Today Edgar and I decided to go to the Taste of Plainview event here in town. It’s this convention-type event where various restaurants here in town set up booths and offer free samples on some of their best dishes and the attendees fill out ballots based on their favorites in various categories (ie. “Best Fast Food,” “Best Dessert” etc.). While I don’t necessarily consider this much of a “foodie” event since most the restaurants were chain restaurants, but it still made for a fun, worthwhile outing. If I hadn’t been the one paying, I would have considered it a date!
Anyway, I filled up a plate and went back twice for a smattering of other items that I couldn’t fit on plate number one. No, not the best advice for one trying to lose weight, but I’ve learned not to fear food or the occasional excess of it, but I’ll address that later.
My plate(s) consisted of a small Sonic salad (no chicken), some barbecue turkey and ham (SO AMAZING), buffalo wings from Chili’s and Pizza Hut, a supreme pizza from Pizza Hut (ate most of a standard slice), a Cali Chicken Bacon Ranch pizza from Dominos (at most of a half-slice. Was very good, though quite rich! My small piece was enough!), two mini-sopapillas with some kind of honey-butter sauce, 1.5 pumpkin empanadas, some cut fruit, a pinwheel, half a Dominos chocolate lava crunch thing, a Sonic cheddar pepper (not that good), a little bit of beef enchilada (I love me a good beef enchilada), two tiny pieces of cheese (swiss and pepperjack. have decided that swiss on its own is quite flavorless, but melted on a sandwich is great!), a tiny sampling cup of cantaloupe juice, and washed everything down with a bottle of water!
And YES, I ate pretty much all of it. And YES, it put a HUMONGOUS dent in my calories/points available for use this week. But you know what? That doesn’t bother me. Let me explain:
This week I’ve decided to work out a lot. A LOT. I mean, gaining 21 activity points lots. Monday, Tuesday, AND yesterday, I did a 3-mile walk/jog/run on TOP of 5-digit steps clocked on my pedometer. That’s also in addition to Zumba and a new workout video I got on Netflix (Billy Blanks Ab Bootcamp). And all day I’ve been INSATIABLY hungry. I’ve decided that my body probably knows what it needs, and STARVING it isn’t going to make me lose weight any faster (or healthier). I have this hypothesis that I lose more weight on weeks where I exercise frequently AND eat ALL the points those exercises burn, even if I eat TWICE the APs I recieve (thus breaking even between calories burns in exercise and calories consumed, since one food point is roughly=50 calories and activity points roughly=100 calories), than if I don’t exercise at all but never eat those extra calories in the first place. I’ve also noticed that in the past few months, my weight loss has slowed, but for some reason after a day or two of abnormally “high” calorie intake, I’ll randomly lose two pounds overnight. I think this has to do with my metabolism at the current time. I really think 21 points (+ 5 flex points/day) is too low normally, and exercising and consuming the calories burned from exercise actually may stimulate my body to burn those energy stores more efficiently.
I don’t know for sure. Like I said, it’s a hypothesis that I’m fully willing to experiment this week. If it works, I’m in no way suggesting that everyone do this, nor that it will work for me EVERY time. I’ve seen/heard of people who’ve overcome plateaus in strange ways, and the functioning of the human body is still a huge mystery to mankind.
That being said, I’ve also simply made peace with food. I’ve decided that food itself in NOT the enemy. Those fresh-made chocolate chip cookies lying around the office are not the enemy. I believe that it’s not the food itself that really makes people fat. It’s eating behavior! I grew up eating somewhat balanced meals (minus more than a few important nutrients, I’m sure), but what really contributed to my consistent carrying of a little extra pudge was the fact that I could not contain myself around snack food and dessert. I’m an external eater. I’m a grazer. I have a see-food complex. Whatever you want to call it. If we baked bread, cookies, brownies, whatever, it was gone within 24 hours. My parents learned long ago that 2-liters of soda are not safe in that house. It’ll be gone within hours. And a bag of chips with salsa? Please…
But now I’ve really made peace with “junk” food. I believe it’s okay in moderation, and I don’t feel deprived by not downing the whole pan of brownies in a sitting. I’ve learned I can’t keep that food lying out. Even if I have it in the house, if I put it in the pantry or fridge, I’ll be perfectly fine. I’ve overcome those irrational thoughts that tell me that I better take advantage of those trays of cookies while they’re available, because “who knows” when I’ll be able to have cookies again! It’s so silly, because now I know I can just whip up a small batch of homemade cookies if I really crave them. I’ve more or less learned to balance “indulgence” with a healthy lifestyle, and that’s why the fact that I consumed 3000 calories today doesn’t scare or bother me. I’ve lost 33 lbs in total, and that didn’t happen without my share of episodes of considerable overeating! And one night of indulgence is not going to make me gain back all that weight. The next meal will be right back to normal. I’m confident in that, and for the first time I think I finally understand what it means to be “on plan” even if I completely exceed my point allotments. I made a choice to eat what I ate, even if it was more than I originally expected. I’ve made the decision to make good choices and find that healthy balance in my life, and I believe this night of fun was fully worth the extra calories.