Deprivation Isn’t Sexy – Stepping Stones With Give – Week 7

    

     I promised you guys and myself that this would be a year full of creativity, fun, and active  joy as we lose weight together. It really has been that for me most days.  However, I wasn’t feeling  joy as we began week 6. I was feeling deprived.

   It was Superbowl Sunday and we were all set to attend a big family Super Bowl Celebration. My sister-in-law tells people “Super Bowl is one of the major holidays in our family”. We celebrate Thanksgiving at Mom’s, Christmas at our house, and Superbowl at her house. How do we “celebrate”? With FOOD.

     Don’t hate me, but I’m not a big football fan. What I’ve always loved about Super Bowl is the yummy party foods. My father fries oysters, just this one night each year. Tony makes amazing dips (including a bacon and cheese one developed just for me), April cooks an assortment of irresistible appetizers and both our moms add yummy goodies to the mix.  It’s quite a spread and spread is what I envisioned my hips doing as I battled in my mind over how to handle my calorie count.

    As I sat reworking and reworking my Sunday menu to make room for the foods I knew tempting me, I became frustrated. I didn’t want to “pre-plan”. I wanted to take a plate, pile it high, and pig out! However, the weekend before, I had a less than ideal calorie count after attending a much more “calorie-friendly” ladies pot luck.  An “All You Can Eat” Superbowl buffet was sure to set me back in my weight loss progress and to make it worse I would have to confess to you that I’d fallen off the wagon.

     “I soooo dread tonight”, I finally admitted to my husband.

     “Why?” Was his natural guy response.

     “Because of the food. I really want to eat everything that I want but I can’t figure out how to make it all work. How do I not go over my calories without skipping healthy foods earlier in the day? If I don’t eat enough before, I’m going to have less willpower and will over-eat.  If I do eat enough before, I’ll need to limit even more what I have tonight.”

     “What’s wrong with you? What would you tell your readers? All things in moderation, right?  Make a plan to enjoy healthy amounts and then stick to the plan. This is a special occasion, right? After all, its the first bite you really enjoy the most, isn’t it?”

     And doggone it he was right! So I had a conversation with “Ideal Me”, future, fit, fabulous Sandee. I asked her what SHE would do about a Super Bowl party. This is what she told me. 

     “Deprivation isn’t sexy, Darling. I’d eat! I’d savor and enjoy each bite. If there’s cake, I’d swipe my  finger thru the icing  licking it off, really lingering as I enjoy the flavor, then I’d leave the rest of the tiny piece of cake on my plate. Oyster? Yes, Please! I’d linger over that first single oyster and enjoying it for a long time. It would be decedant. I’d slowly taste that one bite of each dip on the edge of a single chip, letting the taste combinations linger on the palate. A single taste, held on to and really experienced can be pure bliss. So YOU, stop fixating on the food. The food is one small piece of the event. Yes you will want it but it’s not what it’s all about. Get excited about visiting, laughing, being with family. While others are munching seconds, text Tommy(the football loving son who will be excited about the game). Don’t you see, you are still letting food control you. You may be controling the calorie count, but when food can cause you this kind of stress, it’s in the driver’s seat.”

     “Also, make a plan but build in a cushion. Special events happen. Give yourself a little wiggle room. Based on the information at the Calorie Control Council website you’ve learned that you could eat 2222 calories a day and not gain any weight. How horrible would it be if you simply broke even today? Or maybe you could do this, if you go over your 1600 calorie goal promise yourself to offset it by exercising enough extra over your goal this week to burn off those additional calories. That’s what I’d do. Then you are still on track with the plan….but be sure to follow through.”

     “Enjoy a bite or two of everything you want, but limit most things to a bite or two. If you really savor them, a bite or two will satisfy you. Honey, Deprivation isn’t sexy, but neither is setting down and eating an entire cake. Keep it in perspective and eat like  asexy person.”

     So how does a “sexy person” eat? “Ideal Me” wasn’t talking about anything other people would notice or think of as provocative. What does it mean to eat sexy? Think about sexy folks you know or have seen on tv or in the movies. How do they eat? Here I picture the carefree lady laughing, and slowly biting into a single chocolate truffle. She savours the bite and lingers over just one confection. She doesn’t eat an entire box.

      In my past I’ve been the lady with the entire box and no, it wasn’t sexy as I comped down chocolate after chocolate, barely tasting a thing, It’s as if I somehow believed at the end I would find satisfaction to some deep unmet need. I didn’t find answers or absolution at the bottom of the box. I found misery and guilt….and I hid the evidence.

     Eating sexy? I invasion the svelte celebrity chef using his fingers to pick up a few strands of pasta and drop them into his mouth. I envision the look of satisfaction as he savours that single bite. That’s eating sexy and so contrary to the picture of the kid in the cafeteria shoveling in the spaghetti, spoonful after spoonful and asking the kid next to him if he’s going to finish his lunch. I want to eat sexy and be sexy.

     Eating sexy is about learning to slow down and experience each bite, each moment, each sensation.  It’s about enjoying the food in a way that less is more. Often our eating, and especially our over-eating is “mindless”. We aren’t really paying attention, we are simply going through motions. Yes, we may be enjoying the flavor on some level but we aren’t taking the time to enjoy each bite. We don’t feel the textures, smell the aromas, and really experience our food. We just shovel it in.

     I want to introduce you to a concept called “Mindful Eating”. If we can learn not to take the experience for granted, but really partake in the pleasure food has to offer, weight loss will become natural. Please take a moment right now to go get a couple of small pieces of food. Make it a food you enjoy. I suggest something like a couple of potato chips, a pair of cheese cubes, two grapes, or a couple of Hershey’s Kisses. Then I want you to play the video below. It will entroduce you to “Sensual Eating”.

     Did this little exercise give you a new awareness about how much we miss out on when we “feed” without experiencing? Maybe we over eat because we under-experience. I certainly believe that has been true for me. I intend to eat less but experience more. Let all five senses play their part in the process. Less food with more intent will bring more pleasure into my life. God made so many wonderful foods and flavors. I need to take the time to really appreciate his creation.  A big thank you to my super supportive hubby and “Ideal Me” for putting me straight.

     I did enjoy all the foods I loved, in modest amounts at the Super Bowl party. Oysters, Dips, Sweet Tea, and Slaw made a yummy assortment. I was satisfied on far less than I thought it would take. We were there for several hours and I did nibble a second time but chose lean deli meat and cheese to satisfy. I was also thrilled to see that the half time music, the m&m commercial with the song from Zumba class, and even Cruz’s latin inspired touchdown dance made me want to move. A single Zumba session would burn off the extra calories and more.

     Now as I enter week 7  and review week 6 I feel very comfortable with the decisions that I’ve made and the progress I see.  I lost another .8 lbs this past week so I’m still ahead of where I need to be to reach my goal to weigh 135 by 12/31/2012.  I did go over my calorie goal on Superbowl sunday by 225 calories. My lowest caories intake day was 1207 calories and the highest was 1825. My action steps call for 1600 calories or less a day. Everyday but one I was succesful and I did take action to offset the one day. I walked 10 miles this week and did my two toning sessions.  All the exercise and eating plan still works well. My action steps are proving to be effective and do-able. According to my daily log evaluations I need to be more diligent in affirmations and still struggle to get in 8 hours of sleep. Those will be focuses for the upcoming week. I am on track with all else. I did everything on my to-do list except picking up a few groceries I need for the coming week. I will do that tomorrow morning. Week 7’s Steeping Stones will look a lot like week six.

     My menu will be slightly diffrent this week. I am leaving a 100 -200 calories available for fun little treats each day. It’s my little Valentine gift to me. Maybe I will enjoy a min-dark chocolate bar, a cup of warm chai tea, or an extra chunk of rich cheese. I won’t eat more calories, I will simply use them a little differently. Happy Valentine’s Day to me! Do something nice for you!

     I am excited and energized as we go into a new week. I am ready to enjoy even more fully each part of the journey. If you haven’t created “Stepping Stones” for week 7, I encourage you to take a few minutes to do so now. Consider adding drinking more water and incorporating toning exercises into your plan if you haven’t already done so. If you are new to this process click on this link to learn more – Stepping Stones. I hope you are ready to live out loud and lose some weight!

Stepping Stones Week 7

Goal: ”To weigh 135 lbs by 12/31/2012. (That is a loss of approximately 40 lb in 1 year

Action Steps: I will continue to limit my daily caloric intake to 1600 calories, focusing on good nutrition in my choices. I will continue to speed walk no less than 8 miles during the week and include at least two combined toning and cardio exercise session. I will officially weigh in once this week, marking my progress on the Weight Tracker tool.”

To Do List

1. Plan Weekly Menu (See Plan To Eat Fabulous Foods.)

2. Grocery Shop (See Stocking The “New Me” Pantry.)

3. Refill Snack Basket (See The Real Food Fight .)

4. Weigh In (See Weigh In Wednesday.)

5. Organize Outfits and Gear (See Get Your Rear In Gear.)

6. Speed Walk a Total of 8 Miles

7.  2 or More Toning/Cardio Sessions (10 Ways to Increase Your Metabolism)

8. Enjoy a Rest Day. (See Balance.)

9. Grade Last Weeks Efforts (See A for Effort.)

10. Assess Past Week’s Efforts (See Assess for Success.)

11. Create next Stepping Stones Sheet

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Melissa
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 08:42:21

    Great blog! You have given great advice for the real enjoyment out of food. I enjoy the way u write, witty yet informative and extremely motivating. I look forward to future blogs about your success with your new healthy lifestyle!

    Reply

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