Loving the Buffet

food-salad-dinner-eating.jpgI woke up this morning fearing the inevitable. I finally worked up the courage to face the elephant in the room….my bathroom scale. I timidly stepped on the scale and held my breath. After a 10 day vacation in Cancun, Mexico, I was expecting the worse.

Well, the news was not too bad. Only 1.5 lbs gained!

Considering that I was practically force-fed Carb filled Margaritas and Cervezas at every turn, I considered this a mild victory.

Cancun, Mexico is a relatively young city on the Yucatan Peninsula. This coastal city, boasting pristine turquoise waters and gorgeous white sand was developed only a few decades ago (started January 1970). It has experienced massive growth in its first 40 years of existence. In fact, Cancun was specifically designed to be just that…a tourist destination. Almost every single hotel, restaurant, boutique, cafe, bar, gallery, shop, etc is designed to cater to the tourist trade.

In my younger, more adventurous days, I would have definitely eschewed such a touristy destination, however as we were traveling with 2 small children in tow, the more “American” the better.  I had heard nightmare stories of impotable water and raging crime and illegal drug trade.

My worries were completely unfounded. Cancun is one of the cleanest and safest cities I have ever been.

Many of the hotels in this region are “all-inclusive”, meaning that all of your meals, drinks, and snacks are included in your hotel bill. We purposely decided NOT to go “all-inclusive” as the temptation to over-eat and over-indulge in food and drink was too tempting.

We did, however, partake in our hotel’s lovely buffet breakfast. This is where we pigged out. Now the key to working the buffet is to eat only protein and some fresh fruit. I would load up, and I mean load up, on eggs, bacon, sausage, cheese, smoked salmon, ham and salami. I would shamelessly go op to the buffet line three to four times. I would always end my breakfast with a last visit to the buffet line piling my plate with lots of fresh fruit.

Even though there were gorgeous platters of freshly baked croissants, Madelines, muffins, bagels, french toast, waffles and pancakes I avoided all the carbs and stuck with the “fat”.

After that first breakfast, I glanced at myself in the mirror and decided that my bikini clad body could use a little toning. Although I used to exercise religiously in the past, I purposely gave up exercise months ago when I started the I LOVE FOOD DIET to see if weight loss is possible without exercise ( It Is!).

The Hotel had a gorgeous gym overlooking the ocean so I decided, pouquoi pas and I hit the treadmill. After blasting MY HUMPS  on my iPod and running on the treadmill for 20 minutes, I felt great. I forgot how much fun running can be. Hmmmm, maybe I have to reconsider this exercise thing.

Lunchtime would roll around and I literally would have to force my self to eat lunch. I was still stuffed after that huge breakfast! Cancun is known for its seafood so we would usually order a salad and a ceviche (marinated raw fish “cooked” in fresh lime juice”).

Dinner would usually be some fresh fish and some veggies. Although I usually eat  red meat, the tropical weather prevented me from my normal cravings of steak or buffalo wings.

The killer for me though, was the alcohol. Open bar, cocktail hour and cheap beer abound in Cancun. Although wine and vodka do not contain many carbs, Tequila is the name of the game in Mexico. Tequila sunrises,  Margaritas (as much as 30+ carbs per drink!) and all sorts of frozen sweet carb filled tropical cocktails are offered to you left and right. It’s hard to refuse a free drink sooooooo……what can I say, I was on vacation and this was the I LOVE FOOD DIET after all.

Chow for now.

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