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Resisting McDonald's

Sunday, September 23, 2012
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O McDonald's, why must thy flavoursome gastronomy intertwine so devilishly with fevered attempts at healthful combobulation?
Golden Arches,
Your fries and burger of cheese call me
I cannot go.

That's a scrappy attempt at a haiku. You don't want to see what an ode would look like.

I'm Mr Speech.

I'm trying to drop some weight.

Okay, a lot of weight.

Alright, several metric tonnes. Well, it feels that way.

I have dragged Mrs Speech for kilometre after gruelling kilometre on our walks, labouring up and down Brisbane's devastating landscape (see here, here and here). You know when kids get in the sandpit and use their bucket and spade to dig a big hole, and next to the big hole there's a big conical pile of sand? That's like Brisbane. Up and down and up and down again.

The walk

Tonight, we hit the most challenging route yet. Along Broadwater Road, which before an intersection with Newnham Road curves upward in a never-ending hill which never ends because it doesn't stop.

Then somehow we made it to the top, and went down Newnham Road, before we hit the Catholic School Hill.

The Catholic School Hill. I see it in my dreams.

Click to enlarge.
The Catholic School Hill. Mrs Speech had not climbed it before. It had taken on an awed oeuvre of hushed reverence in our household, lest we upset the Catholic School Hill. Shhh. Don't let anyone hear you talk about the Catholic School Hill.

In reality, the CSH has nothing to do with the Catholic School. It just happens that St Catherine's Primary School sits astride the most punishing, sweat-producing, trauma-inducing mini-mountain which ever existed. We passed two Sherpas who came back down crying. This thing rises immediately after a gentle-then-not-so-gentle elevation of about seventy metres, suddenly coming upon you and devouring your last morsel of energy and self-esteem as it batters you with its steepness.

Climb me, will you???? Folly! Pure folly!

We climbed the thing though, our unoxygenated words coming between laboured gasps for sweet, sweet air. We climbed the Catholic School Hill. I felt like we should get t-shirts printed.

Then we turned onto Mount Gravatt-Capalaba Road, took a detour down Ham Road, back on to Broadwater Road, and round again on to MG-C Road and forty-five minutes later we were home.

The problem

Freedieting.com says that tonight I burned 1064 calories based on my age, weight and what I did for how long (the option "Hiking Or Walking At A Normal Pace Through Fields And Hillsides" seems to suit; 1hr45 minutes). Mrs Speech apparently burned less, I guess because she doesn't weigh as much as me.

1064 calories is a lot. I burned up a lot of energy.

A large Big Mac Meal with a shake is 1450 calories.

The McCafe is surely the best place to get a donut for three dollars.

Click to enlarge.
If you come back home from the east, as we did tonight, the Golden Arches of our local McDonald's rises like the diet-destroying monster that it is, sucking in all without the requisite power of will, who might dare to pass. If we come home from the west the view down MG-C Road still offers an almost telescopic view of the yellow sign they bulldozed lots of quite old trees for.

I wish I had a picture of this place. Mrs Speech got one a while back but it didn't come out great.

They built this thing and it's awesome. It used to be an assumingly dull place, effortlessly attaining the grit of a truckstop without actually being one.

Now it's a combined petrol station/McDonald's/McCafe. It's new. It's clean. It's schmancy. The layout could have been given more thought, but it's inviting and warm and in the middle of winter it was a wonderful place to walk to; the inviting aroma of comfort food and the soft lighting and post-modern mainstream trend decor beckoned deliciously for us to escape the cold and try our new McAngus burger!

We actually haven't been much. Not as much as I thought we would. It can get pricey and the big boys at the electricity company take cash, not excuses about inviting aromas and former faux-truckstops.

The resistance (Just don't call us Les Maquis)

That red stuff is a sunk cherry. Otherwise: num num num num.

Click to enlarge.
It's tempting. Tonight, was tough. My legs burned and my whole body told me that I had purchased the right to those 1450 calories with every drop of sweat. But, no. If today McDonald's, then tomorrow, pizza. And the day after that, Red Rooster.

It's tempting. That sweet, sweet chocolate shake.

But I said no. Mrs Speech, too. I also don't like the idea of burning off all that energy, only to be in so far in surplus again. Kind of makes the whole Catholic School Hill ordeal a little less worthwhile.

So it's an each day sort of thing. We walk five days a week, and each day brings us home and on to a collision course with the Kilojoule Kingdom. So each day we gotta remind ourselves what we're doing this for and not to undermine it because those golden fries......yum.

So I write poor haikus and laugh at myself a little bit. And tomorrow, maybe it'll get a little bit easier.
Then be the second commenter!
  1. Mr Speech, you were a champion! You encouraged me up CSH and every step home afterwards. You inspire me and motivate me. I was nearly lured into the little known restaurant just before CSH on Wishart Road by the divine aroma of American BBQ Ribs. How they called to me! I can still smell them...so tempting. They would have surely been my downfall had I been carrying cash and been on my own. Thank you for keeping me on track! Though, I now know where we can get some great ribs . . . and we can walk there. :)