Monday, August 4, 2008

Open Bar

Mark an I spent four days attending the LA RKC, which was held at UCLA. Our accomodations were at the dorms on campus and our main meal source was the buffet cafeteria located in the main building....breakfast, lunch and dinner.

The first night we went to the M&G (Meet and Greet).....buffet style finger foods, (I loaded up and cheese and crackers, but managed to avoid the M&M's.....a great accomplishment actually), and then breakfast the next morning, (Friday), I wasn't hungry, probably because of the cheese and crackers from the night before, lol, and I was hoping to get my Max Vo2 workout in later before lunch, so I didn't want to eat prior to that. I did get my workout in just before lunchtime and then headed to the cafeteria to eat.

I had brought quite a bit of homemade food with me on this trip, and I'll write about that on another blogpost, but with me this first day I had a large container of my veg soup that I added some of their spicey corn soup to, in addition to helping myself to some jicama, cucumber, carrot salad, dressed with, from what I could tell, I'm guessing lime or lemon juice, I didn't detect any oil, or at least not much, brown rice and another salad of seafood (fake scallops and crab), and tomatoes, again dressed very lightly with no or little oil. Not too bad.....I was a good girl! Somehow I must of not seen the brownies, lol!

Dinner that night was of my own food, squash and kale soup w/chicken, and coleslaw.

Breakfast the next morning.......uh oh. Same buffet, different day....a "hungry" day. Let's see.... I started out with oatmeal, oh yes, I couldn't pass up the biscuts, so I took one (I hadn't had a biscut in forever, lol), and then I found the peanut butter and jelly. I've had PBJ's on the brain for a while now and there they (kind of) and all I could I did! Two PBJ's, and then back to the oatmeal. Then on to the granola....not too bad right? first with milk, and then my second and third helpings were granola with yogurt (very small bowls, lol!).

I managed to talk myself into eating fairly descent foods before hitting the dessert section, and by this time I was getting full (notice I didn't admit to actually being full yet). I think I had a small muffin and then I went for the least 3, maybe four, and then I was officially "topped off". Good Lord! I left the cafeteria feeling defeated.

Buffets, "all you can eat" style of resturants did not have me in mind when they created this concept...or did they? What is the point of this concept? To provide tons of poor quality foods in mass and charge more ($12 for breakfast, and $16 for lunch in this case), because a person can only eat so much, right? I mean do they really think I'm going to pay $12 for 2 eggs and some juice, or $16 for a small salad, some chow mein and brownie? No way, I have to get my "money's worth".

After my breakfast binge I walked down to the field to watch the start of the 2nd day, and I met up with Courtney Cheng RKC, (Mark Cheng's wife), that I originally met last April (2007) at her certification in St Paul. Courtney is familiar with my story and we had a chance to talk about KB training , diet and weight loss on our many walks together from the hotel to the rec center where the cert was being held (about 1 1/2 miles). Feeling full, and defeated by what had just happened and knowing I could share this with Courntey I explained that although I've been able to maintain my weight loss for about 3 years that this particular eating right there, just below the surface..... It was Courtney that used the analogy of buffets being like an "open bar" to a alcoholic.....exactly! Wow!

Should I compare my non-binge eating to that of being clean and sober? And everytime I eat compulsively comparing it to that of "falling off the wagon"?

I have so much more to write about this subject, but I have to get to my workout this morning! Lots more to come, as alot has been going on. Lots of food, lots of thought and this month, tomorrow in fact, is my 45th birthday and I want this month, this month of August, to celebrate another great year in this incredible journey I'm on by taking the time to reflect and grow, so I can move past some of this crap by writing, by expressing and sharing out loud what makes me human. To remind myself of what makes me special, special like we all are, but in our own unique ways, and live to my potential.

There is so much goodness to have, I guess it just depends on how you look at things. Buffets or no buffets, my life is good.


Nomads2 said...

I read somewhere that if you eat a muffin, you might as well eat cake. I guess the ingrediants are the same. This has been a running joke between my wife and one of her girl friends for a while. Enjoy your thoughts, keep up the good work. Dave

Diana said...

I too just recently took a trip to New York for the annual "Lucy fest". I am the world's biggest Lucille Ball fan! I tried my best to eat well, but this world, I swear, is out to get us NO MATTER what! I was at the mercy of restuarants for 3 days. I did manage to get some runs and some snatches in, but I still came home feeling bloated and extremely tired. We all know those feelings! Makes me wonder that I probably would have done better by fasting for the 3 days!
Always good to be home with "my" food, can't let that keep me stuck in my comfort zone-just another "fight" to keep striving at in the world of weight-loss and healthy living!

Tracy Reifkind said...


I remember the "muffin craze" of the 80's, it was just before the "bagel craze" of the 90's, both crazes promoted these foods as a healthier 400+ calories each, lol!

Tracy Reifkind said...


I have yet to follow through with the exact eating and food plans I make when I go on a trip!

This trip was about overeating, not so much food quality, there were plenty of healthier options, but there was more junk food in one place, 24/7, constant stimulation.

I can only be better prepared next time and keep a positve attitude.

Jennifer said...

I think the analogy to a buffet being an open bar is an accurate one. I realized fully how addicted to food, specifically sugar, I was one night at work. We had had a particularly rough night, and when we finally got a little bit of a breather, my nurses immediately headed for the door to get a cigarette. I, in turn, headed for the candy drawer for some chocolate. At some point in that exchange I realized what an addiction it was. Since then, I have been more aware of my cravings/binges and have found that I can break the cycle a little more easily.

Another helpful insight for me about "all-you-can-eat" buffets was something I read somewhere. The author made the point that a person makes the mistake of spending all this money and time (and don't forget that time is money) trying to get fit and healthy then goes to a buffet (for whatever reason) and thinks that he/she has to eat enough to justify the money paid. All the while, they are negating all the money/time spent trying to get to the physical point where they are, thus in essence wasting even more money than if they had eaten reasonably. This made a connection with me. Hope it does with you, too.

Lauren said...

Buffets are always a danger for anyone. It's almost a sin to stick with perfect eating when you have so many choices to taste and try anything. It's pretty tough to just have a tiny bowl of oatmeal and be done with it.
They are fun when you know that when you get home you will be right back on track.

I don't do so well on cruises because it's unlimited amount of amazing food. The first couple days I can try and be disciplined but by the end I am having a desserts at every meal. 8-)