The slide…

My last post was so, so smug. Look at me, all happy in the achievements of my goals and not having to worry about them any more…Since then (over a month ago) I believe I have started what is referred to as ‘the slide’. It is the one you begin innocently enough, maybe eating something you haven’t had for a while  (*cough, Nutella)… and end up in a few years time right back where you started, only this time with pictures of yourself which show your descent into madness. No I haven’t put on weight (have been the same for ages now…that 3 kgs I thought would melt away by reverse psychology of ‘not wanting to lose more weight’ hasn’t eventuated..), but I HAVE ditched many of the healthy food habits I had been gently introducing and started some dangerous eating behaviour.

1. Doubled Up Afternoon Snacks.

Yes, it’s a good idea to have a snack between lunch and dinner to avoid starvation and blow-out at dinner time. But is it a good idea to have two afternoon snacks? One consisting of nice healthy cup of tea and trail bar or piece of fruit and low-fat yogurt – and then another, only an hour or so later, consisting of bread (wholemeal, but no doesn’t make up for it) smothered in something delicious (*cough, Nutellla). Or raisin toast with butter. Or a milo and tablespoon of peanut butter. These are ‘not really hungry’ snacks which are so, incredibly pointless and calorie dense. But I can’t seem to help myself! Even as I stand there waiting for my toast I am thinking ‘this is a mistake, I don’t need this. I won’t be hungry for dinner if I eat this. What am I doing? Stop it, stop it, stop – oh well toast has popped…’.

First step: Identify the problem.

  • Boredom
  • Opportunity
  • Not having a big enough lunch
  • Not having a big enough first snack

Second Step: Plan of attack

I think a large part of the problem is boredom and opportunity. Opportunity as in: we stock Nutella in our pantry. BIG MISTAKE! When hubby came home with a jar and a smile on his face I  was like “what?! why did you buy that and now lets eat some out of the jar with a spoon”. Since I can’t convince him to stop buying it, I need to start a blanket ban, just like hot chips (yep, 10 months and counting without). NO MORE NUTELLA!!! I REFUSE TO EAT YOUR HAZLENUT GOODNESS. No Nutella November I’m calling it (nice ring to it?). OK, that’s done. Next. Plan activities IMMEDIATELY after work. This seems to work for me on days I actually do it, I plan a gym session, run, MTB ride or similar straight after work so there is no hanging around thinking, hmmm guess I’ll read my book and have a snack’. Nope, no more. Finally: Don’t skip healthy afternoon tea. Make sure I have at least a piece of fruit before I leave work for the day.

2. Grazing and Snacking After Dinner

I am going to lay the blame once again at Nutellas door. But biscuits and dip have just as much to answer for. This is again boredom eating I believe and possibly also a result of poor meal planning for dinner. I have let my ‘five serves of veggies’ habit well and truly lapse and my lunches and dinners have suffered for it, meaning I am less satisfied after meals. For shame!

First Step: Identify the Problem

  • Boredom
  • Less satisfying dinners
  • Habit and expectation

Second Step: Plan of Attack

Blanket ban on after dinner snacks. If I MUST have something, I can have a tea, or piece of fruit. Also, ramp up the veggies woman! They take a long time to eat, have so many nutrients just waiting to make me feel a million bucks and can be super tasty.

3. Last-Minute Lunches

I have been…lazy lately. No other word for it really. But I also partly blame my husbands shift work for often disrupting our routines which mean grocery shopping and the start of the work week are often out of sync.  Nevertheless I have had a subway meatball sub TWICE in one week as well as a chicken schnitzel burger. My other lunch was a microwave meal and a take-away chicken sandwich on WHITE bread. The horror. Sounds really bad when I put it all together like that. Back to organisation stations!

First Step: Identify the problem

  • Lack of organisation
  • Laziness
  • Mecca of take-away food in near vicinity of workplace
  • Lack of lunch ideas

Second Step: Plan of attack

Get organised! No matter what is on, I should be able to spare and hour for grocery shopping at SOME POINT on the weekend. Just pick something healthy and make it. Also, start going to the farmers markets again! Much nicer way to shop plus locally grown. This week I am having wholemeal wraps with boiled eggs, mayo and lettuce with carrot sticks OR left-overs, apricot and almond muesli bar and fruit. Breakfast will be porridge with strawberries and dinners have been planned out including a veggie rich spaghetti bol. TICK.

Other things out of control:

  • Portion sizes
  • Cheese control (amount of cheese added to meal)
  • Soft drink in take (yes its Coke Zero, no its not a better choice than water)
  • Eating out
  • Chocolate consumption
  • Caffeine addiction
  • Wine and cider consumption (I LOVE pear cider)
  • Eating what my husband eats (i.e. ice-creams and chips…)

Yep. Should really  nip those in the bud ASAP.

My exercise regime has been intense lately and I have really stepped my fitness up a notch by discovering a high intensity sport I LOVE to do (more on that soon) and think it is the only reason I haven’t started stacking it on. So get your s$#@t together self and work out what is important. Nutrition is definitely on the important list so: MAKE. IT. HAPPEN. Right after this magnum ego…

Advertisements

An unhealthy obsession with health?

Nah. Although I do find that I get sick of thinking about if I’ve met my health goals for the day (have I had enough of x and too much of y?), or mulling over if eating that chocolate will really have any negative impact on my overall health and well-being.

My aim is for healthy living to become second nature, and I am hoping that by gradually adding healthy habits to my life they will become a part of who I am without constant need for thinking about it.

Recently, my husband has started night shifts and is developing some unhealthy eating habits involving binge eating – which I totally understand because shift work is so, so hard on your body. He did the shopping and, along with our usual haul, bought WHITE BREAD, CHIPS (Salt and Vinegar god help me), CREAM BISCUITS, CHOCOLATE and SUGARY JUICE.

I was completely horrified and my reaction/resulting lecture to my poor, tired husband made me realise that, actually, I have developed some healthy habits which are now second nature and, when faced with alternatives, I can make the right decision (or use my super-hero power of ‘iron will’ to resist what I know to be poor choices).

Your sugary goodness doesn’t tempt ME

Healthy habits I have already established:

SECOND NATURE

  • 2 pieces of fruit every day (too easy, I love fruit)
  • Eat wholemeal bread. White bread now seems like a junk food to me!
  • Drink low-fat milk and eat fat reduced version of other dairy (yoghurt, cheese etc) EXCEPT I indulge in a full fat slice of cheese sometimes at lunch (portion size controlled, more protein so keeps me full for longer. Plus its damn delicious) and think eating parmesan is pointless if its fat-reduced.
  • Don’t add sugar to tea
  • Only drink juice if it has no added sugar and dilute with water
  • 2 alcohol free nights a week. Actually I don’t drink much, most weeks I won’t have any alcohol although I will have a beer or glass of wine (sometimes a couple) maybe once or twice a month.
  • Check labels before buying a new product to determine overall impact on health
  • Exercise regularly and Include both weight training and cardio

A BIT MORE THOUGHT INVOLVED

  • Order salad or veggies and fish when eating out.
  • Avoid McDonalds, KFC or Hungry Jacks like the plague (1.5 years so far without)

WORKING ON IT

  • Avoid hot chips (5 months in…)
  • Eat 5 serves of vegetables a day
  • Exercise 70 minutes a day

NEVER GOING TO HAPPEN

  • Stop eating chocolate

 

I have a whole list of planned weekly health goals for the coming months but I think I need a consolidation week! I don’t want to push ahead too far and slack off on previous goals.

NUTRITION

I’m getting sick of eating carrots at lunch and need to spice things up a bit to keep some momentum forming my 5 serves a day habit. My plan of attack for this week is to make an eggplant sambal curry which gives 4 ½ serves of veggies in ONE GO for lunches this week (thank you Healthy Food Guide). I’m also going to work on some different veggie recipes. Having them steamed or raw will only keep me interested for so long! I visited the local farmers markets this morning and bought up a bunch of fresh, local, delicious looking veggies…I’ll figure out what to do with them later.

farmers market fun

Vegorama!

Vegorama!

EXERCISE

Last week I set the target of 70 minutes a day of exercise. I probably should have made it ON AVERAGE because I needed a rest day! So in a way I didn’t reach my goals…but in another way, if I do a bit of sneaky math, I did 😉 I actually did almost 80 minutes on average every day. I did up a little spread sheet (I heart excel, lol) to show my exercise week. I’ve colour coded it to show moderate (yellow), medium (orange) and high (red) intensity workouts. Yeah, I went there.

workout calendar may

It’s good to know I can have a day off and still meet my exercise goals. Looking forward to a week of consolidation and figuring out what the hell I’m going to do with all those veggies…