I don't know if it is a universal thing, but around here, any occassion is just cause for a pot luck lunch. And have you noticed at these events, how aweful (for you) the food choices are?
We had just such a luncheon yesterday at my work, to celebrate "the holidays" and two birthdays. I brought my own, logical lunch of whole wheat pasta with turkey meatballs (craveable), but several of my coworkers kept prodding me to have some, and kept stopping by my department to make sure I got some food. Since mine was one of the birthdays being celebrated, I felt obligated to at least go check it out.
Chili with beans: really just kidney beans and beef in some mysteriously greasy sauce
Boiled (?) ham with fluffy white rolls: I don't eat pork
taco dip with tortilla chips: OK, yum yum yum. I could eat the whole tray if I didn't have morals
Mystery noodle salad: dripping of mayo. Yech!
Frosted sugar cookies: So soft and inviting with colorful frosting and sprinkles.
Yellow cake with chocolate frosting: I could have, but that would just be over the top.
Strawberries and Kiwi with fat free greek yogurt mixed with splenda.
Can you guess which selection I provided for our little pot luck? OK, so I was the one with the most leftovers, but I figured if I was bringing a dish to pass, it was at least going to be something productive.
What I ate: about 2oz of weird chili, which was pretty flavorless and greasy, and I am not the biggest fan of beef, but the kidney beans tasted nice. One spoonful of taco dip with 4 chips, and about 1/2 cup of greek yogurt with veggies. And against all logic, I had one of those beautiful frosted sugar cookies, because I hadn't had one yet this season, and really just because I wanted one. And I found myself justifying some of it because 'I ran this morning, I could probably use these nutrients for recovery.' Once I got home, the kids and I polished off the leftovers of fruit and yogurt handily, and I ate two handfuls of piping hot popcorn. Why? Because I had already 'blown it'? Because my eating intervals were too far apart? Because I was just so burnt-out that I didn't care? It really is easier not to care.
But I do care. And while it felt ok to do that last night, this morning as my stiff, sore legs carried me to the treadmill, reminding me of what I went through on the treadmill the day before, I thought about the proverbial floodgates and how it's hard to just open them a crack without them flying wide open. Once I have a little bit of something, it's hard for me to stop. Part of it is chemical, but a huge portion of it is mental. When I am tired, stressed out or burnt out it is almost as if I give up and think, I am in a rough spot and I just don't have the fight in me right now. But the truth is, I feel so much better when I eat clean, and I do have the fight in me, sometimes I just need to remind myself of that before I put something unproductive or unplanned in my mouth. As I have said before, I am a perpetual work in progress!
Despite yesterday's 'extras', I have lost 4 pounds this week, most of it water from all the extra salt and carbs I ate over the past couple weeks, but just in those 4 little pounds, there is a huge difference in how I look (especially my face) and how my body feels. I have been drinking about 1.5-2 gallons of fluids a day which is helping to flush my system out. Now I can actually guage where I am at by how visible my collar bone and wrist bones are. I know when I look soft, I am retaining extra water/weight. I have never been so in touch with my body before.
For my birthday, my husband presented me with a gift card for a really upscale spa in the city. I have never been to a spa, but I used to promise myself that if I ever lost a bunch of weight that I would reward myself with a spa day, and now I can make that a reality. When I was obese, I never would have gone into a spa, I would be too ashamed with how I look/feel to be that vaulnerable. Even as I browsed the menu of services today, I considered using it for a great hair cut or treatment. Then I came to my senses, and decided I am going to go get a fantastic massage and facial. And I am going to enjoy every minute of it as I reflect on the goals I have accomplish and the ones I that are still in progress. And once my muscles relax and I am finally in a peaceful moment, I am going to let out a long, long sigh and smile.