I am a liar. Not just to you [the readers] but to myself. My diet has been a colossal failure. But I keep reminding myself that it’s never too late to start over. Every day is a chance for a new beginning and this article will not only chronicle my journey but it will keep me committed to it. When I first lost weight it was for all the wrong reasons. I wanted to shut the mouths of all the naysayers who said I couldn’t make it and prove that I was someone who was actually worth a damn, but as the quote goes, “poor is the man whose pleasure depends on the permission of another”. When I shed my adolescence and made my first steps into adult hood the opinions of others mattered less and less, adversely so did my negative body image, which at the time was my sole motivation for maintaining my rigorous exercise regimen. In college my mind flourished but my health steadily declined.
But this go around will be different. I’m not doing this for them. This is for me. My family has a history of diabetes and I won’t walk that same path. I won’t leverage my youth for the sake of my addiction any longer. But unlike a normal addict who can remove themselves from temptation; I will be confronted by it every day. I can’t just stop eating. Starvation isn’t the solution for me losing weight. Starvation won’t solve my need for late night binging. The one good thing is, unlike a normal addict, I can counter act the negative effects of my condition with simple exercise, but even that can only last for so long. When it comes to improving my health, exercise is only 20% of the battle (and to be honest it’s not something I partake in on a consistent basis).
First thing’s first, I’m going to have to conquer my eating habits. I’ve already told my coworkers that I am going on a diet, so they have been hounding me relentlessly for the past couple of weeks (it’s because they care). Having a system of people that will hold you accountable is essential, because sometimes the only way for change to move forward is with the help of your others.
The next step is avoiding the old triggers. I tend to eat when I’m bored, so to keep my mouth preoccupied I’ve taken to smacking on a couple of sticks of Double Mint. I also tend to get bad cravings during times of stress (and the fact that I work in customer service only contributes more to my bad food choices). But one thing I’ve learned is that when I’m stressing I’ll eat the most readily available foods over any other option, what can I say — I am a complex blend of both lazy and impatient attributes, so I need to prepare options that are healthy for stress binging. Instead of drowning my sorrows in a pint of ice cream I can wipe my tears with a lettuce wrap (I know the solution should be to just stop ‘emo’ binging entirely, but I am taking baby steps here). I also remember a study, from my psychology class back in college, that people will only over indulge in food that requires a lack of effort to consume[The Pistachio Effect] (no wonder I would rather order out than walk the few steps to my kitchen and fix a salad). So when it comes to my war against the bulge I will have to be diligent. Preparation is key. I will need to make healthy alternatives ready in case of any emergency, so when I do get cravings I’ll make the easiest option the right option.
But when you work at a job where free ice cream and free tacos are no rare commodity it can be an uphill battle. It’s like a crack head trying to get clean in a crack house. I’m caught up in the struggle.