The Lazy-asses guide to losing weight: the diet edition

This lazy-asses guide is that lazy, it’s taken over a month to come out!

If you haven’t read The Lazy-asses guide to losing weight: the workout edition, I suggest you read that first before delving into the diet edition.

The greater proportion of losing weight is unfortunately in the diet. That means that no matter how much you workout, you can’t use that as a justification for eating three bowls of nachos, a cheese pizza and a chocolate brownie. (If this sentence has made you crave said nachos, pizza and brownie, I apologise).

Personally, I love eating. Food is great. Food tastes great. Even being the vegetarian that I am, I prefer to eat the fatty/sugary non animal products like chocolate, cheese pizza, chocolate, and more cheese pizza, as opposed to the obviously-vegetarian options like… vegetables, and fruit. YES: BEING A VEGETARIAN DOES NOT GUARANTEE A HEALTHY DIET. Just thought I’d get that misconception out of the way.

Because Nikki Bella didn't get that body by drowning herself in peanut butter. (CREDIT: WWE.com)

Because Nikki Bella didn’t get that body by drowning herself in peanut butter. (CREDIT: WWE.com)

The most obvious thing to do to alter your diet and make it healthier is:

Cut out the bad foods
The easiest solution to turning your diet upside down is to eliminate the obviously bad foods, or “substituting them”. Instead of having a midnight snack of chocolate and chips, opt for a bowl of yoghurt with cut up banana in it. On your lunch break? Grab a sandwich and/or a salad instead of a burger and chips. Healthy eating isn’t as bad as it’s made out to be. I’ve actually come to enjoy eating salads as much as I do cheese pizza. And my relationship with cheese pizza is still going strong after all this time.

For me, substitution has played the strongest point of my change in diet. No matter how fit I am or how trim my stomach may get, I will always love eating. It’s just what I eat that plays the major factor in whether I look like Nikki Bella or Peter Griffin.

One thing that keeps me going through my diet is having something to look forward to. That something is my cheat day, which I’ve conveniently placed on a Saturday. It’s like you’re going through a dark tunnel and there’s a light at the end… only for the cycle to repeat itself, but that’s beside the point. It’s alright to have a little cheat day once a week. Just make sure you don’t splurge it. I’m talking waiting-by-the-clock-for-the-strike-of-midnight-and-then-eating-everything-in-sight splurging. Of course, if you don’t trust yourself with a full 24 hours of no dieting, then a cheat meal will also suffice, in which case, yes, splurge all you want in that one meal.

If you manage to substitute your foods, eat a cleaner diet and on top of that, work off your little butt, you will be looking as great as ever. And when you do look that great, you can refer them to Widow’s Lure as your inspiration.

I accept credit card, PayPal and boxes of chocolates (on Saturdays).

Happy weight-loss!

– by The Black Widow

You Know What Sh!ts Me?: People Getting Ready on Public Transport

I hate taking public transport. It’s already bad enough that I have to deal with the system’s terrible schedule, the dirtiness of the vehicles, and the fact that carriages are never at a comfortable temperature – but God, if there’s one thing that’s worse than all of this, it’s the people who take public transport, more specifically, those commuters in the morning.

Alright, so not everyone’s a morning person – granted, it’s probably safe to say a good 80% of us just hate mornings – and being grumpy in the morning is simply an uncontrollable side effect. That’s fine. I can handle grumpiness. But what I can’t handle is the fact some people think it is in within their social right to get ready on public transport.

It is not.

This is how it SHOULD be done. (SOURCE: Reginaldo Andrade's Flickr photostream)

This is how it SHOULD be done. (SOURCE: Reginaldo Andrade’s Flickr photostream)

The train, bus, ferry, light rail, or may I dare to say, the footpath, is not the place for you to get your morning shit together. I’m sorry, but I was under the impression you shouldn’t leave the house until you were ready for the day, or was that just me? Because judging from the number of women I’ve seen putting on an entire face of make-up on public transport alone, I feel like I’ve missed the memo.

Come on, girls. Is public transport really a good place to wave your mascara wand around? I mean it’s a skill to be able to apply make up on a moving platform, I give you that, but it is not a tip endorsed by make up professionals. I believe the correct and preferred way is still on an immovable seat in front of a large mirror. Do you really want other people to know how image obsessed you are, even if you never see them again in your life? That’s no way to give off that effortless beauty look you’re going for. Plus, I would prefer if none of your powder blush landed on my jeans.

I would also prefer if I didn’t have to deal with your dripping hair on my book/newspaper/phone. Or even just watching dripping water fall from your head down your neck onto your back. It’s strangely icky. I know you’re probably clean, assuming your hair is wet because you took a shower rather than taking a quick dip in that puddle outside your house before jumping onboard public transport, but I don’t have to consciously know that you got naked in the morning and scrubbed yourself clean. Icky. And the fact is, I’m seeing more and more people who I can tell have taken showers in the morning. It’s troubling, because the question is, when will we draw the line? Because I am going to be pretty upset if people start taking showers on their morning commute, especially if you’re one of those people who takes a little wee in the shower. Really upset.

And then there’s the issue of breakfast. If you have to eat, or want to eat, I suggest getting up a little earlier because it is just rude to be having your morning meal on public transport, especially if you’re not going to offer it to the person next to you. I am able to deal with coffee or other hot drinks, but not your toast or boiled eggs (oh yes, I’ve seen someone peel eggs on the train). Not only is there a problem of the smell of hot food, which lingers after you’ve long finished it or long gone by the way, there’s also the issue of you sitting on the aisle eating your food and the problem of me having to get over you to get off at my stop. It’s an awkward moment that simply shouldn’t exist, and wouldn’t if you would have have your damn breakfast at home like a normal person.

It’s not a lot to ask, but it would be a whole lot easier if you could actually be ready when you’re ‘ready’ to leave the house. But it seems everyone is getting ready on their morning commute in one way or another. No one is ever ready anymore. Have I been handling myself in public wrong all these years? Should I cut my morning routine by half, so that you can share the remainder with me as I struggle to pick my outfit on a moving vehicle on the train to work/uni/out for that day? Please tell me. I don’t want to look like a put-together morning idiot.

– by Nicole Lam

The Lone Vegetarian

The sky was an eery shade of red and the vermillion hues in the grass matched it perfectly. The sounds of cattle crying out sounded throughout the field. A baby piglet stared up at me with its lifeless eyes, its mouth slightly ajar. Blood was pouring out of its neck profusely.

#datvegetarianlyf

#datvegetarianlyf

This was the nightmare I had as a teenager that made me want to become a vegetarian for the right reasons. I had tried it once before, with the goal of losing weight by taking meat out of my diet, but it didn’t work out. Now, I can happily say that I’ve stuck with my vegetarianism for the past six years because of that conscious decision I made.

As a Pacific Islander – who are infamous meat eaters in their own right – living life as a vegetarian in a family full of carnivores is definitely as difficult as it sounds. With my busy schedule of combining college, work and my outside hobbies, I barely get enough time to cook a decent meal for myself. When I get home and there’s a chicken dish sitting on the kitchen counter, it’s either my job to a) Pick around the deceased animal and eat or b) Think of something quick and easy to make. On my most busy days, a pot of boiling water and a bag of pasta becomes my best friend.

Nine times out of ten, I have to cook for myself on my days off. Dinner will usually consist of meat which means I’ll have to cook my own vegetarian option. If my family is feeling sorry for me, they’ll either make the main dish vegetarian acceptable or take out a bit for me before they add the meat. When I go to extended family events or social gatherings, the meat-eater in my relatives and friends are very apparent and my options are very limited. I am usually only left with a bit of salad and baked potatoes on my plate.

Dining out as a vegetarian has become a lot easier than it was when I first started: I am aware of my options and know which restaurants cater to the eating-conscious. There are a few restaurants that have little to no vegetarian options so I’m left with ordering an egg and mayo sandwich and a glass of water.

I’ve learned most of the dishes in my arsenal from my mother. When there’s meat involved, I easily just substitute it with tofu and my own version of the meal is created! One of my go-to dishes is called a “Hawaiian Haystack” which was passed down from my mum: it’s basically a dish where you have rice and stack honey mustard tofu on top of that, and you continue to stack various ingredients on top of that, including cheese, dry noodles and pineapple. Seriously. Try it. Honey mustard tofu is to die for.

Life as a vegetarian in a family full of meat eaters is challenging,  but it’s not impossible. Nothing is impossible for me. Insert arrogant hairflip here.

– by The Black Widow

Cronut / Dossant

The Cronut seemed to me such a strange and unnecessary invention. For those who are not up to date with modern food, the Cronut is a delicate hybridisation of two much loved sweets; the croissant and doughnut. A much needed union in our dull baking world.

Anyone fancy a cronut?

I can just imagine a little Mexican kid saying “Why can’t we have both?”

The inventor of Cronuts, Chef Dominique Ansel, stated that the technique took him two months and more than ten recipes to perfect. Fundamentally it is made with a croissant-like dough, deep-fried then either a) rolled in sugar, b) injected with cream or c) glazed. However the recipe varies depending on the bakery. Needless to say, any Cronut will fulfil all your fat requirements for the month.

However figure-destroying these sweets may be, the concept alone was enough to accumulate a substantial fan base. The result was horrifically long lines at bakeries at unreasonable times of the morning, and chefs willing to undertake the Cronut challenge. Unfortunately, the original Cronut resides in New York, so it was up to me to find the trendiest, up-to-datest bakery Melbourne could offer.

Tivoli Bakery in South Yarra attracted much interest for their pastries. But no, they did not have Cronuts at all; they had Dossants. For obvious copyright laws, the bakery couldn’t call their adaptation of the food by its original name but I think that the name Dossant is more fitting for the pastry. Something that rolls off the tongue, soft sounds for a soft sweet rather than the less appealing Cronut.

Neatly lined up behind a glass cabinet and awaiting my hunger were the holy Dossants, available in two flavours; chocolate strawberry and vanilla strawberry. Before long, a Dossant arrived at my table and its plump presentation, sugar coating and slivers of strawberry and chocolate in the centre were nearly enough to win me over.

Its beauty was of no surprise; after all, the bakery is known for their gorgeous looking gourmet doughnuts. I knew the real test would lie in the tasting. The sugar coating was a soft grain, none of that coarse Donut King cinnamon. The pastry itself was incredibly fluffy, and not too sweet, that is until I got to the semi-hard chocolate in the middle which, although was rich, suffocated the flavour of strawberry. In fact, the intended flavour of the Dossant was muted entirely by the Dossant pastry itself. Despite this, it was scrumptious.

The food resembled a doughnut more than anything else, which lead me to my final critique of it; The Dossant is basically a glorified Churro. It holds a large resemblance to traditional Spanish Churro; smooth and fluffy on the inside and coated in fine sugar. This thought did not occur to me until I was finished eating because the food was still delightful, however derivative.

The Dossant may just be a Churro that has been tied up at the ends, but to this I would say – so? It may not have been the spectacular game-changer of food that it was in my mind, but based on taste it was just as delicious as the best croissant or doughnut I have eaten. Many look at the Cronut and ask why? But to ask questions of such a thing is useless because the novelty of it is that it exists solely because it can.

– by Josefina Huq