Meet TheRestaurantDieter.

He’s 52, soon to be 53. He lost 50 pounds about four years ago and has managed to keep most of it off. His blood sugar is normal, his blood pressure is normal and he can even fit into clothes that are — occasionally — age inappropriate. More on that later.
The Restaurant Dieter

He is currently about the size he was in high school, but bigger in the chest and shoulders. What man doesn’t love that? He has gained and lost several people in weight over the years. He’s boxed up clothing for Goodwill and counted himself lucky when the transition coincided with a change in fashion trends.

Since he discovered kneecap-slamming aerobics in the early 1980s, he’s always had some exercise in his life. Currently, it’s a combination of elliptical machine, bike, yoga and free weights.

When he lost the 50 pounds four years ago, he had help from Weight Watchers. There is ample research that supports WW’s commonsense approach: Most people in our food-centric world cannot lose or maintain weight without some system of counting and accountability. He’s found this to be true and not onerous.

Plus he likes the Weight Watchers cookbooks, which have come a long way from the days when they listed tomato juice as a salad dressing.

He reached his WW goal in about a year, and has been consistently over that by about 10 pounds since. He chalks some of it up to the testosterone supplement he’s taking. But honestly compels him to disclose that he does not count WW points every day. But he does count as often as he can.

He lives in Atlanta — a pretty wonderful restaurant town  — and travels frequently with his spouse, whose hobby is checking off the Best New Chefs from Food & Wine.

He admits he rarely counts WW points when he’s visiting New York City, where the “Sex and The City”-inspired cupcake craze has given way to the doughnut craze, courtesy of Doughnut Plant. It is a city where temptation is on every corner. He stays within walking distance of a place that serves carry-out lobster rolls.

Remember this?

When he can summon the internal fortitude to behave himself in the food department, he often finds the choices lacking or uninspiring. It is as if the diet plate of his youth has never disappeared. Moreover, restaurant staffs are either unhelpful or deaf to requests.

For four years, his quest to maintain both lifestyle and weight has posed a challenge.

Along the way, he’s learned a lot that he promises to pass on in this space.

Oh, by the way, The Restaurant Dieter is me.