From Accidental to Intentional

What I see very clearly is that most people have no clue what they’re doing to themselves with the food they normally eat. Nor are most people aware of how much better they could look and feel if they stopped feeding themselves accidentally and started re-creating themselves intentionally.
—Bill Phillips,
Body for Life

I love this quote from Bill Phillips. I have definitely been guilty of feeding myself accidentally.

Spoiled Girl (Me), Eating Out

The Accidental Then
For the past fourteen years, I have been spoiled rotten when it comes to food. I have a husband who loves me unconditionally—even though I’ve packed on 65 pounds since we met. Neither of us likes to cook. He knows I work hard (at my desk job), so almost every evening when I got home, we would leave again to go eat out. Where we would be served. Where someone else would do the cooking and cleaning up. When we got married, I jokingly told him, “I promise to make you dinner—but only when I feel like it.” It’s nice to be spoiled.

Eating out is expensive. We became masters of the coupon. We’d go through the circulars that came in the mail and tape them to the back of our den door. We’d go to Restaurant.com looking for good deals. We’d go to Costco for a hot dog or a slice of pizza. We became regulars at restaurants that had weekly specials, such as $1 tacos on Taco Tuesdays.  We ate very, very well.  And it showed.

Just the thought of cooking stressed me out—except for weekends, when I had lots of time. I had all kinds of excuses.

“I’ve worked hard all day. I’m too tired to make dinner. I can’t deal with the mess afterwards.”
“It’ll take too much time. I’m hungry right now.”
“I deserve to relax.”
“I don’t know what to make.”

The Intentional Now
I work a little harder for my food now. I plan ahead. I think things through. Preparing my food makes it easier to get 10,000 steps recorded on my pedometer each day.

I have to go to the grocery story and pick out Lindora-approved items. I have to haul the bags into the house and put the groceries away. I have to pull stuff out and prepare meals. I have to clean up afterwards. (By the way, I adore my dishwasher.) I can hear my pedometer clicking away as I move around the kitchen, and I’m enjoying the movement after sitting at a desk all day. One evening on the way home from work, I went to Costco just to pick up a rotisserie chicken for dinner. There were quite a few steps required to go from the car to the back of the warehouse and back to the car again. Click. Click. Click.

I realize how spoiled I’ve been, and I wonder to myself, “Who do I think I am that I don’t have to prepare my own meals?” I think of all those women out there who get home from their day jobs and cook for their families or just their husbands. Just because I don’t have kids doesn’t give me the excuse to be a lazy slob.

And why haven’t I cared about healthy foods for my husband and me? We aren’t getting any younger. We can abuse our bodies only so much.

I am committed to working for my food.

Here’s my menu from yesterday.

Saturday, August 20, 2011
Pedometer: 11,120
Exercise: 20 minutes on treadmill, 6 minutes on elliptical, upper body strength training (finished Friday night’s workout), 30 minutes low-intensity swimming in the pool with my husband.
Party Success Strategy: I went to a party this evening. I ate my mid-day meal before we left the house so I wouldn’t have the urge to graze. For dinner at the party, I ate a double dose of protein as there were no fruits or veggies. There was no diet soda so I drank 3 bottles of water (next time I’ll bring my own diet drink). A couple of hours later I had a ZonePerfect Bar. I said no to wine, tortilla chips and salsa, carrot cake, and a pasta salad. Even though it was late, I ate another ZonePerfect bar after we left because I was tired and getting a bit dizzy.

  • 9:30am 3/4 c Cheerios (12), 1 c skim milk (12), Coffee (0) with 2 Tbsp sugar free Coffee-mate vanilla creamer (2), 2 chewable adult vitamins (3)
  • 1pm  1 oz string cheese (1)
  • 3pm Veggie Omelet: 1 egg (1), ¼ c onions (3), ½ Roma tomato (2.5), 1 tsp olive oil, clove of garlic; 2 c Romaine lettuce (3), 1 c strawberries (11)
  • 6pm ZonePerfect Cashew Pretzel bar (13)
  • 8pm Approx 3 oz. grilled chicken (excellent!) (0) and 3 oz. salmon (0), a couple of slices of cucumber
  • 11pm ZonePerfect Chocolate Mint bar (13)
  • Total carbs:  76.5
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7 thoughts on “From Accidental to Intentional

  1. This was really inspirational to read. My husband and I also go out a lot (though we hadn’t become masters of the coupon, unfortunately). That’s really a lot of the reason that I am where I am now. I was stressed with work and would come home and not want to cook, so we would go get hamburgers and I packed on 20-30 lbs in a matter of weeks!

    Like you, I’m eating far more intentionally. I’m planning my meals daily, and taking things with me to work.

    Also, your party strategy is great! I, too, have found that I have to eat a good on-plan meal before going out, and it will keep me from being tempted much by those things around me.

    You have also convinced me that I should get a pedometer. Just as planning and measuring my food makes me more diligent about what I eat and when, measuring my steps would make me more diligent about getting in a certain amount of physical activity each day!

    Keep it up! You are doing great, and I’m so proud of you for saying “no” to the things available to you!

    • Thank you SO much for your comments! Eating out is so dang easy. Believe it or not, we got pretty tired of it, which helped to get me going on this program.

      I love that you’re inspired to get a pedometer. What I like about Lindora is they urge you to “move more.” It doesn’t mean we have to go to the gym. It just means we’ve got to get up off the couch and do stuff. Lately I keep forgetting the darn thing at home and feel incomplete – like I’m not capturing my efforts.

      Keep up the good work! I’m inspired by you as well and really enjoy reading your blog. What’s your first name, if you don’t mind saying? : )

  2. Jennifer, sounds like you’ve been making steps in the right direction! Keep working hard! ~Brittany @ZonePerfect

    • Thanks Brittany. I am in love with ZonePerfect. : ) Loving all the new flavors. Can’t get enough of Cashew Pretzel. : )

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