While I do believe that my experiences and observations during Food Rehab 2010-2011 are relevant to A Runner’s Delight, I also realize many people come here for information rather than personal triumph, woe, and check in. That said, if you’re curious as to how the past thirty-two weeks have been going, you’re welcome to keep reading under the cut. And if you’re not curious, then…don’t.
If You Haven’t Been Reading Runner’s Delight, Here’s What You Missed
After reading and reviewing David Kessler’s The End of Overeating: Taking Control of the Insatiable American Appetite, I felt empowered to work on my own health pitfall of overeating foods that stimulate rather than appropriately eating foods that satiate. In order to change not just my habits but really my entire approach to food, I analyzed what triggers me to overeat, and came up with a few basic rules to follow in order to get a grip.
At my last check-in (whoa dawgs, back in March) I reported that I was quite pleased with my rehab into healthy eating. With the exception of wanting to be more of a water hound and hoping to cook for myself once in a blue moon, I was rather pleased with myself. My goals were to cook SOMETHING, to keep working out, and to try one new kind of cheese.
And now you’re in the know!
Okay, before I get too far into this, admittedly I was reminded of my commitment to Food Rehab when I sort of tumbled off the Rehaby train. So there’s quite a bit of falling off the horse talk to follow. But first, a few pluses: As far as last update’s goals are concerned, I did 2/3 of a good job. I did manage to cook (and record the event here), and I even ate new cheese (can we say goat cheese brie from Trader Joe’s? Fine, still brie, but a new kind). Water intake? Yeah, still trying.
So it’s been almost three months since my last update on Food Rehab. What have I been doing? For a long time, I was onto a really good routine. Working out in the morning, eating a relatively healthy lunch with many healthy snacks, walking to work, working out after work, and maintaining a sense of reason at dinner. And then…well, then about a month and a half ago there was the night of one hell of a lot of pizza, which I certainly ate willingly. And that happened a second time (hm, both with Lucas in the mix of people…interesting). And then desserts started sneaking in. And then I got a new job and stopped walking to work, and started getting in two workouts in a row or just one workout per day. And then I fully blame the pasta salad for lunch two weeks ago with my sudden carb-cravings, but just like that I was feeling the need to breadify, to over-cheese, and even (oh the shame) to try SnoBalls (those pink coconut covered things I’ve always wanted but never had). And then (I know, there’s more) there was the Night of Cookies and Carrot Cake. Sure, I’ve balanced all this out with longer runs, continuing to work out, kale, and lots of veggies at work. But that doesn’t excuse the issue.
All this pizza/carb/over-eating/sweetness imbibing definitely got noted in my head, but when I saw the scale number creeping up at the gym (I can excuse a couple pounds up and some flux is totally normal, but five pounds up is pretty steep) I started worrying about when my body would catch up and darn it I’m not buying new jeans. The jeans I own now weren’t the cheapest pair of pants on the block (Dr. Dad, don’t be mad. They make my…legs…look amazing) and I can’t afford to buy new ones unless I went thrift shopping. With the desire to continue to wear jeans I love as my inspiration, I knew it was time work.
So here we are. I had a long conversation with my fitness-loving neighbor who used to work for a nutrition company, and I felt empowered and inspired. His thoughts: Eat less, exercise more. Well, I think his thoughts were more like “You want to burn more calories than you are putting into your body,” but it’s the same concept (where have I heard that before?). We talked nutrition, deciding that trips to Whole Foods for dinner was not economically sound or healthy even when hitting up the salad bar and that carbing like there’s no tomorrow might be comforting in times of stress, but mostly makes me feel like a piece of squished pie. Foodwise, he suggested lots of raw veggies, lots of water, half a sandwich with peanut butter or nuts of some kind for dinner, and varied workouts that incorporate strength training (the dreaded strength training).
All things I know, all things I can do. What is curious to me is that I do already raw veggie it up. And fruit. And nuts. That’s my kibble at work (along with coffee like it’s going out of style, which it’s not because when is coffee every going out of style?). So where am I going wrong?
1. When I’m going out. This is happening too often, and without the portion control I used to demand of myself.
2. In my coffee. I’ve become a half-and-half devotee. Fine, I’ll work on it. Whole milk. Yay? Even 2%. Well, let’s not get crazy.
3. Water: perhaps I could go nuts and start drinking more water. Sparkling water even to mix it up. I used to be exceptionally good at busting out 64 ounces, but I’ve become a 32 ounce girl.
4. Post work: not sure were this is going wrong, but it must be because it’s when I probably eat the most. So x-nay on the brie cheese, and no more on those carbs I have started loving.
5. Strength training: again, I’ll try.
6. Motivational signs. This one I’ve already done. Handwritten in markers and posted in every nook and cranny to remind myself what the goals are, and remind myself that I’ll feel better once I get there.
Interestingly, I’ve had the Michael Pollan’s phrase “don’t eat anything your grandmother wouldn’t recognize” humming in my head as I go about my days. I find myself staring at a Cliff bar and wondering if Betty would recognize it (I’m guessing she wouldn’t know the SnoBalls). And really, would she know what anything vegan would be, or gluten free? Hmmm. Interesting. Either I’m not giving her enough credit, or the ways of the health food world have changed so much that even “healthy” food isn’t recognizable to the octogenarians (and above).
Okay, three-two-one, Food Rehab!