being on vacation was that we didn’t have access to snacks unless we went out to purchase them which was uncommon.
- We exercised. Besides constantly moving (see #1) as part of our tourist routine, we also managed to go on power walks and runs. While not every day, we probably did 30-45 minutes of exercise at least every third day.
- We were in love. Okay, this probably is unrelated to the excellent record in regards to weight maintenance, but it’s cute to say that.
Listen, I was expecting a weight gain on the order of 5-7 pounds for me. So again, I was quite shocked. Of course, at the same time, I did notice that my newly purchased 32 inch waist blue jeans continued to fit me throughout the trip so perhaps it wasn’t that bad. But one pound? Remarkable.
So what has happened in the intervening week since we have made it home from our wonderful trip? Well to be totally honest, my weigh in today was 163.0. Up 1.5 pounds since we got home.
Not exactly where I want to be but within a reasonable margin of error. And this is after surviving Halloween week and the adjustment back home and back at work.
And we are both back on MyFitnessPal and I am reducing my caloric intake allowance a bit until I get back to 160 or 161 where I will move back into maintenance mode. Especially with Thanksgiving and Christmas right around the corner.