I’ve recently lost 65 pounds and I’ve hit a plateau.  Sadly, my body doesn’t want to take off any more weight, even after adding more exercise, shifting calories around, tracking everything in with the detail of pointillism, and monitoring myself to see if I was doing something different.  I just can’t get it going again.

I’m trying to shift how I eat and drink, to see if that has any impact on what’s going on with this plateau.  This means giving up on occasion my beloved flavored creamers.  I know, 35 calories a tablespoon doesn’t make much difference in one cup, but over two or three cups a day, it does add up.  I’m sure my body doesn’t need that extra sugar and fat every day too, though it’s a tasty morning doughnut in my drink.  Being New Year’s and all, I set out with determination to learn to enjoy coffee black.

I hearkened back to my past experiences with coffee before pouring that first trial cup.  I remembered my first experience with the bitter black stuff as a toddler.  I mistook coffee for soda in my Papa’s cup and took a big ol’ swig before promptly creating a huge coffee stain on the carpet at my Nan’s house with the expulsion of the entire swig from my mouth.  It was terribly acrid and all I could remember was my family laughing at me as I coughed and gagged.

I couldn’t bring myself to drink the first cup black.  I brought out my stevia packets and a tablespoon of the creamer of comfort and swilled.  Ah, perfection.

As I sipped guiltily and ran my morning house errands, I thought back to how I began enjoying coffee in the first place.  It must’ve been in high school, when I began going to the coffee shop in my hometown with all of my friends.  The owner introduced me to a milky, sugary, caramel beverage cleverly entitled a Milky Way.  The combination of social pressure to not spit out the drink in front of all of my friends and the environment of freedom from youth must have made one heck of an impression on me.  I don’t remember ever really enjoying the coffee or the grinds at the bottom of the cup, but I remember loving that coffee shop more than my own home.  

I thought about all of the open mic nights and the car rides down Main Street to the shop singing Weezer to get there and returned to the aromatic pot, determined.  After all, it smelled like the coffee shop.  What’s not to love? I poured myself a cup of coffee, steaming hot, without adding my sweetener or my routine creamer.  My brain hung on to the earworm that is Weezer’s “Island in the Sun” as I brought the cup to my lips.  The immediate thought rang into my head of blocking its entrance through my mouth.  It just felt somehow different, watery, as it passed over my tongue.  The sourness clenched my jaw tight, though I wanted to purge the brown stuff onto my wall.  I swallowed out of politeness in the presence of my coffee pot, which seemed to be giggling at my defeat.  As I reached to strangle it or pull its cord out of spite, I noticed my sweetener packets sitting idly by, watching the proceedings and waiting for their chance to intervene.  I took them up on their offer and poured them into the cup, seeking solace in a saccharin-flavored coffee treat, somewhere in Weezer-land.

That’s when I knew I’d never enjoy coffee black.  If it means I’ll be forever 10 pounds from my goal weight, so be it.  I hear a BMI of 28 helps longevity anyway.  Pass the creamer, please.

(My apologies for my long absence--it's been a long semester!)

Views: 171

Comment by alsoknownas on January 2, 2013 at 7:53pm

Congrats on your progress. I told my doc I was not going to be able to lose more weight so to improve my BMI I would simply grow a bit taller.

Comment by Constant Calliope on January 2, 2013 at 8:03pm

I like that!  I'm gonna have to see if I can get away with that... maybe using the rack to make myself a little bit less morbid and maybe just down to obese!  LOL

Comment by Marlene Dunham on January 2, 2013 at 8:07pm

Congratulations on the 65 Lbs.  That's terrific.  Hopefully there is something else you can move around that will work.  You've  got to have something that makes you feel good, even if its just a 35 calorie creamer.

Comment by Zanelle on January 2, 2013 at 10:00pm

That is how I felt about coffee too.  The cream and sugar thing is sure a nice way to drink it but I still don't like the stuff.  You are so right to just five that creamer stuff up.  Black coffee seems so grown up and mature.  The title of your piece really hit me.  Sophisticated.   Thanks.

Comment by Gregory Haley on January 2, 2013 at 10:21pm

Great job on the weight loss efforts!

Something that might make "pain" of black coffee a little more tolerable is freshly roasted coffee. Locate a micro-roaster in your area, and you'll likely find coffee that was roasted the same day, or a day or two before. Micro roasters usually roast in batches of 5 lbs or so at a time, and roast two or three times a week. The difference is huge. If you buy fresh roasted Brazilian you can taste the natural sugar in it. Try it. You'll never buy coffee from a store again!

Comment by greenheron on January 3, 2013 at 3:11am

Did someone say 'coffee'? Yay, that you lost the weight.  You deserve a nice cup of hot creamy coffee!  I am a slathering dog for coffee, black, cream and sugar, cream no sugar, any coffee is good coffee.  I like it black now and then. In Paris, they kind of sneer at you if you ask for cream, so I learned to drink it black there, in the teeny cups. Now, drinking a nice cup of strong black coffee reminds me of Paris, so I have it that way a lot. And, ditto what Gregory said!

Comment by DaisyJane on January 3, 2013 at 8:36am

your pic looks quite pretty, either way.  i am learning to drink it with a little milk, instead of grotesquely light and sweet.  but i generally only suffer through one cup a day, so its a little easier.  maybe focus on the awesome achievement of having lost 65 pounds for a while, and it will kick back in later, if it needs to?

Comment by Phyllis on January 3, 2013 at 6:43pm

I've never enjoyed coffee unless I was hung over and the cup held a bunch of cream and sugar, too.

65 pounds is fabulous! Have you considered just maintaining at this weight for a couple of months, let your metabolism settle, then slam those ten pounds off? Trick your body.

Comment by Constant Calliope on January 3, 2013 at 8:22pm

Marlene:  Thanks!  I think the only thing moving around to work would have to be my body... and I simply don't want to do it... HAHA!  Coffee creamer is my diversion tactic.

Zanelle:  Black coffee reminds me so much of the gamine, the ultimate boyish feminine, grown up but retaining her wiles.  Sadly, I'll always be a little milder than that!

Gregory:  I have a great little micro roaster here, Churchill, that makes a wonderful coffee called "Sinless Pastry" that takes the edge off drinking coffee without two creamers.  I'll work my way from there.  :P  A good coffee tastes just as good cool as it does piping hot, I've found.  Folgers, not so much.  LOL

greenheron:  I was unaware of Paris' unspoken ban on cream... but if I ever get the pleasure of traveling to the land of upturned noses, I'll learn to get my caffeine in quick swigs!  LOL  Thanks for the heads up!

DaisyJane:  Thanks!  Milk seems like a good idea to kick the extra sugars if I need to ween from the overly flavored creamers and maybe the sugar too.  I'll have to try that tomorrow... or not.  :P

Phyllis:  I agree... coffee is almost like beer in that respect!  :)  And I really wish I only had 10 more pounds to go... I'm not even halfway to goal yet, sadly.  I guess I'll have to start admitting I can now and have to exercise to get off this plateau instead of trying to argue with 35 calorie creamer in a 1500 calorie diet.  LOL

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