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When all you want to eat is a burger...

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

I was walking by a coworker's cube after picking up my lunch-time Americano (no cream, no sugar, just black) and saw he was eating a Wendy's meal. The scent of the fries and the smells of the burger wafted to me and I couldn't help but think, "I want a burger dammit!"

I didn't go out and get a Wendy's or Jack in the Box's or any franchise's burger and fries, you'll be happy to note. (At least, that made me happy.) But I did pout about it for about 15 seconds before moving on with my life.

Then I had a cool conversation with my boss about weight loss. I was talking about "eating normally" and he brought up (wisely), "Once you get to your goal, though, you won't ever REALLY eat normally."

There is a bit of truth to that, especially if you see what "normally" means in the American mindset. "Normally" being fast food a few times a week, maybe some restaurants. "Normally" includes burgers, fries, chips, beer, mixed drinks, specialty lattes, fattening desserts, and everything in between.

The thing is, I have to change what my "normally" is. I can't eat what I used to eat last year, else I'll end up back at 268 pounds. I have to make a new "normally" - a "normally" that includes more fruits and veggies, more lean meats, and less fast food/restaurant outings.

Will I miss that burger? Of course...even now, a part of me aches for it. But I've lost 84 pounds - no small amount! I'm healthier than I have been in years. I've had tons of energy for my job, for moving into my new apartment (and climbing stairs - I have no doubt that the stairs would have winded me last year!), for enjoying my life.

The other thing is: I was imaging the burger as being juicy, flavor-filled with crunchy, salty fries. Imagine if I thought of the burger instead as being greasy, covered in a soggy bun with limp fries with a sour taste. All of a sudden, I don't WANT to eat this burger. All of a sudden, my lean chicken salads with light dressing sound so much better.

I want to make this weight loss journey, this health journey my last. I'm willing to give up the burger and embrace the "new normal" to do that.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    You are doing so well. I get happy when I read your blogs. Maybe I have mentioned I have discovered vegetarian burgers and really like them! My daughter is a vegetarian and has been eating them for years and I always thought... yuck. We rarely have red meat now, lots more fish and brown rice, another food I thought was not good. Our new "normal". And I think nothing should be off limits, but everything in moderation.
    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1607 days ago
    Hey Carolyn! Like you I've had my 15 seconds of desire, but it goes away quicker the longer you've been on the journey. The most important thing is not to let feelings of deprivation build up so you don't trigger a binge. So you must think abut whether it is a BIG DEAL that you're not having a burger or whether it's a temporary twinge. Having a bit of success under your belt (so to speak) really helps in this case, 'cause you've seen the prize & it is in your sights. You're doing so well. Thanks for giving us a sneak peek into your journey. You are helping us all along the way!! emoticon emoticon
    1608 days ago
    I still eat burgers and fries...

    Well like SNOWYOGA, it's black bean burgers and baked fries. To me they taste better than the greasy limp burgers you mentioned.

    I make sure that nothing is "off limits" when it comes to food. If I want a cupcake, I have a cupcake. It'll be a vegan cupcake...but it's still a cupcake.
    1608 days ago
    I read the title and was like "but but burger! nothing inherently wrong with eating a burger..." and then I continued on and saw fast food burger and went "oh, no. no not one of those" lol yay for the new normal!

    burger for me now means fresh lean ground beef (correct portion size!), sauteed onions and mushrooms and spinach, one slice of sharp cheese on a real roll. nothing on the side, but a glass of water - one of those is meal enough. wendy's just can't compete.
    1608 days ago
    Our new normal can definitely include the occasional burger. But that burger might be every couple of months instead of twice a week. And when we select it, it will probably be to the exclusion of other "treat" options. Our journeys differ insofar as I have not been following a set diet like you have. So, I can happily report that I had a burger in March, no bun, no fries, it tasted great and I still lost weight emoticon . A burger can be part of our new normal, we just need to tweak the whens, whys, hows, wheres and whats of the way we consume it.
    1608 days ago

    Comment edited on: 5/22/2013 6:36:47 PM
    "Normal" is a relative term! Your new normal will be fantastic, and you will still be able to have a burger from time to time. =)
    1608 days ago
    Good idea to visualize the bad burger & fries rather than something that you want to eat. I do allow my self a McDouble once a week, no fries, I also plan it into the day...So my spinach salad is awaiting me for dinner.
    1608 days ago
    The best thing about the "new normal" is that it's active - you get to define and redefine it to suit yourself and your needs at each point in time. And it doesn't have to be anything like anyone else's "normal"!

    Isn't it fun to be different?!? emoticon

    Hope you're not too stressed out with the move, and are enjoying the "workout" of it!

    1608 days ago
    emoticon emoticon Thanks for sharing, but like you said you have done great and came a long way. I know that this isn't the same as that greasy burger, but I have 1 Morning Star Spicy Black Bean Burger Lots of taste and only 120 calories. And microwaveable You might want to check them out and there are others also. Good luck and keep up the great job! emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1608 days ago
    Thank you for sharing your feelings and for sharing your inspiring thoughts. It can be so hard to keep to a 'new normal' in a workplace environment. I'm so happy you found/realized a solution that was BEST for you!
    1608 days ago
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    1608 days ago
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