This post is not about celebrating a holiday surrounding classic character The Cheat from Homestar Runner. This post ALSO isn’t about Bob Kuban and the In-Men’s classic song, “The Cheater”… though I wish it was. And although this is a post about temptation, it is not a salacious tell-all about marital infidelity.
As I mentioned on Monday, I am trying to lessen my refined sugar consumption. In fact, I am currently on the Advocare 24-Day Challenge that Coralie has mentioned. And, as such, I’ve been making healthy decisions and following a plan. It also means that I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately about “cheat foods”– both in longing for and trying to psychologically figure out my relationship with them. I’ve been having some back muscle issues recently and was really needing some motivation to NOT drown my pouting in a package of Hershey’s Miniatures.Which is why I thought it was funny that I found not one but two reminders that were almost tailor-polished for me this past weekend. Thank you, Universe.
The first reminder I saw was a picture a professional trainer/writer friend of mine from Chicago posted on Facebook. I couldn’t place the origin of the picture, so if you own it, let me know and I’ll credit you.
Sometimes trying to do better is so hard and the results are so slow that it would be easy to give up. Lately, I’ve spent more time than I’d like to admit imagining eating my favorite “bad” foods. Which is kind of sick, really. There are foods which are better for you and foods that are worse for you, but attributing an emotional characteristic to food is probably not super-awesome. I struggle every single day with self-control when it comes to food. Every meal. Every day. The complex psychology that goes on behind the scenes in my brain regarding eating is epic. Weighing the emotional motivations behind every portion size of food is exhausting. I know these are first world problems, but it doesn’t make them less real. I’ve been giving a lot of thought to how to find a balance between satiating my WANT for junk food and trying to do better. Unfortunately, it is all about consistency. I don’t even want to think about the number of pounds I have gained back after rapidly shedding them thanks to the latest, yet completely unsustainable diet. So, what is the balance? I think it is completely unique and has to be found through trial, error, and reflection. And I will probably always be working on it.
My second sign from the Universe came as I recently sat down to cull the pile of periodicals that arrived when I was gone over the holidays. I found the below article in the Wellbeing section of the December issue of Los Angeles Magazine.
The article is pretty interesting. It discusses the rumor behind “cheat days” actually boosting your metabolism” rumor (*spoiler* they don’t–unless you are a training athlete). And that the’ cheat day’ is actually for your sanity, which (again) is an interesting thing to posit. The answer in the article is, as always, moderation and mindfulness. If only it t’were that easy, right?
I love eating out. Love it. We’ve been eating IN a lot however because it is easier for me to be “good” when I can control all the elements that go into a dish. Josh and I kind of have a standing Sunday brunch date at our favorite local joint, Paty’s. Because of my back and because of the 24-day challenge, I haven’t been to Paty’s in two weeks. I have been thinking about healthier alternative items I could order– instead of my favorite: two eggs poached, over corned beef hash with one pancake on the side. The problem is when your one cheat meal completely obliterates the calorie deficit for which you have worked so hard. Here is the rub. I LOVE food. I revel in it. And hard as I try, I cannot take all the emotion out of food. Having an amazingly-crafted meal is a thing of beauty to me. I will never give up an opportunity to experience something special. In two weeks, Josh and I are going to Vegas for four days to meet some friends of ours. The last two days of my 24-Day Advocare Challenge fall during the first two days of our Vegas adventure. Because nothing says balance and moderation like Las Vegas.
But, until then the battle wages on. And on and on. Best of wishes to you today on YOUR journey! Got any tips or tricks you’ve picked up along the way? Do you want to know what Advocare is? As always, let us know what you are thinking about in the comments!