I signed up to be part of this nationwide women’s dietary study, and all of that starts for me on Monday. I did this because I know I need to make changes in order to get healthier, and accountability might help me stick with it. I also know that for at least the first couple of weeks, I will want to quit. I am not looking forward to the next couple of weeks, I dread them. However, I do look forward to them happening and getting through it. I just have to stay strong…something I do not have a good track record for doing.
As I have mentioned several times, I have an inner-child that throws tantrums when she doesn’t get her way. The worst tantrums come when I mess with my food. I absolutely cannot stand to be told what to eat. Does not matter if it is for health reasons or not, I want to eat what I am in the mood for, and nothing else will do. Now, many would tell you that I am not truly hungry when this happens, and they would be mistaken. I have gone days without really eating anything because what I wanted was not available, and I flat did not want what was.
It is not that I am a picky eater, per se. It is a quirk I really do not understand about myself, I just know that no matter how wrong I know I am being, I have to be shaking and nauseous with low blood sugar, on occasion, to eat something that does not appeal to my mood at the time. Childish? Absolutely! Easy to change, well – I am 53 and I have had no success with it to this point. It used to drive my Mom nuts, I would crave eggs for weeks, and then I would not eat them stating I did not like them. We quickly figured out I actually did like them, just was no longer in the ‘mood’.
What will make this time different? Honestly, I am not sure it will, but I am going into this with the mantra “no change without changing the behavior” – reminding myself that what I am doing is basically the very definition of insanity. I cannot actually believe that eating well for a week or two and then falling back on my comfort food will allow me to regain my health and feel great, because it has not worked so far.
How am I going to make it through? A lot of tears, a lot of running upstairs and being by myself, a lot of yelling at the sky. I have an online community and a support system. I have a meal plan, and I have a mantra. I also know that I do not have to be perfect, they are fine with 90% and even really bad slips, now and then. So I know it will not be about perfection and if I can make it through the week, I can go out on the weekend and have a pancake if I want.
It is the day-to-day that will be hard for the first few weeks. I will want a pizza, or to run to grab something fast and already cooked, regardless of the fact that I have prepped for the week. I just have to get through the first few weeks and not give in to my tantrums, because I know that they are just my fears of change protecting me from going through it. Once I am on the other side, my mind will realize that this fear was not something I needed to hold on to*.
So, tomorrow morning I will be going shopping, tomorrow afternoon, meal prep time, and Monday morning, I will have the tools I need to make it through to the other side. Prepared for the bumps in the road, but hands steady on the wheel and eyes fixed on the road.
* to understand what all this mind protecting stuff is about read Mel Robbins‘ book, The 5 Second Rule.