The Genius Diet: For Every Swing of the Pendulum

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Rayne Wolfe

Self-Employed Freelance Journalist
Rayne's dream was to write her memoir and found a global support community for adult children of toxic mothers. This summer she completed her book, which inclues her story of growing up with not one, but two super toxic mothers as well as a mosiac of mini-memoirs of women from all over the world who have created happy and peaceful lives despite toxic parenting. Her book, Toxic Mom Toolkit, is published on and Create Space. Her Facebook page Toxic Mom Toolkit, attracts over 250,000 per month and is a safe place to read or tell healing stories, exchange positive strategies on how to live with toxic parenting and lots of humor and resources. A freelance journalist, she currently writes a food & drink page for several Bay Area newspapers and is a private writing coach.

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When you’re doing everything right yet gaining weight.

The Genius Diet: For Every Swing of the PendulumI have worn prescription glasses since I was a toddler because I have very poor eyesight.  I am so poor-sighted that if I don’t put my glasses in the same spot every night when I turn off my bedside lamp I run the risk of not being able to find my glasses in the morning.

It’s one of the main reasons I’m married. So I have a friend to help me hunt for my spectacles.

I also tend to mis-read things often.

On a recent road trip to Iowa where all directions are giving in a “drive five miles north, then two miles east” sort of way, I experienced a new form of visual sabotage.

Driving a brand new rental with only 56 miles on it, I watched the gauge go to 57, then 58 and a few moments later I down glanced at the mileage gauge only to see it had dropped suddenly to 55. How was that possible? (My first Three Stooges thought: was I driving in a circle?) It made perfect sense after I realized I was looking at the outside temperature gauge.

So, you can imagine, with my eyes, and level of intelligence, misreading the bathroom scale is common.

Having dieted most of my life, I knew that if I did everything right and followed all my nutritionist’s instructions, around Week Three I’d hit a weight loss wall. Because I’m a genius at dieting I assured myself that if I just stuck to the plan my weight loss would resume — probably by the next weigh in.

Sure enough, there was the two-pound weight gain and we tsk’d-tsk’d and nodded at each other because The Bossy Nutritionist and I both knew it was nothing to worry about.

Until it happened again the next week.

Weight gain — or as I like to think of it — an unexpected reverse weight loss — is common during dieting efforts. Part of it is your body adjusting to actually receiving balanced nutrition. It just doesn’t know what to do.  Your body may be so accustomed to conserving fat to fuel you on days when you only eat mints and drink light beer,  it refuses to burn fat. I find that when this is going on in my body my body demands an afternoon nap. Only I never remember this warning sign from diet to diet. (I told you, I’m a Dieting Genius!)

This kind of weight gain is not to be confused with wolfing down a big bag of barbecue potato chips when no one sees you followed by an egg-white omelet for dinner and wondering what happened.

Losing weight is simple.

You eat nutritious food and move your body to burn calories. If you burn more than you eat you lose weight. But this equation doesn’t honor the five-year-old-at-the-cocktail-party-you inside your head encouraging bouts of magical eating like finishing off a jar of peanut butter with your finger, and thinking because you didn’t use utensils, it won’t count. OR, eating a box or bag of anything, wrapping the wrapping in several bags until no one looking in your garbage would know what’s in there and thinking that will make it not count.

Rayne may still need help finding her eyeglassesI’ve concluded that for me the internal child’s voice and thoughts are there because I’m a little bit scared to take control of my weight — despite it being a very simple and straightforward thing to do.

Lately, I’ve had many more adult days in my efforts, and I’ve lost about 13lbs. When visions of caramel corn for breakfast dance in my head, I tell myself that’s just fear rearing its ugly head.

Sure, fear dressed in caramel is pretty irresistible — unless you’ve finally reached the point where despite personal dieting myopia you finally can see what you’re doing and why.

I may still need help finding my eyeglasses but I don’t need anyone to remind me what to eat, when, or why.

I know I can eat nutritious food, feel good, lose a little weight, increase all of my health metrics and get on with my damned life.

Thanks to my nutritionist the numbers on my bathroom scale may go up or down but overall I’m on the path to healthy habits.

 Next week: The Final Installment of The Genius Diet – Taking My Diet On the Road


  • Heather Montgomery, Product Launch Dreams

    At a recent party we hosted at my house, I was grilled about my weight loss over the course of 5 hours. I honestly got sick of answering with the details so I finally said “everything you are supposed to do… and it seems to be working for me!”

    My own new diversion from eating that bad (and oh, so good food) is “how long will this take to burn on the treadmill?” Since cardio, especially on the treadmill, is my least favorite thing, it’s really working as a deterrent for me.

    Thanks for sharing sweets – Heather

  • Rayne

    Listen, only I could blame some of my weight gain on poor eyesight! Oh attempt to convince others!

  • lol I am right there with you on the eyeglasses thing. I’ve bought and lost enough pairs to fill a large garbage can. Now, with Heather’s advice, I’ve sprinkled a few pairs throughout my home (a pair in the bathroom, in the kitchen, next to my bed and at my desk) and it seems to be working.

    Ah the voice in the head. Calming that “eat something bad” voice is hard to do at 10:00 at night. I applaud your efforts!

    I am still at that pre-contemplation stage.