The Clackamas print. (Oregon City, Oregon) 1989-2019, February 12, 1997, Page 9, Image 9

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    Special Feature
The Clackamas Print
Wednesday, February 12,1997
Photo & Page Design
by Laney Fouse
Eating Well magazine features English Instructor Emily Orlando
How to lose weight the “write” way *
Laney Fouse
and rolls of film.
Orlando still did not think
it would come to much.
mily Orlando found an Another phone call was from
answer to a lifelong the copy editor who was
weight problem by checking facts.
designing her own curriculum “It was just a lark when I
for fitness, which allowed her first wrote that one-page
to lose 50 pounds and keep it article, to kind of validate and
off for the past five years.
prove I had actually did this.
petite English Writing the one-page narrative
instructor is featured in the and sending it out was more
January/February edition of proof, besides what the scale
Eating Well magazine.
said and how I was feeling. It
“Two years ago, in 1994, was just kind of another step,”
they had a little blurb at the Orlando said.
bottom of one of the pages.
She kept a very sketchy
They wanted to hear from journal during this time
anyone who had lost 50 because there were too many
pounds and kept it off for two other things keeping her busy.
years. They wanted to know
“I couldn’t write a
how I did it,” said Orlando.
sustained narrative but what I
She admits it felt good to did and what I still do five and
write the one page letter even a half years later I write down
though she got a “thanks but everything I eat everyday. I
no thanks” letter. In don’t know if this is good or
September 1996, Orlando obsessive,” said Orlando.
received a message on her
A family history of heart
answering machine from the disease and diabetes were a
major concern for Orlando but
“I thought, well, my being self-conscious about her
subscription must be up. The body image played an even
rest of the message said they greater role.
were going to do another story
“I was just overweight my
on weight loss and lifestyle entire life. I had a wonderful
changes, focusing on fitness.
They wanted to know how
people fit the exercise into
their life,” Orlando said.
The editorial staff at the
magazine decided to review
some of material they had
received from their previous
request. Orlando’s letter had
apparently impressed them.
“I don’t even remember
what I wrote. I didn’t keep a
copy of that letter. I don’t
know but it must have been
»Emily Orlando
brilliant, I guess. Of course I
English Instructor
Over the course of the next
couple of weeks, she had
several phone calls -- family childhood but other
including one interview with kids were cruel. They would
the magazine’s nutrition call me fatty and four eyes and
editor. The forty-minute stuff like that. Even through
phone call covered such areas college I was overweight. I
as whether she had kept the was always thinking about
weight off, what sort of food and weight and my body
routine she followed and but all in a negative way,”
whether she was still doing Orlando said.
the same things.
In 1992, at forty-three-\
“She called my husband years old, she made up her
the following week to see if mind to change.
he was still sane. They told
“I said, ‘This is it.’ It’s a
him they would be in touch matter of health now plus I had
and they wanted some curvature of the spine. My
pictures. They wanted some back was killing me. The
outdoor shots, maybe some doctor had said decades ago
action shots. Even at that the older I get and the heavier,
point we were just laughing that the weight on my frame
and saying, ‘This is pretty was going to cause pain. And
exciting’but who knows what sure enough that’s what was
will come of it’,” said Orlando. happening. I had to lose
One month later the weight. I couldn’t wish it off
photographer called. He anymore,” said Orlando.
traveled to Estacada and
Prior to making her life­
spent two hours taking rolls changing decision, Orlando
I was a
Italian and
love was food.
__________ 55
had resigned herself to eating two-thousand calories
thinking she was always going and not exercising that much,”
to be overweight. She kept Orlando said.
According to Orlando, it
checking with her doctor who
said her health was still good. was astonishing to her how
Her lab reports
contained all the right
numbers. Orlando felt
happy with herself.
“I was so happy
with myself that I
gained about six
weeks/’ she said.
Like a lot of other
women, Orlando’s
emotional eating
patterns stemmed
froth her family.
/ “I was second-
generation Italian and
love was food,” said
Orlando, “[In my
family] it was ‘if you
don’t eat this, you
don’t love me’.”/
When she ' was
Orlando spent her
days going to college
and working; she
Photo by Laney Fouse
took all the overtime Emily Orlando lost 50 pounds with her
she could get. Some own weight loss plan.
days she would be
away from home from six in the much she would eat with just
morning until eleven at night. a bite here or there.
“I would eat five tortillas
Before she even realized it, she
cheese while preparing
had dropped down to 113
I didn’t even realize I
pounds without even trying.
“I didn’t have money for was doing it. I would turn
food. Lunch was toast and around and half the package of
tomato or something similar. tortillas would be gone and a
Sure enough, my family said, half pound of cheddar cheese
‘Oh you’re going to die. You was gone,” Orlando said.
The biggest change she
look so terrible. Eat some
more.’ Once I had enough made in her food choices was
money for college, I didn’t to give up cheese. She now
have to work that hard anymore eats nonfat mozzarella on pizza,
and the weight came right but only occasionally. Orlando
was able to identify as one of
back,” said Orlando.
problem areas the simple
In January 1992, she felt it
of coming home and
was time to do something.
“Actually, I thought I had reading the paper.
“I would open up the
eaten pretty well because I
hadn’t used butter or even newspaper and eat. I would eat
margarine for decades. I don’t until dinner. I isolated that as
use salad dressing. I had been a trouble spot. I would have
drinking skim milk since 1975,” to come home, change into my
said Orlando “My lunch that I exercise clothes and do
brought to school would be something immediately. If I
nonfat yogurt, Grape Nuts and looked through the mail or
raisins. I’d have a half bagel looked at the paper, then here
in the morning with nothing on would come the tortillas and
it. I thought I was eating cheese and I’d be sunk,” she
pretty good. And maybe three said.
Orlando made a conscious
times a week, I would have a
king-size Snickers bar. But, effort to change by writing
down what she ate, when she
hehrhow bad can that be?”
Once she made the decision exercised and what her trouble
to lose weight, she started areas were.
“I would attack each one a
writing down everything she
little at a time. What I did was
“I was amazed that my plan to lose three pounds a
healthy little lunch was almost month. I thought that would
a thousand calories. I realized have been a miracle. I asked
it was a matter of cutting fat myself, ‘What can I do in
and cutting calories. A January that’s different than
thousand calories of Grape what I did in December to lose
Nuts may be healthy, but it’s three pounds?’” she said.
She began by using fewer
still a thousand calories. I was
Grape Nuts and, instead of
raisins, she used grapes.
Instead of taking the whole;
two-pound block of cheddar
out, she would cut off just a
little, figuring it would be
better than eating half as she
did before. Each month
afterwards, she would always
ask herself what could she do
different than the previous
month to lose the three
“I was still having the
cheese, but I would cut it back.
I took out the Grape Nuts and
added more grapes along with
an orange or an apple. I was
eating in bulk. I realized that
by trading off the bagel, I
could have an apple, a banana,
an orange and some milk. I
could never even eat all that
much at once,” she admits.
Making a lifestyle change
affects not just the person
making the change but also
family members.
“Charlie and I have been
married for years, and he
understood that I was battling
the weight. He really made an
effort to understand. He’s
been really supportive,” said
Orlando, although she said
there have been times of
adjustment “When I would
come home from school, I
would have to do aerobics
even when I didn’t feel like
doing it. It was a matter of a
psychological, habit-forming
Even when she was not
working out as hard as she
should, she was exercising her
mind, establishing the habit.
There were times when she
would go home and, although
she knew there were things to
be done, she would go upstairs
and do aerobics.
“There were times when he
would be thinking that I could
get all this exercise from
helping him out. I explained to
him that I had to establish this
pattern. I had to do this
sustained exercise every day
or at least four times a week. I
didn’t mind doing the other
stuff, but it would have to be
after my established time.
Once he understood that, it
was great. He ended up
helping quite a lot,” said
She acknowledges it was
insignificant changes in her
choices of food that were the
primary reason for her weight
“What I realized was I had
lost the taste for fat. My body
could, not accept it anymore.
It’s not so much willpower as
it is making a conscious
decision. I have a choice,”
said Orlando.