Getting into Shape

Think Before You Eat – It’s a Constant Compromise

Let’s talk about food. Not as in let’s swap recipes, but rather, how food affects your physical and mental well being.

There is no particular reason I’m writing this post, it’s just something I am forced to think about pretty much constantly and I go through phases when I eat more than normal and have to reign myself in and get serious about controlling my eating habits again – like now.

Before we get started, please note, I am not an expert, as in AT ALL. I can tell you my experiences, I can give you my observations and even my advice, but I in no way really know what I’m talking about. I’ve been battling weight issues my whole life (really, who hasn’t??) and I only NOW (I’m 45!) think I (sort of) have it figured out. Again, these are my views, this is what works for me. I hope it helps you, or at the very least, gives you an idea, or even encouragement to try and control your own eating habits.

Also? Eating is sort of psychological. If you’re eating all the time, it would be worth a look at WHY you’re eating. It probably won’t be an easy journey but if you truly want to conquer your eating demons, then beating them down will be more effective than if you try and shut the door in their face. You know?

I talked before about how we really MUST reach a point where we are comfortable with our bodies. Though we would all LIKE to look like Victoria Secret models (and the media knows this and of course quilts us into thinking it’s possible), get real. Though it’s certainly possible to lose weight and tone your body, the question is, is it HEALTHY for YOU to wear a size zero.

Personally? With my height? I’d look like a fence post, with breasts.

Thankfully, I have stopped aspiring to be a single digit size – I’m pretty comfortable hovering around the 10/12 size (and I say hovering because it truly varies from day-to-day. There’s the bloating/puffy factor that comes with being a female, and the sizes of clothes depends on who’s making them at what time of year and which style is hot at that time period. In other words, it’s never consistent so I end up trying on both sizes of everything I like because it’s a crap shoot. Tell me I’m not the only one this happens to).

But though I’m okay with this size, it’s not easy to maintain this size. My problem? Is I have a huge, as in GINORMOUS sweet tooth. If I could just curb my sugar cravings, I wouldn’t have to battle my weight so much.

But alas, I can’t control them.

Wait. Scratch that. I CAN control them, I just don’t want to.

Life is too short to deprive myself of what I enjoy. Though a little control IS called for here.

I don’t diet, but I do balance my sugar intake on a daily (sometimes hourly) basis. For example: If I’ve eaten a few donut sticks for breakfast, then I don’t eat anything sugary or fattening in the afternoon.

Or, if I eat something fattening after lunch, I don’t eat anything else fattening the rest of the day.

And I especially try not to eat anything really fattening after dinner where it will just sit and eventually turn into solid fat. (I’m not always successful though – especially when it’s getting close to Myrtle’s monthly visit. I CRAVE junk food for about four or five days before she comes knocking on my uterine walls).

I also try and eat a lighter dinner, (and by “lighter” I really mean smaller portion), again, because I’m less active after dinner and it doesn’t have a chance to fully digest.

Also? I AVOID soda. I don’t drink it, I don’t miss it. I’m pretty convinced that over half of our obesity problem is because people have substituted soda for water and drink WAY too much of it. Yes. It’s habit forming. Yes. It’s pretty delicious. And yes. It’s hard to kick the habit. But when you do, I promise you, when you break down and have that glass of soda at that party? You will gag because it will taste sickeningly sweet.

Look at this photo, people:

I want you to remember this photo every time you drink a soda – just think how much sugar you’re drinking. Now think how many sodas you have in one day. Then think about all of the sugary snacks you eat on top of that. Soda is liquid sugar. Soda is obesity’s secret partner. Is it no wonder you can’t lose weight when you’re drinking so much sugar??

Cut out the soda. Like I said, it’s an addiction and it will be tough to kick the habit at first, but you’ll see what I mean when you haven’t had one in a while.

I can barely stomach the thought of drinking soda anymore.

That’s pretty much my eating habits, in a nutshell. I don’t diet, I just try and balance how much I eat and when I eat.

I also avoid buying crap so that I’m not tempted to eat it – if it’s not around, then I won’t eat it, right? (Though I have been known to make special “junk food” trips now and again to the store).

Though this all sounds great, I get carried away. Like now. I’ve been eating like a cow. I am pretty much snacking all day long now because I have, once again, gotten into the habit of munching on something whenever I’m on my computer – and since I work and play on my computer all day long, well, there you go.

When that happens (I mentioned that it’s happening now, right?), then it’s time to hit the treadmill.

I’ll talk about exercising in my next post.

In the meantime, watch what you’re eating. Seriously. Balance when and how much crap you’re putting into your body every day.

  • 1. Eat breakfast. This one is really hard for me because I’m truly not hungry in the mornings. But I find that when I eat breakfast, and force myself to eat lunch, then I’m truly NOT that hungry at dinner and I naturally don’t eat bigger portions. It all evens out over the course of the day. Try it.
  • 2. Munch on dried fruit or granola bars instead of candy or pastries (that will help satisfy some of your sweet craving).
  • 3. Drink LOTS of water (stay away from the soda, seriously, it’s evil).
  • 4. And lastly, don’t have that crap in your house. Make it hard to obtain – like, if you really want some junk, then you have to physically leave your house to go get it. It won’t discourage you every time, but it will discourage you most of the time.

Look gals (and guys), if you want to lose weight, you’re going to have to change your eating habits. Will it be easy? Oh hell to the no, but how badly do you want to shed those pounds? How badly do you want to be able to fit into your clothes again? It’s EASY to overeat, disciplining your diet is HARD. But you just have to be stronger than your weakness. Don’t let your diet control you, take control of your diet.

Don’t be a weakling. Stop being lazy. Stop making excuses.

Start small. If you normally eat a few poptarts for breakfast, then stop. Eat cereal instead. If you normally have a Little Debbie in the afternoon, then have some crackers instead. If you normally eat a huge plate full for dinner, cut out 1/4 of that, then eventually cut it down to half. Eat more for breakfast and lunch then you’ll be less hungry for dinner.

It’s all about discipline. I’m tired of the excuses. I’m tired of the whining and the self-deprecation and “I feel sorry for myself so you should too,” lines. Get a backbone ladies (and gents) and start being PROACTIVE.

I will.

Will you?

And because I don’t want to end this post with me going all Army Sargent on you, watch this video and have a laugh – then get serious.

Because no one can stop you from over eating but you. Take charge.

Now excuse me, I’m going to make fried chicken for dinner. (But I will drain the chicken, pat them dry with a paper towel to remove excess grease, take off the fried part on my breast and just stick to the chicken part. I will also give myself the smallest piece of chicken and only scoop about half portions of potatoes and veggies onto my plate as opposed to heaping the guys’ plates full. See? It’s a constant compromise).