So we say good bye to high school and youth and move 2000 miles cross country to college in Washington D.C. You know it's an interesting thing. You hit college and suddenly have access to all kinds of food without rules. No more mom and dad saying I couldn't drink 20 gallons of Pepsi. So what did I do? Indulge. I've always had a sweet tooth. Now I had access to soda, candy, and piles of meat! My favorite things, all with no real limits. Hello freshman 15! At least that, since I didn't have a scale. I wasn't a big clothes person, so I didn't tend to shop often. I'd wear baggy jeans until they were ready to fall off. So there was no pants test to warn me.

Dorm cooking for me was using the microwave. I to this day can boil al dente pasta in the old nuke box. Another staple food for  several years was Steak Umms. Steak Umms are  the meat that is used to make a Philly Cheesesteak. Now a genuine Philly Cheesesteak is a thing of beauty. Quality meat, melty cheese, peppers, onions, and a soft roll combine for a true classic of American cuisine.

Steak Umms are actually real meat. But that's not a good way to consume your meat.

I'd go through close to a gallon of soda a day. I still vividly recall the green plastic bottle collection. I'd drink ginger ale in these green bottles. I didn't take them down to the trash as soon as I used them. I'd develop a little collection on the vanity. I'd like to profoundly apologize to my poor roomates. Again. 

Fruits and veggies were an after though. A distant after thought.

Now the good thing is that I did a lot of walking in DC. You walk to Metro, walk down on the mall, walk, walk and walk. So for a while, that kept my weight in check. Junior year, the car came back East with me. There went some of the walking. Once again, we see the slow climb upward. Now I knew that I was starting to create a problem for myself. I wasn't as active as I had been in high school. I took a couple of fitness classes, no real engagement. I even took basic weight lifting. I was sort of interested in the class, but not really.

The wheels kept spinning, the poundage kept creeping up. One summer while I was home I actually joined a gym with the intention of getting into better shape. I did my first workout with the manager. I came back in the next day with the intention of working out. Since I was going to do bench press, I looked around for a trainer to help spot me. There were two of them in that area of the club. I walked over and asked if I could possibly get a spot.

They told me they couldn't help me because I wasn't a paying client. Now at the time, I didn't know any better. I was embarrassed that I'd made the mistake, so I apologized and walked back over to the bench to muddle through the workout. A little bit later I noticed the guys helping someone.

A blond someone, who looked amazing and pretty obviously didn't need two guys helping her out. I was humiliated. I looked so bad I couldn't even get help with my workout. I walked out of that club and didn't set food in a gym again for years.

My shape was getting rounder and I was feeling worse. Moving back home to finish up college was the proverbial straw on the camel's back.

Next- Time to make a change