Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Routine on pause

I create organized systems for every part of my life. I like routines, I like consistency, and I like numbers. Which is why I have a very consistent Monday through Friday routine. I work out in the morning, run five minutes late to work, and then pretend to go home at five. (Generally, I have a planned work/activist/social activity. I rarely am actually home.) I make my lunch the night before, pack my clothes for the next day, and go to bed.

This morning I slept through my alarm, and woke up about the time I should have been half-way through my workout at the gym. I'm trying to decide what that means for the rest of my day. Do I exercise after work? Tonight is the only night this week I don't have plans, and I was looking forward to going home, relaxing and doing laundry. On the other hand, I know that the next week will be difficult for me weight-wise due to the vacation. I SHOULD work out after work, but I think I'm just going go home, do laundry, walk around a bit in the park, and go home and enjoy my new room.

I am very good about my exercise routine (normally). It's just a habit - get up and go to the gym. But I am terrible with food. As I think I've mentioned before, I'm a food addict. An alcoholic once said, "I don't want just one drink. I want ten." The same with me and food. I don't want one of anything. I want AT LEAST ten.

I've tried to handle this in a variety of ways.
  1. I'll buy food I can have a lot of, like baby carrots or broccoli.
  2. I'll pre-portion everything. When I make soup, I immediately put it into portion-size containers. I will eat whatever's in front of me, so I need to have the food in a portion size I should consume.
  3. With the help of portion control and calorie counting, I am slowly training my body to know what is a portion. I have been on this training path for over six months now, and it's still going slowly.
I no longer can eat an entire cake, but I can still eat half of one. This probably doesn't sound like a huge improvement, but it really is. Unlearning a lifetime of habits is slow-going, and every small sign of progress is a huge success, even if it takes months and years to get it right.

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