A screenshot from my scale this morning. Obvi I went up by about a pound and a half.
And I know why. I had it in my schedule that I would skip the gym Wednesday mornings. I have a standing weekly appointment at that time, and if I’m being realistic I won’t have time for the gym then, so why not avoid the unrealistic gym goal, and build in one day a week that I don’t go? That seems reasonable. So I didn’t go Wednesday morning. I went to work, and had my Potbelly’s for lunch and my salad for dinner.
Wednesday is my Friday, meaning I have Thursdays and Fridays off work every week. I came home at the normal time that night, and I wasn’t hungry, like normal, and I had my fruit waiting for me at home, like normal.
But something happened in my brain in the span of getting off the train and walking down two flights of stairs to the street. Without thinking, or rather, with a little weak justification and then no critical thinking about those justifications or my subsequent actions, I straightaway went into the pizza place across the street and got a slice and a cookie, my regular after work meal before that got me into this fat pickle in the first place.
And then I didn’t go to the gym Thursday. Or Friday. And I ate garbage too. And I avoided this blog. I basically laid on the couch and watched shitty tv and ate whatever the hell I wanted.
So let’s figure out what the fuck happened.
I made the following justifications that shoved me right the fuck off the wagon:
- It’s my weekend, I deserve some treats.
- I haven’t lost much weight yet, and I probably will fail this time like I’ve failed in the past when trying to lose weight so fuck it I’m going to eat an entire pint of ice cream because nothing matters.
And I avoided my goals by taking naps and watching tv. What’s weird is that I enjoyed my mornings going to the gym*, and I felt better eating better. I didn’t even really enjoy the pizza, and I felt bad for eating garbage I knew wasn’t good for me.
So what I think is happening is maybe a couple things:
- Old habits die hard, and are going to take time to not only rewire my brain with a new habit, but also, and even before the rewiring takes place, I’m going to have to practice some serious awareness with actions that are so insidious they are nearly automatic.
- There is a lot of data out there about how our gut microbiome drives our food cravings, and I think my pizza and cookie microbes are strong, because I’ve been feeding them a lot for a long time, and that’s likely where my “automatic” drive to eat pizza and cookies comes from.
So what am I going to do in the future to try and beat back this bad behavior?
Next Wednesday, I will still skip the gym. I think it’s good for me to have a rest day at this early stage. And like I said, I can’t make it that morning b/c of a scheduling conflict anyway. Also, it wasn’t a problem to eat well during the day. I just fucked up when I came home after my work week and thought I deserved something for completing that task. And my need for a reward wasn’t even very strong. The biggest hurdle was that I wasn’t thinking about what I was doing.
I think the answer is to plan to write a blog post that night. It will give me something to do and it will force me to use my brain and think about what I’m doing as well. And if I need a treat, I will bring home some different fruit, so I’m staying within my good eating routine but still getting something special. I love mango, so I will likely bring home some pre-cut mango slices from work, and destroy the whole container, guilt free, because even a whole container will be well within my calorie allotment. I think the most important takeaway here is to stay the course. I fucked up. I will likely fuck up again. I just can’t give up.
*I’m not going to lie and say I enjoyed the exercise, because that’s bullshit. The exercise is hard because I’m fat and out of shape. But I do enjoy how I feel after the exercise. I like the shower and the blogging and the water drinking. And the exercise isn’t as bad as I think it’s going to be when I’m rousing in bed before I go.