Thursday, January 8, 2015

Getting Back in the Saddle after a Bad Food Day

I'd like to say that I'm writing about the way-back past when it comes to having a bad food day, but the truth is, I'm writing about yesterday. So, yes, even while writing a blog about eating healthier, I had a crash-and-burn day on the food front.

Here's the lowdown, filled with excuses and rationalizations: 

So yesterday was a very big day for our family. My 19-year-old daughter left for an 18-month mission trip to Africa. She'll receive her missionary training in Ghana and then is off to Madagascar and, I wanted to make her last two meals extra special as she will be eating lots of rice and beans and some unfamiliar dishes while over there. I got up early and made an egg casserole and our very favorite authentic French hot chocolate. On the sweets front, I thought that if my husband picked up some donuts from the bakery (instead of my making something from scratch), I would have an easier time of it food-wise.

I did okay at breakfast, having a little of everything but neglecting to have any fruit or wholegrains. Then, I offered to take my daughter out for lunch, just the two of us, and she chose a favorite local Italian restaurant. Swept up in the current of such a big day, I didn't think through what I was going to order and ended up ordering nothing healthy at all...then, we came home and put together a bag of little Finnish candies (from my other daughter who is on a mission-trip in Finland) for my daughter to take with her to Africa. Of course, I sampled and then sampled some more and, well you get the idea, I slid down the slippery slope and into the black hole of a bad food day. And while it was an amazing day for our family, it was not so good on the food front.

What I learned: I was reminded that when I don't eat well, I don't feel so well. By evening, I felt anxious (a common symptom when I've had too much sugar/white flour) and sluggish, and while a portion of the anxiety might have had something to do with having a daughter on a plane bound for Africa for the first time, a good portion was also due to my food choices.

I also had it reinforced that when I make poor food choices earlier in the day (especially the decision to have a breakfast that consists only of things with little or no nutritional content), I am more likely to continue making poor food choices throughout the day.

My Plan of Action Going Forward: I actually did something very beneficial last night...I got back in the saddle before I went to bed. While my husband and two youngest children were at an activity, I made a large salad. My husband and kids came home while I was eating it, and my 12-year-old son asked to have some salad himself. Hooray! Before eating the salad I was experiencing those gnawing hunger pangs that I have only when I have eaten lots of food with low nutritional content. After the salad, the pangs were subdued and I went to sleep feeling much better.

This morning, I made a point of eating a terrific bowl of oatmeal with some Flax and Chia seeds thrown in. Mid-morning, I drank a smoothie with spinach and kale leaves, frozen strawberries, 1/2 banana, and 1/3 cup plain non-fat yogurt with some water for blending. Then for lunch, I enjoyed some delicious crock pot split pea soup. Yum. Everything has tasted delicious and I don't have those hunger pangs I did yesterday.

For the remainder of this day, I commit to eating a large salad and having some more split pea soup for dinner as well as fruit, and possibly some whole grains. I commit to having no sweets today. I need a vacation. If I am tempted to sway from this plan, I will check in on my blog to hold myself accountable. Though I have been tempted to weigh myself to better assess yesterday's damage, I will hold off to weigh until Monday, knowing that one day will not do me in. This is about progress, not perfection. And, overall, I'm making progress. I hope you are as well.
Love this visual reminder to stay in the boat of eating healthier, keeping it well stocked. I need to look at her more often.

Sneak Peek at Tomorrow's Post: More Thoughts on Recovering from a Bad Food Day

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