MagazineAugust 2008The Fat of the Matter

The Fat of the Matter

When I weighed myself on the scale at the Appalachian Trail Conservancy in Harpers Ferry, I came in at 135 pounds. It’s official – I weigh the same amount that I did in 10th grade. Now, 135 pounds may not sound strikingly thin for a female, but keep in mind I am six feet tall. Also note that I am not going for supermodel skinny out here. I mean, fit is fabulous but bones are not becoming!
If you count the 5 pounds that I purposely gained on my honeymoon (I loved my honeymoon), I have probably lost 10 pounds hiking south. I don’t look that different, but the scale doesn’t lie and I can notice a huge difference in how fast my body metabolizes food and how often I’m getting hunger pains. Therein lies the problem: I am always hungry, I mean always, but I am also sick of eating! It’s a ridiculous statement, I know. I mean, this is the one time in my life I get to eat absolutely whatever I want and not worry about it, right? Well yeah, except my body needs food about every hour on the trail and eventually all that chewing gets old.
Ahh, yes the chewing… I am still doing great with foods that can simply be swallowed. Ice cream, mashed potatoes, pudding… bring it on, but all the crunching has to stop. Plus I am starting to get tired of the same food that I have eaten day after day after day. I estimate that I have probably consumed 150 cliff bars by now, but the worst is peanut butter. NO MORE peanut butter! Despite the fact that my husband does make the best peanut butter and jelly sandwiches ever, I really need to lay off the creamy nut substance. Trust me, I’ve tried variety – there’s been peanut butter and honey, peanut butter and banana, peanut butter and banana and honey, peanut butter and banana and raisins, peanut butter and raisins, peanut butter and raisins and M&amp;M’s, peanut butter and M&amp;M’s, just plain peanut butter… you get the drift. I’m certainly not an angry or aggressive individual, but if after this hike is over someone hands me a jar of peanut butter as a practical joke, then I <em>will</em> throw it at them.
So now I’m just outside of Roanoke, VA, and I estimate that it will only take 80,000 calories to get me home. To help with that, my husband went to the store today and bought a variety of new snacks to tempt my palate. And tonight we’re feasting on Hardee’s Thickburger combos (so now I only need 78,000 calories to reach Springer). Despite my aversion to chewing, I am hopeful that with another Hardee’s and 2 Dairy Queens in Pearisburg and Marion (yes, I’ve researched this), and with my husband tempting me daily with new delicacies, I will make it through this slump and regain my strength and appetite and jaw dexterity in no time.
On a side note, my husband likes to prompt me to eat my by shouting at me in a German accent to <em>“Eat! You need to eat more! You make me feel like a bad cook</em>.” And yes he says it whether he heats up water to make dinner or simply spreads peanut butter on a piece of bread. Ugh… <em>peanut butter</em>.<br />

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