If calories burned are more than calories in, you lose weight. That is the one good, tangible thing about this discretionary eating challenge: I finally broke through a post-baby plateau.
I am halfway through Chili's discretionary eating challenge and I set several lofty and possibly unobtainable goals for myself:
- Avoiding restaurants, take-out, prepared deli foods, and frozen meals.
- Avoiding highly processed and refined food stripped of its nutrients.
- Avoiding sugary foods and drinks.
- Avoiding food eaten after physical hunger is satisfied (or to fix a low blood sugar).
- Watching my caffeine intake. Note I didn’t say significantly reduce!!
Why did I do this to myself? Because if I only aim halfway, I won't put in the effort. And the reality is I go out with great intentions and then backslide.
So how have I been doing? Here are just a few candid observations I've made:
- I'm doing 10 times better at packing lunches for work, but I fail to factor in healthy snacks and have been called to more work-related lunches than I've been to in a long time. I won't call out any coworkers specifically, but apparently our most productive meetings occur at Enzo's Pizza.
- I struggle with breakfasts. It's tough when you've admittedly been dependent on a morning diet of prepackaged oatmeal, containers of yogurt or Eggos. Even harder when a 3 year old demands frozen waffles or cereal most days - you wind up weighing the time demands of extra cooking plus managing a tantrum when the tired one doesn't get what she wants to start the day.
- I have more energy overall, but I'm finding my Diet Coke habit is directly correlated with Olympic coverage and teething.
- I could kill for some really good dark chocolate. Good thing no one's brought any into the office!
- Is it me, or does everything have added sugar or artificial sweeteners in them?
- It's a challenge to explain to my husband that I really don't need dinner after a late meeting. He's sees a diabetic; I know I'm not hungry,
I admit it's difficult to see the impacr of a few less envelopes of prepackaged oatmeal or one less soda. But, it's all about a growing awareness of what we produce.