I’ve been in a pretty healthy groove again since late December, but I’ve had some thoughts in the last 24 hours that have helped me regain some of the confidence that I lost last year…
Shortly before dinner last night, I went to the grocery store to pick up some vegetables to add to my salad. And on the way home, I passed a restaurant that makes gigantic, deep-fried cheese sticks that make me salivate whether I’m hungry or not (even right now.) And for a moment I thought about the days long ago that I used to visit here, drive to that place and pick up an order (or two) of the big, hot cheese sticks and eat them all when I got home – followed by a 3 scoop ice cream sundae. That occurrence (though not with this particular restaurant) was far too familiar in those days, and when I’d finish, I’d feel sick and promise myself that I wouldn’t do that again…then I’d do it again.
As I drove by that place last night I realized that I hadn’t given it a thought in years. And when the restaurant did catch my attention, for a split second, I thought about those days. I remembered a time in my life in which I ate without thinking twice about it, and I remembered the taste of those stupid cheese sticks.
But in the next moment, I smiled as I drove by because I thought about my life now. Sure, I don’t take a bite or a drink of anything without calculating it in my mind, and everyday I wake up and think about the workout I’m going to do. I go out of my way to look up nutrition facts, and often times, it takes monumental effort to tell myself no.
And last night I thought about how delicious those cheese sticks would have been for a moment before coming home to see homemade french fries that my visiting relatives were eating while I was preparing to have a big spinach and cabbage salad.
And as I sat down with my family, after a little teasing, I took a few bites of the fries before quickly pushing away the rest, and I said…”Do you know how hard it is to pass up those fries right now? Not nearly as hard as it was to walk up a flight of stairs before I started making healthy choices. Screw the fries. I’m having the salad.”
I got up immediately and prepared my giant salad with baby spinach, romaine, cabbage, cucumbers and tomato with a little protein on the side then sat down again and ate it while I enjoyed their company.
I’m not saying that we have to choose salad over fries every time, but I am saying that while the fries or the cheese sticks, no doubt, would have tasted great for a few minutes, the salad which was loaded with healthy and hearty things that I like too, left me feeling full and satisfied while bringing me closer to my goals. And with that knowledge, I can tell you that last night’s salad was the best salad I’ve ever eaten.
A few minutes after dinner, the dull craving I experienced (which I’m going to talk about it a post soon) passed, and I was happy with my choice to eat something healthy, flavorful, delicious and filling.
I know that my journey is not over and that some days will be harder than others – I’m no stranger to that. But today, I am not intimidated or nervous or anxious about it. Instead, I’m clinging to the knowledge that I can do this…I am doing it, and once again, and it feels good to say that I’m healthier today than I was yesterday.