The fast food indulgence that didn't turn me into a face-stuffing lunatic

Thursday, April 04, 2013

Last night I had my first fast food meal in almost 3 months. I usually go to my parents house once a week to watch Justified (season finale last night...AWWWESOMEsauce!). Usually I budget my calories because I know they end up cooking stuff a little higher in calories/carbs/sodium than I do. But last night they decided to get Captain D's instead since my dad had a doctor's appointment. My parents do not get fast food much, so this was unusual for them too.

I could have went there and ate something different. But you know what? Fish sounded good. It wasn't ridiculously unreasonable in nutrition as long as I was careful. I ended up eating 2 pieces of battered fish, a half-cup of green beans, half a serving of fries, and a stuffed crab shell. And even a tablespoon of ketchup (I used to be the Ketchup queen, so I was most concerned about this). And it was delicious. And yes, I wanted more at the end, but I waited. I kept the plate in front of me and said if in 20 minutes I wanted another piece of fish, I'd get it and not stress about it. And at the end of the 20 minutes, the fish sounded tasty, but I was satisfied enough that I was just "Eh, nevermind."

I didn't go crazy and dive into the box of fries. I didn't grab the fish with my mouth and growl at their cat when she advanced to battle me for it. This morning, I didn't go buckwild and hit up the McD's drive-thru, stuffing my bra with bacon, egg, and cheese biscuits for breakfast and daytime snacks.

What I'm trying to say is, it wasn't the end of the world because I indulged. Or that I didn't think the food was disgusting. And I felt fine afterwards. Other than some sodium bloat, I was perfectly OK other than being exhausted. But I was that way before I ate it.

I think my body understands now that it's OK for me to eat some crazy stuff now and then, but I need to be reasonable about it and make an effort to eat slowly and make some smart choices if I can. Like the half-serving of fries. And even though I want more, I've gotten smart enough to say "Calm down, it isn't like this is the last piece of battered Captain Ds fish you will ever see."

I'm not saying it's SUPER easy. But it's a heck of a lot easier than it was three months ago. I've learned that as long as I don't let myself get too hungry, have backup/prepared meals and go-to snacks, and I try to plan for unusual meals, then I'm going to be a lot less likely to snap up some fast food. But if I do, it really is OK. I may have to nudge my body in the right direction, but it is not my enemy. We can reach a compromise.

So this? MAJOR progress. I'm not saying I will never eat fast food again ever or act like a pig at some point, but my hope is that as long as I stay the course, it will be the 20% rather than the 80% of my diet.

Never give up! Never surrender!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    awesome job!
    3030 days ago
    Awesome Job! emoticon
    3031 days ago
  • no profile photo CD12380606
    This is a great post!! I live your way of looking at things, and it seems like the healthiest possible attitude to have towards fast food. It's not the devil, moderation is king, etcetc. Way to go!
    3031 days ago
  • no profile photo CD13744193
    I applaud your will power of not saying Screw it and eating the whole thing!! I don't want to live in a world where you can't occasionally have some fast food!! But I am sure your coworkers are happy your bra isn't filled with Mickey D's!! LOL
    3031 days ago
    First, to add to the people, NICE WORK!

    Second, THAT is the way to eat! When you make your goal weight, you will still have to do this (as will I) but like another poster said, THIS is very likely how people who never struggle with weight issues eat ALL the time!!!

    I could have written this myself, it was relatable. Sunday (easter) I ate some candy and treats. It was DELISH. You know what though? I left it to that day. I was done. I'm back on track. I think that is the first step to really enjoying the moderation and weight loss. Allowing yourself a splurge or even a screw-up day (because they happen, even though yours wasn't a screw up, or even much of a splurge - calorie wise!) but not letting it derail all of your progress!

    Way to go.
    3031 days ago
    I'm glad you were able to enjoy your fried fish reasonably, along with Timothy Elephant. Who is unreasonably enjoyable.

    I have had that experience more and more - with fast food, with holiday stuff, etc. It is a great feeling! Plus I love that you make the point that this doesn't mean you are "cured" and you'll never overeat again in your life. Also important to recognize!

    I unknowingly joined you yesterday. I was traveling for work which meant lunch out. I was going to get soup and salad, or a small veggie omelet, but one of the lunch specials was chicken and a biscuit and it sounded SO. GOOOOD. And it was. SO GOOOOD. I enjoyed every single bite without overeating (I didn't eat the Mount St. Potato that was provided underneath) and my dinner was reasonable so I was within range even with my Big Bad Lunch. ahhhhh!

    My theory is that this is how Normal People (by which I mean, people who have never had a weight problem) eat all the time. They sometimes eat a big meal or high calorie foods, but then they naturally eat less later without thinking about it.
    3031 days ago
    'And even though I want more, I've gotten smart enough to say "Calm down, it isn't like this is the last piece of battered Captain Ds fish you will ever see." ' This is so on the money and worth repeating over and over again when you are in that situation. It's all about moderation and you should be proud that you did well.
    3031 days ago
    I liked your blog and the humor you added to it. Sometimes we take things to seriously and beat ourselves up for not sticking to things. But the attitude you showed us in your blog really hit home for me. PORTION CONTROL is what it is all about and you nailed that on the head in a way most of can understand (and been there lol). Good for you and keep it up.
    3031 days ago
  • no profile photo CD13621205
    I'd consider that a NSV! emoticon
    3032 days ago
  • no profile photo CD12744659
    Congrats! It sounds like you had the perfect blend of indulgence and restraint. It's great to hear you've made enough great progress to be able to indulge yourself yet keep it under control. Not a lot of people would be able to be honest with themselves to wait 20 minutes, then decide that you want more, but don't need it. Again, congrats!

    Haha just be careful! My first fast food indulgence was a success in terms of self-control as well, but oh man, it can do a number on your digestive system if you've refrained from eating such things for awhile!
    3032 days ago
    emoticon Great job. I am still surprised at how little food I can sometimes be satisfied with. If I would just listen to my stomach instead of my brain....

    Fast food is pretty rare for me. It has been over a year since Ive had McDs or BK, but I have had Arby's and a few of the other "better" quality places. I do miss the convenience of it, but not the food itself.
    3032 days ago
    I enjoyed your blog. emoticon
    3032 days ago
    Smart attitude....there are very few single events that can derail comes down to having perspective. and building in some enjoyable moments & treats...just don't turn them into lifestyles!

    I like what i read the other day;

    Saying “Oh, I’ve already ruined my good eating today. I’ll just eat crap” is like saying “Oh, I dropped my phone on the floor. I’ll just smash it till it breaks.”

    Never give up just because you hit a bump in the road!
    3032 days ago
    By grabthar's hammer, thanks for not molesting the mcdonalds menu, hilarious as that sounds.
    3032 days ago
    That is the key to success!!! emoticon
    (echoing what Nikki said) :)
    3032 days ago
    I'm burping up pizza as we speak... ;)
    3032 days ago
    Took me awhile to get to the end of your blog because I was laughing hysterically @ " I didn't go buckwild and hit up the McD's drive through, stuffing my bra with bacon, egg, and cheese biscuits for breakfast and daytime snacks." Oh yea! Now THERE'S a mental picture.

    Great the way you handled the situation. You picked your options, didn't get into a cat fight and you survived! All good.

    3032 days ago
    I knew I would do better with weight loss this time around because I never told myself I could not have something. I tell myself that I can have anything I want as long as it is worth it. I try to think of certain things in term of how long it would take me to burn off. Typically I will tell myself that that one thing is not worth one hour on the treadmill and sometimes I tell myself it is absolutely worth it. We have to learn to live in the real world and in the real world there are fast food places on every corner.
    3032 days ago
  • no profile photo CD13457147
    That's how I am trying to eat now- a treat once in a while is fine- though I know somethings would start a binge so I don't go there. I want to eat this way the rest of my life not just to diet and lose weight. I have gone a couple times and something didn't taste as good as I thought so I just didn't finish it and I am more thoughtful about my sides. Like I love the fried fish at Cracker Barrel but when I went I picked a sw potato and carrots so the fish was the big indulgence. emoticon emoticon
    3032 days ago
  • no profile photo CD13046058
    As soon and someone tells me (or I tell myself) that I can't have something, I want it insanely and binge the first opportunity I can. So I identify when you told yourself, relax, this isn't the last piece of battered fish you'll ever have. Way to go! Once in a while for indulgences - not every day - is a great frame of mind. It's something you can live with and not go crazy! emoticon
    3032 days ago
    Hi. My name is Tiffany and I am a Fast Food Addict. Lol! We each have our boundaries. You could feel yourself in control when you decided to indulge. For me, the danger comes when I choose the fast food from other motivations--typically for self soothing. Those little biscuit thingies from the Golden Arches are my archnemesis. Period. One Sausage, Egg and Cheese biscuit and I'm in the throes of a total melt-down. I compromise and make my own healthy alternative breakfast sandwiches at home instead.

    My long winded point is congratulations on Knowing your boundaries and being respectful to your body.
    3032 days ago
    Now and then having something less than ideal or even 'bad' isn't a problem. The problem comes in when people have a tendency to think 'once in a while' is actually more frequent than it should be. That's the road to a rebound.
    3032 days ago
  • MINEA999
    That's the thing that I'm working on making a part of my life. Fast food happens. It's a fact of life. We can't let it derail us or give us a license to eat. It just is what it is, and when it's gone, the next meal is healthy.

    I haven't banned anything from my diet. I try to avoid things as often as possible (like high fat, sugar, calorie foods) but sometimes they're what is available and I just deal with it.

    3032 days ago
    moderation is key and it sounds to me like that is exactly what you are doing.

    Keep up the awesome work!!!
    3032 days ago
    One thing that is important about the experience you've shared is that everything about it was out of the ordinary. You were with your parents, they generally don't eat out, it was a special get-together, etc. The real danger in reintroducing the stuff is when you add it in the same way you would in the "old days", whatever that means for you. Then you're just reinforcing in your brain that "every time I do x, I get y." But when it's a one off, once in a blue moon, type deal, I think you're fine. emoticon
    3032 days ago
  • no profile photo CD1403645
    The best lesson I have learned through this all is to never deal in absolutes. Absolutes are the way of the Sith.

    Good for you! It is nice to be able to enjoy food and not let it be a stressor!!!
    3032 days ago

    Great blog!
    3032 days ago
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