Happy “Chewsday” Everyone!

You may remember last week I talked about getting a handle on my eating – for health’s sake, for the sake of my pants fitting, and for the sake of my running prowess.  It just so happens that Princess Lisa over at Prairie Princess Runners is also looking to clean up her act and get healthier before her next big race.  So of course, we did the logical blogger thing and decided to team up to keep each other accountable.  Of course, we’re techno-challenged, so we were unable to come up with an actual link-up, but never mind that!  If you’re interested in joining in and eating better, let me know in the comments below!

what you've always doneI definitely need a partner.  Every time I decide to “clean up” my diet (approximately 30 times a year), I think to myself, “OK, this is it.  This time, it’s gonna be different.  This time, I’m gonna stick with it.”  And I’m super committed for about 3 hours, and then 2pm hits and I REAAALLLY want some candy, and it all goes to hell.  I tend to have an all or nothing mindset, so if I “ruin” my day by having some sugar, I tend to just go all out and eat whatever I want the rest of the day/week/month.  And then a few weeks later I get fed up and decide to start all over again.

No more.  I can’t keep doing this to myself.  I know I run better, sleep better, and generally feel better when I eat less sugar and more fruits and vegetables.  I want to commit to a healthier diet at least until after my half, so essentially, the entire month of June.  I’m hoping that after a month, the habits will be sort of ingrained and I’ll just continue them afterwards anyway.  I would also like to clarify that when I use the word “diet,” I simply mean the combination of all the things I eat, rather than a restrictive plan like South Beach or Paleo.

In the interest of S.M.A.R.T. goal-making, I’m going to lay out some specific guidelines to help me eat better.

  • Only one serving of “treat” per day (whatever the recommended serving size is), preferably after dinner, to avoid a mid-afternoon sugar slump
  • Fruit or veggies with EVERY meal. This is still something I struggle with, but I’m getting a lot better and learning to like tolerate a lot of different veggies
  • Plan meals–including lunch.  Ben and I have been great about planning dinners, and he’s totally on board with helping me make better choices.  The problem is lunches.  If we don’t have leftovers, I don’t have lunch.  Which usually leads to me going to Chipotle.  Mmmm, Chipotle.
  • Lean protein at every meal.  This is not hard.  Eggs for breakfast, almonds for snacks, chicken, beans, chickpeas, tofu…The list goes on and on.  I’m not good about this, and that’s usually why I’m hungry all the time and end up eating too much.
  • Snack better.  I’ve been relying pretty heavily on Clif Builder Bars lately, and while they have lots of protein, they also have tons of sugar.  I need to rely more on whole food options–cottage cheese, yogurt, almonds, fruits and veggies.
  • No booze on work nights.  Not only are alcoholic drinks full of empty calories, booze tends to mess up my sleep patterns, which is exactly what I don’t need when I’m trying to get up at 5:30 am and run.  Even one drink can have adverse affects, so I just need to stop those occasional after-work beers.

Seeing this stuff written down seems pretty simple and common sense, and I’m hoping that will be the case.  I feel pretty good about this, but I’ve got a lot of challenging situations coming up over the next few weeks.  I’m going on vacation with my family starting on Friday, which is almost always an excuse to throw over healthy eating in favor of sweet, boozy drinks and delicious, fatty foods and sugary treats.  The weekend after that, we’re going to a wedding, which is basically an excuse to drink free booze and eat free food.  And two weeks after that is the Catamount Half Marathon.  I don’t really have a lot of time left for making excuses, so I’m hoping that by publicly committing myself to this plan, I stick with it.

I’ll be adding an “Operation: Diet Clean-Up” check-in to my Friday Free-For-All posts so that I stay accountable, and you can follow my progress.

If you don’t already follow Prairie Princess Runners, I highly suggest you go over and check them out.  I know Princess Lisa is going to be a great “accountabilibuddy.”  Oh, South Park, you slay me!

Do you have an “accountabilibuddy” for your healthy eating or workouts?  Do you find it helps you to stay accountable?

What’s your favorite healthy eating tip or trick?

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31 thoughts on “Happy “Chewsday” Everyone!

  1. Kimberley@Black Dog Runs Disney says:

    I do now, thanks ladies! Since the world’s BEST chocolate chip cookies are made daily at my fave little deli down the street from work, I have to have some pretty strong willpower to just say no. The trick? Vanilla greek yogurt mixed with granola before lunch. Satisfies that sweet craving and fills me up before I get there, so I’m not so tempted. Back away sugar monster, back away.

    • DarlinRae says:

      I LOVE yogurt and granola! I’ve been meaning to make some of my no sugar added granola – now I have an incentive!

      Good luck resisting the cookies, I know I’d need it if I had a bakery right down the street!

  2. SuzLyfe says:

    You’ll do great. You have a great plan set out in front of you, and you’ll be able to ease up on your stringent planning out of your day as you get more comfortable. My goal is always to have more healthy on my plate and in my fridge than the unhealthy. Also just don’t bring in things that you know you don’t have control around, and don’t have things in bulk, or portion them out ahead of time.
    Good luck!

    • DarlinRae says:

      Portion-control is a huge issue for me. I probably should have incorporated that into my goals, but at least I’m aware of it.

      Thanks for the tips, and the encouragement!

  3. dgobs says:

    Having an accountabilibuddy is huge. (South Park FTW!) The times I’ve had one and we’ve *actually* held each other accountable made a big difference… unfortunately I tend to pick accountabilibuddies that are too much like me and we enable each other to slack. Not good!

    One trick that’s worked for me is to keep the healthy snacks around the house, instead of the chocolate and cookies and things I’d naturally gravitate to. If my only choice is an apple, I’ll eat the apple. Otherwise I’m hopeless!

    • DarlinRae says:

      I’m the same way! I always think that I can be moderate, but am never able to follow through. I need to be a lot better about having the healthy options around.

  4. txa1265 says:

    Some parts are easy for me – I absolutely love fruits and veggies and nuts and pistachios and so on, so my diet is riddled with good stuff.

    When I lost weight and ‘got serious’ about running two years ago and cleaned up my eating, I lost my taste for packed junk food. I think that has helped me – I will eat sweets, but I have to make them myself (well, or Lisa or Chris). So this weekend I made myself some great peanut butter fudge that I layered in with graham crackers and chocolate … not ‘lite’ … but oh, so good 🙂 Lasted three days.

    My point is that rather than deny myself, I make my eating ‘intentional’. By making my ‘junk food’, I know the ingredients and control them. I can make the healthiest carrot cake that is still incredibly delicious. For me it is about picking and choosing my battles in a way that I never feel like I am restricting or denying, nor do I feel post-consumption guilt. Win-win.

  5. Jordina says:

    Regarding food I believe I do not need anything to help me stay accountable, I am quite fond of healthy food and cooking in general and I have always followed a healthy diet. I like cooking food myself and I try to experimentate with foods and recipes and find the most delicious ones, thus I do not get bored of the tipical steamed veggies.. 🙂 btw, If you want to see a delicious Spanish side meal recipe visit my blog! 🙂 xx

  6. Amy says:

    I’ve been trying to get back on track, too. I’m trying to start by tracking my food. Just doing that makes me more conscious of what I eat. Once I make that a habit, I’ll start making small changes. Big changes all at once don’t stick for me.

  7. candies & crunches says:

    I feel like the only time that I can hold myself accountable is during Lent. I think it’s because so many people know what I gave up during that time, that I don’t even bother cheating lol! I’m gonna jum on the wagon though. It seems like I’ve been eating too many sweets lately 😀

    xoxo
    Olena

  8. kebe51 says:

    I think it’s so great that you guys are doing this! An accountability buddy is definitely a great motivator! I definitely need to get my eating back on track and try and be better with what I consume and when. I blame my husband’s freakish metabolism! lol I’m gonna give this a try too. Now all I need to do is find more veggies that don’t make me gag.

    Good luck!

    • DarlinRae says:

      Ugh my fiance has a freakish metabolism too! He eats three times what I do and is all muscle. Jerk! 😉

      I really have a tough time with veggies 😦 And it’s totally hit or miss too–sometimes I like asparagus, sometimes it makes me gag. It’s all in how I feel at the time and how it’s prepared.

  9. Jennifer says:

    You have some great ideas! I think that, for me, planning is the most essential part. I do bring my lunch to work every day, but some weeks I have an amazing salad each day that I prepared on Sunday, and some days… it’s whatever was left in the kitchen. You’ve inspired me to get back on the meal planning bandwagon!

    • DarlinRae says:

      Yay, excellent! It really makes SUCH a difference. Even if you plan a “whatever’s left day” in there, at our house, having a plan means that dinner actually happens. And we also save a significant amount of money by only buying what we need for meals for the week as opposed to buying whatever we want. Win win!

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