Saving My Jaw Line

>> Thursday, July 27, 2006

I started growing a beard 4 years ago, when I went back to Hong Kong for the first time after I left. I forgot to bring my shaving kit. And since I was only back for a little more than a week, I didn't care. It suited me, I wanted to look carefree and it added a little maturity. Without it, I looked like a kid. I was just promoted to be a director in my company, some facial hair certainly helped me especially when I was talking to my clients. It makes me look more authoritative, you know.

When people asked me why I grew a beard, I told them it was for sentimental value. It's sort of like a souvenir from HK for myself, it reminds me of my friends and also signifies how we have all grown up and began the next stage of our lives; careers, marriage and children. Of course, that's the gist of it. But then, there are always another side to the story...

I was skinny as hell growing up in Paris. After my mom passed away, I moved back to HK to live with my grandma and uncles. She experienced WWII, so it is her belief that we should eat while we have the chance. She trained me to finish everything on the plate. I was basically the "trash can", whatever she can't finish, she forced it down my throat. Not before long, I was overweight. Now, I'm a tall guy so it doesn't show that bad. But from years and years of living with my grandma, I got brainwashed into feeling guilty if I can't finish what is in front of me. Til' this day I can still hear her saying about "The starving children in Africa." I honestly don't know how I helped them by eating everything in sight. "If there's a war happening here now, you won't have anything to eat and then you'll know!"

I thought by escaping my home in HK, I would be able to control my own diet but then somehow I learned how to cook. They say you gain 15 pounds when you go to college, because you are eating junk all the time. They called it the "Freshmen 15". Let's say I've gain more than that. I was 175 pounds in my high school years, now I'm at least 50 pounds heavier. My jaw line is slowly disappearing, my stomach is growing to be a perfect round. I've tried going to the gym, but I'm not motivated at all. I keep gaining muscle weight and the cardio is driving me crazy. I need some brain stimulation and being on the treadmill is so boring that I keep on doing stupid calculations of steps vs. calories vs. time so I go completely berserk.

The only thing that seems to work is Atkins, I've been on it before for two weeks straight, I lost 10 pounds. Of course, I go through sugar cravings and carbs cravings, it has strange effects on my digestive system and I gain them all back when I sink back into the chocolatey goodness, but it worked. So that's what I'm gonna do for the next four weeks. No rice, no noodles, no breads, no sugar, no fruit and no root vegetables. No soda or juice. Just regular vegetables, preferably greens, and meat, fish, cheese and eggs. Although if I'm having salads, I'd like to have a little bit of tomatoes and dressing. I know it's kinda against the rules but I need something to take my mind off the greens. I'll try to choose some low carb dressing like blue cheese or Caesar. I'm gonna start on Monday and I'll try planning the menu for the whole month so I know what I'm doing and not stray too far from this plan.

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