Crash Diets and Crack Almond Butter

After work I called a friend who is on a diet for some infomercial (ah, good ol’ Hollywood). We chatted about what she’s eating – or rather not eating, and how much weight she’s lost. Let me be open and honest (as always), I am definitely jealous of her weight loss and would LOVE to lose 6 pounds too. But, I am not jealous of being on what I consider, a crash diet.

I feel like I’ve done every diet in the book – Cabbage Soup, Atkins, South Beach, Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, that weird one where you eat hot dogs and eggs all day… I could go on.

And while I lost a few pounds on each, it always came back because I wasn’t changing my day to day reality once the diet was over.

I think Crash Diets are something you do when you’re young and unaware. Like, a crash diet is something stupid you do in college up there with unprotected sex, binge drinking and taking BioChem and Chem in the same semester – very bad choices you make before you decide to treat yourself well.

As much as I really want to lose 12 pounds from the very deep depths of my little Mexican heart – I have absolutely zero desire to starve myself. I have learned my lessons (some of them more than once).

In the past, when I still felt like dieting was a good idea, I would have grilled my friend on what she was eating and what her workouts were like so I could lose weight fast too. But, I really wasn’t interested in that today. As we talked all I heard was a tale from a place I don’t want to visit.

I had a complete light bulb moment. I acknowledged to myself I want to lose weight, but I also realize that I don’t want to make myself miserable or anti-social in the process. I really believe you can lose weight with small, healthy changes that you can live with forever :)

I dunno, sometimes I feel I don’t have the will power I used to and that’s why I can’t diet any more. But I’d like to think that now my body has even more will power and will no longer tolerate starving myself and the resulting binge later. No thanks.

Working on intuitive eating has made me realize how much what I eat affects my mood, my running and my day to day. I want to eat cleaner to feel better and be a better runner.

I don’t want to starve myself. I don’t want to binge. I want to eat yummy food when I’m hungry, exercise when I am jumpy and treat myself well. At least I know that much.

Dinner: I considered saving the other half of my tuna sub for lunch tomorrow, but I wanted to eat it after work. So I did. IMG_1324

Then, I took a walk while I waited for Ben to come home. While he ate dinner I had dessert. I heated up a Vitatop…IMG_1327

and added Justin’s Chocolate Almond Butter.IMG_1328

Ben caught me eating it straight from the jar. Busted. IMG_1335 I have no shame, it didn’t stop me. IMG_1334

For those that don’t know, Justin’s Chocolate Almond Butter is what would result if Almond Butter and Crack had a baby. And that baby cured cancer. And the cure for cancer came in nut butter form. Except better.

Ben was dipping his chips in it! He’s busted too. IMG_1337

Now I must return to school work and trying to piece back together the friendship I potentially frayed from my crash diet rant above. 

Question: Have you had any “light bulb” moments about anything lately?


  1. says

    YES!!! I had a similar lightbulb moment recently too. Yeah, I’d love to lose 30 lbs and am totally jealous of my friend who has lost 50 lbs on the atkins diet but I don’t want to risk my health, sanity or happiness to get there. Crash diets don’t work for me, I can’t stick to them. My lightbulb moment was realizing that I don’t care that I can’t stick to a diet anymore. I just want to learn to eat healthier and smaller portions.

    I’m rambling but I just had to say that I think you are awesome, gorgeous and incredibly inspiring to me! I love your attitude. :)

  2. says

    I completely agree! There is always a binge that follows any crash diet I do.

    I also thought it was because I’m not young enough to be able to do a crash diet anymore too, but I guess the same mindset I had when I followed my crash diets were the same mindset that I had when I decided I liked smoking or gulping Everclear. Nicely put into perspective! :)

  3. sara says

    I’m an avid reader and I just want to say I LOVE how real you are and that you share it with your readers. So often I read blogs and at the end feel worse about myself than I did before I started on my healthy journey. Thank you for being real, mostly healthy, awesome and gorgeous all at the same time. You truly are inspiring! !

  4. says

    Love this post. It’s so true: Every time I try to “diet,” my actual diet ends up completely worse. I eat healthy food (most of the time, of course), but like Amanda said, I’d like to learn to eat smaller portions. Because I just like to eat a lot. :) There’s no point in doing something that will make you completely miserable and you won’t be able to stick with in the long run.

  5. Olivia says

    I really wish I was in the same mental state that you are in now. I’ve been reading for a while but this is my first time commenting and I am really having a hard time with bingeing lately. I started doing this this 5 years ago (and I’m only 19!) and feel like its going to be impossible for me to over come this. It’s like i know what I need to do to be healthy but I just can’t let go of the bingeing. I don’t even think I’m restricting myself and still I find myself having really bad binges a few times a week.

    I could really use some help. This is taking over my life and I’m way to young to not have fun because of being so bloated, uncomfortable, and mad at myself over a binge.

    You are a great inspiration and role model.

  6. says

    Yes…exactly!! I had a friend go on some funky diet and lost nine pounds in a week. Would I like to do that? Sure! Who wouldn’t!?! But I knew deep down that it wouldn’t last and she’d gain it back because that is not reality. If those kind of diets really worked, there would not be an obesity problem in this country. And yes, she didn’t keep the weight off.

  7. says

    great post monica. and i’m like you, i simply don’t think I could diet (or restrict) like i used to because i’ve realized how horrible i felt and how much food affects my mood and running. and we would never want to ruin our running now would we? 😀

  8. Amy Ramos says

    Yes! Yes!! I have tried sooo many diets but I end up gaining it all back and being miserable.
    My light bulb moment? That I can’t make anyone happy except myself (and maybe my husband)

  9. Amanda says

    You are so right! Thats how I feel about crash diets. On a crash diet you are not making any commitments to eat cleaner, better, healthier and will probably binge because of how deprived you feel! I’ve been trying to explain this to my buddy. Some day she will see the light.

    Justins almond butter = crack. The BEST almond butter I’ve ever had, one exception being trader joes roasted ab with flax. Mmmmm refreshing crack…

  10. courtney says

    i can totally relate to what you said about crash diets…i never went on a specific diet (like atkins or south beach or anything) but i will never go back to the really restricted eating and calorie counting i did when i was in college.
    justin’s maple almond butter is my addiction, never tried the chocolate, gotta find it.

  11. j says

    this is how i view the last stubborn 10 lbs.

    if you were the last person on earth right now .. and still were living your daily lifestyle.. would you REALLY care about those last 10 lbs?

    yes if they come off .. i would be happy
    but right now .. i am happy and healthy so who cares :-)

    no starving or crash diets for me anymore!

  12. Christina says

    You’ve made a lot of progress with your Intuitive Eating! Doesn’t it feel great?! I’ve made a lot of progress myself and have had the same lightbulb moment.

  13. rosa says

    great post!
    From experience;
    No one is able to exercise well, let alone run a marathon on a crash diet.
    No one is able to have the mental energy they need to peform well on a crash diet.
    No one is able to be happy and care free when there obsessing over calories or food types on a crash diet.

    Everyone is more then likely to gain the weight back when they come of a crash diet.

  14. Lauren says

    You don’t need to diet. You’re not fat. And you’re fast. And all these people that don’t even know you think you’re awesome. You’re a badass athlete and you’re incredibly healthy at whatever size you are. Rock it, girl.

  15. says

    Sometimes I wonder if a lack of will power caused my inability to diet as well. I have used it up I think! But changing a lifestyle is definitely important to me. Who doesn’t want to enjoy life?

    I have a work meeting today where I know there will be food galore and cupcakes. And I’m going to eat one of those cupcakes, I already decided! I’m not going to say “No cupcake for you!” and then eat five.

  16. says

    Can I just say “ditto” to your whole commentary about crash diets? I’ve had that same light bulb moment and have the same reaction when I hear about some new diet a friend is on.

  17. says

    I love this post! Today I realized that I simply cannot count calories. I know how much food my body needs (when I listen to it). And I know what it feels like to feed it more than it needs. Every time I go to spark people or daily plate and start adding up my calories, I swear it makes me hungrier!! I think about what I can or can’t eat, and how many calories I have ‘left’ and before you know it I am saying ‘screw it’ and scarfing something I never would have eaten if I wasn’t feeling deprived. Of course, this is just my experience – some people do great counting cals. It’s just not for me, and I guess I’ve decided that the 10 -15 lbs I want to lose are just going to have to come off through eating (healthy) when I’m hungry, stopping when I’m full, and exercising regularly.

  18. says

    I’m sad that I’ve never had Justin’s Chocolate almond butter, you described in a way that I really want to go to the store right now and get some.

    Where do you buy it in OC? The Wholefoods in Irvine doesn’t not carry that flavor. They only have few varities, about 2 and they’re plain.

    You guys are such a funny couple, busted!!! lol

  19. says

    Totally agree, and I like what you call intuitive eating, that is the path I’m on also and it feels empowering, not depriving.
    I think the key too is that regular exercise whether that be running or something else that gets your heart rate up – keeps you more in tune and aware of your body, how food affects it, sleep too.
    Becoming a more efficient runner is my motivation to lose the weight I need to lose. I also want more energy and stamina to get through my day, reduce the risk of disease, and of course to look great and feel great in a rockin’ pair of jeans.

  20. says

    Crash diets are definitely for the birds! I think those are temporary fixes and not life changes. You need to make changes in your lifestyle so that you’re used to what your body can and cannot have. Everyone is different so not everyone can eat the same things.

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