The Vegas Diet


By: Karen

“Do I look fat in this?” Kristy asked me as she stood fixing herself in front of the mirror into a black backless mini dress in our beautiful suite at the Cosmopolitan Las Vegas. Of course she didn’t look fat. Her small frame had undergone a month of hard dieting and two-a-days at the gym in preparation for this very trip. I should know this better than anyone since Kristy and I have shared diet tricks and recipes nearly every hour on the hour for the last month. It has not been easy. Constant texts flurried from our phones to each other; “I just ate dinner and I am STILL hungry ☹” “How much is one serving of salmon? I’m worried the piece they gave me at Whole Foods is too big.” “Wine sounds so good right now but I know I cant” “I wish I could get a latte instead of an Americano, fuck the cals”.

The irony is that we have always been healthy eaters and good about going to the gym so in reality, this “Vegas diet” probably wasn’t even necessary. Sadly enough we are no strangers to the “Vegas diet”, we do it practically every year. However, this year I paid closer attention to it and was probably more stringent about it than Kristy. I saw her about a month before over Memorial Day weekend in which we spent the majority of our time poolside.  During the weekend I felt like her body looked amazing. She looked fit and toned but not too skinny. She still had the right and perfect amount of weight on her to have a good butt and boob size. Those lady parts are normally the first to go on our bodies (and most girls, right?) when we start to get too skinny. I thought her body was perfect where it was and she seemed to be in a loving and mentally peaceful place with it. That weekend we tried to be as healthy as possible, but neither of us really batted an eyelash at consuming bread, pasta, gnocchi, meatballs, and tiramisu at our family dinner. And let’s not forget several bottles of wine.

So back to the “Vegas diet”; in my mind- “Kristy was good= I’ve got more work to do”. After Memorial Day, aka my proverbial “last meals” I meant business. I couldn’t bear to think about dancing in the club in a tight dress next to Kristy and Bre (a beautiful and also tiny girlfriend who joined us in Vegas) without losing about five pounds. Knowing that Kristy was on also on team “Vegas diet” was motivating for me. I didn’t want to look like that fat twin in a town that values superficial beauty so highly.

“But why the diet? Why five pounds” I kept asking myself. Ultimately, I knew it would give me peace of mind on my trip knowing that I put a little extra effort into my looks. I was worried that the vegas diet would pull me back into unhealthy thinking and behavior when it comes to food. That is why I am so grateful to have had Kristy to talk to about it. We were both stressed and trying to tone up but we kept each other in check. “Listen to your body” is a phrase we often reminded each other of to reinforce that it is totally ok to sleep in a little and miss the morning gym on occasion or to go ahead and eat the extra almonds that were packed as a work snack if we were still hungry. Mentally, we were in the same place- wanting to stay healthy and TONE but also not lose our sanity in the process. Kristy even told me to just completely stop weighing myself ever and just look at the results instead. Not a bad idea.

So finally the Vegas trip arrived, the culmination of weeks of work and I felt okay about my body. Nonetheless, the phrase “I feel fat” or “do I look fat” was a soundtrack on repeat throughout the entire getting ready process every night. I found myself cringing at all food at breakfast knowing I had to be in a bathing suit in an hour or so.

On Saturday night I opted for a tight black backless American Apparel bodysuit under a gold miniskirt. This choice was ballsy for me anyway because I couldn’t wear a bra with it, therefore saying to the world “YES. My boobs really are this small.” When Kristy and I took a photo together on our balcony before getting some champagne and heading to the clubs, I looked at the photo and for once couldn’t think of any self-criticism for my body. That was such a good feeling in itself but it meant even more to share it with Kristy. I was proud of her body too! In that moment, small boobs and all, I was able to accept myself and my body and it felt damn amazing.

I am proud of us both because we stuck together on this and got our bodies to a place where we were both happy with them while most importantly keeping our sanity in the process. We both know too well how slippery the slope is from trying to diet to no longer having a healthy body image or viewpoint on food in general.

So as I write this on borrowed paper and pen from a fellow passenger on my way home to Nashville, I hope that Kristy and I can finally relax the rules a little now and love our bodies. Even though it is still bikini season, I’m looking forward to taking some of the pressure off. We eat healthy all the time and love they gym so I’m pretty sure our bikini bodies can survive it. Meanwhile, I know my head can use a break from the worry so I plan to take this one off my plate and I couldn’t be happier about it. I hope and assume Kristy will do the same.