Wednesday, July 4, 2012

bad habits.

Yesterday I ran across this article discussing our, for lack of a better word, fucked-up relationship with food.

I was definitely raised to eat fast, because if I didn't, my older siblings would take all of the desirable foods from the table. Additionally, in elementary school, my brother and I learned to eat all of the "bad food" (candy, cakes, etc etc) before our mother returned home from work.

These childhood routines helped form my adult relationship with food, and as such, I gained a lot of weight by eating whatever I wanted, and as much of it as I could get. When I joined Weight Watchers for the cycle that stuck, I changed my relationship with food gradually and drastically over a five year period. It's because of that that I am proud to say I have kept most of the weight off all of these years.

I am definitely still guilty of three of the five pitfalls listed in the article. Mindless munching, stress feeding and eating WAY too fast. I know most of these things about myself, and have adjusted my eating habits to sort of... fit them in.

Mindless munching, I try to reach for volume foods when I know I just want to eat a lot. Popcorn, carrots, melon... things I can eat handfuls of and not feel guilty. This rolls right into stress feeding, as this is typically the only time I tend to reach for food over and over and over again.

The speed of consumption however, I struggle with a great deal.

How do you slow down to really enjoy your food?

Tuesday, July 3, 2012



I just returned from a week in Africa. I had absolutely no idea what to expect from this trip other than attending a traditional Maasai wedding. In my head, I imagined hikes, and moving; instead I mostly sat in the back of a Land Cruiser minibus, bobbling around on dirt roads that weren't necessarily meant for travel.

With all the welcoming and the celebration, I managed to gain weight while in a very poor country.

The American Way.

When I returned home on Sunday, I could not WAIT to get my hands on fresh fruits and vegetables, especially because I had literally been awake for 36 hours, 18 of which were in the air. I had been surviving on bread, corn and other starchy foods with some delicious sauteed/boiled cabbage on the side and a thrice daily ritual of tea made with whole milk. It was delightful, but hardly nutritionally sound. When you're in a country who has unreliable water and poor air quality, you're not supposed to eat any fruit or vegetable that you can't wash and peel first. This left us with very little options.

My grocery bill yesterday topped at $164, though this did include some staples that were on sale like my favorite Alba Cocoa Butter Lotion, Alba Sunscreen, and some glass jugs to replace the plastic ones I had been using for iced tea and iced coffee in my fridge. That, and my ultimate favorite guilty indulgence of Jeni's Ice Cream. This time in Roasted Strawberry Buttermilk.

The majority of my cart contained fresh fruits like cherries (my favorite!) in both red and Rainier, grapefruit, avocado, nectarines, white plums, pluots, bananas, and apples. I also stocked up on cucumbers, endive, cabbage (my latest favorite obsession due to Africa), and carrots. I did my best to stay away from starchy carbs, and instead opted for a new whole grains. I grabbed bulgar and red quinoa in the bulk section. I've never cooked with either, though I've had bulgar on many occasions.

This morning I have been tracking my food. I am also trying something new that I've never done throughout my weight loss journey, which is pre-tracking the things I plan to eat. I'd been successful by making a meal plan and keeping it on the fridge, but I never actually pre-tracked points (when on Weight Watchers) or written the food prior to having it in front of me.

I packed the day's snacks into my work bag and tracked them, I tracked my breakfast before I even started slicing the berries.

Have you ever pre-tracked your calories/food/points? Was this a successful course for you?