I am so sorry I have been MIA since end of May! It has been crazy with several unplanned last minute trips for work that turned EVERYTHING upside down.
I also planned a mini-blog break, that I wasn't really intentionally keeping secret, so I could focus on working on my book. Well, I have had lots of ideas swarming and yet not the progress I was hoping for. But tonight as I was writing a confession message to my SparkPeople Biggest Loser team for June, it became a blog post. And here we are.
These past few days have resulted in some scary realizations. And some very very bad choices.
SO. I'm here to confess. Ready for it?
On Tuesday I learned that I would be traveling to TN and VA on Wednesday (there and back in the same day via plane - I live in FL but work in AL). SO I was in 4 states that day. I'm pleased to say that I started off with a green smoothie, ate a larabar for snack on the way to the event, then was veeeery careful at the buffet. Mostly fruit, veggies and some crackers/cheese (just 3 cubes of cheese). And...3 chocolate covered strawberries. Still not that bad. I was pumped and proud of myself.
Thursday morning I was glad to be back in my office and then decided I had to go to Lakeland, FL for work. I had to leave within an hour of finding out and since I was driving (6+ hours) I rushed home to pack my bags, find someone to watch my dog and hit the road. I tried really hard to pack my running clothes. Got as far as my shoes, sweatband and sports bra...but just one problem. No clothes to wear to the hotel gym. And all I had otherwise was denim and my suit. SO. I did not run on Friday morning as I planned to.
Let's back up a bit as to why me not exercising one day would be THAT big an issue.
On Thursday for lunch we ate at my favorite BBQ place and I had smoked turkey, cole slaw, baked beans, and, wait for it, 2 pieces of garlic toast. Seriously. Seriously? So I figured I'd eat a light dinner. WRONG. Instead I opted for a fried chicken sandwich, waffle fries AND a milkshake. Did you hear me? A milkshake. Oh and a diet coke. Quadruple-past-life-whammy.
I began feeling a little...OUT.OF.CONTROL.
The next morning we had the breakfast buffet at the hotel (greeeat). One biscuit, one piece of bacon, a spoonful of gravy and a bowl of strawberries and pineapple and small glass of OJ. Was a little proud of myself even. Not terrible. I could have made a waffle and slathered peanut butter and syrup on it.
AND then there was lunch. We ate at a great mexican restaurant as I was craving avocado (i.e. guac). Their guacamole was pretty healthy but I'm sure the chips were not. And instead of opting for a salad without the cheese and salsa as my dressing, I opted for one chicken enchilada and one chicken and bean tostada. I only had one bite of the creamy potatoes they serve with it and didn't touch the refried beans. But I was so stuffed to the gills that I didn't feel good. Sheer volume of food even if the choices weren't the worst.
I continued letting the wagon drag me and I had a hot fudge sundae from McDonalds with extra fudge and a bacon cheeseburger for dinner. I did make one good choice at dinner and opted for a side salad instead of the fries. Because really, I don't like fries anymore at all. Thank God!
Today would have been the day to redeem myself.
Great run this morning followed by a green smoothie. On the right track. Lunch was half a cheeseburger and half a chicken sandwich (hubby and I split it). We threw away the onion rings as, much like french fries, they taste like grease. WIN! Followed by a HUGE LOSE when we split a large bag of popcorn AND I ate a bag of pretzel M&Ms (2 servings worth).
Tonight at dinner I had two things.
A leftover turkey burger. And a huge side of remorse.
It serves to remind me that I am not "healed" from my former issues with food. I'm beginning to realize that much like an addict, I will always be just one cheeseburger away from the edge of the healthy wagon I've been driving for so long. It's like I'm driving (blogging, logging into spark people every day to track my food), then I decide to be a passenger and watch for a while (i.e. blog break and slipping on my daily tracking). And eventually I just jump off the back and let it drag me for a little while.
And much like any type of sin in one's life....once the dust settles, day breaks and you are once again where you should be, the poor decisions made are like open gaping wounds.
These wounds cause you to question your own integrity even. What kind of example am I? What kind of person preaches good health and wise decisions and then goes on a 5,000 calorie spree in a weekend of weakness?
I'll tell you what kind.
A REAL person. And I've never been anything but real with you folks.
So this blog really is embarrassing to me. It is tough to admit I've failed. It is challenging for me to suck it up and say, hey, look at the damage I've done these last four days.
And besides just the sheer issues the scale and I will face in the next few days...imagine how sick to my stomach I feel. Not just from guilt. More from my body rejecting all this crazy and unnecessary junk I literally inhaled this last few days.
So if you are on a really good track right now, please PLEASE let my failings these last 3 days keep you on track and help you realize it is not worth the ick I'll be going through the next few days. Have a treat every now and then but good gracious, don't jump off the wagon without a parachute or a rope.
As typical of me, my failing has helped me learn a few MAJOR lessons I'll share.
1) It is NOT NOT NOT worth it. I would trade all the cheeseburgers and milkshakes in the world for my stomach not to feel so bleh right now. I would also feel so accomplished had I made healthy decisions 90% of my time with all this travel. I would have been that much stronger. I KNOW it is possible. I lost most of my weight when my job required me to travel regularly. Every place I visited had healthier choices than I made. Ick. It's also not worth the mental anguish I'm going through tonight as I realize just how badly I treated my innards this week.
2) Much like running and athletics, food choices and healthy living are MOSTLY mental. What does that mean exactly? It means that when you DECIDE in advance you will eat healthy, you will. I did not take the time to make any conscious decisions besides jumping off the back of that wagon. And I didn't try to get back on. Good thing my foot was caught by a rope (this blog and all of you). I'm climbing on now, sheepishly, humbly, and validly embarrassed. 3 days into gastro-distress. So much like running, when I feel like stopping at 2 miles, but push myself and end up running 4 miles, I know for a fact that I am capable of making better choices. I just have to keep pushing myself past that challenging situation and triumph in each leg of this race, one good decision at a time.
3) The occasional treat every now and then is necessary. I think the stricter you are, the more you set yourself up for a huge binge and FAIL. Which is why I always harp about dieting not working. That isn't necessarily what happened in my case as I'm pretty much an 80/20 girl, but even so. I obviously had wanted a milk shake for awhile and just suppressed that feeling. Should have just bought some mildly healthy ingredients and made myself one at home! Much safer than the 570 calorie, 26 gram of fat one I consumed at chick fil a...when you deprive for too long you can end up with weaker resolve. Had I had just ONE less-than-perfect decision each day I could have probably stayed in my calorie range. OOPS.
I may have lost this battle. But I WILL win this war. Am I disappointed in myself? Sure! Do I wish I could have a redo? Of course! But I also believe in the value of lessons learned. During this journey, I have learned that each failure becomes an opportunity if I so choose to look at it that way.
And I see the opportunities here. To share with you my struggles. To become stronger and more conscious of my decision making going forward. To make planning such a priority that I stop everything I'm doing to plan my next meal or meals if I'm traveling.
I have more travel and events coming up this week. And I am right now planning to make as many good choices as possible.
Thanks for listening, and ultimately for forgiving me of my failings. I've forgiven myself and already feel better. Because I know that while I might slip up again in the future, I'll never fully go back to who I was before. And I will lose this last chunk of weight in 2011.