Chit Chat

I don’t have enough about one topic to write a whole post, but if I title it “chit chat,” I can talk a little bit about a bunch of things, right?

So the first thing that’s on my mind is the subtitle of my blog “thoughts on living a whole and  healthy life.” I don’t write too much about living a healthy life any more. But unlike what many suspicious bloggers write, its not because I’ve fallen off the wagon or anything. I’ve just been writing about healthy living and diet and food and maintenance and exercise for seven freaking years. Most of the time I feel like there’s nothing new to talk about.

So here’s a healthy living check-up: I still eat mostly whole foods. Lots of great fruit this summer. Its been a disappointing summer for fresh vegetables, but I still find enough to enjoy, and I fill in with salads for the rest. I try to avoid sugar, although it has been making a more frequent appearance in the past month or so. Wheat? I’ve been eating it a bit more, and it does consistently result in some gastrointestinal disturbance. So that is pretty motivating to keep wheat off my plate for the most part. That re-gained 25 pounds that I worked so hard to re-lose a couple of years ago? Yep, I gained it all back. That leaves me holding steady and contemplating the next step. There’s no point in what was pretty severe food restriction if its not going to result in a lower MAINTENANCE weight. Some days I log my food, and other days I wing it. The days I “wing it” you can usually find a scrap of paper or two where I am jotting down what I ate to make sure I stay within the limits I’ve set. So I guess I log my food every day 🙂 I totally keep up my daily exercise, and really enjoy that. I go to the gym and do the bike for 20 minutes and pool-jog for 20 minutes. I stopped doing my weights exercises, just because of time restraints, and I realized that I was feeling a bit weak in my upper body. So it was back upstairs to the weights room at the gym, and I am enjoying that very much. Since its cooled down a bit, I am taking more walks with Noah and I do keep up with my PT exercises at home, and I added in a few core exercises to that routine too.

Recently I made a little change to my daily routine that I am quite pleased about. I usually have a small first breakfast (150-225 calories.) And then I was stopping mid-morning for a tea break, usually with a Quest bar. I decided to see if I could eliminate that snack. The first day I thought I might only be able to do it a couple of days a week. But now its become a habit, and I like it because it eliminates a few calories, but also because of the extra time in my morning.

Okay, back to that mention of severe food restriction. That is something I’ve thought about A LOT. I was going to write something about “You have to Decide for Yourself.” There are so many ways to eat. So very many good ways to eat. And one of the ways to cut down on the AMOUNT of food you eat is to just eliminate whole food groups. Look, there’s nothing wrong with this. Many cultures seem to live just fine with SEVERELY restricted food groups. But we don’t live in those countries. We live in America, the land of the free, where every conceivable food from every single food group is available every single day everywhere you go. So you have to decide what works for you. Don’t assume that just because eliminating food groups results in weight loss or claims of better health works for someone else that it will work for you. YOU HAVE TO DECIDE WHAT WORKS FOR YOU. And sometimes you have to try new things. How will you know that a certain way of eating will or won’t work for you unless you’re willing to try?

Changing subjects: the seven freaking years of writing? That all came back to me as I took on a daunting assignment the past couple of days. I write an occasional blog as “the healthy quilter” for The Quilt Show daily blog. But that “occasional” stretched out into a months long absence, and the longer it went on, the more I felt guilty, and the more I DIDN’T write. So I came up with the idea to take an entire day, and write a year’s worth of blogs (12) in one day. Oh, and the blogs are mainly recipe recommendations. So I spent about 12 hours searching my archives, looking over recipes, trying out recipes, finding photos of food, and then writing all about how tasty and delicious that food was! Fun????

Well, the fun part was that I did find some good old recipes of my own, and a couple of new ones that I am going to try out. This morning I had my Almond Joy Oatmeal (extra yummy,) and yesterday I had a brand new try–Crispy Oatmeal. It was super yummy, and I think might become my new winter BFF. This was all for one of the blogs that I titled “Oatmeal Three Ways.” The third way was Overnight Oats, which is also good, but its cold. And I’m pretending that its getting to be fall around here. Tonight I’m going to have one of the salads that I recommended. Got all the ingredients, and ready to go!

Here’s another thing I’ve been thinking about. Controlling your food environment is a very good thing. If its not in the house, you really will find something that will satisfy you that (hopefully) is a better, healthier choice. If it IS in the house, it is going to get eaten (I’m looking at you, Costco-big-bag-o-snacks.)

Well, that’s more than enough chit chat for one morning! I’m off to try to get back into my quilting groove!

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20 thoughts on “Chit Chat

  1. Yes – the restriction thing. I see some bloggers that are so obsessive about every ounce gained and every little thing they put in their mouth. It must be completely exhausting. I know after many years that this really is tiring when you are trying to control every.single.little.thing – and then you never experience life outside the ‘dieting fishbowl’. That’s kind of sad. Yes, you have to pay attention, but there are other things to pay attention to as well. I think we have both found maintenance isn’t always about the weight staying the same, but maintaining balance. That means gaining some and losing some. Finding that sweet spot where you are fine with how you are living and the results you are getting (for the most part 😉 )

    John made cookies the other day and I have eaten them. I wasn’t really expecting cookies in the house and he just up and made them. Ugh. I kind of wish they weren’t there. Tasty, though.

    • LOLOLOLOL. Your last paragraph. My mind EXACTLY.

      I was thinking about how I just wrote that I am motivated to keep wheat off my plate. And I was thinking that I should go and put an “*but that doesn’t mean I’ll give up cake completely.”

  2. Don’t stop talking about healthy eating. I stop by regularly, and I’m always interested in what you have to say about the topic. I’ve recently blogged about what I thought was a plateau, but turns out is a lifestyle. It’s so easy to slip back into old habits and avoid trying new things. I love oatmeal, so I’m going to copy down your recipes. Thanks for sharing your life with us. Great post!

  3. Debby…love your blog. I had to chuckle about your writing down everything you eat–especially on the scrap paper. You are right, at least you have SOME idea of how well you are doing, and also you can see how CRAZY you can get when you are in a funk. Just read an article on Oatmeal and Nuts and how filling and satisfying both are. Of course the article did emphasize PORTION…..they had to throw that in there. ha ha Now that the days will be getting chillier, oatmeal will hit the spot. We love reading about your daily life…KEEP WRITING. mickie

  4. I know what you mean – sometimes I feel like I’ve said all I can with regards to dieting and maintenance and healthy living. But then, something will crop up, and BOOM – new topic! And even if it seems like boring old news to me, as I write it, invariably someone will leave a comment saying how much they got out of reading what I wrote, so there’s that. I guess I said all that to say that I always get something out of what you write, and this post, especially…YOU DO YOU. Sometimes I think I would be better off going back to eliminating all baked goods, like I did back in the day, but then, how could I stand going to BB every Saturday? It’s a lifestyle, truly, and it has to be something we (the royal) can do year in and year out.

    Oh, and that crispy oatmeal sounds delicious! I will have to give it a try.

    • I know. I ALWAYS enjoy it when you have something new to share about maintenance.

      If you stopped going to BB every Saturday, you would eliminate some of my Wednesday enjoyment 🙂

      Yes, the crispy oatmeal. I want to have it again already!

  5. This is literally a serendipitous post for me as just this morning I once again was pondering just how much and what types of food I am willing to give up. I have been in a funk, AGAIN, about my seeming inability to budge any fat off my body. I’m sure the funk and thoughts are being brought on by the suddenly very cool temperatures and change of seasons as I also find myself dreading the thought of dragging out last year’s fall and winter clothes.

    Even in my situation (i.e. no weight loss but also not at maintenance) I feel I eat cyclically with “treat” items. We’ve had a lot of celebrations this year and I’ve eaten more sugar and carbs in general, and drunk more adult beverages than I typically would. Thankfully after Friday night, when we attend Mr. Helen’s black belt dinner, those will be at an end until the holidays.

    That might also be a reason why I’m thinking along the lines of what am I willing to do.

    In any case, back to “you be you” – this was a lesson I learned many years ago as a WW leader: never judge what someone else is consuming because you really have no idea what has been consumed all around that one time you’re seeing them eat. There is room for all types of foods and no one up and made me the food judge.

    Great post – keep ’em coming even if they are “just” chit chat!

      • Don’t apologize! You were just chit chatting right back at me–I love it!

        I wonder if you could reframe (see there, I used a WW term 🙂 ) and think of yourself as a maintainer. And these periods of cutting back are just part of how you maintain.

  6. About controlling your food environment: I always keep a candy jar on my desk filled with hard peppermints (which I rarely touch) but I decided to be festive and bought some candy corn to fill up the jar. Big mistake. BIG MISTAKE. I’m not a huge fan of candy corn, but just having it on my desk made me want to reach in 12 times a day and have a small handful. So after the jar was empty of candy corn, I refilled it with the peppermints (and haven’t touched them). Lesson learned: if it’s soft sugary, I will eat it. I can deal with the peppermints because I don’t really like hard candies – no allure there for me. Soft peppermints however, are a problem so I don’t keep those around either (learned that lesson the hard way too!). 🙂

    • Ah, the curse of the candy corn! I was getting my hair cut yesterday, and as I was leaving, I spied a bowl of candy corn on the counter. There was a woman between me and the corn, and I thought briefly about knocking her over to get at it. But then my better self just left 🙂 Perhaps, I thought sadly, there will be candy corn on another day.

  7. ROFL. I can’t stop laughing at your reply to Jill. Seriously, I’m STILL laughing. You surprised me with that one.
    I guess I need to reframe myself as a maintainer for the last year. I go thru these times where my addiction rears its ugly head and focuses on ONE food that I MUST have. And just when I think I’ve fought back to self-control – BOOM, I’m blithely buying and eating it again. &%$* So keep writing on healthy living when you have something to say, and chit chatting when you don’t. I get a lot of help from the healthy insights, and a lot of pleasure from your chats, garden, dogs, etc. etc. Gotta try the crunchy oatmeal.

    • Glad to make you laugh! Hey I wrote that one before coffee–so no filters 🙂 Yep, on the addiction and the obsession. Sometimes I think happily about the things I have conquered, the food I haven’t gone back to since I first started WW, and the treats that I still love, but don’t ever bake and keep in the house. But then, I think, better not think about that stuff too much, or it might become a reality again.

  8. I was just writing about whether to be a moderator or an abstainer. I must admit that while abstaining has some advantages (not having to make a decision each time the food appears for example), I tend to be a moderator. I often set up “rules” for foods. Or, maybe guidelines sounds a little less harsh. For example, I had a peanut butter cookie tonight. And, cookies have rules. So I don’t buy cookies for the house (I have to make a decision every time I go by the pantry and it is usually not the best one for weight reasons). But, one rule is that I can occasionally (no more than, say, once every month or so) have a cookie at home if it is one cookie I bought somewhere else. So…had that cookie tonight.

    SInce I got to my goal weight (top of the normal BMI range — may lose some more though) I’ve found that all those decisions that I made while losing the weight are still the decisions I make now. Nothing has really changed….

  9. I don’t read ‘food or diet blogs’ any more and anything about food restricting / dieting/ that kind of stuff . I tend to skip over this stuff in the few blogs I do read. I did see Quest bar mentioned here and wanted to say “Quest is Crack”…or something like it . I ate a Quest bar recently and I guess because I mostly eat healthy, whole foods with an occasional chick fil biscuit or cookie or DD Munchkin, the Quest hit me like a surge of drugs. I HAD to finish it even though I ‘d only wanted half. It wasn’t really ‘apple pie’ like the name, but it was more like apple cinnamon cookie dough (like apple jacks cereal flavored). My brain was lit up like a pinball machine. I have one more to eat ‘ cinnamon roll ‘ and I love cinnamon rolls but don’t often have them. Though I will on occasion. Maybe I’ll just taste it and throw it away. Then no more. no way. no quest. For Me anyway.

  10. @Mickie–Shelley is a runner, and every Saturday after her group run, they all go to Blue Baker. When I visited Shelley, I got to go to BB, and it is most worthy 😄

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