Another successful weekend of staying on track has passed. The phrase "staying on track" will mean something different to everyone. For me, it means: managing my portions, eating regularly throughout the day, sticking to whole foods, AND enjoying a treat night every week!
Cravings used to rule every aspect of my life. If we had any form of junk food in the house, there was ZERO control, only mass consumption. I then tried not buying junk food when getting groceries in the hopes of not eating it because it's not in the house. I quickly came to realize that was almost worse!
It could have been 8p.m. and in my pajamas, and I would suddenly want chips and dip, closely followed by a craving for chocolate. Instead of thinking of an alternative, I would literally change and drive to the nearest convenience store and purchase that and more because once I got there, I couldn't decide what I wanted. This wouldn't just happen once in awhile - it became a regular occurrence, because the second I would have it, I craved it even more. Eventually, we were spending more money on our cravings than on real food.
Now, I've done a complete 180. I've achieved that by learning two things:
1. If the majority of my nutrition comes from healthful foods, I crave the empty calorie
2. I can't feel as though I need to deprive myself of the foods I enjoy just to obtain the healthy
weight I want - I just needed to find a new way of treating myself.
For over three months now, I have been able to almost eliminate my binge eating from cravings. I say almost, because the holidays got me! However, it was temporary, and I quickly was able to get back on track. Changing the foods I eat has lessened my night time cravings and have found that I tend to go for a hot cup of tea instead of anything with empty calories. I find since I've changed my intake, when I do treat myself to chocolate, or chips, etc. that the taste doesn't have the same impact it once did - so I have been able to stop after having a smaller portion.
The other trick that seems to work for my boyfriend and I is making one night a week (usually Saturdays) a 'treat' night where we come up with a different meal or snack that we enjoy but don't have often. For instance, last week we had taco night - but did it with all whole foods and no pre-packaged taco seasonings. We used Lisa Leake's real food recipe found here.
It was absolutely delicious.
If you read my last blog, you would know we were pizza addicts! We loved the thought of it, we loved the taste of it, but afterwards we felt awful. So, yesterday, instead of ordering a pizza among other items like we used to, we instead decided to make our own using only whole food items. It didn't look pretty, but it was incredibly tasty AND we didn't feel like crap afterwards!
After reflecting on how much our eating habits continue to change - for the better, I've come to a wonderful realization - that my cravings no longer control me, but I control my cravings. This is possible by taking proactive steps to not deny us of what we enjoy, but doing our very best to manage portions and the ingredients that they contain.
I truly hope that those of you who are ruled by cravings are able to find a way to overcome them in a way that works for you, because I know how much it can impact you emotionally and physically. I hope that this blog has given you some potential ideas as to how you can take that next step. Please share how you manage your cravings in the hopes of helping all of us :) WE CAN DO THIS!!!! Have a great week everyone and remember STAY THE COURSE!