My Military Diet Experiment

My Military Diet Experiment

Still unsure how I survived craving pizza and graham crackers.

As my family and many of my close friends know, I suffer from a stomach disorder known as GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disorder). While many people that suffer from this only experience mild acid reflux or indigestion, I have a more serious case. I take prescription medicine to control the acid production within my stomach along with taking serious lifestyle changes. I have had to take multiple food sources out of my diet, including red meats, dairy, sugary products, fatty, and greasy substances. Since having this disorder, I thought it would be beneficial to try what is known as the "Military Diet." Now, I don't eat much as it is throughout the day due to my disorder. Occasionally, I have gone days at a time without eating so I figured this would be a walk in the park.

While I had to add in some moderation due to my luck of a stomach, here is my take on this 3 day diet:

Day 1 Breakfast: 1/2 grapefruit, 1 slice of toast, 2 tbs of peanut butter, 1 cup of tea.

Eating this much for breakfast is bigger than what I am used to, so my stomach wasn't too pleased. I chose tea instead of coffee as it's easier on my stomach and put less than 2 tbs of peanut butter on my toast. I noticed I felt more full leading up to my next meal. Usually, my breakfast consists of a piece of toast or a protein bar and two bottles of water.

Day 1 Lunch: 1/2 cup of tuna, 1 slice of toast, 1 cup of tea.

This time, I switched the generic tea for caffeine free. I noticed my stomach was a tad bloated; however, I'm sure for the average person this meal would feel close to nothing. Truthfully, I could go for some graham crackers and honey.

Day 1 Dinner: 3 ounces of meat, 1 cup of green beans, 1/2 banana, 1 small apple, 1 cup of vanilla ice cream.

For my meat, I decided to eat a turkey burger as I can't have many meat products and opted out of the ice cream as I can't have dairy either. I could have chosen to do a dairy free ice cream as those are now available (and definitely not as terrible as they sound!) Going to bed, I felt more full than I had in days which made me skeptical on how I would feel waking up.

Day 2 Breakfast: 1 egg, 1 slice of toast, 1/2 banana

My stomach was slightly queasy in the morning so I was skeptical to eat; however, I chose to keep the breakfast portion in tact for the day. I felt more energized the second I did, but I would've preferred my typical protein bar.

Day 2 Lunch: 1 cup of cottage cheese, 1 hard boiled egg, 5 saltine crackers

Let me begin my saying, cottage cheese HAS ZERO FLAVOR. If I had to describe how nothing tastes, I would use cottage cheese as the reference. This lunch isn't too far off from a typical lunch for me so I kept with it and added two bottles of water. Still thinking about the box of graham crackers in my pantry and my chocolate covered blueberries. *You can do this Jo*

Day 2 Dinner: 2 hot dogs (no bun). 1 cup of broccoli, 1/2 cup of carrots, 1/2 banana, 1/2 cup of vanilla ice cream.

By this time, I was definitely craving sweets. I decided to eat a full turkey burger instead of the hot dogs and went for the dairy free ice cream. Food was a little heavier and I had a rough time going to bed from feeling so full.

Day 3 Breakfast: 1 saltine crackers, 1 slice of cheddar cheese, 1 small apple

I actually woke up that morning feeling hungry, which is a rare feeling for me! I kept the breakfast how it said and added a bottle of water with a Crystal Light packet of raspberry flavoring.

Day 3 Lunch: 1 egg, 1 slice of toast

Okay, by now I was starving. Same lunch, just added in another water with a Crystal Light packet. All I could think about was avocado toast and a fruit salad.

Day 3 Dinner: 1 cup of tuna, 1/2 banana, 1 cup of vanilla ice cream

I definitely noticed that I felt much more full the day before than I did today. I chose the dairy free ice cream again and was surprisingly still hungry. I had a heavy debate about eating the whole pint that night.

Overall, I'm sure that for a typical person these three days must have been torture and endless cravings. I had a relatively decent time experimenting with the Military Diet and it's definitely something I would try again. I dropped a total of 6 pounds by the fourth morning. While I'm sure a good portion of it was water weight, I did feel slightly lighter and had less symptoms from my stomach disorder.

I am in no way recommending this diet to anyone and I believe everyone should consult with their doctor before trying such an extreme diet! It was a good experiment and I would give this life style commitment a 5/5! You're one tough cookie if you can beat this diet.

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I'm The Customer That Doesn't Always Tip 20 Percent

I can be your best friend or your worst nightmare, but it depends on YOU.

As a server, I fully understand that myself, and others like me, make a living off of our tips.

I know how nice it is to get a $50 tip and how frustrating it is to get merely change when you did everything you could to make the unpleasable table happy. I am well aware that an acceptable tip is anywhere from 15-20% and I typically tip way over that.
However, I can easily say that there have been times where I have tipped anywhere from 5-15%. In these times, the tip was well deserved...or not deserved.

As before mentioned, I am a server, bartender, and part-time restaurant manager. It is safe to say that I know the business quite well. This makes me aware of the tipping process and what is deemed acceptable, but it also makes me aware of what a serving job entails. We are, without a doubt, the worst critics when we are out to eat. We noticed everything you did or didn't do and we timed how long it took to get our drinks -- it's just in our blood.

We also notice if you are genuinely good at your job, or if you are just there to be there.

The key point to any serving job is knowledge. I, as a customer, expect you to be able to answer almost all of my questions. If I ask you something absurd like "exactly where was your lettuce grown?" ....Like what the f****? Who knows that? But when I ask what beers you have on draft, or what all comes on a salad, I expect you to know it. If you don't, I dock it off your tip. No, it's not mean, it's you not holding up your end of the deal when you started this job.

I know that sometimes you get busy and it's hard to cater to someone's every need, but I do expect my refills in a timely manner and would also expect you to check back with me shortly after I get my food to make sure everything tastes good. I feel like that all is just common sense. If I have to wait for five minutes with an empty glass before I even have the chance to call you over, that's going to affect your tip. If you never check up on me after I get my food, guess what, I take it off your tip. If something goes wrong in the kitchen or you forgot to put my order in, do not avoid me. Tell me. I know how hard it is to tell a table that you are the one who screwed up their experience, but it is so much better to be honest and shows more about your integrity than by saying, "I don't know, the kitchen lost your ticket. There was a computer malfunction and then things caught fire. The firemen had to come and put it out, and then they found your ticket under the smoldering that's why your steak is five minutes late.".... Just tell me you got busy and it slipped your mind. I'm okay with that.

The worst one to me is when I see my server on her phone. I know that today's generation has some need to be in contact with everyone 24/7 and I have learned to accept that. But when I need something at my table, and you fail to notice because your girl friend just broke up with her boyfriend who cheated on her with his supposed best friend...I'm not going to be happy. You are here to work and this is your job. And, not to be conceded, but I come first. I am the one paying the bill that allows you to keep that phone your on in service, so make sure that I am happy before Samantha can't call you the next time shit hits the fan with Andrew. It's common sense.

Despite all of these, probably the number one thing I look for in a server is a positive attitude. We all have our own lives outside of work, and not to be cold, but I don't really care about yours. I am here for a nice dinner and a night out to not worry about my own crazy life let alone wonder about yours. As soon as you walk into work, the outside world needs to stay there. Do not be in a terrible mood because your girlfriend is psycho. Do not show the customer that you simply don't want to be at work. You don't want to be -- I don't tip you. Easy as that. If you engage in even a small conversation with me, I will tip you more than expected. I am extremely easy to please and really understanding.

I know that every place is different and every store/restaurant has different standards, but I the guest-service industry all lies on the same guidelines. The number one rule is to make the guest happy. I am not that guest who asks for the world from my server. Nor am I that guest who doesn't tip my server if my food came out overcooked or doesn't taste good. I know what lies on the server and what lies in other areas of the store. I know what they can and can't control.
As a customer, I can be your best or your worst, but that all lies on the service that I receive from YOU.

Cover Image Credit: Wikimedia

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Pho Fixes Everything

A bowl a pho keeps everything bad away.


Pho might just be the best thing my taste buds have ever endured. If you haven't had pho, you're missing out. It's a Vietnamese soup, but it's not just any soup; it's the soup to my heart.

And no, this is not like ramen. It makes ramen look like random noodles in a bowl of water….yeah I know that's basically what it is, but you get the point.

Pho helps with everything. Having a bad day? Pho. Want to have 2 meals, one here and one to go? Pho. Bad break up? Pho. Need some emotional support? PHO IT UP.

Best part, there are so many options for pho. If you're vegetarian, no worries, there's pho for you. If you don't like spice, no worries! There's pho for you! If you love different kinds of meats… THERE'S PHO FOR YOU.

Please, everyone, just go get a bowl of pho and be happy. Doesn't matter if it's 100 degrees out or -13, pho is still amazing. You won't regret it.

Not going to lie, I'm craving it just from typing this.

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