Sunday, March 13, 2011

Intoxicating Foods

I have written that my formula for physical transformation is:  Eating plus Movement over Time, and the formula continues to work for me as the days become weeks, months, and years since this journey started.  My progress has not been strictly linear though, far from it!  If I had been able to stick to optimal nutrition and activity levels for the past two years, I would have been at 108 pounds some time ago.  Hey, how about a calculation?  Lets take the pounds I wanted to lose when I came back to blogging in September- (15).  Multiply by the number of calories in a pound- (3500).  Then divide by the typical daily calorie deficit for fat loss- (500).  15 X 3500 = 52,500 (Sheesh, no wonder you don't see this calculated very often, that number of calories is daunting!)  Divided by 500= 105.   Wow.  Oh my gosh.  105 days?  Just 105 days to get the body I always wanted?  What's stopping me?  What's stopping you?  Oh- it's not that simple you say.  But why isn't it?

There are so many reasons why it's not that simple to knock off 500 calories a day in a straight shot, and it's a life mission for me to discover and find a way around, over, or through as many obstacles to perfect physical well being as I can.

The obstacle I want to confront today is:  Intoxicating Food


What is intoxicating food, and how does it interfere with our goals?  Let's define intoxicate shall we?  according to my dashboard dictionary we have-
Intoxicate: Cause someone to lose control of their faculties or behavior.  (No kidding!)
                : Poison (Eeek!)
                : (Figurative) Excite or Exhilarate.

I've talked before about foods that are satisfying and foods that are stimulating.  For me, an example of a satisfying food is spinach, and an example of a stimulating food would be whole grain bread, or natural peanut butter.  I can eat satisfying foods freely without fear of tipping over into overeating.  Stimulating foods are the ones I need to eat carefully as part of a balanced meal in measured quantities.  On this fat loss journey, I've gone through periods where my menus are only made up of satisfying foods.  Sometimes I include stimulating foods, but honestly the barrier to getting all the way to my Super Goal has been the way I react to intoxicating foods.  A few examples?  Chocolate, fruit snacks, granola bars with peanut butter, christmas cookies, Rombauer Chardonnay (oops, that's wine), rice pilaf.  The list is somewhat random, and totally individual.

It is time to refine my thinking about intoxicating foods, and to decide how they will fit into my menu, if at all.  I have believed for some time now that in order to change our physiques we have to change our thinking first, and I think that my intoxicants have to go, at least until I reach my goal.  At that time some of them may be asked to come out and play a role in my eating again.  I'm not sad or disappointed though.  By taking out chocolate and fruit snacks I make room in my life for something even better, a sense of well being that starts the moment I finish a meal that supports my ultimate goals.

Not everyone gets intoxicated by food.  My son and my husband stop when they're full whether the menu contains pickles or pop tarts, but maybe some foods affect you in a similar way.  If you are on the road to building the body of your heart's desire, it may be time to consider what  foods are intoxicating for you, and what role they will play in your story.