Dieting is not an easy thing
By Katherine Compton-Pope
Jan. 9, 2018 at 4:36 p.m.
Updated Jan. 10, 2018 at 6 a.m.
2018 is here.
Benjamin Franklin said, "Be at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let every new year find you a better man."
What wise words. I hope the dawn of 2018 found you at peace and motivated for a fresh start.
Like so many, I was ready to close the door on 2017, which to me seemed like a run-on sentence. Last year was punctuated with an especially active year in our real estate office, my daughter's wedding, the start of my son's second year in college, Hurricane Harvey, a snowy December and a million other things that, good or bad, needed attention.
I, for one, hope 2018 will bring a little slower pace with fewer surprises.
If you are like me, your New Year's resolutions are mostly centered around losing weight. I was more motivated in my weight-loss quest last year because my daughter's wedding was looming on the horizon. This year, I am hopeful that because I won't be so busy and stressed, I will have more time to focus on my goals.
I love food and wine too much to really diet, but I am committed to cutting back and making more sensible choices. And even if I could convince myself to put off the inevitable a little longer, my jeans are telling me that the time has come. They say the key to success in weight loss is portion control, control being the operative word.
I really do love food. I was recently talking about this with some friends. Other than organ meat and beets, I really can't think of anything I don't like. That makes me a great dinner party guest but not a great dieter.
As I pushed myself away from the table the other night, I started wondering why? Why do we make resolutions every Jan. 1?
It seems that the custom started more than 4,000 years ago in Babylon, where their new year started in the middle of March at the beginning of the planting season. The Babylonians celebrated a huge religious festival at this time of year that included promises to return borrowed items and pay all their outstanding debts.
Julius Caesar established the January new year we now observe more than 400 years before the birth of Christ. The Romans began each year promising their many gods that they would make a concerted effort to be better than they had been the previous year.
I guess the old saying, "the more things change, the more they stay the same," is really true. Our ancient ancestors struggled with trying to be better than they were yesterday, just like we do. The new year, no matter when it happens to fall, offers us all a chance for a fresh start.
As I have gotten older, it seems to take more and more effort to lose fewer pounds. By the time you read this, I will have finally started exercising in earnest, and this year, I am doing so with a new tool in my arsenal.
My good friend and sponsoring real estate broker, Shelley, gave me an Apple watch for Christmas. It is not something I would have bought myself, mostly because I am not that tech savvy, but it only took me a day to fall in love with my new little gadget. Of all the features, the one I like the least but probably need the most is the little reminder the activity tracker sends you if you have been sitting for too long.
There is nothing like being prodded to get moving by a little piece of electronics strapped to your arm. Every time I feel that vibration, I am reminded of why I love and hate technology.
One of my portion-control downfalls is skipping breakfast, which means I am starving later in the day. This leads to overeating.
This year, I am making a coordinated effort to start my days off with a good breakfast. Several years ago, I stayed at the now closed Queen Anne Bed and Breakfast in Galveston, where they served an outstanding broiled grapefruit for breakfast. It is a quick, easy breakfast that is crisp, sweet and filling.
Happy new year from my table to yours.
Katherine Pope is a wife, mother and Realtor. She loves cooking almost as much as she loves living in Jackson County Texas. Katherine can be contacted by email at firstname.lastname@example.org