So I read an interesting article last night written by a guy who’d been obese all his life and then lost a lot of weight. The article focussed on the psychological aspect of weight loss and was something I could really relate to. Every time I go on a weight loss program, I feel a little neurotic about it. I have to think so carefully about all my food choices each and every day. I realize this is just a temporary thing. I have to think hard and consciously make good choices until habits develop. In the past, when I lost a significant amount of weight it took a year or two before I didn’t have to work so hard. By then I had developed some pretty good habits and things came more naturally. But for me, when I first start back on a program, it takes significant work. I have to think carefully about all my choices, do extra work to prepare healthy meals, make sure I get my workouts in, and the hardest part of all – try to find a healthy balance between restricting myself and treating myself.
This week, I am on somewhat of a “holiday”. Technically, I get the whole summer off but I’m out of town visiting family this week. There have been a lot of food temptations this week and although I’ve done quite well with making good choices, it’s definitely been a challenge. For one thing, we celebrated three birthdays this week so there’s been a lot of cake. Also, there’s been a crazy heat wave going on so there’s been a lot of ice cream. And of course, when families get together there’s always hearty meals to sit down to. Since I am still on my 30-day program, I had intentions to restrict myself and stay as close to my daily 30 points as possible. However, I do have to recognize that I am on “holidays” this week and need to be a little forgiving to myself. That’s where the balance comes in. And balance has always been the part I struggle with. How many “treats” are just the right amount? Am I being too restrictive? Am I being too lenient? If I have “treats” three days in a row, will it slowly evolve back into a bad habit? (See this is where the neurotic part comes in… I end up over-thinking everything).
So the golden question is, how does one truly get to a place where they have established enough of the right habits that maintaining a healthy weight isn’t so much work? Where I can feel like I am living freely and enjoying food, but I don’t have to worry about how much weight I might gain or what kind of habits I am creating? And if I do start losing weight, when will I be truly happy with my body? Is that even possible or do we all have insecurities no matter how fit and healthy we are?
I guess it’s just one of those days where I am over-thinking things. That being said, I decided to go a little bit easier on myself today and indulge in my holidays a little. Here’s how today has gone:
Workout 1: Despite getting up three mornings in a row now to go walking at 7 a.m I have realized I am still definitely not a morning workout person. I much prefer moving slowly after I get out of bed – watching morning talk shows, reading, checking social media feeds, and having a leisurely breakfast and coffee. Nonetheless, I enjoy walking with Mom and she goes at 7 a.m. So once again, I laced up my sneakers and off we went. Today’s walk was no easier than yesterday’s, in fact I pretty much felt like I was sleep walking! I dragged myself along though, and completed the 5km walk in about an hour for a total of 6 activity points.
Breakfast: Today, I repeated yesterday’s breakfast – a fried egg, 3 slices of turkey bacon, and a slice of toast and butter. Mmmm, toast and butter. I seriously could eat a whole loaf of toast and butter for breakfast! I think when I go back home I will find a healthier carb alternative (to help sustain hunger a little longer) but for now while on “vacation” I’m loving every single bite of toast and butter. I also enjoyed a morning coffee with 4 tbsp of French- Vanilla cream.
Lunch: My husband had an extended lunch break from work today so my stepson and I went to meet up with him a really pretty restaurant on the lake. Unfortunately, a storm was brewing and the humidity was crazy so we had to pass on the patio, and sat inside instead. I decided to have a grilled chicken wrap which essentially was pretty healthy (grilled chicken, cucumber, tomatoes, and lettuce) other than the wrap itself (it was giant and I chose white instead of whole-wheat) and the “creamy garlic dressing”. I ordered it with garden salad but forgot to mention the type of dressing I’d prefer and it ended up coming soaking in balsamic vinagerette (which I know is a pretty good choice, but I don’t like it at all). Since the wrap is one of my favourites, I opted to eat all of it and passed on the salad (although I did sneak 4-5 of my husband’s fries). I also had a glass of ice water with it.
Workout 2: Outside of the restaurant there is a really beautiful board-walk which the three of us went for a quick stroll on. We would have went further but the humidity was thick and my husband had to get back to work, so we kept it short.
A little after lunch, I was craving ice cream like crazy (probably due to the heat). I knew my Mom had a freezer full of Drumstick ice cream cones at home but before having one, I checked the points with my WW app. As soon as I saw that one drumstick is 16 points, I easily made the choice to have my Chapman’s chocolate frozen yogurt instead. Normally, I only have 1/2 cup but today I splurged and had 1 cup for a total of 8 points. The best part? I didn’t even feel guilty because I really wanted it. And I felt pretty proud of myself that I hadn’t mindlessly eaten the Drumstick but remembered to check the points first which made the healthier choice so much easier!
Dinner: Tonight’s dinner was a boneless, skinless chicken breast, roasted potatoes, and roasted vegetables (carrots, onions, mushroom, zucchini, yellow peppers). I could have passed on the potatoes but made the choice to indulge and it was worth it because they were delicious (out of all the ways to cook potatoes, roasting them is my favourite!). Also, I hadn’t thought to cook my veggies like this before and they were so good (just roasted in a bit of olive oil in a tin foil pan on the barbecue). I will definitely be doing veggies like that again! After dinner, I had a small piece of angel food cake and light whipped cream for dessert. Dinner came out to 9 points with dessert being 6 points. I felt extremely full after but only a tiny bit guilty about my indulgences.
After dinner, a friend of mine picked me up and we headed out to another girlfriends’ house for a much-need catch-up and gab session. Living where I do, I miss my girlfriends so much so it felt so great to sit down with three of them and just talk, and talk, and talk (what we do best!) While there, I chose ice water to drink and only had 3-4 small pieces of the pumpernickel bread and spinach dip that was offered for snacks (I said no to the chips!).
All in all, I definitely indulged today (and didn’t necessarily plan for it) but I decided to go a bit easier on myself so that I could enjoy my holiday and some of the little treats that come along with it. When I look at the bigger picture, even though I did have some “treats” this week and didn’t follow my plan perfectly, when I think of how I would have indulged while here in the past, I have done so much better. The past would have seen me visiting the chip truck or other restaurants almost daily, eating ice cream or other desserts everyday, eating a lot of chips, and heavy meals. I am proud that although I didn’t eat perfectly to plan, I did make better choices – which I know is ultimately what this journey is all about.
16 days down, 14 to go! (Which means 2 weeks today is my real summer vacation!)