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Posted on Feb 13, 2013 in Dear Diary, Weigh Ins, Weight Loss | 30 comments

Ash Wednesday Weigh-in

Happy Lent, everybody! Actually, I don’t know if that’s a thing people say, but I’m saying it anyway. So there.

I know it’s been a while last since my last official weigh-in, which probably seems lame given my last big ol’ sanctimonious speech about kicking my weight loss back off and whatnot, and I’m sure I have about 50 excuses I could throw at you, not the least of which is the flu that knocked me out of commission for over a week. But! I’m not going to bother with the excuses because that is just so 2012, and instead I’m just going to go ahead and focus on the right now. And what we’re doing right now is weighing in.

Starting Weight: 246 lbs
Last Weigh-in: 198.1 lbs
This Weigh-in: 196.0 lbs
Difference: -2.1 lbs

Hey, whaddya know! A loss! Granted, given the fact that it’s been a month since I last weighed in, that’s actually not that great. And I was hoping for something a little more dramatic But! It’s not a gain, it’s a loss, and every pound down is… another pound down. Or, you know, something more profound. Heh.

I won’t lie–I’m kind of hoping that my body is still a little out of whack after the aforementioned flu, wherein I lost like 7 pounds in as many days, and then gained them all back. So my inner optimistic is telling me that maybe I lost just a wee bit more, it’s just that my body is balancing back out. And while I know that probably is just wishful thinking, there was also that whole thing where I essentially spent all of Saturday eating my face off, so I guess the price had to be paid somehow (totally worth it though, I should add).

I’ve been pretty good about tracking my calories on my iPhone, and I’ve been back to CrossFit a few times as well and am working back up to the point where a single class doesn’t wreck my quads for five days (seriously, I actually have to brace myself on the toilet just to sit down on it, it is tres pathetic). So I’m optimistic about how things will go from here, and I’m just going to keep plugging along. Of course, in addition to the same-ol’ same-ol’ good stuff, I’ll also have a new undertaking that should help me along my way: Lent! (I think some of you probably saw where I was going with this.)

In years past I’ve given up everything from soda to fast food to going full-on vegan for Lent (that last one didn’t end up working out so well on the weight-loss front… turns out that french fries are still vegan!). And while I generally am never one to say that completely cutting something out of your life works for long-term weight loss, I think that the Lenten period is the perfect amount of time for a sacrifice like this. It’s long enough that it’s challenging, which serves as the reminder for why you’re giving up what you’re giving up, but it’s not neverending. So there’s the whole light at the end of the tunnel thing.

So, with all that said, this year for Lent I am giving up…


Yep, I will be going the next 40 days (or whatever the actual timeline is) without cakes, cookies, chocolates, candy… the whole desserty shebang. It’s funny, I never used to have much of a sweet tooth, always preferring savory snacks like chips or fries to dessert, but in recent years I have become a RAGING sweets-eating machine. It’s been bad-news bears, because desserts in particular are so calorically concentrated with little nutritional value, and the SUGAR itself is super detrimental to my weight loss (and energy levels, and general health, and mood, and, like, everything).

I don’t really follow the Lenten rules where you’re allowed to partake in what you’ve given up on Sundays or whatever, so this will be like a straight-up 40-day dessert detox. I’ve actually been seeing a LOT of people giving up sugar-related things this Lenten season, so I figure I’ll be in good company. And fortunately, Easter comes before my birthday this year, so while I know that’s totally not the point of any of this, I’m not gonna lie–I’m pretty happy that I’ll still be able to have a birthday treat. It will almost undoubtedly come in the form of a Georgetown Cupcake… with a fondant mockingjay on top. (Guess I should probably actually start planning out my Quarter Quell soon, eh?)

Aaaaaanyway, in commemoration of both my weigh-in and my first day sans-sweets (which is going very well so far, but then again it’s only 8:45), here is a song that I recorded the other day on my newest impulse purchase. Yuuuup, I bought a ukulele, and it is the best thing I’ve ever done ever in the world of ever. Super easy to learn (I already play the guitar) — I recorded this video roughly half an hour after coming home with my new toy, if that says anything.

The song is, rather fittingly, entitled, “The Happy Song” and it is by Kate Micucci. Also, it was on Scrubs, which is all you really need to know to confirm it’s amazingness.

Do you “do” Lent? What are you giving up?


  1. Welcome to the sad, sad world of a dessert-less existence. Womp. Womp. I’m doing good, too! 9 hours in and no soul-crushing chocolate cravings. Granted, I was sleeping for about 8 hours of that, but whatevs, right?


    • Hahahahaha, at least we’ll be able to commiserate! Misery looooooves company. 🙂

  2. I am also giving up sugar for lent: http://samanthamenzies.com/home/2013/02/lent-2013/

    I almost always give up sugar.
    I did vegan in the past but found it actually pretty easy. Sugar is my weakness.

    And I’m also trying to be less judgmental or, in the very least, try to catch myself when I am being judgmental and reflect on it. It’s something I really need to work on and I think it will make me a better person.

  3. Good luck, Gretchen! You can do it, do it, doooo it!

    And avoid the Valentine’s Day Chocolate Clearance Racks on Friday. 🙂

    • I know, right? How cruel for me to do this to myself the day before Valentine’s Day. Hopefully Sean can make a plate of fruit or something just as romantic as a box of chocolates, hahahaha.

  4. Good luck with your Lent challenge. I’m a giant sweet tooth myself so I did something similar two years ago. This year I’m giving up procrastinating….good luck with that one 🙂 HAHA

    • Lolololol. I should probably have done that too!

  5. I’m almost embarrassed by how much I love you and this blog. Your music video? Amazeballs.

    I myself never had much of a sweet tooth growing up, but as adult I’m like, in sugar mode ALL THE TIME. It’s almost as if my body is trying to make up for all the years I opted for the salty snacks rather than the sweet. I wonder why that is?

    I can’t decide what to give up for Lent. I really want to try giving up Diet Coke again (that’s what I did last year), but we’re taking a vacation to Florida right in the middle of Lent and if there’s one thing I like doing by the pool, it’s drinking whiskey and Diet Coke. Isn’t that shameful of me?

    (and yeah, I’m totes with you about not partaking in the forbidden on Sundays. When I give up something, it’s cold turkey.)

    I might not even give up anything at all. A friend left a comment on my blog yesterday saying that she’s using the 40 days to be meditative and reflective on her blessings. I’m kind of on board with that idea myself, but it almost seems too easy. I view Lent as a sacrifice (because obviously Jesus made the ultimate sacrifice that majorly dwarfs my “Oh, I’ll stop drinking Diet Coke for a while!” thing) and I want it to be difficult for me. Does that make sense? I’m not looking to torture myself, but I want to do or give up something that makes me uncomfortable. I’m considering doing 40 hours of volunteer work over that 40 days because I’m actually really selfish with my time. Or making myself read the Bible every day because I’m terrible about that and I know I feel better when I’m more involved in scriptures.

    Okay, this was a long comment.

    My apologies.

    • I think NOT going cold turkey would make it SO much harder, don’t you? With pretty much anything, but especially with something like sweets or sugar. And I know exactly what you mean about thinking about not giving anything up, using the time to rededicate yourself or whatever, but I had the exact same thought–it just seems too easy. Like, I do need some kind of tangible (well, as tangible as possible) thing to sacrifice/take on in order to mark the season or something.

      I think your idea for volunteering sounds really wonderful, actually. I’m like the most selfish person ever, so that would certain make me reflect on my life in a grander way.

      <3 <3 <3

  6. I am attempting to eat clean(er) 5/7 days of the week by following the Paleo diet. Im really doing it more for my migraines, but thinking Lent was a good excuse to start. Woo!

  7. I am either giving up sugar or alcohol and, since it is only 7:15 a.m., I have some time to decide. My birthday is before Easter, though, so would I rather go with alcohol or sugar to celebrate…such choices!

    • Oh man… such a tough choice! This is why I was so happy when I realized Easter was before my birthday this year — in past year’s it’s definitely come after and celebrating was just not the same, haha. Which, I know is so not the point of Lent but it’s still important, I say!!

      • Totally Sophie’s choice! I think I am going to give up the booze juice and let everyone that wants to buy me a birthday drink do so in April. I am going to Arizona at the end of March which means bikini time. Hello weight loss incentive!

        You play a mean ukelele btw. Loved!

  8. I SO appreciate your commentary on CrossFit wrecking your thighs for a week..um…I actually thought I had injured my muscle after my first class b.c my quads were so sore…no injury, just plain ol’ working out, haha. I haven’t gone back, it was too hard bracing my body for every activity!!

    • Duuuude, you have no idea how much I sympathize. Seriously, just WALKING is hard during the first two days after each class. I keep being like, surely I’ll eventually be able to recover after just a day, and go to CF on a regular schedule–like every other day or whatever, right? Well… remains to be seen…

    • That’s because we’re the same person, duhhh. 🙂

  9. Weight loss is weight loss! Take it any way you can! Good luck with the sweets, I haven’t given anything up for lent in a long time.

  10. Good luck with your dessert-free lent! I don’t do lent but I am in the midst of a month-long attempt at eating a 100% planned menu of home prepared foods.

    • Wowwww, 100% home-cooked for a MONTH? That is so impressive! Does that include like, convenience/frozen meals as long as you still cook them at home? I don’t think I could do it even if it did! Kudos to you, TJ!!

      • No frozen dinners – I’m trying to be healthy, too! I mass-batch foods. Homemade granola and chili in quantities that last me weeks of breakfasts and lunches at a time! Dinner are pretty simple, smoothies or baked fish, roasted veggies, and rice.

      • Also, thank you! 😉
        I’ve been reading for a long time and always enjoy your posts.

  11. I need to think of something….the sweets things is a good idea, or maybe a workout x amount of days a week

  12. Soda.
    Sigh, I’m totally addicted to Diet Coke at work. This is going to be hard.

  13. I don’t do Lent… I’m originally from Louisiana, so I’m mostly just sad that Mardi Gras season is over we’re not supposed to eat king cake anymore starting on Ash Wednesday.

    Also, that’s awesome that you’re learning ukulele! Ukuleles are so much fun. I should practice more, but my favorite song to play is “I’ve Been Workin’ on the Railroad,” no joke. The chords are fun and people will always sing along with me.

  14. I loooove the song! And I hope that your Lent time sacrifice works well to remind you how difficult sacrfice is., in the true nature of the exercise… just rmember, if it’s hard, you’re doing it right!

  15. I gave up cheese! It’s going to be rough, but there are only 45 days left!

    I feel you on the body balancing thing. I was doing well with working out, but broke my foot over the weekend (damn Mardi Gras). Hoping to not correctly derail any progress.


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