Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Intentional Chocolate

Chocolate doesn’t really even rate highly on my list of foods I crave but I love today’s title, borrowed from Yes, my current strategy involves intentionally eating all of the things I love, balanced by portion control and keeping up my training. Basically I like to see what I can get away with food-wise, lol! Keeps that metabolism cranking! is one of the few ‘foodies’ blogs I like to read (I’d read more if I were allowed to surf the net all day). We share a love of thinking of all the yummy things we love and trying to eat them all at the same time…. For example I’ve gotten a lot of fabulously naughty ideas to make a bowl of oats for breakfast more like dessert… Kath is a runner so I guess can afford to ‘carb up’ a lot more than me (so lazy!) so my compromise is to choose one or two things to add to my oats each day to make life just that little bit sweeter. This morning I had 50g mango through my oats.. yum!

I think the ultimate goal for emotional eaters is to feel in control of your eating habits and enjoy food.

What about if you want to or like being all ‘hardcore’ and are genuinely happy to only ever eat food as fuel? Wow well if that’s true then good for you and I’m a little jealous of your six-pack right now! Although just quietly I am wondering what planet you are from and whether you have ever tasted hot chips with garlic aioli or baked cheesecake… haha. (Talk about “sometimes foods”!)

In the past I have wanted to achieve this and used to think that to truly consider myself an athlete, I had to be disciplined enough to eat ‘functionally’ 24/7. To be honest, I used to think that anyone who preached using a balanced approach was ‘soft’ and just wanting to justify eating crap….! At the end of the day you can tell a lot more about a person by what they DO not what they SAY.

For most of us, there’s a little struggle going on in your mind where some days you just want to be able to eat whatever you want but on other more motivated days, you’re willing to do whatever it takes to be lean as…. I’m about 80% fuel and 20% taste right now and am using a bit of common sense in planning my meals to balance these conflicting extremes and keep all the voices in my head happy …(!)

Using my list of foods from yesterday, I have a good idea of how often I should be eating each item and what is a reasonable portion for me – this is something we all have to consider for ourselves based on your foods, activity level and current goals (usually losing/maintaining fat and gaining lean muscle mass). It also depends on how disciplined you’re willing to be. There’s no point saying you want to have abs year-around but also want to eat chocolate everyday. Basically, you need to align your eating/exercise habits with your goal and keep it realistic. Break out of the cycle of setting unachievable goals and feeling like a failure because you can’t keep up with what it takes to get there.

As for these foods triggering overeating, I guess that’s a risk you have to manage by not eating when you’re upset and staying focused. But if you know you can have x food again tomorrow or later in the week then that makes it a lot easier to stop. I’ve been on some mad binges in my time. If I’m feeling that behavior coming on, I ask myself “you have to stop eating at some point – do you want to feel good about it or … gross?”

Its worth thinking about …. Personally, if I tell myself I can’t have a particular food for longer than say, a week - then I consider myself to be on a diet. I don’t want to be on a diet 365 days a year, do you? It’ll make comp dieting easier, I promise!


Ali - MesoCorp said...

Right on. If it keeps cravings in check and helps control the other 99% of you week then go with it! x

Lauren said...

Good post Steph. It is so important to find what works for you (as an individual) because what's good for the goose is NOT always good for the gander!!!!

Frankie said...

Yep, I like your thinking Steph!

For incredible info, advice and support- get involved!