This blog title isn't exactly the Queen's English but every once in a while you have to say it in a way that just gets right to the heart of the matter
I have been busier then three cats
in the desert with diarrhea! Living in AZ is very "different." We have brutally hot summers and so we have tons of people who live here only part of the year. For those of us who live here year round, late September through May sees a huge population explosion and a lot of changes that go with that. One place this really effects me is at church. I am in two choirs and I've recently started playing the electronic chimes. This means hours of practice during the week, and hectic weekends. I also do some volunteer work and am on a couple of committees, along with my regular activity/exercise schedule 3-6 times a week. Now don't misunderstand - I'm not bragging about how much I do. I actually think I'm out of my mind sometimes for getting involved in so much
Still, it keeps me busy and out of trouble and those who know me know how easy it is for me to get in trouble
The upshot of all these activities starting up again over the last couple of weeks has been that I have been unable to spend as much time on Spark People as I usually do. In fact, over the last week, I haven't been tracking - or when I have, I haven't always completed it thoroughly and run my reports
On top of this, I've had three occasions where I had to eat away from home, and two of them were church events where I had no knowledge or control over what was being served. The other occasion was a friend taking a group out to eat at a "surprise" location - again, no clue where or what kind of food
This was a disaster - in my mind - and I was certain that when I had the guts to get on the scale I would be devastated
Now, before I tell you what the outcome was, I want to tell you a little about the food at these three events.
The ones at church were buffet tables loaded with shrimp and macaroni salad; bean salads; crab salad, potato salads; broccoli and bacon salads; all kinds of jello and fruit salads - some with nuts and some with marshmallows; croissants; and all kinds of cookies and donuts
. The surprise restaurant turned out to be TGI Friday's and if you've ever eaten there I defy you to point out anything on that menu - other then coffee and water - that isn't huge and loaded with fat and calories!
So, here is what I did: at the church meals, I ate tiny little portions of crab salad, shrimp and macaroni salad, and three bean salad. I passed on the croissants and the cookies and ate about 1/2 cup of one of the jello salads for dessert. I drank water. At TGI Friday's, I didn't get fooled by the salads
Because of all the articles and quizzes on Spark that I've read and taken, I saw the hidden dangers in those salads. I stayed away from the fried food and the creamy type stuff. I ordered a pulled pork sandwich which came with french fries, onion rings, and pickles. I took the top of the bun and put it aside and ate half of the bottom bun and pork - which I estimated was about 3 oz. I ate one onion ring and 5 french fries. I drank a cup of coffee and skipped dessert altogether. I was still worried that my scale was going to break when I got on it, and that the darn thing would be laughing at me evilly as I cried
I should add that I did get in my exercise as usual during this time frame. So, in spite of my fears, I braved it and got on the scale this morning. I didn't lose an ounce, but the good news is I didn't gain an ounce either
The "take-away" for me in this story is not only relief but also a feeling of accomplishment. There will be times when we just can't track. There will be times we are faced with foods we normally wouldn't prepare or eat at home. There will be times we even want to eat something we normally wouldn't prepare or eat. However, we need not fear because we are armed with Spark-u-cation
We have learned how to eye-ball our portions and how big a portion we should be eating. We have learned how to eat everything but scale down the amount we eat to stay within our calorie range. We have even learned how to pick foods that give us the nutrients our bodies need to stay healthy and feel satisfied! We have learned to have a new and healthier relationship with food - one that get us off the "diet roller-coaster" and gives us the tools to maintain our slimmer and healthier bodies for the rest of our lives - church potlucks and surprise dinners, and everything else that comes our way!
and a BIG HUGE
to Spark Guy who started this great site!