Tales From the Back of the Pack

Tales From the Back of the Pack

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Book Review: It Was Me All Along by Andie Mitchell

One look at the cover picture and I knew this was a book I wanted to read. Thanks to Taking the Long Way home for both hosting this awesome virtual running book club link-up and for selecting this "non-running" book for this month's read. 
It Was Me All Along is a memoir of Andie Mitchell's life long struggle with her weight until she has an epiphany/breakthrough in college. Then we get to the really good stuff. 

While her journey from morbidly obese to a size 4 is impressive by itself, that's just the beginning. The best chapters of her memoir are about the struggles of maintaining that weight loss, and how it's not about the food
In this era of competitive dieting, (e.g. The Biggest Loser and Extreme Makeover) this book is a much-needed guide for how to do it RIGHT. 

This story resonated with me from the very first page. Like Andie, I grew up wearing clothes that bunched up on me in odd places and pinched me in the others. Like Andie, I grew up with a brother who's pants were several inches too short before his body outgrew the waist. Like Andie, I grew up knowing that skinny was good and fat was bad and that I was fat. 

If food is a drug, then Andie's mother was most definitely her supplier. Her mother was a classic codependent. She allowed Andie to use food as proxy nurturer, she'd never acknowledge that Andie had a problem and she kept the kitchen cupboards stocked with food that triggered Andie's overeating. 

My own mother was always focused on me keeping my weight in check but her approach was to shame me whenever I overate or to lecture me when I needed to buy clothes in sizes larger than what my friends were wearing. 

As an adult with a daughter of my own, I don't know which approach is better: my mother's or hers. While I never weighed anywhere near Andie's highest of 268 I'd say both approaches are terrible. So far, my own kid doesn't have any kind of unusual pull to overeat anything, so in that regard, I'd say I'm lucky. 

Her book starts and ends with references to one of her favorite comfort foods, her mother's Sour Cream Fudge Cake. The recipe is in the book so of course, I couldn't resist trying it out for myself

I hit up WinCo on the way home from work and picked up some powdered sugar and dutch cocoa from the bulk bins using my own cloth bags. I had the remaining ingredients at home: 
The recipe was pretty easy to follow and the Puff helped until we got to this point here, then she lost interest and went off to watch TV. 
I'm no master baker, but the results were pretty good! Even the Puff liked it, and she is the pickiest eater I have ever ever met. We sliced off some for ourselves, re-frosted the bare side and we'll take it over to the nephew's in the morning so they can finish it off.  
Andie's blog is at www.andiemitchell.com and she also has an inspiring and insightful Ted talk HERE. I highly recommend checking out both!! 





7 comments:

  1. Haha I love that you re-frosted the side - I feel like that would be a good way to sneak some cake ;)

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    1. The recipe made TONS of frosting. Kinda scary but then not surprising that this girl was so heavy. Yikes. :)

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  2. I want to make the cake as well. It sounds so good.

    Great insight on the book. I love your review. Yep, her mom was an enabler. I grew up with one of those as well.

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    1. Wendy I'm so loving this book club! THANK YOU for all you do!

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  3. Will have to bake the cake sometime too. I've never baked a cake with sour cream in it. Thanks for sharing your story.

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  4. I love that you tried the cake (and that it was good!). I just added the cookbook to my wish list. :)

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  5. I'm adding that book to my list, thanks for the suggestion... I didn't read all your review, because I want to be surprised, but I promise I will return to read it!

    The cake looks delicious!

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