How many calories does a dancing deer burn?
About a month ago, I decided I needed to lose about 30 lbs.
I adopted this really bizarre and radical diet plan; it goes something like this: consume fewer calories than I burn. I know, amazing, isn’t it? Eat a balanced diet, healthy whole foods, just fewer calories than I am burning.
In that month, I lost 10, and then I pretty much stopped. Probably because I couldn’t deal with obsessing about food that continuously. And I think my metabolism must have caught up…or down…with the reduced calorie intake, because I’m still eating something like only 1500 calories a day and not an ounce has come off in the past week…
Anyway, one of the challenges has been to find ways not to feel too utterly deprived while still keeping the calories down. There are, of course, all the delightful “100 calorie snacks,” most of which are highly processed and generally quasi-food versions of partially hydrogenated cookie products (and 100 calorie oreo snacks that are just little vaguely chocolaty cookies without the cream? For God’s sake, even if one is going to indulge in the crap that is Oreos, why would one do it without the white creamy goop in the middle? I mean, really.), and other specifically “diet” “treats.”
Then there are the really delicious things, the stuff one really shouldn’t be eating…
Which brings us to brownies. Specifically, if one isn’t going to make them onesself, the ones made by the Dancing Deer Bakery, sold at our local Whole Foods. Again, I don’t mean to go in for heavy product placement, these just happen to be my personal vice of delight. (They can be purchased online at www.dancingdeer.com although the prices there are slightly ridiculous, something like $20 for 8 brownies. They are actually almost worth it, but Whole Foods sells 4 brownies for I think $6.) The only brownies I’ve ever had better than this are when my mom makes them from unsweetened chocolate and God knows how many sticks of butter. These come in packages of 4, yellow label on the wrapper…give them a try.
So here I am on a “how I’m losing weight” entry rhapsodizing about my favorite brownies…what’s that about?
It’s about the fact that, once I checked out the nutrition label and did a little pre-planning, they were suddenly within reach again.
Okay, here’s the deal: one of those big 3-inch square brownies is 300 calories. Too much to take at one go, especially if I’m trying to stay at 1200-1500 in a day. But…if I buy the package, open it, and immediately cut all 4 brownies in half, I then have 8 desserts at 150 calories apiece; my discretionary calories do allow that. If I were feeling really virtuous, I could cut them into 4 pieces, at 75 calories apiece. Cut them, bag them, put all but one away, and then head to wherever I’m gently gnoshing and slowly, blissfully, eat my delicious concoction of butter and chocolate and eggs and peanut butter. (Peanut butter is my favorite…the peppermint ones are lovely too…then again, there’s the caramel pecan…see what I mean about obsessing over food?)
This doesn’t work, of course, when I’m premenstrual, or when I’m having a really crappy “give me chocolate and give it to me now” kind of day, but most of the time it flies okay.
And Trader Joe has their little tins of chocolate wedges, 35 calories apiece…there’s one with chili powder and cinnamon in it that’s lovely and has a nice little bite to it…
(Okay, who am I kidding? I just want more…)