I'm the Goldilocks of dieters.
That is, if Goldilocks had gray roots.
Because I'm trying on a new diet, and so far, I like it.
Not that I've lost any weight.
But I'm still on it at day six, so that's progress.
Let me explain.
I gained weight over the winter, since I go into writing hibernation. It works out the best for my book schedule, because I write three books a year and they all publish in the spring and summer.
Which is awesome.
Lots of people buy books for summer vacation, and I hope they buy mine, plus it means that I get to go on book tour when it's warm and sunny, rather than touring in December, when you have to worry about whether they de-iced the airplane.
Been there, done that. With fear.
If you travel in winter, you know what I'm talking about. The pilot comes on the audio system and tells you they're not taking off yet because the plane is being de-iced.
Everybody but me whines.
They want to hurry up and go, presumably when the pilot can't see a damn thing, so he'll fly the airplane vainly rubbing the windshield with his fist and hoping for the best.
Anyway, back to my diet saga.
I gained weight, and I couldn't fit into any of my clothes. I had grown out of my yoga pants and graduated to my sweatpants. Then I moved on to a robe and was heading for a bedspread.
I knew why. I eat while I write, and all I was doing was writing and eating.
And, by the way, I use a treadmill desk.
That means that I eat while I walk and write, which tells you how smart I am.
You haven't lived until you've seen popcorn riding a treadmill desk.
I eat so much on the treadmill desk that the dogs wait at the end for food, delivered via conveyor belt.
They just lie there with their mouths open, like furry alligators.
Food flies into their open jaws.
It's room service, only better.
So all of us got adorably roly-poly, but only one of us has to fit into her clothes by tour this summer.
Yet another advantage of being a dog.
Your clothes grow with you. Your waistband is never tight.
So I went diet shopping and found the hardest-core diet I could, and even bought a food scale and started measuring everything. The idea was no flour, no sugar, no snacking between meals, and — you guessed it — no fun.
It was the Stern Daddy of diets, if not the Brutal Master, but I thought that was what I needed. I stuck to it for 10 days and lost three pounds, which was great. But I was hungry all the time, generally cranky, and looking for a safe word.
That word was Freestyling.
Before I explain, let me first say this is not an advertisement.
I never endorse any product except my books, and they're terrific. They have absolutely no calories. How many products can you eat after you read, without guilt?
Freestyling is Weight Watchers' new program, and I'm in love.
I got the idea from the commercials, because they had Oprah, and we all know how I feel about my Goddess.
She's the Bradley Cooper of women.
So I read more about the diet, and the idea is that you track your foods by an app on your phone, and all of the food is assigned a point value, and I get 27 points a day. But the best thing of all, there are 200 foods that have no points, which is "free" in the Weight Watchers vernacular, so you can eat them all day on your treadmill desk.
And I do.
Because what I learned about myself, through diet trial-and-error, is that I love snacks.
Snacks power me.
They're fun and they're fuel.
Writers like Hemingway drank when they wrote, but I snack.
I even like the word!
It's a verb and a noun, people!
In fact, I might be the Queen of Snacks.
I don't know if that's wrong or right, but I can't change it at this point in my life, and the fact is, I'm not going to try anymore.
And, thank God and Oprah, there's a diet that lets you snack and doesn't tell you that it's a bad hobby.
My snacks are healthy, like apples, oranges, blackberries, bananas, and walnuts. But I can even eat 4 cups of popcorn, for only four points.
It's worth every kernel.
It's too soon to know whether I'll lose anything, but I can tell you what I gained.
I'm happy again.
And so are the dogs.