Back on the Wagon

farm-464190_1920Yesterday’s dietary fail was the first real blip in eight months of new healthy lifestyle habits. I didn’t begin all at once with the full dumpster of dietary deprivations, I let myself gently into these new ways. But within the first two months I’d eliminated all the bad stuff, even the few things I was holding on to with excuses like, ‘oh, a little bit won’t hurt’… and ‘I’m giving up so much, surely I can get away with this’… Out had gone all the sugar (last to go was my favourite Rachel’s Organic Coconut yoghurt, which, I have to admit now, was very, very sweet). And then the biggie for me, out went the crisps (aka potato chips) and other processed salty snacks too (with the exception of my go-to lightweight wasabi flavoured seaweed snack, an ultra-low-calorie port in the snacking storm).

Savouries were actually harder for me to reject than the sugary treats, but I got there – and the challenge for me now is never to buy, never to have crisps/chips or similar munchies in the house. These days, I limit my salty snacks to tiny handfuls if they’re served up at friends’ houses, for example. But I never buy bags of crisps/chips for home any more.

But when Ocado, my supermarket delivery service gave me a full-sized 140g bag of ‘healthy’ organic chia seed corn chips as a sample, it was more than my money-sensible head would allow, to simply throw them away. I’ve thrown away odd chocolate samples before, and even ice cream samples, but ‘healthy’ organic corn chips?  They went into the cupboard for some future occasion involving guests.  They stayed there for two months. Untouched. Until my weakened willpower overwhelmed me, yesterday afternoon.

But that was yesterday – you felt my pain. And I resolved to make amends to my body with a fast-day. Are you interested in how I got on?

piglet-520883_1280Sunday 17:00

The humous is finished and the rest of the corn chips are in the bin, mulched into slurry. I feel piggish and pig-sick. But my fast-day penance – 24 hours at least – begins here.

Sunday 19:30

I let my angst spill across the screen and I upload my post.

Sunday 22:00

It’s been lovely, all evening, receiving such positive and encouraging comments on my blog post. It has softened the pain of my dietary fail.

Sunday 22:30

I will walk tomorrow morning, whatever the weather.  I set out my exercise clothes before I go to bed, making them impossible for me to ignore when I get up.

Sunday 23:00

Those corn chips have settled like a slab of concrete in my gut. It’s more than six hours since I consumed them, but for the first time in months, I have the sense of food in my oesophagus, a precursor to acid reflux. I take a couple of Gaviscon tablets to hold it back.

fire-227291_1920Monday 01:30

I’m awake and uncomfortable with heartburn, another sensation I haven’t had in months and months. I deserve this.

Monday 04:00

Awake again, restless. This time the discomfort is more emotional.

Monday 05:30

That’s it. It seems I’m to get no more sleep.

Monday 06:00

Might as well get up then. I weigh myself – no change since yesterday, the humous hasn’t headed straight for my hips then. That’s a plus at least. I dress and get out of the house.  Audiobook on iPhone. It’s chilly but not bitter outside, and nice to be out before the rush hour traffic has cranked up. I walk for 50 minutes, pushing myself to go left instead of right at the decision point, choosing my ‘big’ morning circuit over the quickie version.

Monday 07:15

Back home. Feeling good now, refreshed and virtuous. I know… it’s hardly a marathon, but it’s the right start to the day.

2015-09-10 09.50.07 copyMonday 08:00

I replace my usual breakfast Bircher muesli mix with a glass of warm water, lemon and ginger. I’ve found a way to prepare it using my Nutribullet, that means I no longer get icky bits of lemon pip and shreds of ginger in my teeth. I whizz it up until it’s frothy, then bung it in the microwave for a few seconds. Tolerable, it awards me a few more smug points.  Black coffee follows – that’s not a trial, as it’s my all-day drink of choice anyway.

Monday 08:30

Instead of munching my breakfast in front of the TV, I head straight for my office (that’s my spare bedroom, by the way), and make a start on this post. Then work – I’m still very busy this week, so good to get my head down and not think about if I’ll get to feeling hungry later.

Monday 10:00

Worth a mention, I’m even feeling (a bit) better about my brutal haircut today, having made judicious use of ‘product’ and straighteners. (Perry – thanks for reminding me of the proper way to use sticky stuff on my shorn locks – it worked a lot better this morning.)

Monday 12:00

A paper-shuffling desk morning, and I’m on my third cup of coffee, but no hunger pangs yet, and no inclination to break my 24-hour fast.  I’m feeling good; this is a head-clearing and re-setting of my commitment.

Monday 13:00

Gah! A neighbour has one of those horrible, relentlessly noisy power-wash services spraying (totally unnecessarily IMHO) their already spotless driveway. I’m all for taking pride in one’s property, but this grinding torture looks set to continue for the next couple of hours. It’s eating my brain cells and disrupting my hitherto calm and serene state of food-fast. My head hurts.

Monday 14:00

Feeling hungry now, but that’s okay. I think I want to enjoy the feeling of hunger, of readiness to eat – because I’ve decided I will eat after 17:00 today, once I’ve completed 24 hours. It means I’ve begun to look forward to what I might prepare for this evening’s meal.

Monday 15:00

Perhaps three hours to go until I finish work and eat. I’m thinking maybe grilled asparagus with poached eggs and a sprinkle of parmesan.  Not sure yet, but hunger is sharpening my need for more than fuel. I want a plate of food that looks appetising too.  And it must differentiate significantly from yesterday’s bag of corn chips and hummus scooped from the tub.

Screenshot 2016-04-18 08.46.27 copyMonday 16:00

I’ve had five cups of coffee today, which I confess is two more than I usually enjoy and one more than I have on an occasional caffeine-heavy day. I know I should have drunk more plain water, but there it is. I like coffee.   I’m buzzing a bit, but it’s not so gross. Water from now on, or I will suffer for it tonight.

Monday 17:00

That’s it – 24 hours – and I actually feel really, really good. I’ve always wondered if I could manage a fast-day and whilst my 24-hours has straddled two days, it is still 24 hours with no food, and it wasn’t even a little bit difficult. So I’ve learnt something about myself, and that’s a positive. I feel I’ve undone the damage from yesterday too, which is, after all, what this was about.

Monday 18:00

24+1 and I’m signing off. It’s time for dinner!

Author: Jools

Abundant, Bold, Confident, Determined, Empathetic, Forthright, Grumpy, Healthier, Individual, Just me, Kind, Loving, Mellifluous, Natural, Optimistic, imPatient, Quirky, Real-world, Single-minded, unTreatable, Unwound, Verbal, Wilful, eXtraordinary, Young and old, Zero-tolerance.

18 thoughts on “Back on the Wagon”

  1. Wow, that’s a pretty intense 24 hours, but you made it. Kudos to you. It’s funny–chips (crisps) don’t really tempt me. A few and I’m satisfied. But sweet things I always want more of. Guess my brain doesn’t reward my salt intake, but it sure does my sugar one.

    1. We’ve spoken (blog-wise) about this before I believe – the way some people struggle with giving up sweet but have no trouble with savoury. I’m the opposite – blissfully not tempted to sugar, but on-guard (not always successfully) against a salty snack-attack. I’m also very lucky not to have much of a taste for alcohol. As a result, I freely and without guilt enjoy as much alcohol as I like to drink, which is give-or-take a half-glass of wine or similar, once or twice a month. It fascinates me, how some people struggle so hard with this, where my struggle is those darned salties!

  2. You are so … virtuous. A bag of crisps okay a sack, I understand but 24hours of punishment for what really wasn’t so bad. Maybe I am trying to justify the huge Sunday roast I had… you can’t be picky when, one, someone else cooked for you, can you? two, you have your brother and sister in law over once in two months, three, it looks so inviting and one meal is not a deal breaker (the biggest lie).
    So roast Chicken (with crisp skin) roast potato, mustardy mash, yorkshire puds, carrots, green beans, broccoli, cranberry jelly and gravy, served on the biggest showoffy square plates. Followed by scicllian lemon tart and madagascan vanilla ice cream.
    Now by your standard, high as it is, I should be on my knees praying for forgiveness, having colonic irrigation and fasting for three days. Please don’t think for a minute that I don’t know that is exactly (barring the praying) what needs to happen; because I do. Why do I tell myself it’s a treat day? I wouldn’t treat myself to poison, but I know it has the same effect on me. Bloated, windy, uncomfortable, guilt ridden, embarrassed and ashamed at my lack of self control and indulgent greed. Back on track but with no chance of getting into the dress for the wedding this weekend. And the same as you it would be the salty or sour that I couldn’t have in the house. *sulk* “when will I learn”.

    1. Oh Ellen!! You did make me laugh! I sympathise, but the reality is that we all need to be able to accommodate these indulgent days, and maybe that isn’t so bad, because the trick is to learn how to manage them, and get back on track after. I would have – and do – enjoy the crispy skinned roast chicken, roasties (but perhaps just one?) (or two?)…. and all the rest, with the exception of dessert, on which, for me, there is no compromise. That’s because my Big Thing is excluding the sugar/sweet.

      My problem with those corn chips and the humous was not what they were, but that I ate, and ate, and ate, ignoring any sense of self-control or satiety, until I’d finished the tub – and that’s what felt so bad.

      As for my high standard… don’t be fooled, I indulge all over the place, but with caveats: Much smaller indulgences, more controlled, not buying for myself. But it doesn’t come easy – new habits never do.

      Interesting that you too suffered, gastrically (is that a word?) speaking, for your indulgence, as did I. It really shows you what the old habits were doing to you, doesn’t it?

      Whatever you wear – enjoy the wedding!

  3. I have been away for two weeks staying with other people and things slipped for me a bit too … mostly with having alcohol and milk-coffees more often. This ‘being social’ is a distraction. Back to the straight and narrow for a few weeks for me now.

    1. Being social is a distraction, but it’s also ‘life’, and our pleasure. We need to be able to balance this pleasure and our need for self-control, and not be too hard on ourselves. Trick is to get right back on it after the fun of the social, and keep on going…

      1. Yes! So true. It is good to enjoy the company of others … And I was reading through one of your posts where you mentioned something about less exercise and i realized too that I did not do my normal walking for two weeks when I was staying with others. I am getting back into that again now and enjoying it … so am back on track again. 🙂

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