MY summer of cake eating has caught up with me. My jeans are starting to feel a little snug. My floaty dresses are significantly less floaty than they were at the start of the summer.
I’m not one for getting weighed every five minutes, but this morning, I decided that enough was enough I needed to assess the damage. I had to face up to things. I thought I may have gained one or two pounds, possibly three, definitely not more than four. Five max.
I stepped onto the scales. Then quickly stepped off again.
Nine stone nine and a quarter. That’s what it said. Nine stone nine and a quarter. That couldn’t be right. I reset the scales and tried again.
Nine stone nine and a half. Still not right. I reset the scales and placed them on a different tile in the bathroom. I took a deep breath, stepped back on.
I jumped off the scales, and threw them into the cupboard. Nine stone ten, almost 11. A gain of eight pounds. More than half a stone. I felt dizzy and a little sick. ‘Chris,’ I screamed.
Chris came running up the stairs. ‘What’s wrong?’
‘I’m fat.’ I pointed into the cupboard where the scales lay upside down. ‘I’ve put on half a stone.’
Chris looked at me, but didn’t speak.
‘It’s the cake,’ I said. ‘We shouldn’t have eaten all that bloody cake.’
‘You bought the cake.’
‘I know. But it was for all the birthdays.’ There’d been two cakes for my birthday, three for Chris’ 40th, including the Chocolate torte in Vienna. There’d been a cake for Mum’s birthday. Then there had been other cake in between, like the Chocolate Guiness Cake, a speciality of the Showrooms in Sheffield, which I can’t resist. There’d been the chocolate mud cake, the Bourbon biscuit cake, the Brownie the night before the Great North Run, the cake for my blog’s birthday.
‘All that cake,’ I said. ‘It’s disgusting. I’m banning it from the house.’
Chris turned to go back downstairs. ‘What about the chocolates? Are you banning chocolate too?’
He was referring to the Minstrels, Maltesers, Dairy Milk, Mars Bars and Snickers. And also the Thorntons Continentals and Pudding collections that we’ve happily munched our way through.
‘Yes! All of it.’
When I thought about it I realized how out of control our cake consumption has got. I felt ashamed. Aren’t I supposed to be an athlete? Proper athletes wouldn’t eat so much cake and chocolate.
‘I’m going to stop eating cake.’ Once I’d said it, I felt better. I even got through a full morning and afternoon without cake or chocolate. There was a close encounter with a chocolate orange brownie at lunch, but I stayed strong. I survived.
And then I came home to this.
‘Your Mum came round,’ Chris said. ‘She thought I needed feeding up.’
I called my Mum. ‘I’ve put on half a stone! Why have you brought cake and trifle and chocolates?’
‘It’s not for you,’ she said. ‘It’s for Chris. He’s not well. All that marathon training.’
‘But it’s all here,’ I wailed. ‘In the fridge, demanding I eat it.’
‘Don’t be dramatic,’ Mum said. ‘You don’t have to eat it.’
I put the phone down. I took a deep breath. Could I get through an evening without cake or chocolate? I went to the fridge. I opened the door, reached inside and lifted out the trifle.
‘Here,’ I handed it to Chris. ‘You’ll have to serve yourself.’
I watched him spoon out the cream and custard and jelly. I watched him eat the lot.
I went back to the fridge. The Maltesers were calling, ‘Eat me! Eat me!’
My hand rested on the red box. It would be so easy to give in, to eat the chocolate or the cake or the trifle, or even all three. But my cravings were not going to win. I could survive one day. I could do it. I took out a low fat yoghurt, and closed the fridge door. I couldn’t help but feel just a little bit proud of myself.