Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Lifestyle Change

Right now, I'm not choosing to make time for exercise.

I know, I know.

Really, I do. I know all of the reasons that exercise is good for me and how good it makes me feel. But for now I have to settle for the occasional walk or hike and the exercise associated with doing laundry or straightening the house. (Seriously, I have chore days where I barely sit down all day, so it’s not like I’m completely sedentary.)

The trade off at the moment is that I’m spending a lot of time focusing on what I’m eating. R and I are using the Livestrong app on our phones to keep our eating in check. It has reminded me that I don’t need to eat until I’m completely stuffed. I've stopped going for seconds at dinner, I'm no longer mindlessly snacking while I am cooking or cleaning in the kitchen and I am eating less crap. Mostly less stuff that is filled with sugar.

I am not giving up entire categories of food. I am not giving up chocolate. I am working to create a meal “plan” that I can live with long term because the weight is coming off very slowly. Which, honestly is good. These changes are sustainable for the next 6-9 months to get to my goal. (I’ve lost about 7 pounds in 2 months.) And once I get to my goal, I hope it won’t be hard to maintain my new weight since I have established a life strategy and not used a fad diet.

My favorite thing about the livestrong app is the reminder that you start fresh every day. Even if I go way over my goal one day…<>…the next day I start from scratch. It is a wonderful reminder that one day of extra calories does not *ruin* my efforts. It is just one day.

The reason that this is a trade-off for exercise is that I am spending more time planning around food. Meal planning, preparing and regularly shopping to have healthy foods available for all of us to eat. I really do enjoy vegetables a lot, but they generally take a little more forethought than fruit. If I plan, I can have them available so that I munch on red peppers and carrots instead of grabbing chips or bread while I make dinner.

I have slowly been building up my bank of recipes and trying to focus on meals that have more vegetables. Some nights I am making a batch of stir-fry veggies for me, a meat dish for R and a noodle side for the kids. They all go together as a meal, but each component has a certain family member in mind. Other nights I can make one dish or two that makes us all happy. Rare, but it happens.

All of this is a way of introducing a few posts that I have in mind about food. I just wanted to set the stage for what is to come.

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