Day 11 – I Am Grateful For A Short Leash
Mostly I’m just tired, but this week was busy – and without my normal weekend food prep time, it was easy to slip into habits of going out for more meals and generally feeling behind all week.
So while this week was not perfect in terms of eating, it showed me what I think is “not so good” these days isn’t actually so bad. I ate more meals out but I made good choices – salads, etc. – but cooking for myself yields much better results. I’ve also had a couple of glasses of wine this week – which I’d really cut out in the past couple years. About 5 years ago, when I was done with school (finally after 12 years!), I got in the habit of allowing the proverbial glass of wine with dinner. Before long I realized that more days than not, I had a glass of wine – how the heck did that happen? Well it did and it became my comfort at the end of a tough day. It was a habit I needed to break for my health and of course a glass of wine with dinner doesn’t help the fat loss one bit! So now it’s a more of a rarity, but this week the glass here and a glass there had quite an effect on me: tired, foggy headed and dehydrated. I still exercised everyday but my oomph wasn’t really there – they were shorter and less intense, I just didn’t have it this week.
So a couple glasses of wine, less meals cooked at home and some wimpy workouts added up to me feeling not so great this week. However, compared to some periods in the past when I felt “off track”, this week actually looks pretty darn good!
Over the past couple of years my workouts have become so regular and so much a part of my life that I no longer have periods of time when it’s been days – or even weeks – that I’ve been away from a good workout. I rarely let life get in the way of the gym these days and that’s a habit I’m so happy about. So while they weren’t my usual, at least I did something.
Also, I’ve started to prepare nearly all my meals (save a cheat meal or lunch/dinner out with friends) and my diet is much cleaner than in the past i.e. no gluten or dairy, organic veggies only and clean proteins antibiotic and hormone free, wild, grass-fed, etc). Now when I’m off track it’s for just a day or two, and even at that I’m on a shorter leash – meaning I don’t ever stray too far off course anymore. I feel pretty great that now a salad from a restaurant vs. one I made at home is what I consider to be “not so great”.
One thing that happens when you eat better more often is that when you eat like crap it makes you feel a whole lot worse than it did before! That is such great positive reinforcement that taking good care of ourselves is worth the time, money and effort – so, so worth it.
So for anyone out there who’s frustrated with getting it all in line: the diet, the exercise, breaking bad habits, etc, just know that with time and consistency it happens and it gets easier. Just keep trying to do better than yesterday and see yourself more and more often like the person you are striving to be.
When I’ve had a day or two of not great eating my favorite thing to do is have a really clean day – it mentally and hormonally “resets” me. Lots of water, lots of raw veggies (I usually cut up bell peppers, celery, cucumber, and throw in some snap peas or carrots) and some clean proteins: hard-boiled eggs, baked chicken, steamed shrimp or broiled fish. After a day like that I’m mentally and physically on track again – and I’m grateful that more of my days look like this than not….finally!