Wednesday, January 12, 2011

My Lifestyle.

After my last blog post on goal setting, I wanted to let Ann's comments really sink in. They're totally reasonable and valid, especially if you really want to be dedicated to weight loss, but sometimes life gets in the way, and that is just [my] reality.

I tried to picture my ideal lifestyle, or the kind of person I want to be, and settled in quite comfortably on the fact that the reason I have gained back some of this weight is because I absolutely am, and want to be, a social creature. The odd thing is, as we get old(er), social outings turn more and more into calorie consumption. Coffee, happy hour, dinner, etc. In the dead of winter it's hard to convince a girlfriend to join you for a -20 degree walk with the dog. It's even harder yet to convince the jet-setters to come play a game of broomball.

My professional life requires me to attend a lot of networking events. I can certainly choose not to indulge at these events, but that's genuinely not what I want to do. I know I can strike a balance, and it's a learning game. I'm going to fail. A lot. And I will learn from it.

I'll learn that I think miniature desserts are adorable and I want to put them in my mouth. A bunch of times. 10 times. And then I'll learn that 10 mini cupcakes amount to a gain on the scale when coupled with a few glasses of wine and some cheese and crackers. And then I'll learn that next time I can still have a mini cupcake, but we'll leave the "s" off the end, and I can still have a glass of wine, but I'll take a few sips and set it down and have a conversation because really, I'm there to further my career, not drink free wine and stuff cupcakes down my throat.

The compromise I have dedicated myself to so far on this new leg of the journey is cooking at home more. I have eaten at home every night this year, which is pretty good considering we're nearly 2 weeks in. I've enjoyed getting back into cooking and learning how to cook for one. Well, technically just still cooking for 4 but learning the proper techniques to freezing the leftovers and remembering that I have a freezer full of brightly colored and labeled leftovers at my disposal when the fridge is starting to look bare.

Not only is this helping me with my weight loss goals, but it's also saving me SO much money. When I start to run out of food, it doesn't mean an emergency trip to the grocery store, because I have about 25 meals in my freezer at any given time. All I need to do is pop them in the fridge to thaw and by dinner time, a quick heat up and I'm set. The only thing I need to purchase regularly is a ton of fruit, mixed greens and my favorite yogurts and cottage cheese!

My ideal lifestyle mixes being a homebody with being a social creature in moderation. Learning the techniques to let indulgences feel like indulgences and not the every day routine. Burgers are not for Monday through Friday, they are for Friday, and Friday only, and maybe only every 3rd Friday if at all.

I definitely think eating out is important. I get all sorts of ideas for my cooking through eating at different restaurants. I truly enjoy and savor food when I am out, versus my tendency to scarf it down in front of the Housewives when I'm at home. I also love eating out for the opportunities it provides Date Night with my manpanion, whom I don't live with. We do all sorts of active things, but the 2 of us LOVE to eat, and there's no sense denying that.

How do you balance life and weight loss? Where are your areas that you simply won't compromise because you know it's important to learn this as a long-term lifestyle over a quick fix? Do you still eat dessert every night, enjoy a soda a few times a week or grant yourself permission to drink a glass of wine in the bath?

4 comments:

Ann said...

Hey girl, I hope my comment wasn't offensive. I wasn't trying to be mean or call you out. I've seen friends start a weight-loss journey with the assumption they can indulge a few times a week, and it never ends successful. That being said, if you can find a way to make it work, I totally commend and respect you for it!! I always feel like I'm saying "no"when people offer me food or want me to participate in some activity that takes me away from my goals. My true friends understand how important this is to me.... And when I finally fit into those "skinny jeans", I know I've made the right choice. Good luck making it work for YOU. :)

nic said...

You definitely didn't offend me!

I just come at this from a different angle. I have lost weight and kept a lot of it off. I've been at it for a long time.

When you asked me what kind of person I want to be, it was easy to answer, because I don't want to be the person who says no all the time. And I don't want to have to nitpick every little thing because the fact of the matter is THIS IS FOR LIFE.

Once you lose the weight and "fit in your skinny jeans," you'll still have to stay on top of it. I'm living proof. I lost all that weight, kept it off for a while, gained a little back and now I'm taking it off again.

Can you imagine spending the rest of your life never eating out? Or attending a cocktail party?

It's just not reasonable.

Alexa said...

Nic,

The only way I keep myself sane, is really denying myself of nothing, and also, listening to my body. For instance, today I went to D'Amico and Sons for lunch. All the wonderful creamy pasta salads were screaming out to me, but did I get the pick three salad sampler? No, I got one side salad, and a cup of the vegetable chicken soup, and guess what? I was full and satisfied, and didn't feel denied!

Now, I'm not one of those people who can have just one bite of a brownie, or just a few fries when they're right in front of me. So, there are times I give in. I ate a whole brownie with breakfast yesterday, because I wanted to, and if I didn't, I would think about it the whole day.

So, without anymore personal stories, I guess I'm just saying, don't put any food off limits, enjoy your life, it's the only one you've got, but surround yourself with good for you food at home, that can make delicious and nutritious meals. And, then, if you're still craving that cookie, walk to Lunds, buy it, rip off half, eat it, enjoy it and throw the other half in the garbage (I've done this!), people may look at you like you're crazy throwing away half of a baked good, for a blizzard that only has five bites out of it, but if it works for me, screw those people!

Jen, a priorfatgirl said...

umm....before I address the meat of your post, can I address the dessert of your post? What kind of social/work events are YOU going to? free cupcakes and wine? I MUST hang out with you ASAP! Or...maybe it is better that I don't? I'm so torn!

Now, back to your post? I love your thinking - you've been through this before and, although I don't intend to imply that I doubt you, I'm confident you will be here again. Not the "losing weight" part but the evaluating your healthiness goals, trying to figure out what you are doing, and where you are going. I say I don't imply that I doubt you because it isn't about if you will succeed or fail - this is your life. Forever and always, we must continually reflect on what we are doing and if it is right for us at that moment in time. I have maintained my 90lb weight loss for 1.5 years and guess what? I eat cupcakes and drink wine. And apples and carrots. I am figuring out how to live life without being chained to a "diet."

ok ok - I'll get off my soapbox now.