June 2, 2009

LOTS of Baby Steps

I thought that when I lost my weight and kept it off that I learned how to eat better. I don't keep cookies, chips, or other crap snack food in my house because I know I will eat it. I can easily waste an entire bag of chips in one ten minute sitting. I enjoy the mindless saltiness of it. So, I only keep healthier snacks like popcorn, crackers and cheese, fruit, frozen yogurt, and granola bars around. Sometimes I buy nuts but those are a treat. Basically any salty, crunchy thing in my reach is off limits. When it comes to baked goods, my kryptonite, I make my own tasty low-fat items. Overall Mike and I keep it pretty healthy at home. I don't even walk those aisles at the grocery store and I don't miss it.

So what's the problem? Well, whenever I am faced with chips or full-fat baked goods or certain candies I start eating them and I can't stop. I have no off switch and I eat until I'm uncomfortable. There is always an excuse too- it's a party for [insert occasion here], I haven't seen [insert long distance friend here] in months, I only eat these things three times a year, it's Tuesday, blah blah. I thought that the point of eating better was to be able to eat that shit always in moderation. Or better yet, never eating it. I know that having a healthy lifestyle is to eat whatever you like in moderation but like my politics, I'm not that good at being moderate.

I can't help but feel like I'm failing at the bigger picture here. Mike says that not keeping the trigger food in the house is in itself a huge success. He and I grew up in households where there was always a sleeve of cookies to devour (which we both did) or a bag of chips to inhale (which we both did) and the fact that we're trying to create a household where those snacks aren't even an option is a huge step in the right direction. I can't help but feel that a better step in the right direction is to have that crap in the house but learn to live with it. Does that make sense? If I could learn to have chips in the house but stop at one serving of chips then I can win the perpetual battle of the bulge. I guess a good place to start is at the party for [insert occasion here] or when I do see [insert long distance friend here] or on Tuesdays.

But even if I can succeed at those trigger events I won't start buying the crap products. I really don't miss them day to day. Rarely do I want chips enough that I will pick them up on the way home. When I was a kid I never knew what to do when I hung out at a friend's house whose mother only kept fruit around and they didn't drink soda. I thought that house was totally lame. An apple just wouldn't cut it for me then. But an apple cuts it for me now. And now that I write that, I realize that I have made a huge life change. Perhaps what I really need to do for myself is not dwell on my little set backs. What I need to do is recognize the changes I have made and celebrate them. With a nice bowl of tasty frozen yogurt.

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