My friend Heather (Divas Run for Bling) is hosting a FB challenge group that started this week. Most people are doing 21 day fix (another Beachbody program) while right now, I am still working through the last week of Cize. I was planning on starting 21 day fix next week although I am having some issues/doubts as to whether or not I am ready to take on the eating aspect of that program. Next week is a crazy week for me (heck, every week between now and 10/17 is a crazy week) and I am not sure I will be able to commit to the planning and organization I would need to in order to follow the eating part. I don’t know. I may just do the workout part and loosely follow (to the best of my abilities) the eating part. We’ll see.
But I digress, that is not the reason for the post. On the FB page Heather said (paraphrasing here) that one of the ways to prepare for 21DF is to rid your home of any junk that is not on plan in order to remove temptations. This got me thinking…should I do the same? Should I toss out everything that won’t conform to the eating program?
Personally, I won’t do that for a few reasons but let me first say why I think this would make sense for someone to do.
When I first started off on this weight loss journey I didn’t know portion sizes nor did I understand the term moderation. I had really no control over my eating. I started to make changes, though. Sometimes they were a bit too extreme and I had to reel myself back in. Sometimes they were a bit too lax and I knew I needed more focus, more change. It was a balancing act. But even though I was learning how to portion my food and how to practice moderation I knew I still had to limit the amount of junkie foods I kept in the house. Because back then, when I first started WW I had a daily point allowance of like 40+- I could easily eat multiple snacks a day of junk foods and still be good points-wise (which is a whole different issue I will save for another post) but just because I could do it didn’t necessarily make it something I should do. Does that make sense?
You see, when I was first starting out it took me awhile to find balance, to build good habits, to rely on my instincts (because my instincts were not yet pointing me in the right direction) so I had to maintain focus and work differently and diligently to get to that point. You see, I didn’t start out as a mindful eater, listening to her hunger cues, thoughtfully deciding on food choices and reflecting back on them. Nope, that took time to get there. I started out as someone that had to avoid eating out, someone that couldn’t keep junkie foods in the house (of course, the foods I ate back then I would consider junk food so…take that with a grain of salt), I didn’t drink and I didn’t socialize.
I didn’t do that for long though because that life is boring and unlivable, in my opinion.
So what I started to do was work to find balance. No, I wouldn’t buy ice cream and keep it at the house because I would eat a pint instead of a serving or if I did eat a serving I would eat it every night until I finished it. I would, in turn, make foods I was trying to limit the norm, not the exception. So instead I would go out with my friends for frozen yogurt. I would top mine with fruits and mochi (and sometimes dark chocolate) and it was a treat. I savored it. Especially if we would go walking/hiking first. It was a nice way to cool off and relax and discuss our fun adventures.
Same with eating out, I started to bring it back into my routine but not as a daily or twice daily habit that it had been but as something special. A once in a while treat. Because honestly, it doesn’t matter what you eat or where – eating out is an indulgence, at least that’s how I see it. What I started to do more often was invite friends over for meals I prepared myself. I would find new recipes and share them with the people I loved. I loved the social aspect associated with dining out but I wanted a better alternative. This was one of the ones I chose to incorporate into my routine.
My point is this, my relationship with food is different now than it was 4.5 years ago. Today I can keep foods on hand knowing that I will (more than likely) be able to limit my portions and how often I eat it. I have had a pint of cashew milk ice cream in the freezer for at least a month. Which is saying something because that ice cream is amazeballs. But it took me a long time to get here. So I do agree with Heather to the extent of if you are just starting out then maybe don’t keep junk around the house if you aren’t yet practiced at portioning, moderation or mindfulness. Or too if you are doing the 21 DF and you think you might feel deprived and you want to just grab something and devour it then maybe having a pantry full off items you are trying to avoid is not the answer. That’s your call.
Like I said, I have been both people. The person that couldn’t keep ice cream in the house and the person that can. And even now, I switch between the two. I am not saying that ice cream is the devil food and we should all avoid it at all costs, not at all. What I am saying is that it’s ok to keep certain food items out of the home while you are working on building habits. Only you can understand your relationship with food. And it is up to you decide what is in your best interest. But know that it is ok at any point in your journey to say ‘I just don’t feel strong enough to not overdo it’ and say no OR to say ‘I feel like ice cream this week’ and treat it like it’s not a big deal.
Either way, it’s just ice cream.
A scoop of sorbet on a hot summer night...hits the spot :)
Love and hugs,