Fair food is key to getting lean, fit | Jill Urbach

Have you been feeling tired and sluggish? Still trying to lose the extra weight that you swore would be gone before summer began?

Have you been feeling tired and sluggish? Still trying to lose the extra weight that you swore would be gone before summer began?

Me too. So, in honor of this year’s county fair, which kicks off Friday Harbor’s year-long centennial birthday celebration, I’ve devised a plan for making Friday Harbor residents healthier than ever. I have taken information and advice from nearly every diet book and philosophy available and compiled it into an easy-to-follow four-day plan for getting lean and fit at the fair.

My plan should retail for $179 but, since The Journal is the only place willing to publish it, your only expenses are the cost of this paper, a four-day pass to the fair and a couple hundred bucks in food.

Now, the plan.

I have yet to find a diet book that doesn’t stress that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Therefore, I recommend a daily breakfast at the pie booth. Most of the pies are fruit, so you will be consuming valuable nutrients and antioxidants. Of course, you should order your pie “a la mode” in order to reap the benefits of ice cream’s calcium content.

It is best to eat something different for lunch each day in order to give your body the greatest variety of food groups and nutrients. This will take some scouting on your part. The first day, walk around the entire food court and choose your top four picks, one for each lunch at the fair. The savviest people go with a friend; they then can choose eight vendors to patronize between them so they get more variety.

Snacks at the fair are important because, with all the walking you will be doing, you must keep up your energy level. Besides, most diet books agree that frequent eating keeps up your metabolism.

Snacks are best eaten after your morning pie (if you like a big breakfast) or mid-afternoon. I recommend the ice cream and berries for women over 40. The calcium helps prevent osteoporosis and the antioxidants in the berries fight aging.

Cotton candy can be eaten at any time. It doesn’t fill you up and can’t count as calories since it practically disappears before you swallow it.

An elephant ear, on the other hand, has enough calories to fuel you through next Tuesday. However, cinnamon increases metabolism so the obvious solution is to get the cinnamon elephant ear. The calories consumed versus the calories expended through your increased metabolism will practically be a wash.

It is important to give your muscles protein after all the exercise you will get walking, standing, zucchini racing and riding the Paratrooper. The nightly barbecue dinners by the Lions, Kiwanis, Little League and Purple & Gold are the time to load up on protein.

If you plan to do the 8.8K Loop Run on Saturday, be sure to do a “carbo-load” on Friday night. This would be the perfect time for a bowl of pasta or another elephant ear.

However, after reading how essential sleep is for weight loss, I plan to burn fat by sleeping in on Saturday.

— Jill is desperately seeking a publisher for her book, “Eating — But Not Looking — Like a Carnie.”